IHOPKC spars with attorney Boz Tchividjian after multiple Jane Does deny abuse

International House of Prayer founder, Mike Bickle.
International House of Prayer founder, Mike Bickle. | YouTube/International House of Prayer

An attorney for International House of Prayer Kansas City publicly sparred online with noted attorney and Billy Graham's grandson, Boz Tchividjian, over the strength of abuse allegations against the ministry's founder, Mike Bickle, after five of eight Jane Does an advocate group claimed were victims publicly denied the allegations.

The response from IHOPKC's attorney to Tchividjian came after he took issue with ministry spokesman Eric Volz's claim on the social platform X that he, along with the ministry's interim executive director Kurt Fuller, had met with the advocate group to discuss hiring a "mutually agreed upon 3rd party investigator" to review the allegations against Bickle.

"This is what the IHOP attorney emailed to me just two days ago ... you be the judge," Tchividjian began in a statement on X Sunday night addressing Volz's claim.

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"[I]f you or the Group claim other alleged Jane Doe victims have come forth, we need to know the who, what, when, and where of any other claimed victimizations. If that information is provided, we pledge to review and investigate as warranted. 2/4 [Keep reading…it gets better]

"If this request is once again refused, as it has been on multiple occasions in the past, IHOP will have no choice but to assume that like the prior and now debunked 'victimization' allegations against 'at least 5 Jane Does', 3/4 [Get ready for the clincher]

"there is no real substance to any such other unsupported allegation, and they will be dismissed."

In a joint statement last October, IHOPKC founding member Dwayne Roberts, former IHOPKC Executive Leadership Team member Brian Kim and former Forerunner Church Pastor Wes Martin revealed 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 Bickle to step away from public ministry when they were first confronted with the allegations on Oct. 24.

The IHOPKC leaders identified five of some eight women who the complaint group alleged 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 one woman, identified as Jane Doe, who Tchividjian is representing, was found to be credible.

On Jan. 16, IHOPKC worship leader Misty Edwards released a joint statement on behalf of herself and four other women misidentified as Bickle's victims.

"Many of us alleged Jane Does have been silent throughout the months of the three IHOPKC investigations and difficult ordeal. While other voices have chosen to clamor loudly and insistently, we have maintained our silence, desiring to retain whatever measure of privacy of life we could that was left after our lives were invaded by the violating behavior of those involved in a calculated 'Jane Doe' campaign that is being done in the name of 'love, transparency, justice, and advocacy,'" the statement noted, criticizing the advocate group.

"While a narrative has been presented of many female victims whom the 'advocate' group is representing, the true story that has not come out is how many of those victims were involuntarily labelled that and had narratives constructed by others forced upon our lives, that we have been forced to defend ourselves from. This has been painful, humiliating, and traumatizing to all of us."

A statement released by Volz and credited to IHOPKC's attorney, who has been practicing law for 44 years, called Tchividjian's release of communication between attorneys "desperation tactics."

"This is the first time I have ever had an attorney make public an email from attorney to attorney. It shows the desperation tactics of this Group," the IHOPKC attorney noted before highlighting "the entire paragraph from which the Boz selectively quoted."

"Now, we know your prior claim of a lack of safe place thereby causing victims to stand silent was simply not true. Again, it is now clear that the safe place agenda was a red herring in this process. The protest statement yesterday from a large group (at least 5) of those same alleged 'victims' has changed the dynamics. It is now absolutely clear that, 'at least 5 Jane Doe's' had and have no issue at all with safety from IHOP questions but they do have significant issue with safety from the Advocacy Group," the IHOPKC attorney argued.

"The previous use of a claim of a lack of safe place was a tactic used by you and the Group to avoid presenting whatever small amount of information you might have had. We no longer accept empty allegations about a lack of a safety and caring environment for alleged victims to make their accounts. It was not true then and is not true now.

"We have provided and will continue to provide that safe place. So, I respectfully repeat our many prior requests … if you or the Group claim other alleged Jane Doe victims have come forth, we need to know the who, what, when, and where of any other claimed victimizations. If that information is provided, we pledge to review and investigate as warranted."

In a statement on a "50-Page Working Document" used by the advocate group to present the allegations against Bickle, Roberts said it was never meant to be public as it was not properly vetted.

"While I did use the 50-page document as an outline, I want to again make clear that it was a working document that had not been edited or agreed upon by the rest of those who were standing with the victim, nor, unfortunately, had it been fully redacted as it did include initials of victims who agreed to be named and the ex-spouse of one victim," Roberts noted.

"In particular, neither Wes, Brian, or Allen had read or agreed to this document; they had all heard firsthand witness statements, and it was upon the basis of these statements alone that they had appealed to the Executive Leadership Team of IHOPKC."

Despite the controversy over the document, Roberts hopes it will be treated as an opportunity to conduct "a suitable investigation by a third party."

"While some of the friends who stood with the victim had not read or agreed to the working document, they did find the allegations brought to them to be credible and longstanding. We would encourage all stakeholders to resist the temptation to view this as a battle of two sides and instead to correctly think of the issue as it is.

"Will shepherds in the body of Christ be willing to receive the testimonies of allegations of misconduct by an elder brought by more than twenty people and be responsible with that information? We are still hopeful that a suitable investigation by a third party with no fiduciary duty to IHOPKC can be mutually agreed upon between all the parties in order to bring the truth to light in an environment that is safe for all concerned."

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

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