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Posted at 06:40 PM ET, 04/20/2012

Jericho City of Praise members to worship in separate services

Members of Jericho City of Praise in Landover will be divided between two locations this Sunday following this week’s ouster of the Rev. Joel R. Peebles, the sanctuary's acting pastor.

Peebles, who led Jericho since the 2010 death of his mother, Apostle Betty R. Peebles, will hold services for his church followers at the Metro Points Hotel in New Carrollton. Meanwhile, members of the church’s governing board have appointed an unnamed minister groomed by Betty Peebles to conduct two services in the sanctuary that has been closed this week.

Peebles, the sole survivor of the Peebles family, was removed Wednesday by the Jericho Baptist Church Ministries’ board of trustees. On Thursday, the church’s former lawyer Bobby Henry and two other ministry letters were “excommunicated,” from Jericho which is one of the region’s largest churches

The six member group said in a statement that “upon the passing of Apostle Peebles, Elder Peebles challenged both her Last Will & Testament in Court, and the authority of the Board to continue to govern Jericho.”

Joel Peebles said that he wished to continue his work despite the ouster.

“This is only about our ability to do the work of the Lord. The worst thing that could happen is that people can miss Jesus in this,” he said in an interview.“I have eulogized a mother, father and two brothers. Compared to that, God has given an easy grace for this season.”

By Hamil Harris  |  06:40 PM ET, 04/20/2012

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