Gothard Breaks Silence on Harassment Claims
Bill Gothard, the Christian seminar speaker and founder of the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP) has publicly addressed the sexual harassment accusations put against him by over 30 women.
On April 10, Gothard posted a letter to Twitter which noted his failings as a religious leader Christianity Today reported.
The message began with a disclaimer saying, “I have withheld this statement in order to honor the request of the Board of Directors to wait until an initial review has taken place. As the review continues, I now want to make this statement.”
Gothard went on to express his regret for putting the needs of the IBLP above the people involved. “I was finding value and affirmation from the accomplishments of the ministry...I put the Institute and its goals ahead of people and their needs,” he wrote.
Gothard refuted any claims of kissing the young women or touching sexually, but admitted to “holding of hands, hugs, and touching of feet or hair.”
He wrote those actions “demonstrated a double-standard and violated a trust.”
The overall message sought repentance from God and forgiveness from the people who were affected. “More than anything I want to make right what I have done wrong and deepen my relationship with the Lord,” Gothard wrote. “I trust in God’s undeserved mercy and pray that those whom I have offended would find grace to forgive me.”
Publication date: April 22, 2014