Updated: May 25
Matt Chandler hired Anthony Moore after his internship with Mark Dever in 2014 to be the campus pastor of The Village Church in Fort Worth, Texas. A few months later, Anthony Moore hired a friend of his from the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary to be his student pastor. From August 2016 to January 2017, Moore took at least five videos over six months of his “friend” while showering in Moore’s home for his sexual pleasure. These felonious criminal acts were serial, perverse, and pre-meditated. They were carried out with stealth. The friend discovered the videos on Moore’s iPhone.
The Village Church fired Moore in January 2017 but covered up the nature and extent of his criminal behavior and did not report him to law enforcement. They chose to protect Moore, not the sheep in their pasture or other pastures. Chandler learned nothing from his friend, C.J. Mahaney. Anthony Moore finished up his Ph.D. from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in 2014. He was close friends with Paige Patterson & Dr. Thomas White, the President of Cedarville University in southwest Ohio. White wanted to hire him because “he is a conservative, evangelical, African American, with a winsome and charismatic personality, who has a Ph.D. in theology.” (Letter to Cedarville Trustees, July 3, 2017) During the vetting process in June-July of 2017, The Village Church elders told Dr. White and Dr. Jason Lee (Dean of Biblical and Theological Studies) about Moore’s crimes. White withheld that information from the Board of Trustees who hired Moore the next month as the Multicultural Recruiter. That was his primary job description and involved close interaction with prospective students. White never explained the nature and extent of Moore’s actions to the Board of Trustees or the faculty. White knew the issues with Moore were extremely serious. He was told there were “multiple videos” of the victim. Deceitfully, White presented Moore’s actions as a single “incident” when he “acted in perversion technology with another person” “during a dark moment of questions, temptations and curiosity.“ He made excuses for Moore in the little he did share. The trustees and faculty had no idea Moore repeatedly preyed upon his student pastor friend and committed multiple felonies in the process punishable by up to two years in jail on each count.
Invasive Visual Recording Invasive visual recording, also known as voyeurism, is charged as a serious felony offense in Texas. … Being convicted of invasive visual recording under Texas Penal Code § 21.15 will subject an individual to serious felony consequences. In Texas, a §21.15 conviction is charged as a state jail felony. A state jail felony is punishable by up to two (2) years in jail and up to $10,000 fines.
Yesterday, Dr. White was put on “administrative leave” and plans are underway to do two “internal reviews” by a supposed independent firm. I hope the law firm is genuinely third party and has extensive experience investigating corruption, sex crimes and their cover-up. Students and faculty must ask the Board of Trustees to explain how the law firm is selected and divulge any connection it has to board members or the university.
The trustees must also explain the parameters of the investigation and how it will be conducted. For instance, will the lawyers attempt to interview Anthony Moore, the victim, the detectives who interviewed and recorded the victim, Matt Chandler, Paige Patterson, Craig Miller (Moore’s pastor), et al.? Their efforts must be probing and extensive. Not superficial and parochial.
The investigations cannot be confined to “all relevant communication” (see announcement below) if that means written communication only. There must be a diligent attempt to interview all relevant individuals inside and outside of Cedarville University. It cannot be a “limited” investigation. The full scope of the investigation must be made known. Furthermore, I am greatly concerned the Board of Trustees is retaining a law firm like Covenant Life Church in Gaithersburg, Maryland did in their bogus “independent investigation” of sexual abuse while C.J. Mahaney was senior pastor. The lead lawyer/partner who did that investigation was retained by Covenant Life Church to protect their self-interests. After a 15 month “investigation,” which did not include talking to the victims, he could not reveal anything incriminating he discovered under attorney client confidentiality. It was a totally corrupt undertaking. CLC paid his law firm $100,000. Under this arrangement, the “independent investigator” legally covered up the illegal conspiracy to commit and cover-up the sexual abuse of children. The Cedarville Trustees are taking the same approach. I hate to say it but this is by design. They know exactly what they are doing. Follow closely what they say.
