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RZIM Canada Ending Ministry

By Jackson Elliott
Ravi Zacharias

Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM) Canada announced today that it is “winding down operations” because “it is not possible” to continue the apologetics ministry “in the current environment.”

According to a statement released both on its website and email lists, the most recent revelations about Ravi Zacharias’s sexual abuse have made it impossible for the group to continue apologetics-based evangelism.

The full statement reads:

A Statement from the Board of RZIM Canada

The final report from Miller & Martin PLLC on the late Ravi Zacharias has been released by the Board of RZIM US, to whom he was accountable. The findings of his sexual misconduct fill us with desolation and grief.

We grieve for all the victims. No words are adequate or even appropriate, yet we must somehow find words. Their stories must be heard and heeded. We pray for healing, forgiveness, and reconciliation.

RZIM Canada has always been a wholly independent and self-sustaining charitable organization. We view our donors’ support as a sacred trust given “as unto the Lord.” In the spirit of integrity, we committed last month not to accept donations while seeking God’s direction for this ministry.

We recognize the ongoing need for an apologetics-based approach to evangelism. Regrettably, we are of the conviction that it is not possible for RZIM Canada to fulfill this mandate within the current environment. Therefore, it is with heaviness of heart and after much prayerful consideration that we are compelled to begin winding down the operations of RZIM Canada.

Our hearts go out to the countless people around the world who responded to Ravi’s apologetic ministry and who are now at risk of rejecting the message on account of the messenger. We take hope that Truth prevails even in a fallen world.

We ask that you continue to join us in fervent prayer.

The Board of RZIM Canada

RZIM Canada’s shutdown follows RZIM’s suspension of all fundraising activities on Feb. 16 and the separation of RZIM’s UK arm from RZIM on Feb. 12.  

On Feb. 11, RZIM released a months-long investigation, revealing that Zacharias reportedly raped one female massage therapist, sexually molested other massage therapists, paid for massages with donor funds, and had pictures of over 200 women on his phone. Investigators said the report proved Lori Anne Thompson’s allegations that Zacharias abused and manipulated her into a sexual relationship.

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The report interviewed over 50 people, but it didn’t examine every suspicious area, investigators said. In the interest of releasing information quickly, it never investigated what Zacharias did while overseas.

RZIM Canada closed their donation page on Feb. 1 and canceled all giving options for a three-month period. The group’s event page still has events planned consistently up to November.

“RZIM Canada is proceeding with a time of lament, reflection and prayer to seek God’s wisdom and guidance,” the closed donation page reads. “We would ask that you join us in prayer to seek God’s wisdom and discernment for the future of this ministry in Canada. We will provide an update on our plans and direction by the end of March.”

Jackson ElliottJackson Elliott is a Christian journalist trained at Northwestern University. He has worked at The Daily Signal, The Inlander, and The Christian Post, covering topics ranging from D.C. politics to prison ministry. His interests include the Bible, philosophy, theology, Russian literature, and Irish music.



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26 Responses

    1. Yes, & it is so, so sad on almost every conceivable level. Most of all, the abuse of women created in God’s image who were treated as less than. Secondly, the disintegration of a ministry that Ravi, & others, have spent their lives to build; God, in His judgement, is now tearing it down. I pray that God will raise up a much healthier ministry in the wake of RZIM’s destruction that will do similar work because this specific type of apologetical work is sorely needed. Just a great shame & grief, all of this is. Lord, have mercy on us.

  1. “In the interest of releasing information quickly, it never investigated what Zacharias did while overseas.” I think we all know what that means. It’s a matter of time, and likely a short amount of it, before proof of RZ’s pedophilia comes out.

    1. RZIM Canada has drawn the correct conclusion: there is no way to communicate Christian faith in the context of an organization bearing the name of Ravi Zacharias.

      Mr. Zacharias compelled a woman to pray with him just prior to breaking the seventh commandment. To whom, exactly, was he offering prayer? If his physical and spiritual abuse of women were limited to this instance, it would be enough to discredit him completely.

      1. Who had the authority to discipline Ravi Zacharias? I did not say that he was unqualified to repent and continue as a member of a church but he was unqualified to be an elder.

