103-year-old Georgia woman banned from lifelong church

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A 103-year-old Georgia woman was recently banned from attending her lifelong Baptist church, causing a rift in the local community.

MyFoxAtlanta reports, Genora Hamm Biggs has been worshiping God for the past 103 years. She says she reads her Bible daily and prays often. So, she was surprised when she received a letter in the mail from her pastor telling her that she was banned from returning to church.

According to Fox Carolina, the letter reads:

Dear Mrs. Genora Hamm Biggs,
This letter is to inform you that according to the by-laws of the Union Grove Baptist Church, and by vote of the active members, any membership or associations that you have had with this church are now officially revoked. Therefore, you cannot attend Union Grove Baptist Church for any reason whatsoever. You are not to come to the property of the Union Grove Baptist Church located at 680 Pulliam Street, Elberton, Georgia 30635.

The members and officers of the Union Grove Baptist Church.

“I was shocked,” Hamm Biggs said of receiving the letter.

Hamm Biggs and the Reverend Tim Mattox had been at odds for since Mattox was hired six years ago. They disagreed over Mattox’s preaching style.

“At one point, he had a crew in here and they were hollering and falling out in the middle of the floor. We don’t do that in the Baptist Church,” said Hamm Biggs.

But just because she disagreed with his style doesn’t mean she wanted out of the church, so despite the letter, she returned to church the next Sunday. At that point, Mattox called the police on her, but the police said they could do nothing, as it was a civil dispute.

Since the letter, many other members of the congregation have left the church.

“You can’t do that to somebody,” church member Ezell Land, who recently left the church after 50 years, told Fox. “She has been part of this church her whole life. She was even the church secretary for 40 years. That’s just no good pastoring to do that.”