Bishop Paul S. Morton, founding & presiding bishop of The Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International which encompasses some 5,000 churches and 1 million members, confirmed on Saturday that his “spiritual son,” who leads a megachurch, engaged in “multiple” sexual relationships. Morton apologized to the women involved.
“I was recently made aware of a situation involving one of my spiritual sons, Bishop Victor Couzens, being involved in multiple relationships that caused me concern. I spoke with Bishop Couzens about his actions as they were not in alignment with the level of character I expect of pastors, especially one that is my spiritual son. He has repented and tendered his resignation as the Bishop of College of Elders of Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship,” Morton said in a statement.
“Though I understand the relationships were consensual, I want to also offer an apology to the young ladies involved as well as the body of Christ for this situation. People of God, we must maintain high standards. I’m not perfect but I’m determined to present myself to God as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto God, which is my reasonable service,” said the Full Gospel founder who previously admitted to having a daughter out of wedlock.
Morton’s apology came after Andrea Garrison, a 29-year-old New York City model who said she had a long-term sexual relationship with Couzens and planned to move in with him as recently as last month, publicly demanded that Couzens apologize to her for allegedly getting engaged to another woman and lying about the nature of their affair.
“I felt stupid, I felt used, I’m hurt, [he] publicly humiliated me, tried to lie on me, tried to tell people I got no receipts. I got more receipts than you could ever imagine,” Garrison explained in an interview with Larry Reid Live on Wednesday where she presented photos of them together as recently as this summer.
“Church checks, [evidence] from other women coming at me with receipts. It’s a lie. It’s not cool,” she insisted of the evidence she has to back up her story.
Garrison stood by her story in an interview with The Christian Post on Monday morning and shared explicit evidence of the relationship she had with Couzens.
She said she was intimate with Couzens as recently as three weeks ago and was led to believe that she and the megachurch preacher began a steady relationship in April after enjoying an on-and-off sexual relationship since 2011.
She was devastated to learn recently, however, that her relationship with the pastor was not exclusive.
“I never knew that there was another girl [fiancee’]. As far as I knew, whenever I would ask, he would always say I was the only one. He didn’t want me sleeping with anybody else. He didn’t want me doing this. He didn’t want me doing that. I was the only one. He would fly me out constantly between New York and Cincinnati. He would fly me out to Miami. You know, we would spend more time together, he would have me come to the house for like a week. I would cook, clean, do laundry,” Garrison told Reid.
Prior to her interview with Reid she also defended her “truth” in an extended broadcast on Facebook Live last Tuesday.
She told Reid that she would have privately moved on with her life after discovering Couzens’ alleged deception but she felt forced to respond after he publicly dismissed their relationship and painted her as a liar in a Facebook post that has since been deleted.
“Social media makes it possible for anyone to accuse anyone of anything and it seemingly be taken as gospel. No receipts! Just accusation and innuendo. On top of the fact that there are some that lurk around looking for an opportunity to condemn others. Based on what they heard or what someone else has said. Those people are never ‘your’ people,” Couzens reportedly wrote in the since deleted Facebook post.
“At 41 years old I have come to understand [that] ultimately people are going to believe what they want to believe. And that’s fine. It’s not my responsibility to chase and respond to every accusation. Or give a commentary on what’s true and what’s not true. Especially when grown people suddenly become childish about their adult decisions.
“I have NEVER professed to be perfect! But what I am for sure is AUTHENTIC and REAL! And the LORD knows me by my name and my good works,” Couzens continued in the post shared by Reid.
The Christian Post reached out to Inspirational Bible Church – City of Destiny on Thursday and spoke with elder Tracy Lee, who also serves as executive administrator at the church. She was asked if there was any response from the church’s elder board regarding the allegations against Couzens and whether or not he was still at the helm of the church.
“I actually can’t answer that for you because I don’t know,” Lee said.
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Source: Christian Post