The group, which makes loans to congregations to build places of worship and then uses the interest earned off those loans to feed and cloth the poor in 108 different countries, agreed to help Harris out.
In the beginning, it all seemed picture perfect — Harris would get his money to build a church and, in turn, the interest he paid on that loan would benefit the homeless.
But after several months of stalled construction and missing loan payments, Teen Missions began to worry that Harris had very different plans from the ones he first laid out. And he did.
According to a federal lawsuit, Harris borrowed $482,000 from Teen Missions to build a church for his nonprofit, Kingdom Builders Faith Church Inc. — a church that was never constructed.
Instead, Harris bought himself a $39,000 Mercedes Benz and a men’s mink coat with Versace buttons.
Meanwhile, Harris also never made a single payment on his loan.
Last week, he turned himself into federal authorities, who are charging him with fraud.
4. Jim Reynolds
Jim Reynolds is obviously a persistent man.
When the Graceway Baptist Church in Mansfield, Louisiana relieved him of his pastoral duties just two months ago, the 55-year-old preacher had no intention of leaving quietly.
Instead of taking his leave with dignity, Reynolds spent the next two months firing off angry emails and nasty text messages to several church members.
Obviously, that didn’t not get Reynolds his job back. Instead, three church members took his threats, like “You will pay for this,” to police.
At first, the authorities were willing to play mediator and attempted to contact Reynolds about his verbal assaults. But the former pastor remained uncooperative and continued to his tirade.
In the end, his persistence landed him three criminal counts of cyberstalking. He was arrested and then released on bail last week. However, if he is caught contacting one of the victims again, his bond will be revoked immediately and he’ll be put in jail until there is a verdict in the case.
3. Christopher Daniels
In March 2009, Christopher Daniels called 911 to let police know that his Belton, South Carolina church, the Blue Ridge Baptist Church, was engulfed in flames.
Police weren’t entirely shocked by the call. After all, Daniels had been calling them sporadically over the past few months to complain about vandalism on the church property — mostly graffiti that pointed to the Nine Trey Gangsters — a local faction of the Bloods.
However, when firefighters and investigators arrived at the scene, they suspected something fishy about this crime.
That’s when they soon realized that it wasn’t the work of gang members — but Daniels, himself.
Dell Johnson, the church’s deacon chairman, said he wasn’t that surprised.
The church had been suffering from image problems for years, mostly due to infighting amongst church leaders. Just months earlier, the church even changed its name with the hopes of escaping its troubled past.
Daniels had been hired by the church as its pastor a year before the fire. A married man with two teenage children, he was also an eighth grade teacher at the nearby Calvary Christian School.
A day after Daniels called in the fire, he was arrested on suspicion of arson.
It didn’t take long for police to rack up even more charges against Daniels. Turns out, he’d been filing bunk claims with the church’s insurance company for a while — trying to collect money for alleged “damage” to church property.
In the end, Daniels pled guilty to making false reports to police, committing insurance fraud, and arson. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison for his crimes.
But Daniels clearly had no intention of serving that time. On May 4, while on work detail at the Pickens County Jail, the 41-year-old disgraced former pastor made a run for it.
He managed to evade police for over two months, until last week, when authorities finally tracked him down in North Carolina.
He is currently sitting in a North Carolina jail awaiting an extradition hearing.
2. Father Selvaraj
When Mercy Maria met Father Selvaraj six years ago, they immediately connected.
Maria often complained to Slevaraj, who has ran the Faith Assembly Church in Chennai, India for the past 15 years, that she and her husband frequently fought. He complained of the same thing with his wife.
Soon, the two were romantically involved — so in love that she left her husband and moved in with Selvaraj, who lived on the second floor of his church.
But Maria wasn’t the last woman to be wooed by Selvaraj. He soon found a lover in another church member.
The two women weren’t happy when they discovered that they were both Selvajar’s mistresses. They were even less pleased by the fact that they’d been swindled by the charming pastor, who often asked the two for hefty loans, which they paid him in rupies and jewelry.
After several attempts to get Selvaraj to pay them back, the woman realized they’d been absolutely cheated.
That’s when they went to the authorities and both claimed that Selvaraj had raped them.
The 53-year-old pastor was immediately taken into custody. While he wasn’t charged with rape, he was charged with “cheating” and “sexual harassment.”
1. Richard Wilson
Richard Wilson is not a priest. Nor a preacher. Nor a pastor. Not even a deacon.
He’s an adjunct Biology professor at Wayland Baptist University in Tucson, Arizona, where we’re pretty sure, moral turpitude matters as much as intellectualism when it comes to the school’s faculty.
Unfortunately, WBU really missed the boat on this hire.
Last week, Wilson was at a local McDonald’s when he spotted a cute little 12-year-old girl in the parking lot.
He approached the girl and offered her just under $100 if she would allow him to take pictures of her.
Unable to resist his offer, the girl quickly agreed and jumped in Wilson’s car, allowing him to drive her to a nearby alley, where he said he’d tape her.
Wilson then directed the girl to expose her private parts for the camera, while he photographed and filmed her, all the while pawning at her body.
The girl wasn’t entirely stupid, however. While Wilson indulged himself, she made sure to jot down his license plate number.
After he dropped her back off at the McDonald’s, she immediately contacted police and gave them his plate number.
Wilson was arrested outside the University on Tuesday and charged with child molestation.