In an announcement made late Sunday afternoon, Pastor Bob Coy abruptly resigned, ending his 30-year leadership at one of the largest churches in the country, according to the Christian Post.
Citing a “moral failing,” the senior pastor of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale resigned amid reports of multiple affairs and allegations that he cheated on his wife, Diane Coy.
Michael Newnham wrote in his blog that they have confirmation Coy admitted to at least two affairs in the past year alone and has had a long standing “problem with pornography."
The megachurch did not elaborate on what Coy’s moral failings were.
Not present at the Sunday announcement in which his resignation was announced, church elders read a statement from Coy and answered parishioners' questions.
"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," the statement read.
Pastor Bob Coy and his wife Diane led a Florida ministry that grew to include satellite locations in Boynton Beach, Boca Raton, West Boca, Plantation, Hollywood, and the Keys, according to the SunSentinel.
"The way I see it, Bob Coy is a very selfish man, who indulged in his own personal desires, and when he got caught he abandoned his church," Brian Craig, producer of The Steve Kane Show on AM 1470 WWNN told Examiner. The congregation deserves to be addressed directly and in person by Bob Coy. They need closure and will not get it until he comes forward and apologizes directly to them."
According to Cavalry Chapel, their congregation consists of approximately 20,000 members.
“Every sinner’s got a future, every saint’s got a past. Bob is a good man who made big mistakes like the rest of us, and he’ll pay the consequence like the rest of us,” Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney John Contini, author of several real-life crime dramas including Danger Road and Feeling the Heat, told Examiner. “It’s more important to focus on what Jesus Christ said about this: “Judge not lest you be judged. By the same measure you judge others, you too shall be judged. Remove the log from your own eye before you look at the speck in your brother’s eye.”
The media ministry of the Active Word that distributes Pastor Bob’s Bible teachings through radio, television and digital media has also been suspended. According to Cavalry Chapel, Coy will be focusing full attention on his personal relationship with God and his family.
The governing board of the church is providing counselors and ministers who reportedly will assist Coy and guide him through the process of full repentance, cleansing and restoration.
Following the announcement, the congregation had a prayer and worship service.
A number of members expressed disappointment, encouragement, and hope on Cavalry Chapel’s Facebook page.
“Why are you taking down his preachings which have saved tens of thousands,” wrote Laura Wright in a Facebook comment. “You are acting as he never existed and his preachings weren't worthy. I understand he needs to step down but I don't think this is a good example at all. Closing the comments? He was the founder of the church here and while he has sinned- deserves respect for what he contributed to this church in my opinion. I ask that you pray on this matter.”
“Pastor Bob has helped so many of us find peace in Jesus Christ,” wrote Regina Anderson. “Our Lord is a God of restoration and He will step in and raise up Pastor Bob and his family.”
Also a board member for the Calvary Chapel Association, Coy has already been removed from its leadership page.
Bill Lewis is principal of William E. Lewis Jr. & Associates, a solutions based professional consulting firm specializing in the discriminating individual, business or governmental entity.