Tony Evans, Robert Morris, Carl Lentz, and the Fallout From Pastor Scandals

It has been a busy couple of weeks as far as pastor scandals are concerned.

First, pastor and author Tony Evans and his church released a statement indicating that Evans was stepping down from the pulpit after for than four decades in light of a “sin” that he committed “a number of years ago.” Very few details about the situation have been given, other than Evans’ assurances that while he “committed no crime,” he did not “use righteous judgment in my actions.”

Then, Robert Morris, pastor of Gateway Church, a multisite megachurch in Dallas, stepped down amid resurfaced allegations of child sex abuse. For years, Morris has told the story of how he was removed from ministry for two years in the early 1980s following an extramarital affair. The “young lady” to whom Morris has referred has come forward. She says she was 12 at the time the abuse began.

And in other news, Carl Lentz is back in the spotlight. Formerly the pastor of Hillsong NYC, Lentz has stayed out of the public eye since he resigned in 2020 amid allegations that he engaged in multiple extramarital affairs, as well as abusive behaviors. While Lentz has confessed to the affairs, he denies the abuse allegations. No legal action has been taken against him. Now, Lentz has launched a new podcast, in which he talks about how his marriage has survived, along with everything else that has happened in the last several years.

Each of these cases are extremely different from one another. But the fact that they have happened in such rapid succession raises common questions about how churches and church leaders should respond to them.

  • What level of transparency should be demanded?
  • Do pastors who have morally failed to the point of needing to be removed from the pulpit ever get to return? If so, when and under what circumstances?
  • How do we pursue justice and righteousness while not inflicting unnecessary pain on those who have undeniably hurt others?

On this episode of the podcast, we discuss these questions and more.


READ: Maintaining Hope in the Church in Light of Sexual Abuse Scandals
READ: 3 Things Christians Can (and Must) Do for Sexual Abuse Survivors
READ: ‘Nobody’s Perfect’ Is a Poor Response to Church Scandals


READ: Dr. Tony Evans Steps Away From Pastoral Duties Because of ‘Sin’ for Time of ‘Repentance and Restoration’
READ: Robert Morris Resigns as Gateway Church’s Senior Pastor Following Sexual Abuse Allegations
WATCH: Carl & Laura Lentz Open up (Here’s What Happened)
READ: ‘I’m Changing’—Carl Lentz Discusses Affair, Addictions, Childhood Sex Abuse Following Return to Spotlight


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