Pastor drops dead during stressful confession in front of his church

Well! This was unusual.

Pastor dies during “confession” – Connecticut Post.

A congregation loudly confronted its longtime pastor about his alleged infidelity — and in the midst of their yelling, the pastor dropped dead.

That’s what happened Sunday at the Miracle Faith World Outreach Church, according to members of the congregation and police sources.

Bishop Bobby Davis, pastor of the Harriet Street church since its founding in 1967, was pronounced dead at Bridgeport Hospital.

The congregation did get loud (people could hear yelling from outside) but it was encouragement, witnesses said, they were supporting him, yelling they loved him. But the stress was perhaps too much. It is expected he died of a heart attack but an autopsy is being conducted.

A “heart attack” due to sudden death is apparently not quite right, according to this Canadian health information site:

[Can] stress itself can directly cause a heart attack? The answer is – not exactly. But sudden, severe stress can cause something called stress cardiomyopathy (also known as “broken heart syndrome” or “takotsubo cardiomyopathy”), an under-diagnosed health condition with symptoms that are very similar to those of a heart attack.

The word cardiomyopathy refers to heart muscle that is weakened, resulting in the heart not working as well as it should. Stress cardiomyopathy refers to weakening of the heart as a result of intense physical or emotional stress.

The release of hormones during a one-time stressful event can cause the heart to stop. But I can’t find that this is fatal. So, there is a medical question that remains here. It was quite a dramatic day for this congregation.

  8 comments for “Pastor drops dead during stressful confession in front of his church

  1. G
    March 15, 2014 at 5:53 PM

    In high school, one of the faculty was pretty-well universally acknowledged as a miserable teacher. One day whenthe school was sending home grades, a student was upset about his grade in that class and blamed it on the teacher: loudly, accusingly, during class, basically standing at the teacher’s desk and screaming at him. Teacher had a stroke.

    It wasn’t fatal, but the teacher didn’t come back. I don’t remember if they ever told us how bad the stroke had been.

    I sympathized with the student–he really was a terrible teacher–but I just can’t imagine the horror of being on either side of that confrontation.

  2. oldekat
    March 15, 2014 at 5:56 PM

    Maybe it was the “instantaneous black capsule” of captured spies so they won’t confess while being tortured. They’re found in several war and/or spy stories. “Gone to Soldiers” by Marge Piercy is one of my favorite examples.

  3. Gary
    March 15, 2014 at 7:14 PM

    Apparently there is more to the story than what was in that article :
    “From what I was told, she (pastor’s wife) told the congregation what he had done. And so, when he comes through the door he had no idea what he was walking into. So it wasn’t even. ‘We’re gonna make an announcement today’ … in a unified way as a couple,” the source continued.

    “I’m told that when he walked through the door she basically told him, ‘Tell them what you just told me,’ which is what induced the heart attack, because it’s not like he was walking into it knowing,” the source explained.

    “She said it and he said, ‘Yes, that’s right.’ She asked him to say who exactly it was. And he said, ‘Well, it doesn’t matter [because] that person has passed. God forgive, let’s get past it.’ Apparently it was his family members who reacted out in anger, from what I understand. It was not the congregation,” the source noted.

    “It got physical. One of the sons attacked him. I was told one of the daughters poured water on him. It was like something out of, not even like the Old Testament, but a bad reality TV show,” said the source. “My heart is so devastated because it could have been handled in a private manner.”
    http://www.christianpost.com/news/bishop-dies-of-apparent-heart-attack-after-wife-allegedly-pushed-him-to-confess-infidelity-to-church-116114/

  4. Brandon
    March 16, 2014 at 4:44 AM

    His children attacked him? Whatever happened to “Honour thy father and thy mother?”

    • Brian
      March 16, 2014 at 10:03 AM

      Have abusive parents, or even parents like that, and think about that statement.

  5. Chris Hunt
    March 16, 2014 at 5:09 AM

    A “heart attack” due to sudden death? Difficult to suffer the former after you’ve succumbed to the latter, I’d have thought.

  6. Lancelot Gobbo
    March 16, 2014 at 6:33 AM

    Most likely a sudden cardiac death in which a lethal arrhythmia (pulseless VT, VF) was triggered by the huge surge of adrenaline in his bloodstream affecting a heart with a degree of ischaemia. It doesn’t sound fishy at all. I know it’s tempting to laugh at the circumstances, but if we are to be better than them, we probably ought not to do so.

  7. Lee
    March 17, 2014 at 12:14 PM

    Sadly, a perfect example of the compassion, forgiveness, sympathy, empathy, mercy and the humanity we have come to expect from that which we call religion. It is sorrowful.

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