  2. It’s all very sad but I thing RZIM CA did the prudent thing. I fear the next shoe to drop will be charges of sex trafficking & involvement of RZIM members who helped get these 3rd world therapist in to the US. Ravi spent almost a year in the sex capital of the world (Bangkok) for 2010 -2014. And let’s not forget that there’s info that his personal attorneys & Ms. Thompson have but have been forbidden to release.

    1. Would not surprise me in the least.

      And let us not forget that Robert Kraft and others were busted getting a rub and tug at a Florida massage parlor. I guess Ravi avoided that by owning the shops, so it is pretty easy to avoid getting busted by the cops.

  3. That is not a true statement: Mrs.Thompson, if she is a Christian, must obey God rather than man.(Acts 5:29) The fear of man is a snare (Prov.29:25) and she is required to reveal sin or she shares in it. (Lev.19:17) God does not want NDA’s as to hide sin is a sin.(Prov.28:13)

  4. It’s absolutely a true stmt. She’s forbidden by an NDA. Let Ravi’s widow & estate executor can release her w a stroke of the pen but she refuses. Who’s sinning now??

    1. The last 6 months, Mom has refrained from speaking out publicly as a wife at RZIM’s request for fear it hurt their public stance, she handed over dad’s devices (it was not RZIM who did that) for examination, and taken other sacrificial steps at their request too. She wasn’t interviewed by the investigators. It would seem getting as much of a full picture of a man would benefit an investigation of areas of weakness, but I guess was outside the scope of the investigation.

      …My mom was not given the courtesy of seeing the material and ‘evidence’ first when it was finally presented officially a couple of days ago. Instead, a board of 18 people, senior leadership, and even someone no longer on staff at RZIM got to ask questions and pour over every detail of allegations that didn’t even involve them. Yet my mom, who has more of a right to know every single detail than anyone, was not allowed in. After many persistent requests, she was eventually emailed the report. Something considerably different than hearing it directly from the investigator and being able to ask them direct questions.

      Regardless of whether today’s report is right or not, the handling of this has been very hurtful to a family that also had legitimate rights in this process. If these things are true, Dad’s choices absolutely went against his Christian beliefs. And that is deeply painful. But so have RZIM’s choices. And they have added more pain that actually could have been avoided.

      Ravi Zacharias’ Son Speaks Out about Investigation, Blasts RZIM and Findings

      1. If she didn’t know about any of his extracurricular activities, what possible benefit was there to the investigation to have his wife give her side of the story. Her side is simply the public persona RZ projected to the world for the last few decades, and it turned out to be a lie.

        I agree she should have been given a heads-up on everything they found before the report went public, but that’s as far as it goes.

      2. Cognitive dissonance starting to hurt your head much their sonny? Let’s face it, the sooner you accept your dad was a sexual predator and a monster, the easier it will be in the long run.

  5. At this rate, I give it another 2 months at most before the entire operation sinks beneath the waves. RZIM UK will announce their shutdown next, followed by Australia and others.

    The last domino to topple will the main RZIM, but it will topple.

    1. Julie is doing the right thing. However her work has brought me closer to atheism than I ever thought possible. Christianity seems to be headed to the toilet. It is only a cultural way of being able to deal with an absolutely upside down world. I am afraid.

          1. Same here. There’s a lot in Christianity I can do without, but I can’t ignore Jesus without feeling like something in me is suffocating.

      1. Bill, in a fallen world, GOD STILL REIGNS. Yes, the Bride of Christ is wounded, but nevertheless, She will ULTIMATELY prevail over ALL EVIL. Be encouraged. Keep your lamp burning, and your light ON.

      2. Romans 3:3-4 (NIV) What if some were unfaithful? Will their unfaithfulness nullify God’s faithfulness? Not at all! Let God be true, and every human being a liar.

      3. Bill, for many Christianity is just a cultural thing, which of course is part of the problem, but God transcends cultures. We can look forward to when all ethnicities will worship together before His throne (Rev. 7); it’s beautiful when this happens on earth too. I hope to see you there.

        Although sometimes easier said than done, when afraid it’s always good to look to the One who calmed the waves and said “It is I. Don’t be afraid,”(Mt 14:27) fixing our eyes on Him, the author and perfecter of our faith (Heb. 12:2-3).

