Spencer LeGrande refused to say anything about the pending lawsuit he had filed against Bishop Eddie Long in an interview with WSB-TV of Atlanta, except to say that he had come forward only after hearing about the fist two suits filed against the prominent pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia, Georgia. Couching his words within reverential phrases about god and love, Spencer LeGrande would only speak in a positive manner about the Eddie Long sex scandal and centered his answers around the truth — the truth that he insists Bishop Eddie Long knows.
“There’s only one way to God and that’s the truth,” Spencer LeGrande told reporter Jodie Fleischer.
WSB-TV spoke to Spencer LeGrande, the fourth accuser in the Eddie Long sex scandal that began on September 19 when two young men announced lawsuits alleging that they had been sexually coerced into relationships with the famed pastor, in Charlotte, his hometown and where he first met the charismatic Eddie Long when his family joined the the New Birth Charlotte branch of the Eddie Long-run church in 2003. In the lawsuit documents, LeGrande said he had been moved tears when he first heard an Eddie Long sermon. Feeling compelled to meet the pastor, he did so, and was embraced by the Bishop. That, he said, was the beginning of their father-son relationship that would transform into one of shared sexual experiences in various places, including inside the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church.
Spencer LeGrande said he couldn’t talk about the lawsuit, or so he had been advised by his lawyer, noted Atlanta attorney B. J. Bernstein.
“Once God’s time is ready for it to expose everything it’s going to happen,” LeGrande said, “and I just pray I want people to know to keep praying. Keep praying for our strength and for us getting through this.”
He admitted that he prayed for Bishop Eddie Long as well.
LeGrande, who is now 22, said that when he saw Anthony Flagg and Maurice Murray Robinson come forward on the news, he knew he had to speak out as well. He said he hadn’t known that there were others like himself until they came forward with their allegations.
in the Flagg and Robinson allegations against Bishop Eddie Long, the two young men, 21 and 20, respectively, claimed that they were part of a group Eddie Long called “Spiritual Sons.” They had been part of the pastor’s entourage, been taken on lavish trips, met with famous people, been given gifts, cars, money, places to live, and even college tuition. But all of that ended, the allegations attested, when Bishop Eddie Long grew tired of the relationship.
The four accusers — Jamal Parris, 23, filed his lawsuit the day before Spencer LeGrande submitted his — claim they had no knowledge of the others while within relationships with the pastor.
But revealing his relationship with Eddie Long has been an unburdening for LeGrande. “I wasn’t free until I came out with it,” he said, “that’s when my life’s been much better. This last week has been free.”
He told Fleischer he was now at peace and he wouldn’t comment on Long’s words to his congregation about being engaged in “spiritual warfare.” All four of the accusers have alleged that Long used biblical scripture to explain and justify his sexual relationship with each of them.
LeGrande remained charitable to the end of the interview. “This is a hard time for the world,” he said, “and you know I have no hate for anyone because God doesn’t produce hate. I pray for everyone, especially bishop, cause he knows the truth, he knows the truth.”
But Bishop Eddie Long’s truth sounds a lot different from the truth of Spencer LeGrande, Anthony Flagg, Maurice Murray Robinson, and Jamal Parris. The embattled pastor has denied all allegations made against him in the sex scandal and publicly vowed to fight the young men, a David against Goliath, but in a courtroom and not in a court of public opinion. He has refused to step down as head pastor at New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, a 30,000-member megachurch with worldwide ministries, schools, and charitable works, and promised his parishioners that he would be there every Sunday throughout his fight.