Over the past few months, I’ve investigated and reported stories that have prompted major leadership and institutional change at two evangelical powerhouses—the Moody Bible Institute and Harvest Bible Chapel and its many sub-ministries associated with James MacDonald.
In my articles, the byline has featured my name alone. But there have been numerous others behind the scenes, feeding me information, praying for me, and urging sources to talk to me about what they have seen and heard. From day one, this has been a team effort. And I’m grateful to everyone who’s contributed their time, talents or treasures to support my investigative reporting.
But the work is not done.
As I’ve investigated Christian institutions, I’ve discovered that the corruption is far more extensive than I had originally thought. The evangelical industrial complex is vast, and each investigation leads to another.
But as an accountant from Texas, who’s been uncovering corruption within evangelicalism for a decade or more, recently told me, warriors in this battle often defect. She wrote:
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“It isn’t sustainable for anyone to work long term in the watchdog line without compensating for the real losses they endure. When I have forensic experts advise me on issues, they remind me that to do so, they are giving up a high hourly billing rate, so I need to use them sparingly. That’s true for all of us. We give up other earning opportunities, but also time with friends and family. It’s why people give up and quietly drop out over the years. Each time that happens, the movement loses a staggering amount of experience and expertise. The charlatans keep rewriting history, so only a person who was there when the bad stuff began can speak into the acts and the trends.”
After 18 months of investigative reporting, I’m not ready to give up—not at all. Like many of you, I long to see the Bride of Christ purified, and I have been so heartened to see all God has done these past few months.
He has removed those who were oppressing His sheep and fleecing them. He’s exposed doctrinal error and prompted reform. I believe we have witnessed a mighty move of God, and I don’t believe He’s done. There is so much more house-cleaning to do.
I believe we have witnessed a mighty move of God, and I don’t believe He’s done. There is so much more house-cleaning to do.
Most Christian media rely on the evangelical industrial complex for their survival, so they’re reluctant to publish anything critical of that complex.
Yet the need for investigative reporting and writing within the church is great. I would love to expand my investigative work and hire a writer and some support staff. But to do that, I need funds.
I’ve been so heartened by the dozens of you who have stepped up and sacrificially given to this cause over the past few months. Thank you so much. These gifts have helped me pay expenses for maintaining my website, sending out emails to thousands of subscribers, travel, etc . . . They’ve also provided me with a small stipend for the 40-plus hours I put in each week.
But to continue in this work, I’ll need a regular stream of donations. I’ll need a grassroots team of godly, sacrificial, and supportive donors.
I need you.
This year is absolutely critical. There’s an incredible amount of momentum surrounding truth-telling and reform initiatives. And God is bringing exciting new opportunities to expand my truth-seeking and truth-telling platform.
In the next few weeks, I plan to launch a new radio program. I’ll reveal more about that next week. But I am so excited about the prospect of returning to live radio and connecting with many of you directly in this way. I’m also extremely grateful to a major donor and several corporate and ministry partners, who are making the new radio show possible. I’ll be announcing those sponsors soon too.
I’ve also been in contact with a watchdog ministry that’s re-launching and is interested in partnering with me to do more investigative reporting. I hope to be announcing that partnership soon, as well.
I also hope to host a conference this fall to gather other whistleblowers and activists to inspire, motivate, and coordinate our efforts. The conference also will provide a place of healing for the many refugees and victims wounded by wolves. This type of conference is so necessary right now. But to make it happen, I’ll need resources and volunteers. Already, I’ve heard from several of you willing to help, so I’m extremely encouraged.
The bottom line is that the evangelical church desperately needs reform. And clearly, we can’t rely on supposed “accountability” groups like the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) to do it. If reform is going to happen, it’s going to be because you, and your friends at church and on social media, join with me and other like-minded Christians to expose and fight the darkness.
The bottom line is that the evangelical church desperately needs reform…. If reform is going to happen, it’s going to be because you, and your friends at church and on social media, join with me and other like-minded Christians to expose and fight the darkness.
But we also need to support watchdog ministries that truly hold those other ministries accountable. As my Texan accountant suggested to me recently, perhaps Christians need to consider giving an extra 1% above their tithe to watchdog groups and consider it “tithing insurance.” Or to use a building analogy, we don’t just need to support the construction of new homes, we need to support building inspectors, so the houses we build are properly constructed and maintained.
One of my major ministry partners, Judson University, has established a fund to support my expanding ministry. All contributions to this fund are tax-deductible. And I promise to be completely transparent about how these funds are spent and will publish a line-item accounting at the end of the fiscal year.
Already, some of you have contributed generously to this fund, and for this, I am extremely grateful. Your continued support means the world to me. And I’d be thrilled if some of you would consider becoming regular, monthly givers. These are going to be key to the longevity of this truth-telling ministry.
But for many of you, this is the first you’ve heard of the need and opportunity to help. Would you please prayerfully consider partnering with me to continue this important work? I can’t accomplish this vision without a team. But with a devoted, mission-minded, and sacrificial team, there’s no limit to what God can do. Thank you and God bless!