The Common Good

Pastor of Florida Megachurch Resigns Over 'Moral Failure'

Florida megachurch pastor Bob Coy has resigned from his 20,000-member Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale congregation over a “moral failing.”

Image via Wiki Commons
Pastor Bob Coy resigned Sunday from Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale. Image via Wiki Commons

Related Reading

Take Action on This Issue

Circle of Protection for a Moral Budget

A pledge by church leaders from diverse theological and political beliefs who have come together to form a Circle of Protection around programs that serve the most vulnerable in our nation and around the world.

A statement on the church’s website reported the news: "On April 3, 2014, Bob Coy resigned as Senior Pastor of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale, effective immediately, after confessing to a moral failing in his life which disqualifies him from continuing his leadership role at the church he has led since its founding in 1985."

A call to Coy on Sunday was not returned. But it appears extra-marital affairs may have been one reason.

Coy’s church is listed by Outreach magazine as the 14th largest church in the U.S., and one of the fastest growing. The church’s assets are around $135 million, according to the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability. It is the second-largest megachurch in Florida, according to the Hartford Institute for Religion Research.

Active Word, a media ministry that distributed Coy’s Bible teachings on radio, television, and digital media outlets, has also been suspended, according to a statement from the church’s board. His programs were included on Trinity Broadcasting Network, a network that hosts several televangelists.

"We have confirmed that Coy has admitted to at least two affairs in the past year alone and has had a long standing 'problem with pornography,'" wrote blogger Michael Newnham. Newnham also wrote that Coy was taken off the board membership page for the Calvary Chapel Association, a ministry started by the late pastor Chuck Smith.

His church has 10 campuses around Florida and has hosted numerous evangelical speakers, including evangelist Billy Graham, author and speaker Joni Eareckson Tada, and actor Kirk Cameron.

Sarah Pulliam Bailey writes for Religion News Service.

Sojourners relies on the support of readers like you to sustain our message and ministry.

Related Stories

Resources

Like what you're reading? Get Sojourners E-Mail updates!

Sojourners Comment Community Covenant

I will express myself with civility, courtesy, and respect for every member of the Sojourners online community, especially toward those with whom I disagree, even if I feel disrespected by them. (Romans 12:17-21)

I will express my disagreements with other community members' ideas without insulting, mocking, or slandering them personally. (Matthew 5:22)

I will not exaggerate others' beliefs nor make unfounded prejudicial assumptions based on labels, categories, or stereotypes. I will always extend the benefit of the doubt. (Ephesians 4:29)

I will hold others accountable by clicking "report" on comments that violate these principles, based not on what ideas are expressed but on how they're expressed. (2 Thessalonians 3:13-15)

I understand that comments reported as abusive are reviewed by Sojourners staff and are subject to removal. Repeat offenders will be blocked from making further comments. (Proverbs 18:7)