IHOPKC bans ‘prophet’ Bob Hartley from 24/7 prayer room after allegations of sex abuse, predation

Bob Hartley is the founder of Hartley Hope Ministries.
Bob Hartley is the founder of Hartley Hope Ministries. | YouTube/Hope: Bob Hartley

The embattled International House of Prayer Kansas City has banned self-styled "prophet" Bob Hartley of Hartley Hope Ministries from its 24/7 prayer room after he was publicly accused of sexual assault and a pattern of predatory behavior impacting multiple alleged women victims. 

"Based on information we have been presented and verified, Mr. Hartley has been informed he will no longer be permitted access to the IHOPKC Prayer Room. We can also confirm he is not on staff at IHOPKC, nor is he a congregant of Forerunner Church," Eric Volz, IHOPKC's new spokesperson, who serves as managing director of the international crisis agency David House, said in a statement on X last Monday, days after the allegations about Hartley began to emerge.

Michelle Seidler, a former prophetic teacher and team Leader at IHOPKC, alleged on Facebook Wednesday that Hartley tried to seduce one woman with fake prophecy. Also an alleged victim of Hartley's, Seidler began publishing the first-hand accounts she'd received from multiple women against Hartley days earlier with a trove of evidence, including video, text messages and first-hand accounts from multiple women.

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Hartley is said to be a friend of IHOPKC founder Mike Bickle, whom the ministry recently cut ties with and is currently under investigation for abuse allegations. Hartley acknowledged the claims against him in an at times incoherent video that has since been removed from Facebook. 

The self-styled prophet and divorced patriarch of Hope Ministries admitted, "I did make some mistakes" during a "mid-life crisis" and engaged in some relationships he has since repented of but maintains they "were consensual." 

"I never would push myself on anyone," he said. "These are women who are very strong, and they won't do anything unless it's in their heart to do it."

"When something is brought into a criminal place, it's very clear what defamation is," he later added. "If people want to be deposed, I've never said the other side of the story on different situations, and I won't. But it's different than what you think."

The Christian Post reached out to Hartley for comment. A response was not received by press time. 

In one video shared by Seidler on Facebook last Monday, Hartley appears to be seeking intimacy with a woman while flaunting his wealth. She said the woman who sent her the video told her she had only met Hartley once at his home "with a group of other people he was prophesying over."

"She does NOT know Him. She never engaged with him in any other way," the former IHOPKC team leader said.

Hartley tells the woman in the recording that he is not a "sex fiend" but a "love fiend" and he would be willing to "bless" her financially for her company.

"I'm not a sex fiend. You know, I kind of plug in. But I am a love fiend where I love and that intimacy that comes from the heart. That's what I'm into. Just want to turn this around. I don't know, but I need to hear from you, and I need to hear. I'll meet at this place … and I'll send you the money for … a little bit a travel you're doing," Hartley says in the video.

"I just never had to pay for somebody to respond to me. And I just don't mind blessing somebody who has financial need, and I just feel like I'm not paying for ... I'm paying for intimacy. I just want to bless you. So let me know how you feel," he continues.

"Let me know because this is what it's going to cost, and I just, I pay for a lot of people in a lot of situations, and so, I just got to know. I'd also want to know that you want to partner with me. You want to bless the world we're blessing, which is an awesome world, you know. I can explain it to you later, but I don't spend much on me. I got a beautiful home and $13 million properties that are B&B's that are unbelievable," he adds.

A text message Bob Hartley allegedly sent to an unidentified woman.
A text message Bob Hartley allegedly sent to an unidentified woman. | Facebook/Michelle Seidler

In another post, Seidler shared a statement from a woman who claimed she was preyed upon and then raped by Hartley. It was noted that the woman is also consulting with an attorney.

Seidler said she was "personally involved" with this situation about two years ago because the alleged victim reached out to her after it happened. 

The unidentified woman claimed she initially idolized Hartley when she met him more than 15 years ago, describing him as a "spiritual champion" and "awesome Father in the faith" whom she "greatly admired."

She said when Hartley first reached out to her with an offer to connect and support her dreams of working for God, she was "elated" and saw "zero red flags" because of his work with churches nationwide.

"At the beginning it felt innocent in his flirtation. Little did I know the wolf in sheep's clothing I was dealing with," she wrote.

"Little by little he would begin being more and more touchy feely with me. This made me uncomfortable. I would get away most of the time until one night he came over to my house when I said I was spending consecrated time with God. He brought his iPad over and got undressed and laid in my spare bedroom. I was very frustrated and grossed out by this. That evening he forced himself on me and raped me," the woman claimed.

"It was horrifically devastating. After this, he threatened me in many ways including suing me. I felt paralyzed as to what to do. This was an extremely painful moment of being violated on so many levels."

