Bishop Eddie Long Plans to Address Congregation in Wake of Sex Abuse Claims

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Now in their 20s, the men claim in their lawsuits that they were teenagers when Long showered them with "cars, clothes, jewelry and electronics," flew them across the world in private jets and booked them into luxury hotels, all the while pushing them into a sexual relationship.

"The allegations are that sexual things started to happen at 17 and 18 years old," Bernstein said.

Even though 17 is above the age of consent in Georgia, Robinson and Flagg claim that the bishop violated his "fiduciary duty as [their] spiritual advisor."

Long's attorney, Craig Gillen, countered the men's claims, writing in a statement that "Bishop Eddie Long adamantly denies the allegations.

"It's unfortunate the two young men have chosen to take this course of action," the statement said, adding that Long's legal team is reviewing the charges and plans to respond.

In the lawsuit, Robinson and Flagg claim that Long used Bible Scripture to "reinforce the God-like connection between himself and the young [men]."

The accusations, according to court documents, also claim that Long would try to block sexual relationships the young men had with women.

The allegations have especially surprised the community that knows Long best.

Church members coming out of Bible study said they simply didn't believe the allegations, speaking of Long's love and passion for his wife.

Atlanta-area radio host Frank Ski, a 12-year-member of Long's church, told the Atlanta Constitution-Journal that he had "extreme support" for the man he's known for more than a decade.

"It's difficult for me because Bishop Long and I are very close," he told the paper. "I'm one of these people who's really old school. When you're a friend and I support you, I support you. Right now it's allegations."

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