In a development that could make a skeptic believe in divine retribution, the infamous “sodomite semen” and “Jesus would stone homos” minister is about to lose his church.
Pastor James David Manning’s ATLAH World Missionary Church in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood is going to be sold at a public foreclosure auction next month because of unpaid debts totaling $1.02 million, DNAInfo New York reports.
Manning told the site that the debt consists mostly of water and sewer bills that he claims the church isn’t obligated to pay because of its tax-exempt status. (The city’s Department of Environmental Protection, which handles water and sewer services, wouldn’t comment on whether churches are exempt.)
But what he didn’t mention, DNAInfo reports, is that there are nine federal tax liens against the church, totaling more than $355,000, and that he also owes thousands of dollars to New York State and other creditors.
After creditors took ATLAH to court, the church was given until last April to pay its debts, but it didn’t. In December a state judge ordered a foreclosure sale, which is scheduled to be held February 24. Manning told DNAInfo he would fight the foreclosure order, which he called a “land grab.” He also claimed he didn’t know there were any legal proceedings against his church, even though the case has been going on since 2009 and his lawyer has filed a response to the creditors’ complaint.
Manning has become notorious over the past few years for signage at the church with messages such as “Jesus would stone homos” and that all supporters of LGBT people should be cursed with cancer, HIV, madness, and eternal damnation.
He has also posted videos online in which he claims that “upscale sodomites” gather at Starbucks to spread Ebola and other diseases and that the coffee chain flavors its drinks with the “semen of sodomites.” And he’s said that President Obama has “released homo demons on the black man” and that gay athletes are pedophiles.
There’s no word on whether Manning will seek a new venue from which to rant.