Alabama Pastor Reveals His AIDS Status To Church Members In 2014

Aiexpress – According to the Encyclopedia of Alabama, the Black Belt Region in Alabama consists of more than 30 counties. The Encyclopedia provides further insight into the characteristics of these counties by stating:

Its characteristics include low taxes on property, high rates of poverty and unemployment, low-achieving schools, and high rates of out-migration.

Rise in HIV Numbers

According to a recent article from Alabama Media, researchers from the University of Alabama conducted a study and discovered that three counties in the Black Belt region (Dallas, Lowndes, and Perry) are considered severe hotspots for HIV in Alabama.

The article provides further insights into the study by explaining:

In Perry County HIV the claims rate is 178.29 per 100,000, in Dallas it was 224.72 per 100,000 and in Lowndes it was 139.81 per 100,000.

A Black Belt Pastor’s Confession

In September 2014, WSFA reported that Juan McFarland, a former Alabama pastor, made a shocking confession during a sermon at Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church in Montgomery County. He admitted to having full-blown AIDS and revealed that he had not disclosed his status to several church members he had been involved with in the past. McFarland also disclosed that he had contracted HIV in 2003 and developed AIDS in 2008.

According to Reuters, McFarland confessed to the church about his drug problem and admitted to misusing church funds for personal gain. Following his confession, the parishioners decided to remove McFarland from his role as pastor, but he refused to step down.


According to NBC News, McFarland took action to alter the doors and locks of the church and even made an attempt to gain control over its bank account. In December 2014, Judge Charles Pierce of Alabama intervened and prohibited McFarland from entering the church.

The article concluded by stating:

McFarland was ordered not to return to the church, to turn over all church property and to give up any claim to the church-owned Mercedes-Benz.

In March 2014, just a few months before McFarland admitted to his wrongdoing, he delivered a powerful sermon called “How to Conquer Fear.”

As of 2024, Alabama does not have a specific criminal statute for HIV according to HIV Law and Policy. However, individuals who knowingly transmit the disease can face charges of a Class C felony. This offense carries a potential punishment of up to ten years in prison and a possible fine of $15,000.

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