Preacher orders church to stay away

April 02, 2008 at 9:16 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

Reverend DeVairr B. Mollaire, pastor of Ama’s Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, filed a temporary restraining order against his own church, saying that he was asked to step down as pastor without grounds for his dismissal.

The request for the restraining order was filed on March 31 in Judge Robert Chaisson's courtroom, but was denied on April 1.

 "He just wants to go back to work, preaching the gospel to all of his church members," Walter Willard, Mollaire's attorney, said. "The church leaders have not met with him to discuss why he was asked to step down and all we want is a meeting with the church leaders and their attorney, if they have retained one, to resolve this issue."

According to a church member, Mollaire was asked to step down as pastor when  female church members accused Mollaire of making inappropriate  advances towards them. This caused some of the longtime members to leave the church, said the source, “Members of the congregation lost confidence in his ability to spiritually lead the flock. 

"85 members were present that Sunday and 50 voted him out as pastor and Rev. Mollaire was there that day," the source said. "He attempted to apologize for anything he might have done to offend anyone, but the apology was vague and no one understood it."

The source also says Mollaire's behavior caused division in the church and reflected his lack of leadership ability.
Willard says the only thing Mollaire knows about his dismissal is based upon the rumors that have been circulating.

Willard says the purpose of the restraining order was to have St. Charles Parish Sheriff's office jail anyone that was purposefully disruptive.

"We tried to get the temporary restraining order against the church to prevent people from heckling Pastor Mollaire when he does return to work and tries to deliver his message," Willard said. "Anyone who would have disrupted his message as he preached from the pulpit would be sent to jail.

 "My client doesn't feel like he has been asked to step down," Willard continued. "He just feels like it's a temporary situation and once he meets with the church leaders' attorney the matter will all be resolved."
Willard says Article 7 of the church charter allows Mollaire to be a lifetime member.

But Article 13 of the charter states that two thirds of the members need to be present to vote a pastor out and two thirds were present that day, according to the source. "Why would a pastor whose members have told him they don't want him try to force his way back?"

View other articles written Shonna Riggs

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