A Connecticut pastor seeking to cleanse his soul for a long-past infidelity met fire and brimstone, then forgiveness from his flock before reportedly keeling over from a suspected heart attack.
Bishop Bobby Davis, pastor and founder of the Miracle Faith World Outreach Church in Bridgeport, kept parishioners after services Sunday, saying he wanted to come clean about an apparent affair he’d had, one congregant told the Connecticut Post. Although police are investigating the incident, indications are that he suffered a fatal heart attack after getting a mixed response.
“After the service on Sunday, the bishop’s family asked us to remain in the church and the bishop confessed to us something that happened long ago,” parishioner Judy Stovall told the newspaper. “He wanted to come clean with all of us. He wanted to ask our forgiveness.”
Davis, who served as pastor since the church was founded in 1967, reportedly dropped to the floor during the screaming.
“We were shouting, `We forgive you, we love you,’ but the stress of all of it — he had a heart attack,” Stovall told the paper. “I held his head as he lay on the floor … Our congregation is hurting now.”
Davis, of Monroe, founded the church with his wife, Christine. The couple celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary last June, the newspaper reported.
Davis was pronounced dead at Bridgeport Hospital. The cause of death is still under investigation, according to police sources who spoke to the newspaper.
The official cause of death is still being determined, according to the Office of the State Medical Examiner. Police spokesman William Kaempffer told the paper that a detective has been assigned to the case. “The circumstances are under investigation,” he said.
The Christian Post cited an unidentified church member who said the bishop did not decide to come clean on his own. The member said Davis confessed to his wife earlier, and she insisted that he tell congregants, The Christian Post reported. The revelation triggered outrage from Davis” children, who “got physical,” the outlet reported.
Police have interviewed dozens of witnesses and are reportedly reviewing video from inside the church that was taken by a member.