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Ebenezer divide reflective of past

Jessica Cuffman • Jan 25, 2013 at 3:20 PM

Court documents recently obtained by the Register show more than a decade ago, Howard found himself ensnared in a debacle eerily similar to the split that unraveled at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Sandusky this past year.

On his resume, Howard's work at New Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church in Memphis is listed as a mere blip in time, 1996 to 1999. But just as the Ebenezer congregation has been divided over leadership changes and finances, New Jerusalem's members found themselves in a similar disagreement, according to documents from the Chancery Court in Shelby County, Tenn.

When all was said and done, the Tennessee congregation was permanently split. Parishioners supporting Howard's vision moved to a new building a few blocks down the road, choosing the name Greater New Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church.

The lawsuit the original New Jerusalem head church trustee filed against Howard in March 1999 describes turmoil in the congregation, almost paralleling that of Ebenezer's problems.

Read a copy of the court documents below.

For details on the previous church controversy, pick up a copy of Friday's Register.

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