A pastor has exposed his community to an unthinkable kind of horror, and people don’t know what it means for their congregation. Juan Demetrius-McFarland, a former pastor out of Montgomery, Alabama, has confessed to his church members that he has full-blown AIDS. The pastor also says that he has slept with a few members of the church who were unaware of his status.
There is no word about whether or not the pastor slept with only women, but there are several women within the church who are concerned about their health.
“He confessed to the entire membership and then to the city of Montgomery, because as soon as he got done confessing, it went all over Montgomery anyway,” Deacon Nathan Williams Jr. told WSFA 12 News. “So it’s nothing we [are] making up. It’s coming out of his mouth.”
The worst part about the pastor’s deep and frightening confession is that this wasn’t everything. He also said that he’d been using drugs for years and stole church money in the process. So, while his confession might be considered admirable to some, the depth of his devious behavior makes a lot of people question why he was ever allowed to provide spiritual leadership to anyone in the first place.
The pastor was formerly the head of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church and said that he found out he had HIV in 2003. He says that his HIV developed into full-blown AIDS by 2008 and he continued to have sex. He also admits that he didn’t inform his partners that he was infected, but kept sleeping with different people anyway. He was removed as pastor from the church on October 5 of this year.
“He concealed from the church that he had knowingly engaged in adultery in the church building with female members of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church while knowingly having AIDS,” Williams told the news station.
The pastor’s confession has worried people inside the church, some of whom have slept with the pastor. Some of the members are getting tested as well. Also, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is probably going to be on the case to find out who the pastor has had contact with in the recent and distant past, since he is a threat to public health. Many of the people he’s slept with have also slept with others, so the disease has probably spread to many others inside the city and outside.
“I know a young lady who is a member of the church who says she has slept with him and that she didn’t want this to go public, and she running out now trying to find out if there is anything wrong with her,” a church member told WSFA. “And my heart goes out to her because she’s been a wonderful church member, and then for something like this to happen. The fact that he didn’t tell them at all, that’s a crime in itself.”
The next issue is whether or not the pastor should be sent to jail for what he’s done. Some states say that sleeping with a person is not a crime. But in Montgomery, transmitting an STD is a class C misdemeanor.
Read more at WSFA 12 News.