Earl Paulk


In the beginning . . . there was a tryst at a 1960 Sunday School convention. Over the next half century, the founder of one of Atlanta’s first megachurches popped up in one sex scandal after another. Soloists and teachers at Paulk’s Chapel Hill Harvester Church, a fellow preacher’s granddaughter, even his ghostwriter-biographer—all claimed he had either seduced them, often by claiming it was God’s will, or molested them. One young woman—who helped Paulk’s wife write her book Stand By Your Man—said Paulk took her to bed every Saturday during Mrs. Paulk’s hair appointment. The silver-tongued bishop dismissed his accusers as demonic pawns.

Chinatown In 2007 a court-ordered test proved his nephew—the Reverend D.E. Paulk, who now leads Earl’s diminished flock—was really his son. A few months later, the aging satyr pleaded guilty to lying under oath about his sexual conquests.