We are hiring an independent firm to conduct an internal investigation to ensure nothing inappropriate involving Dr. Moore took place on our campus or with any of our students elsewhere. We are retaining an independent firm to conduct an audit of the entire process surrounding the hiring of Dr. Moore.
This terminology fools people. People must realize “retaining” and “independent” are a contradiction of terms. It is like Hillary Clinton retaining or hiring a law firm to investigate her destruction of 30,000 emails knowing whatever the law firm discovers cannot be reported to the public if it is incriminating in nature.
In the case of Moore and Thomas, notice that none of the findings of the law firm will be released to the students, faculty, or administration. The reports will be given to the Board of Trustees only. I suspect the Cedarville community will never see them unless they are leaked.
This firm will report to the board, and the board will then report the findings to the Cedarville University community at-large. The firm will report its findings to the board.
An authentic independent investigation does not create private reports only those in power with a vested interest get to read. For instance, Loren Reno, the acting president. He is close friends with Thomas White and Anthony Moore. He should not be heading up this process. No, an independent investigation shares their unvarnished findings at large. Their reports are public, not private. If they find evidence of criminality, they also forward that evidence to law enforcement rather than cover it up under attorney client privilege. In truth, Loren Reno and the Board of Trustees need to explain why they are doing a secret internal investigation and not independent investigation. I realize the Board of Trustees says they “will then report the findings [about Moore] to the Cedarville University community at-large” but I am not confident they will share all the findings especially if they are damming. And they say nothing about what they will share regarding the investigation of Dr. Thomas and his surrogates. This is a bad arrangement! I hope it changes and the trustees resolve to do an authentic independent investigation, not an internal review by their lawyers. In addition, everyone in the administration who concealed the truth about Moore in order to get him the initial job as Multicultural Recruiter and later promotions like Assistant Professor of Theological Studies and Special Advisor to the President for Kingdom Diversity, must be held accountable and called to repentance for their deceptive actions and reckless decisions that put students increasingly at risk. That certainty includes Dr. Thomas and Dr. Lee and likely some of the trustees. Will everyone be disciplined who was part of the ruse or will they get a pass? Because the Board of Trustees has chosen not to do an independent investigation, there is every reasons to believe they will cover up wrongdoing they find (or know about). Furthermore, they need to explain how they chose the law firm and whether anyone in the law firm has connections to the trustees or university. Joshua Harris (lead pastor) and Mark Mitchell (executive pastor) at Covenant Life Church refused to explain why and how Lars Liebeler was hired to do the investigation. He had absolutely no experience investigating sex crimes. Well, here is the press release put out yesterday by Mark Weinstein, the Executive Director of Public Relations for Cedarville University.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 1, 2020 CONTACT: Mark D. Weinstein Executive Director of Public Relations 937-532-6885 (m) firstname.lastname@example.org @CedarvilleNews Cedarville University Board of Trustees: Statement Regarding Termination of Anthony Moore CEDARVILLE, OHIO -- The Board of Trustees at Cedarville University was recently made aware of additional information related to Dr. Anthony Moore’s past that led to the termination of his employment by our president, Dr. Thomas White, on Thursday, April 23, 2020. The board is incredibly grieved over this new information and the questions it raises. This matter was our priority at our spring Trustee meeting. We understand the gravity of this situation, and we covet your continued prayers. The trustees have endorsed and ordered the following three courses of action: 1. We are hiring an independent firm to conduct an internal investigation to ensure nothing inappropriate involving Dr. Moore took place on our campus or with any of our students elsewhere. This firm will report to the board, and the board will then report the findings to the Cedarville University community at-large. 2. We are retaining an independent firm to conduct an audit of the entire process surrounding the hiring of Dr. Moore. This will include a thorough review of all relevant communication involving Dr. White and Dr. Moore, the trustees, The Village Church, employment references, etc. The firm will report its findings to the board. 3. We have placed Dr. White on administrative leave during these investigations and have appointed Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Loren Reno as acting president of Cedarville University. Gen. Reno currently serves as senior advisor, office of the president, and was formerly vice president for academics at Cedarville. Dr. White has pledged his full support of both internal reviews being conducted and will make himself available to respond to either inquiry as requested. Dr. White will also fulfill his commitment to participate in the Senior Celebration online event on Saturday to honor the class of 2020. As our Cedarville University community processes this situation, we pray we would do so with humility, grace, mercy, integrity, civility, and respect. Above all, we pray God would be honored by our deliberations and actions. Mark D. Weinstein Executive director of Public Relations Cedarville University o: 937.766.8800 m: 937.532.6885 cedarville.edu
I’ve closely studied all that has been written about Anthony Moore, Thomas White, etc. If not for the hard work of Todd Wilhelm and Julie Roys now of this would be known. Wilhelm broke the story on April 16 at Thou Art the Man. He has written eight posts to date based on exceptional evidence. Julie Roys has also provided outstanding coverage and documentation at The Roys Report.