In another alleged encounter with Hartley, Seidler shared the story of a woman who claims he tried to abuse her by using fake prophecy.

"A couple years ago I was invited by a friend to attend one of Bob Hartley's in-home church gatherings. I really enjoyed the fellowship with other believers and Bob's teachings on the 'Yellow House,' so I kept going to these gatherings. As I got to know Bob, I truly admired his business-as-missions mindset and 'love everybody' attitude. He seemed genuine and we began conversations about AirBnB management. He expressed interest in partnering and invited me to attend several of his 'Deeper Waters' business meetings," the woman said.

"Late one Saturday night I received a strange text from Bob asking me to come over to his house and hold him. He said it would be nothing sexual, but he just needed to be held and someone to sleep next to him. I was confused thinking he texted the wrong person and said I didn't think that was appropriate. He pushed at first saying he would come to wherever I was, but I was adamant that it was not happening. He apologized saying he had mixed alcohol with his medication and was not thinking clearly," she continued.

The woman recalled brushing off the encounter until a few weeks later, Hartley told her at one of his church gatherings that he had a "prophetic word" for her that he wanted to share at a later time.

Hartley later hosted a barbecue at his home and allegedly asked the woman to stay behind at the end so he could give her the prophetic word.

"I agreed as I was excited to hear what it was. After everyone left Bob said he needed to go upstairs but would be back down soon. He had left his iPad on the couch and a text came through from a number called 'Grasshopper Line' with my name in the message. This caught my attention so I looked at the message and under my name were the names of close people in my life and events that could be easily found on the internet," the woman recalled.

"I got the feeling this was related to my 'prophetic word' and Bob had quickly looked up personal information about me and texted it to his iPad. Bob then came downstairs in his underwear and sat next to me on the couch and started to 'prophesy' what was in that message. I was completely in shock and immediately said I needed to leave. I was disgusted and disturbed by that experience and unsure what to do about it. No minister should ever use prophecy as a way to lure or try and seduce someone."

Seidler explained in one Facebook post last Monday that, "For the last 7 years there have been numerous attempts made for Bob to be made accountable ( Matthew 18 & more) and to stop his behavior of preying on women."

"It started with me in 2016, and at that time several leaders knew of Bob's behavior. At that time they banned him from ministering at their churches, but nothing was done to stop him from doing what he was doing. No one wanted to deal with Bob, that includes Mike Bickle," she said.

According to The Roys Report, Bickle and Hartley have a friendship that stems back to the 1980s when they were pastors at the former Kansas City Fellowship. Michael Sullivant, who also served as a pastor at Kansas City Fellowship, told the news outlet that Hartley purchased IHOPKC's original buildings to "help IHOP get started getting space to pray."

Though Bickle also told TRR that he hasn't had much contact with Hartley in the last 15 years, Hartley's son, Jedidiah Hartley, said he has reason to believe the two were recently in contact.

"When this [scandal] first went down with Mike, my dad was telling me he was talking with Mike," Jedidiah told TRR. "I was under the distinct impression that he was having conversations with him regularly."

About three weeks ago, Volz announced that IHOPKC permanently parted ways with Bickle even as he remains under investigation for "serious allegations including sexual immorality."

Bickle confessed to sinful misconduct he committed over 20 years ago after a woman, identified as Jane Doe by TRR, alleged that for approximately three years, from 1996 to 1999, Bickle paid for her apartment, gave her a key to his office and engaged in every sexual act with her except copulation. She said the IHOPKC founder wooed her with Scripture when she was just 19 and he was 42, then made her a kept woman for several years as he established his now popular ministry.

IHOPKC founding member Dwayne Roberts, former IHOPKC Executive Leadership Team member Brian Kim and former Forerunner Church Pastor Wes Martin revealed in a joint October statement that they were the ones who first confronted IHOPKC leaders about the allegations against Bickle spanning "several decades."

They alleged that before meeting with IHOPKC's leadership team, they attempted to discuss the allegations directly with Bickle "in the spirit of Matthew 18:15-17" but were rebuffed. They claimed that Bickle also attempted to intimidate, isolate, manipulate and discredit his alleged victims.

In its "Report on Initial Findings," IHOPKC's executive leadership team said they treated the allegations against Bickle as credible and asked him to step away from public ministry when they were first confronted with the allegations on Oct. 24.

The IHOPKC leaders said they identified five of some eight women who the complaint group alleges are Bickle's victims and found the evidence thin. Three of the alleged victims called the allegations "lies.'" One of the alleged victims refused to communicate with the attorneys for the ministry. Only Jane Doe was found credible.

Contact: Follow Leonardo Blair on Twitter: @leoblair Follow Leonardo Blair on Facebook: LeoBlairChristianPost

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