Perverse Christianity: After a megachurch pastor confesses to sexually assaulting a teen, the congregation gives him a standing ovation.
At Highpoint Church in Memphis, Tennessee, megachurch pastor Andy Savage offered a disturbing confession in front of his megachurch congregation this past Sunday, declaring:
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.
Even more disturbing, his request for forgiveness received a standing ovation from the perverse congregation. The Washington Post reports:
As Savage finished his remarks, he was greeted with a 20-second standing ovation from Highpoint’s congregation.
Newsweek also reports on the perverse and stunning reaction of the congregation:
A Tennessee pastor who publicly confessed to having a “sexual incident” with a high school student in 1998 received a thunderous standing applause when he asked to be forgiven.
Pastor Savage was forced to make his confession after the person he sexually assaulted, Jules Woodson, called him out for his crime in the wake of the #metoo movement.
In a brave and courageous action, Jules Woodson sent the following email to Pastor Savage, calling him out for his crime:
From: Jules Woodson
Date: 12/1/17 9:21 AM (GMT-07:00)
Subject: Do you remember?
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?
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?
Well, I REMEMBER.
After Woodson’s letter went public, Pastor Savage was forced to address the incident, and rather than simply admitting to his crime, he tried to minimize it by calling it a “sexual incident.”
However, by calling it a “sexual incident,” Pastor Savage is trying to sanitize the fact that he sexually assaulted a minor while serving as a Youth Pastor in a church. As such, he is guilty of a crime, and should be punished by the law, not cheered for his “brave confession” by gullible rubes who show nothing but contempt for his victim and all other survivors of sexual assault.
It is also important to note that Pastor Savage was not just a college student at the time of his crime. When he sexually assaulted Woodson she was a only a teen and he was her youth pastor. She was a minor. He was an adult. And he was her youth pastor, which makes his crime all the more heinous.
Commenting on the fact that the church congregation gave Pastor Savage a standing ovation after confessing to sexually assaulting her, Woodson told The New York Times she watched the moment, streamed live on the church’s YouTube page, in disbelief, declaring:
Woodson said Pastor Savage’s apology wasn’t enough:
His apology isn’t enough because number one, he’s lying about how he handled it. He never came to me, the church told him he couldn’t talk to me and they told me I couldn’t talk to him.
Woodson continued, explaining why she came forward:
I want other victims of sexual abuse, especially within the church, to know that they’re not alone and to know that they have a voice.
There is a petition at Change.org asking Highpoint Church to force Pastor Andy Savage to resign his position at the megachurch. However, the fact that the congregation gave the criminal a standing ovation for admitting to sexual assault means that such a petition will most likely fail.
Bottom line: Christianity is often a perverse and despicable enterprise, and nothing demonstrates that more than Pastor Andy Savage and the good folks at Highpoint Church in Memphis, Tennessee.