This story is another in a long line of stories about Reformed, Baptist, and evangelical leaders who put themselves first in reality; not the Kingdom of God and the cross of Christ they preach. The hypocrisy, corruption and partiality must end! It has done extraordinary harm to the gospel of Jesus Christ and the souls of countless individuals.
For example, why has no one taken a stand against John MacArthur and Phil Johnson for their serial lying and bullying? Why has no one called Tedd Tripp to account for his criminal cover up of sexual abuse in the Association of Reformed Baptist Churches in America (ARBCA) to the great harm of victims? Why do Ray Ortlund, Kevin DeYoung, H.B. Charles, and others still defend C.J. Mahaney. He covered up sexual abuse and assault for 35 years. And how can C.J.’s church still be commended by the Southern Baptist Convention? It should have been removed as an SBC church by now. I could on and on and on.
In the same way, the pretense, hypocrisy and self-justification of Dr. Thomas White is repulsive. He has shown no contrition and refused to be honest with the trustees, faculty and university in his written statement on April 24 and video comments on April 27. Now he is being compelled. Faculty have been fired, and students expelled for lesser sins at Cedarville University. White should be removed as president. The trustees should also require he make a clear public confession of specific sin and ask forgiveness from all the students and faculty.
Lastly, Dr. White is on the Board of Directors for The Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood(CBMW). The men on that board have covered up for C.J. Mahaney for years. They even allow Jeff Purswell to be on the board. I know Jeff well. I turned the Sovereign Grace Pastors College over to him which I founded and headed. He has publicly maligned multiple victims of sexual abuse in Sovereign Grace by calling them liars, slandered Rachael Denhollander as a false witness in her charges against Sovereign Grace, and generally covered up C.J.’s grievous sins the past ten years. How can he be on the CBWM Board?
CBMW claims they protect victims. No. They have a history of injuring victims by defending Mahaney and Sovereign Grace Churches, Inc. For example, Council Member John Piper. Will they also defend Thomas White? They should immediately read the evidence by Wilhelm and Roys, contact Matt Chandler, Dave Brukas, and Jeff Jamison at The Village Church, and then remove Thomas White from the board with a public explanation for why it was necessary (and while they are at it, remove Jeff Purswell at the same time).
The Cedarville University Board of Trustees conclude their statement with these words. “Above all, we pray God would be honored by our deliberations and actions.” From my perspective, our Lord Jesus Christ is not going to be honored by an internal review by lawyers who are forbidden from making all their findings public. I think another cover up is in the works. The hiring of Anthony Moore put students at risk. So does the Board of Trustees if they don’t fire Thomas White and others who concealed the true nature and extent of Moore’s crimes.
This article was originally published at brentdetwiler.com and is reposted with permission from the author, Brent Detwiler. The title has been changed by The GK.