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told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "Guys like Messer are troubling to us because they appropriate real ritual or, in this case, make one up."

 

During the service, Messer proclaimed of Long, "He is a king. God's blessed him. He's a humble man, but in him is kingship, royalty.”

 

Messer told Long that the scrolls and the title were gifts on behalf of the Jewish people.

 

"While I believe that Rabbi Ralph Messer has good intentions during his message at New Birth, I understand that the ceremony he performed on Sunday, January 29th, caused harm to the Jewish community, for which I am deeply sorry," Long wrote.

 

Long has recently returned to the helm of his church after taking a leave of absence that coincided with his wife’s decision to file for divorce. Last year, Long also grabbed headlines for allegations of sexual abuse from several young men who were members of his Atlanta church.

 

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