TOLEDO (WTOL) - A local pastor is suing some of his congregation after he says they locked him out of his own church.
The suit went before a judge this week. This case is really a battle between relatives of the old pastor and the new pastor. The fight even included real-life boxing matches right here at the True Church of God of the Apostolic Faith.
A boxing school is just one of the unexpected changes attorney Mark Davis' client, Reverend Walter Myers, saw when welcoming three new members to his congregation last year. "They took over the church. They went into the officers, set up their own computers, their own phones," said Davis.
These three members are now listed in a lawsuit Reverend Myers filed against them last week too keep them away from the True Church of God of the Apostolic Faith. "They had locked out the reverend from his own church," Davis said, "They changed the lock on the door, so he couldn't get into the building or his own office."
According to the suit, the defendants claim they are the owners of the church, and that it was their inheritance since their father was the founding pastor. However, it was in 1976 that the senior pastor position was switched to Myers.
Davis calls it, "Basically, a power play by former family members to take back what they believe was theirs."
Reverend Myers says it's created fear in his congregation such that many members are afraid to come to service. Davis tells News 11 one woman "tried to get in, but was actually blocked by several large men."
News 11 went to the defendant's homes to get their side, but no one answered.
A judge issued a restraining order against them last week. He's now allowed them to attend church but only for service and nothing more.