November 8, 2019
Christian stand-up comedian John Crist and two pastors with Southern Baptist Convention ties have been accused of sexual sin and abuse.
Crist admitted to “sexual sin and addiction struggles” in a Nov. 6 statement to Charisma News, which shared stories from Crist’s accusers. The women reported behaviors including excessive drinking, sexting and offering show tickets in exchange for sex.
“My behavior has been destructive and sinful,” Crist said. “I’ve sinned against God, against women and the people who I love the most. … I have also hurt the name of Jesus and have sought His forgiveness.”
Crist has canceled the remainder of his 2019 tour and Netflix has put on hold a Crist comedy special previously scheduled to release this month. Crist, a Samford University graduate, filmed the show at the Lyric Theatre in Birmingham in May.
News also broke this week that Wes Feltner, pastor of Berean Baptist Church, Burnsville, Minnesota — a non-SBC congregation — is accused of pastoral abuse.
Two former students who attended Feltner’s youth ministry say Feltner enticed them into secret intimate relationships while he was on staff at First Southern Baptist Church, Evansville, Indiana, in 2002.
Both women said Feltner began sexual relationships with them while he was their youth minister and both women said they and their mothers reported the allegations to First Southern Baptist Church but were told to not discuss it with anyone. Feltner then resigned.
Feltner was recently announced as the top candidate for pastor of First Baptist Church, Clarksville, Tennessee. He also was an adjunct professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS) in Louisville, Kentucky.
SBTS president Albert Mohler Jr. said he learned of the allegations Nov. 4 and a response team determined the accusations of misconduct were credible.
“Accordingly all teaching responsibilities for this individual were suspended and classes reassigned to other instructors,” Mohler said.
And in Chicago recent news reports say Charles Lyons resigned as pastor of Armitage Baptist Church in July after disclosing his long-term sexual abuse of a minor in the 1960s. (BP)