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Controversial Atlah Church Accuses Assemblyman of Crack Addiction

 Atlah Worldwide Church posted a sign alleging Assemblyman Keith Wright is a
Atlah Worldwide Church posted a sign alleging Assemblyman Keith Wright is a "recovering crackhead."
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Dartunorro Clark/DNAInfo

HARLEM - Atlah Worldwide Church is firing off its incendiary messages again — this time hitting out at a candidate for Congress.

The controversial church placed a message on its marquee this week aimed at Manhattan Assemblyman Keith Wright, who is running for Manhattan’s 13th Congressional District seat which encompasses Harlem.

“Assemblyman Keith Wright is a recovering crackhead,” read the sign at the corner of 123rd Street and Lenox Avenue.

The church's Rev. James Manning said in a phone conversation with DNAinfo that he has “reliable sources” that “confirmed” the Assemblyman’s alleged past drug use — without identifying a single one.

“This is because he wants to run for Congress. I think the people ought to know,” Manning said.  

Wright's representatives denied the allegations.

“This is clearly an attack on the Assemblyman from a well-known homophobic and bigoted pastor,” said Emma Forbes, Wright's communications director.

"It's no coincidence that this comes days after receiving an endorsement from one of the nation's most historic and treasured LGBT organizations.

"The only thing Manning's marquee signifies is that Assemblyman Wright is doing right by his community and we're happy to stand in and give our LGBT neighbors a break from his attacks."

Wright has marched with LGBT groups against the church, which has drawn outrage and community protests with homophobic and politically-charged messages on the church’s marquee such as "Jesus would stone homos" and "Harlem is a sodomite free zone.”

Manning said the latest sign was not a retaliation for Wright's support for LGBT rights. It had been taken down Thursday.

In February, DNAinfo New York reported that the church avoided a foreclosure sale despite owing creditors $1.02 million.