The Kuyperian Commentary

Politics, Economics, Culture, and Theology with a Biblical Viewpoint

Mahaney Steps Down

C.J. MahaneySovereign Grace Ministries (SGM) President C.J. Mahaney announced yesterday he will leave his position on April 12 to focus on pastoring his new church in Louisville, Ky. The announcement follows months of controversy related to the ministry, including a lawsuit against SGM that alleges cover-ups of child abuse in the 1980s and 1990s.

Mahaney’s announcement came after the resignation last month of SGM board chairman John Loftness and board member Craig Cabaniss.

Mahaney took a leave of absence as SGM president in 2011 but the SGM board reinstated him in early 2012. Following his reinstatement, Mahaney relocated SGM’s offices from Maryland to Louisville and started a church there.

In a blog post, Mahaney cited an imminent SGM transition to a “new polity” as the reason for the change and said plans for his resignation began in October 2012. Mahaney said he is “eager to once again devote my attention to pastoral ministry. Returning to the pulpit of a local church last September has only confirmed for me what I believe God has called and gifted me to do: pastor, preach, and fulfill a role in building the local church for the glory of God.”

In a November response to the lawsuit, SGM spokesman Tommy Hill noted that “the suit does not allege child abuse by any current or former pastor of SGM or any church associated with SGM. The suit does not allege child abuse by any employee or staff of SGM or any church associated with SGM. The suit does not allege any child abuse occurred on any SGM property or any church associated with SGM. SGM leaders provided biblical and spiritual direction to those who requested this guidance.”

Thomas Kidd is contributing scholar to The Kuyperian Commentary. His newest book is Patrick Henry: First Among Patriots, published in 2011 with Basic Books.

This article was originally published at WORLD.

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3 thoughts on “Mahaney Steps Down

  1. My curiosity with all of this is that based on the quote from Hill in the last paragraph who is left to have committed the alleged abuse and where could it have been done?

  2. Rachelle on said:

    In addition to specific charges against specific individuals, charge number 18 is against an unidentified individual.

    “18. As early as 1987, the Church was on notice that sexual predation of children was occurring under its auspices. In addition to the incidents described below, the Church learned in 1997 through non-ministerial means that the son of a high-ranking Church leader was engaged in the sexual predation of children under the Church’s care. Yet the Church did absolutely nothing to protect the children.”

    The prosecuting attorneys don’t tell us who this “high-ranking Church [SGM] leader” is or the name of his son. I don’t know of any high ranking leader’s son who preyed upon children. C.J. must know and he will be forced to tell the court.

  3. Rachelle on said:

    The original lawsuit alleged that church pressured victims and their families not to report sexual abuse by other members.

    But the amended lawsuit, filed on Friday, adds both plaintiffs and defendants and alleges for the first time that church staff members themselves were among the abusers, and that some of the abuse occurred on church property.

    The lawsuit also adds new allegations of physical abuse, in addition to sexual abuse.

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