103-Year-Old Ga. Woman Banned From Church for Criticizing Pastor’s Preaching Style

Genora Hamm Biggs
Fox 5 Atlanta 
Genora Hamm Biggs
Fox 5 Atlanta 

A 103-year-old Georgia woman has been kicked out of her church for disagreeing with her pastor's preaching style, with members even calling the police on the woman, who has been a part of the congregation for some 90 years, Fox 5 Atlanta reports

According to the report, Genora Ham Biggs and the Rev. Tim Mattox of Union Grove Baptist Church in Elberton, Ga., have been going back and forth over his preaching, which Biggs calls a "holiness style" that has been adopted at the church since he was hired about six years ago. Biggs says that sort of preaching doesn't belong in a Baptist church.

"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," Biggs, who has been going to the church since she was 11 years old, told the news station. 


The argument culiminated in August when Mattox sent Biggs a letter saying that she would no longer be welcome in church or on church property "for any reason what so ever." 

"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 assocations that you have had with this church are now officials [sic] revoked," Fox 5 says the Aug. 2 letter read. 

When Biggs attempted to attend service last Sunday, the police were called on her. Officers said, however, there was nothing they could do about the civil dispute. 

A former church member, Ezell Land, told the news station that he left the church himself after 50 years over the issue. Land said that some 20 members have left the congregation because of the pastor's preaching style.

"You can't do that to somebody. She has been part of this church her whole life. She was even the church secretary for 40 years," Land told the news station of Biggs. "That's just no-good pastoring to do that." 


Biggs is hoping to find a lawyer to help her return to services without any further problems. When asked if she has any intention of going back Sunday after Sunday, the elderly woman affirmed, "Of course." 

Read more at Fox 5 Atlanta

Share This Story

Get our newsletter