        And, it also may be helpful to remember the cloud of witness mentioned in Heb. 12:1, along with countless others who have actually taken up their cross to follow Jesus, living simple, obedient, sacrificial, often obscure lives in His service, who have finished well. I find some Christian biographies inspiring. The flip side of people like RZ is the innumerable lives that have been radically, objectively changed and redeemed for the better by Jesus.

        Hypocritical, abusive people like RZ are nothing new, having been around throughout human history, including mixed in among God’s true followers. The Bible is replete with such examples, often warning of false prophets and priests who speak lies, abuse people, and make a mockery of God’s word. Jesus spoke of weeds among the wheat (Mt 13), had many harsh rebukes for the hypocritical religious leaders, and said not everyone who claims to know Him or to have performed miraculous signs will enter His kingdom, but may instead be told, “I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!” (Mt 7:21-3) Surely, He will separate the wheat from the chaff (Mt 3:12), whether the chaff be fake Christians or those who reject God under the label of a different philosophy or religion.

        God and His true messengers told us clearly about the reality of people like RZ, not shying away from the sin, injustice, and darkness of this fallen world, so that even in their abhorrent negative examples, hypocritical people like RZ are proving the truth of God’s word (note II Tim. 3:1-9).

  6. Here are some organizations RZIM worked with in India. Maybe those lawyers should start asking them questions to find out what happened overseas. I would contact some of those 200 girls that sent pictures as well.

    This Post is just to inform readers of the FCRA recipients of RZIM. Nothing more or less is stated and/or implied. We pass no judgements on any of the individuals nor of the entities which are mentioned in this Post.

    Let us dig into the data.

    The chief affiliate of RZIM in India is RZIM Life Focus Society (RZIMLFS), Mogappair (West), Chennai. Its FCRA Registration No. is: TN/231650466. During the period 2006-2018, it had received nearly Rs. 40.8 Crore from RZIM-USA and Rs. 6.3 Crore from RZIM-Canada. In this period, RZIMLFS received only very small ‘donations’ from other foreign entities, making our characterization of it as a RZIM affiliate, appropriate.

    Table 1. RZIM Life Focus Society

    Who runs RZIMLFS? The signatory in its FC4 returns is a Shalini Manohar. However, its Darpan entry (accessed January 05, 2021) mentions the following names in its Board: Shanthi Thomas (Chair), Kannegi Packianathan (Secretary), Nathan Robinson Andrews (Vice-Chair), Sanjay Patra (Treasurer) and Biju George, Joshua Madan Samuel and Sunita Nair as Members. We must mention here that we are aware of at least two of these names in other contexts.

    Another entity which has received donations from RZIM is South Asian Institute of Advanced Christian Studies (SAIACS), Bengaluru, KA/94420397. It has also received secondary transfer funds from RZIMLFS. Its direct receipts from RZIM-USA during 2015-2017 is Rs. 91 lakh.

    Bombay Teen Challenge, Mumbai, MH/83780534 is a FCRA-NGO which works on anti-trafficking and related issues. Its chief functionary is a KK Devaraj. It does not have a Darpan entry yet. It has received Rs. 1.98 Crore totally in the period 2015-2018 from RZIM-USA.

    An entity related to RZIM-USA is Wellspring International. It has ‘donated’ Rs. 4.45 Crore total during the period 2015-2018 to Little Drops, Chennai, TN/75900804. Its chief functionary is a C Selvaraj Bovas. Edgar Jones Paul and M. Ramesh are listed as other Board Members on Darpan.

    Agni Raksha in Bengaluru is a FCRA-NGO, KA/9442103. It has received Rs. 5.8 Crore during 2015-2018 from Wellspring Internaitonal. Agni Raksha appears to be working for the welfare of burn victims.

    Zamar Educational and Charitable Trust, Chennai, TN/75901166 has received Rs. 9.28 Crore from Wellspring International during 2015-2018. Durai Samson is the Chief Functionary and Regina Samson is listed as a Trustee on Darpan.

  7. Bombay Teen Challenge is highly suspect. What better way to mask sex trafficking and hide his sexual sins/crimes than under a cloak of an entity that fights those things?

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