Indiana pastor resigns over underage sex scandal
Kosciusko prosecutor investigating allegations involving teenager
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WARSAW, Ind. (WANE) – A Warsaw church pastor admitted to his congregation on Sunday what he said was an adulterous relationship. Then his apparent victim came forward and said she was 16 at the time.
After the tumultuous revelations at New Life Christian Church, Pastor John Lowe II resigned and the Kosciusko County District Attorney’s Office confirmed it was investigating the allegations.
Video (look above) of the admission was widely shared on Facebook by a participant. By mid-afternoon on Monday, it had over 90,000 views.
In the video, Lowe confessed, “I committed adultery” with “a person” nearly 20 years ago, and continued the relationship “for far too long.”
“I have no defense,” he told the congregation. “I committed adultery. To put it plainly: I didn’t make a mistake, I didn’t have a problem, I didn’t have an affair, I didn’t make an error in judgment – I Fishing. I need to say it, and you deserve to hear it.
Lowe asked the congregation to forgive him for the “deep hurt” he caused and apologized to those against whom he had sinned. He said there was “no right answer” to why it took so long to admit his wrongdoing, but said he had repented.
Lowe then announced that he was leaving the ministry and said he would submit to the process and recommendation of the church board.
After they finished speaking, a man and a woman approached the lectern. The woman told the congregation she was a victim of Lowe’s when she was 16 and said she had lived in “a prison” for 27 years – not 20.
“You did things to my teenage body that never had and never should have been done,” she said. “If you cannot admit the truth, you must answer for it before God. You are not the victim here.
She continued, “The church deserves to know the truth. This church was built on lies, but no more. The lies must stop.
The woman said she spent years feeling like a ‘horrible person’ with suicidal thoughts until two weeks ago when her brother approached her about a memory of seeing his younger sister in bed with her pastor.
“The lies and manipulation must stop,” she said.
After the woman left the stage, members of the congregation shouted at Lowe.
“If you did, you have to admit it,” one man shouted.
“We need to hear from our pastor,” said another.
Lowe replied, “I told you I had committed adultery and I told you it had gone on far too long.”
“I can’t do anything about it except tell you that if I could go back and do it all over again, I would. I can’t, and all I can do is ask you to forgive me.
The Kosciusko County District Attorney’s Office confirmed to WANE 15 on Monday that an investigation is ongoing into the matter. However, no other information was provided.
From Monday, the New Life Facebook Page had been closed.
Lowe remains listed as the senior pastor of the church on his website.