Megachurch pastor receives standing ovation for admitting to ‘sexual incident’ with teen girl

A Memphis woman says she is devastated after a megachurch clergyman who molested her as a teen was applauded by his gathering for apologizing for the “incident.”

Earlier this month, Jules Woodson said pastor Andy Savage sexually assaulted her while driving her residence from their Houston church in 1998. Woodson, who was 17 years old at the time, claimed Savage attracted her digression and began molesting her, then evaded her not to tell anyone.

But this November, after Matt Lauer was burnt from NBC for alleged sex misbehaviour, Woodson was inspired to confront Savage over email, expecting him if he remembered sexually assaulting her. After Savage refused to reply, Woodson decided to go public with the allegations.

Since then, Savage has admitted to the incident. And this past Sunday, he told his gathering at Highpoint Church, a megachurch in Memphis, that he “regretfully” had a” sexual occurrence” with Woodson. This, he said, became him feel guilty and guided him to” accept full responsibility” for his behavior.

In response, Savage received a standing ovation from the flock, with Highpoint’s guide clergyman Chris Conlee be underlined that his audience does not have to” picked a surface” between Woodson and Savage.

” Our responsibility is that we must take God’s side ,” Conlee said to his congregation.” Now what is God’s side? Does God want us to criticize beings? Does he want us to criticize Andy and reject what creed, forgiveness, and repentance is all about, and about the fruit that is in keeping with that ?”

Savage believed the alleged carnal abuse was ” dealt with” in the past. But even in his apology, it’s clear he isn’t being completely forthcoming. He calls the alleged assault a” sexual incident ,” never formerly detailing how he specifically injured Woodson. And while Savage stresses that he asked for forgiveness from both Woodson, their own families, and Savage’s church in Texas, Woodson instead alleges that Savage never explicitly acknowledged to the assault to Woodson’s mother. And she says the church encouraged her to remain silent so clergymen could deal with the problem within the church.

In an interview with the New York Times , Woodson screamed and “ve called the” standing ovation, of which there is video positioned on the church’s YouTube page, “disgusting.” She said that she has since reported the molestation to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department, although there are Texas’ act of limitations may prevent the situation from ever being resolved.

” I exactly hope that by me coming forward that I would give courage to one other person ,” Woodson explained to the Times .” It doesn’t material if I was his only victim. What matters is that this was a big problem and continues to go on.”

H/ T the New York Times

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