Andy Savage, teaching pastor at the popular Highpoint Church Memphis in Tennessee, admitted Friday that he sexually assaulted a 17-year-old girl while he was her youth pastor 20 years ago but he repented immediately.
Savage’s admission comes after an online uproar over his past after his now grown-up victim, who goes by the name Jules Woodson, described in graphic detail to The Wartburg Watch how Savage coerced her into performing oral sex on him on a dark Texas dirt road when he should have taken her straight home to her mother’s house.
“As a college student on staff at a church in Texas more than 20 years ago, I regretfully had a sexual incident with a female high school senior in the church. I apologized and sought forgiveness from her, her parents, her discipleship group, the church staff, and the church leadership, who informed the congregation. In agreement with wise counsel, I took every step to respond in a biblical way,” Savage said in a statement about the incident that took place while he served at Woodlands Parkway Baptist Church, now known as StoneBridge Church.
“I resigned from ministry and moved back home to Memphis. I accepted full responsibility for my actions. I was and remain very remorseful for the incident and deeply regret the pain I caused her and her family, as well as the pain I caused the church and God’s Kingdom,” he said.
Savage, who is now married and a father of five boys, said he shared his past with his wife Amanda before they were engaged and also disclosed the incident to Highpoint Church Memphis Lead Pastor Chris Conlee and other key leaders prior to joining the staff at the church.
“This incident was dealt with in Texas 20 years ago, but in the last few days has been presented to a wider audience. I was wrong and I accepted responsibility for my actions. I was sorry then and remain so today. Again, I sincerely ask for forgiveness from her and pray for God’s continued healing for everyone involved,” he said.
According to The Wartburg Watch, Jules was moved to reach out to Savage after seeing him tweet about Matt Lauer being fired for sexual misconduct allegations in late November. His tweets are no longer public. Jules reportedly then sent Savage an email on Dec. 1 accusing him of sexual assault.
“Do you remember that night that you were supposed to drive me home from church and instead drove me to a deserted back road and sexually assaulted me?” she wrote, according to The Wartburg Watch. “Do you remember how you acted like you loved me and cared about me in order for me to cooperate in such acts, only to run out of the vehicle later and fall to your knees begging for forgiveness and for me not to tell anyone what had just happened?”
Savage did not reply until Jules came forward with graphic details of their encounter last week.
Click here to read more.
Source: Christian Post