14 NEWS UPDATE: In response to our coverage of this story Bethal Church sent us the following statement:
Bethel Church would like to thank everyone who attended the congregational meeting last night and those who watched online. We would also like to thank the many churches in Evansville and around the country who have contacted us to express their prayerful support during this difficult time. We now begin the process of bringing healing and restoring hope to the body of believers here at Bethel. We are committed to moving forward and reaching out with Christ's love to our community and around the world.
PREVIOUSLY REPORTED: A long-time Evansville minister says he's being forced out of an east side church.
Church officials say a meeting they held on Wednesday night was a private meeting for the congregation. They asked for cameras to be left outside, but 14 News was allowed inside the meeting to listen.
Rev. Schwambach, who served as the senior pastor for 31 years was at the meeting. It was Wednesday morning that he announced on Facebook that he was asked to leave the staff by the current lead pastor, Keith Robinson. He took over that role from Schwambach last December.
Robinson did say the decision was made by him, the elders, and the trustees. He says beyond that, he has no other comment.
14 News is told Schwambach said he plans to start another church.
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