By D. AILEEN DODD, S.A. REID
The Atlanta-Journal Constitution
Published on: 09/06/07
National evangelist Juanita Bynum apparently has filed for divorce, more than two weeks after the alleged attack by her estranged husband, Bishop Thomas Weeks III.
A relative on Thursday said that Bynum, 48, has filed for divorce but court records were not available to provide further details. Bynum's publicist, Amy Malone, would not comment.
The reported divorce filing comes five years after Bynum and Weeks wed in 2002 in fairy-tale style on Trinity Broadcasting Network.
Weeks was holding on to hope that he could eventually work things out with his wife, say attorneys, when word of Bynum's filing for divorce spread on radio, TV and the Internet. A lawyer for Weeks said Thursday they had not been notified about a pending divorce. "We have not heard a thing," said Louis Tesser.
Bynum, an author and a Pentecostal pastor hailed as a "prophetess" by her followers, returned to the national spotlight Tuesday after recovering from the alleged beating by Weeks. She called a press conference that evening, a few hours before she hosted an international Christian talk show on TBN, to let her fans and colleagues know she was moving on with her life under a new mandate â€” as "the new face of domestic violence."
On Wednesday, Weeks broke his silence for the first time since the alleged Aug. 21 domestic violence incident by issuing a written statement through his lawyers. In it, Weeks cautioned against a rush to judgment and said he would share his version of what happened that night at the appropriate time.
Weeks was charged with felony aggravated assault, felony terroristic threats and two counts of simple battery in connection to the incident. His appearance in Fulton County Superior Court originally set for Friday has been postponed indefinitely. The case has been reassigned to a different judge. He could face up to 27 years in jail if convicted.
At her Tuesday press conference Bynum announced that she would launch a new ministry to help other women who have suffered violent attacks at the hands of the men who were suppossed to love them. Since that announcement, she has been asked to join an A-list crowd Saturday at a fund-raiser for Barack Obama's presidential bid.
The party is being hosted by media magnate Oprah Winfrey at her 42-acre estate in California.
Bynum and Weeks moved to metro Atlanta to start a ministry together in 2006, Global Destiny Church of Duluth. They have a $2.5 million home in Duluth and perhaps another residence outside of Georgia, said Tesser.
It is unknown whether the couple has a pre-nuptial agreement.
I know we haven't covered this story at this blog. While I am a person of faith, 'The Church' and I had a falling out a few years ago. My faith in God is still there, but his modern representatives, especially of the Properity Preaching ilk, rub me the wrong way. I like my Christianity old fashioned - put a little guilt and responsibility to your fellow man mixed in with the message of Jesus, and I'm fine.
So, I had never heard of Ms. Bynum before her husband delivered a beatdown on her a couple of weeks ago.
I have been a very intent lurker on the net, reading the responses of others to this subject, and what I've seen, from a sizeable number of people, has disturbed me. Not shocked me, but disturbed me.
I don't believe, as a community, that we take domestic abuse seriously. That we are willing to face up to this issue in our community, and how much it damages us, as a community.
I read about ' there being two sides to a story'.
The man beat her ass IN BROAD DAYLIGHT.
IN BROAD DAYLIGHT.
What other side could there be in THAT narrative?
If you think it's the first time he put his hands on her, you are naive and have your head in the sand.
The woman asked to meet him in a hotel parking lot.
Riddle me this: who the hell meets their SPOUSE, in the city in which they reside, in a HOTEL PARKING LOT?
Who meets in a hotel parking lot?
Oh, yeah....AND WOMEN AFRAID TO BE ALONE IN PRIVATE WITH A MAN.
DING DING DING...we have a winner.
I wish Ms. Bynum healing - physically, emotionally and spiritually. May she never be in the position again of being a recipient of domestic physical abuse.
And, if you are reading this, and are in that position, please get help.
NOBODY has the right to beat on you.