A female pastor was ousted after complaints she visited an adult store with members of her church and purchased sex toys for them.
Reverend Dr. Amy Butler, the first woman to lead the renowned Riverside Church in Manhattan, New York, was removed from her senior position following harassment claims, the New York Post reported.
The incident is claimed to have happened during a religious conference trip in Minneapolis back in May.
Pastor Amy allegedly took two assistant ministers – a single mother and a gay man – and a female churchgoer to adult store Smitten Kitten.
A source told the publication the assistant ministers were uncomfortable and were afraid of ‘professional retaliation’ if they did not go – despite being told by the pastor they did not have to join them.
The pastor allegedly purchased sex toys for herself and the female congregant.
She also bought a $200 vibrator called the Beaded Rabbit for the female assistant minister as a gift for her 40th birthday, who, although she did not want it, felt pressured to accept according to the source.
The pastor is claimed to have also offered to buy the male assistant minister a toy but he declined.
At the register, Pastor Amy allegedly said ‘is this a church business expense?’ and pulled out a credit card – it is not known if she used the church’s card to make the purchase.
A formal harassment complaint was filed days after the shopping trip and the church’s lawyer investigated the claims made – leading to the pastor’s ousting.
Her supporters claimed she lost her job for speaking up about sexual harassment in the church, in particular an incident where she alleged a former member of church council harassed her, the New York Times reported.
But a source said both Pastor Amy and Riverside Church agreed to part ways.
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SOURCE: Daily Mail – Alisha Buaya