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Ravi Zacharias speaks during the Society of World Changers induction ceremony at Indiana Wesleyan University in Marion, Ind
(Jeff Morehead / The Chronicle-Tribune via AP)

Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM) released an interim report on Wednesday of allegations of sexual misconduct against its founder, Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias, who passed away earlier this year

“Unfortunately, the update of the interim investigation shows that this assessment of Ravi’s behavior is true – that he actually committed sexual misconduct,” said the executive committee of the RZIM board in a statement accompanying the publication of the interim report under the Atlanta Miller law & Martin The board said it would speak “more broadly” when the full report was available, which is expected to be ready in January or February

RZIM hired a law firm to conduct an independent investigation into news of Zacharias’ alleged abuse of women at spas he owned this fall

In a September report, Christianity Today published anonymous allegations by several massage therapists that Zacharias sexually molested her, masturbated in front of her, and inappropriately touched her. Zacharias owned, in part, two Atlanta spas that he visited regularly

WORLD also interviewed spa workers, including longtime manager Anna Adesanya, who said a therapist was fired after complaining about Zacharias asking for “more than a massage”

The interim report released on Wednesday did not provide detailed information on specific cases, but said it had uncovered new “more serious” misconduct

“[W] we have found significant, credible evidence that Mr. Zacharias has behaved sexually for many years, “wrote Lynsey Barron, a former prosecutor in charge of the Miller & Martin investigation.” Some of this wrongdoing is consistent with what was recently reported on the news, and some of the behavior we have uncovered is more serious. Our investigation is ongoing and we continue to pursue leads ”

The first statement by RZIM this fall dismissed the spa allegations as “false,” RZIM also dismissed allegations of sexual misconduct against Zacharias by Lori Anne Thompson, a Canadian, in 2017

Now RZIM has promised to make the full, unedited report by Miller & Martin, which was presented to the board, available to the public. This transparency of an organization under this kind of shadow is unusual

“We are broken when we learn this, but consider it necessary to be transparent and to inform our staff, donors and supporters at this point, even while the investigation is continuing,” said the RZIM board of directors, “In in the meantime, we share your condolences for all victims of this behavior and we appreciate your prayers for them and also for Ravi’s family who have been devastated by this information ”

Barron, the attorney who led the investigation, said the report will focus on the Spa allegations but has given RZIM the firm freedom to investigate broader allegations. The law firm, which signed a private investigation firm, claimed to have interviewed dozens of witnesses and examined Zacharias’ documents and electronic records

The Christian & Missionary Alliance, the denomination of which Zacharias was ordained minister, commissioned an independent investigation into his wrongdoing again this fall.It had previously defended him when Thompson’s allegations first surfaced in 2017

Some RZIM employees had urged the ministerial heads and their board of directors to take the women’s accusations seriously and to publicly share the results of the investigation

RZIM employee Carson Weitnauer wrote publicly about the allegations this week, sharing his longstanding admiration for Zacharias and his slow realization of the apparent pattern of Zacharias’ wrongdoing. He said the ministry’s leadership initially discouraged and rejected his questions about the allegations

“I admit that my longing for the approval of others has kept me from asking hard questions and accepting the painful truth much sooner,” he wrote, “[W] We must not silence those who are us tell the truth about Ravi’s monstrous abuses May God give us the clarity and courage we need to become loyal advocates for abuse survivors – and to keep such abuse from occurring in the future ”

Emily is a Senior Reporter for WORLD Magazine. She is a graduate of the World Journalism Institute and previously reported for the New York Daily News, the Indianapolis Star and Philanthropy Magazine. Emily lives in New York City. Follow her on Twitter @emlybelz

One Saturday a month, Pastor Terrell Walter meets with a group of local church leaders to have lunch and pray together. The participants, all of the denomination of the Evangelical Church, come

On Friday night, the United States Supreme Court rejected Texas’s unprecedented offer to prevent four states from casting votes for the electoral college, saying Texas had no legal authority to do so

This is devastating news. His poor wife and family betrayal is heartbreaking in every form, but now to know that your husband, whom everyone loved and cherished, has committed persistent sexual betrayal that is devastating, thank God she has hers Lord and her children on whom she can lean

It breaks my heart; Ravi lives a lie for his family and the RZIM ministry, I attended a RZ School of Apologetics here in S FL years ago, Ravi became a mentor in absentia from books and video materials used in the curriculum, I met him and appreciated him at the level of Billy Graham or other evangelical luminaries

As sad as it is, I have also witnessed the fall of many Christian superstars, some I have called pastors, others we have all observed on the international stage The years of distinction teach us to examine the truth that the preacher preaches, and looking for the kinks to understand the vulnerability of those whose reach and power grows great. As a scarred, healthy skeptic, I am saddened that I am less shocked than I should be

Where did the safeguards fall and where did they fail? Billy took the admirable precaution of never being alone with a woman to wake up sleepers and know who’s roaming around like a lion, once fame is achieved it’s too easy to believe that the awards and press clips will open the door to becoming lion food

Many thanks to RZIM for your transparency, despite the devastation of the organization and the people who also valued Ravi and knew him well It was a grave betrayal that God can use for good through painful, honest reporting, forgiveness and reconciliation

Thank you Emily Belz for following this up! Although the truth is painful here, it is important that it come out, and for anyone discouraged by such news, I just want to remind you that the gospel is still true. Christianity teaches that sin is omnipresent in humanity; That is why Christ’s sacrifice in our name and for his glory is such good news!

Ravi Zacharias

World news – USA – Zacharias investigation has found “serious” wrongdoing – WELT