Rev. Arthur Allen, who was a member of the controversial House of Prayer in Atlanta, died in an apartment fire, reports said on Monday.
CBS Atlanta reported that the 81-year-old reverend was taken to the hospital after the apartment fire in Lookout Ave. NW in Atlanta.
He was later confirmed dead at a local hospital, the station reported.
The House of Prayer, of which he was a pastor, was deemed controversial due to practices that were called abusive by some.
“Imagine for years being tortured by snakes,” one child, Naomi Smith-Howard, told the Atlanta Black Star about the practices. “A church is a place where you go to worship God,” said James Smith, Jr., who was a member. “It is not a place where you are demeaned and degraded.”
Allen served two years in prison after he and other members were convicted of abusing children.