I would like to respond to people who have wondered what was Eddie Shauberger like as a preacher or pastor. He was known to residents in Oak Island as Pastor Eddie and he always had something going on.
When we heard stories about Pastor Eddie’s legal problems in Liberty County we just heard his version of what happened. Most people probably thought very little about it at first or at least until they arrested him one day in the middle of a church service.
People have to understand that Oak Island was devastated by the hurricane and Pastor Eddie stayed here and managed all of the groups that came in and worked. He became a local hero and when different newspapers and television stations interviewed him, he was able to get more and more money and and more and more free workers to help this community.
When stories emerged about Pastor Eddie being handed large amounts of cash in the aftermath of the storm, nobody really cared. He was the man pushing to rebuild the church and it was not our money. Much of the money was from grateful Vietnamese fishermen, so how were we suppose to be accountable?
Some of the money that vanished was in a $30,000 deal with some traveling carpenters. They did a little work and then poof, they were gone and so was the money. There was so much money and so much help it was difficult to keep up with it and our church leaders counted on Pastor Eddie.
When Pastor Eddie and the music pastor had a falling out, almost everyone sided with the head man and the Pagels left and started to build their own church. All of us believed when it is the pastor versus someone he hired, there is not much choice in who to follow.
When the Oak Island community heard Pastor Eddie’s wife, Cindy, left for San Antonio with their child, most of us thought it was a temporary arrangement and too personal to ask about. Some thought it was strange someone as nice and caring as Cindy left here and never communicated with all those who loved her so much. She was Pastor Eddie’s rock. He never was the same after she left and she never contacted any of us after she left with their youngest adopted daughter. We knew something was wrong, then the child sexual assault charges against Pastor Eddie.
Most people had left the church and the church was struggling financially by the time Pastor Eddie started acting weird about his insurance and all of his prescriptions and his salary. The board made the decision to do as he ask and lower his salary and raise his expense account. It sounded strange but according to Pastor Eddie a lower salary qualified him for benefits from the government. It wasn’t the board’s money so I guess they decided to help out. I always felt like the church board helping Pastor Eddie cheat insurance was wrong but I had no input and couldn't stop it, that's why I was relieved when I heard Eddie was leaving. Eddie has left the church in bankrupt condidtion, he managed to take every penny he could out of the church before he left.
In closing when people ask me about what it was like to be around Pastor Eddie I have one thing to compare it to. A hurricane.