May 29, 2021

Pastor denies "cult-like" atmosphere

May 28, 2021

A self-proclaimed pastor of a Waverly church, who had multiple family members arrested last week, is denying an accusation he runs a "cult" in Pike County. James Bellar, pastor of the Dove Outreach Church, has had his church described as a cult in court documents. Four members of Bellar's family, who also are part of the congregation, were taken into custody last week in Athens County and were charged with numerous sexual and physical abuse crimes. Court documents also allege that Bellar is "re-writing" enter sections of the Bible to better fit his teachings, which allow for incest among family members. Serah Bellar, who was reported missing in April of 2020 when she was 16, has reportedly recently sent a text message to authorities saying she is safe. However, the validity of that text message is currently being investigated.

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