(Meredith) – A Missouri pastor is on leave after he gave a sermon that many people say was sexist, misogynistic and inappropriate.
Pastor Stewart-Allen Clark took a leave of absence Tuesday from First General Baptist Church in Malden, Missouri – located in the state’s southeast boot heel – after receiving widespread criticism for his sermon given in late February.
In his sermon, he explained that women need to lose weight and submit to the sexual desires of their husbands to keep the men from straying.
Clark also said wives need to wear makeup, dress nicely, have nice hair and appear less “butch.”
The original video was deleted from the church’s website, but a woman who was watching the sermon that day managed to post the video to Facebook, where it has caused widespread anger and gained thousands of comments.
Clark continued to ask why women “let themselves go after marriage” and reiterated that men only marry for good looks and sex.
“Men have a need for their women to look like women. Sweatpants don’t cut it all the time. Wearing flip flops and pajamas to Walmart – that ain’t going to work. Ain’t nothing attractive about that. It’ ain’t,” Clark said in his sermon. “And men want their wives to look good at home and in public, can I get an Amen!”
Clark also claimed this topic is “so important” that a friend of his has put a weight limit on his wife before he would divorce her.
“Ladies, it’s the way God made us. It’s the way we are. Men are going to look. He made us to look. You want them to be looking at you. Don’t let yourself go,” Clark said in his sermon.
Clark also used former First Lady Melania Trump as an example of what women should strive to look like, although he acknowledged that “not everybody looks like that.”
“Now look, I’m not saying every woman can be the epic, epic trophy wife of all time like Melania Trump. I’m not saying that at all. Most women can’t be trophy wives, but you know ... maybe you’re a participation trophy,” Clark said as a photo of Melania Trump appeared on the screen. “I don’t know, but all I can say is not everybody looks like that. Amen! Not everybody looks like that. But you don’t need to look like a butch either.”
The church released a statement Monday saying Clark’s sermon was “not consistent with the positions and values” of the church.
“General Baptists believe that every woman was created in the image of God, and they should be valued for that reason,” General Baptist Ministries posted on Facebook.
Clark is now on leave. It’s unclear whether that leave is paid or unpaid. The church also said Clark is now seeking “professional counseling.”