SAN FRANCISCO -- Leaders of San Francisco's Bethel AME Church have rejected a troubled pastor from taking the pulpit at the home of the city's oldest black congregation.

The Rev. John J. Hunter was recently transferred from the First African Methodist Episcopal Church in Los Angeles to lead the San Francisco church.

But in an unprecedented move, church leaders drafted an emergency resolution barring him from taking control.

Hunter's eight-years in Los Angeles were sullied by a sexual harassment lawsuit, a federal tax investigation and the questionable use of church credit cards.

The Los Angeles Times (http://lat.ms/UCIX11 ) says Hunter was headed for the pulpit on Nov. 4 when church officials demanded to see the assignment declaration from Bishop T. Larry Kirkland.

Hunter didn't have a copy was blocked from taking the pulpit.

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Information from: Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com