The pastor of a Florida megachurch who often appeared on TBN’s “Praise the Lord” program, has been found dead inside a New York City hotel room. Police say Zachery Tims was discovered on the floor of a room in the W Hotel in Times Square about 6 p.m. on Friday.
It was not immediately clear if Tims, 42, had been alone in the hotel room.
No foul play was suspected, officials told The Associated Press. An autopsy was expected to reveal the cause of death.
Tims and his family founded New Destiny Christian Center (NDCC) in Apopka, Fla., in 1996 where he served as senior pastor. The church boasts a congregation of about 8,000, according to its website.
A message was posted on NDCC’s website Sunday, informing congregants that a meeting would be held to discuss Pastor Tim’s death.
The note read:
Today has been filled with rumors and speculations regarding Pastor Zach. We are having a meeting on tomorrow, Monday, August 15th at 7:00pm. Please join us. We look forward to seeing you there.
Condolences have been pouring in since the weekend, with many awaking Monday morning to the shocking news of Tims' death. Many visitors to New Destiny Christian Center’s Facebook and Twitter pages were expressing sadness over the Florida church's loss.
One visitor, Travis Warren, wrote Monday on NDCC's Facebook page: “Words cannot fully express the depth of my sorrow that I feel at this moment in time having lost our shepherd, Dr. Zachery Tims. While I do not question God I am simply perplexed. I thank God for using DOC to show me and the world that it was cool to be young, gifted, and be connected with a great Church like New Destiny. RIP DOC, you will be truly missed for an eternity. Thanks for keeping it oh so REAL!”
Val Flan, another visitor on the church’s Facebook page, wrote: “Was shocked and sadden by this devastating news. My deepest condolences to the Tims family. Rest assure(d) he is in Gods care.”
According to his biography on NDCC’s website, Tims had a troubled youth before he was “miraculously saved, instantly delivered from drug addiction, and called into ministry.”
Tims, who divorced in 2009, leaves behind four children.