Megachurch pastor Bob Coy resigned Sunday from his position of senior leadership at Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale for an unstated “moral failing.”
According to church elders, Coy said that he could no longer continue leading the church, where he has served as senior pastor since founding the church with his wife Diane in 1985. Coy made his confession Wednesday.
"Leadership made every effort to let the staff and church hear directly from leadership rather than rumor by calling meetings for Sunday," a source told Charisma News.
Coy was a 24-year-old music industry executive when he entered the church as an associate pastor at Calvary Chapel Las Vegas, going on to found the Fort Lauderdale church that drew parishioners with its “21st century” approach to living by the Bible.
More than 20,000 attend Calvary Chapel, which has several branches throughout Florida including in the Keys, Boca Raton, and North Lauderdale.
"Most people were shocked," congregant Robert Milne told the Sun-Sentinel at a standing room-only meeting attended by 7,500 in which pastors read an apology letter written by Coy. "A lot of people were hurt, a lot of people are disappointed."
Milne said that Coy often addressed human moral fallibility in his sermons.
“He said, 'Don't put your trust in me, because I'm going to let you down,'” Milne recalled.
The church board said in a statement that the media ministry that spreads Coy’s message beyond the church through radio, TV, and digital media has been suspended.
“Pastor Bob will be focusing his full attention on his personal relationship with God and with his family. The governing board of the church is providing counselors and ministers who will help guide him through the process of full repentance, cleansing and restoration,” the statement reads.
“Trusting in God’s providence, protection, provision and direction, the staff of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale will continue our mission to ‘make disciples,’ through regular services at all campuses and through myriad other ministries the church has established over the years.”
“Recognizing we serve a God of second chances and that our hope is in Him,” the statement concludes, “the leadership, staff and members of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale have joined together in prayer for Pastor Bob and his family during this time of healing.”
According to michaelnewnham.com, "Coy has admitted to at least two affairs in the past year alone and has had a long standing 'problem with pornography.'”