March 31, 2005

Congregation misled on sex abuse claim

New Zealand Herald


The Takapuna Assembly of God has misled its congregation about allegations that its head pastor, Wayne Hughes, sexually abused a teenager.

A statement read out during a service on Good Friday claimed that police had looked into the sexual abuse allegation against Mr Hughes and "they found no basis to substantiate those claims whatsoever".

But the victim, who was abused about 20 years ago, has never laid a complaint with police.

Asked whether the statement he read was inaccurate, Pastor Duane Newport said: "Itís just too premature for us to make any comment. We are looking into all the issues."

After the Herald published the allegations last week, the church board and pastors agreed, based on medical and spiritual advice, that Mr Hughes should "take a timely break".

Posted by kshaw at March 31, 2005 06:19 PM