Members of an Alabama church are in shock after their former pastor, who has AIDS, admitted to sleeping with several members of their church.
Juan Demetrius McFarland made the confession during Sunday service at Shiloh Baptist Church on September 14, according to WPVI-TV.
McFarland had previously confessed to the congregation that he contracted HIV in 2003 and found out in 2008 he had AIDS.
“The church was very accepting of Reverend McFarland. They were willing to help him in any way possible,” said one church member.
As the pastor started to reveal more details each Sunday, members started to have a change of heart.
In a resolution read aloud at church, McFarland admitted to drug use, mishandling church funds and having sexual encounters with church members.
“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,” explained church deacon Nathan Williams Jr.
“Who does this to people and you are the leader? Who does this? 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. She’s running out now trying to find out if there is anything wrong with her. My heart goes out to her because she’s been a wonderful church member,” a church member said.
McFarland, who served as a leader for 23 years, was removed from the church last Sunday.
The congregation said they are seeking legal counsel on the situation, but they are ready to move forward.
*WPVI-TV contributed to this story.