In a breaking article published by Charisma News, John Crist announced the cancellation of his 2019 tour dates following allegations of sexting, harassing, and coercing young women.
While changing the names of their primary sources to protect the five women who came forward, Charisma claims this is not a reflection on their credibility.
“The names of primary sources have been replaced with pseudonyms,” the publication wrote in an editor’s note. “This was an intentional decision made by Charisma and should not reflect on the witnesses’ credibility; four of the five women stood by their claims enough to let us publicize their names. After prayerful deliberation, our editorial board has chosen instead to protect the reputations and identities of those sources.”
The first of five witnesses who explained her unsettling encounter with Crist was *Kate. Admitting that she was “blown away” when Crist invited her to do an interview with him for her senior project, Kate had no concerns whatsoever that such a well-respected Christian figure could be a threat to her.
Kate explained that she opened up to the comedian about her mental health struggles, addiction issues, and how he inspired her to become an interviewer and podcaster. In return, Crist confided in her with some of his own struggles.
“It was at this point John confided in both my boyfriend and me that he was a sex addict,” said Kate. “Both my boyfriend and I felt it was cool how open he was about his past, and I continued to feel grateful and excited I was getting to meet my comedy idol. Moreover, I was so excited to have a mentor I had so much in common with.”
However, it didn’t take long for her to discover that Crist’s intentions may not be as Christ-like as the persona he projected on stage.
After he got her number, invited her to go roller-skating with a bottle of raspberry vodka in hand, and then made advances on her in her drunken state, Kate knew she was seeing a different side of the man she idolized.
Crist crudely explained how badly he wanted to have sex with her, but Kate turned him down, reiterating that she had a boyfriend.
“I was truly blinded by his celebrity status,” Kate admitted. “The one thing that stopped me from believing he was creepy is John so proudly parades his face as a Christian. I’ve let myself believe that just because someone is a Christian means they won’t do something intentionally bad. But the truth is, John invited me to his apartment with the intention of sleeping with me after shaking hands with my boyfriend.”
Even two years later, Kate is emotionally wrecked by the shocking encounter and says it’s hard for her to know “what it means to be Christian after being so disgustingly let down by a role model I considered a man of God.”
Sadly, Kate’s experience is far from an isolated incident.
Multiple sources have confirmed that over the last seven years, Crist has used his platform to “harass, manipulate, and exploit” women.
Accusations against the Christian comedian include initiating sexual relations with married women and those in serious relationships, sexting various women at the same time, and offering tickets to his shows in exchange for sexual favors.
“He would talk with women online on Twitter, Snapchat, whatever,” said filmmaker and photographer Jeremiah Warren. “[He gives] them a free ticket to the city [where] they live that he’s coming to for a show. Then he will invite them to a hotel room for unspecified reasons. When they turn him down, then he holds the ticket over them and says ‘Why have you been talking to me? Obviously this is what you wanted.’ This is a very gross simplification and paraphrase, but he’s basically shaming them for taking this free ticket and trying to neg them into going to him in the hotel room.”
After Charisma got in touch with Crist regarding the mounting allegations, he responded with the following statement via email.
“Over the past number of years, various women have accused me of behavior that has been hurtful to them. While I am not guilty of everything I’ve been accused of, I confess to being guilty of this—I have treated relationships with women far too casually, in some cases even recklessly. My behavior has been destructive and sinful. I’ve sinned against God, against women and the people who I love the most. I have violated my own Christian beliefs, convictions and values, and have hurt many people in the process. I am sorry for the hurt and pain I have caused these women and will continue to seek their forgiveness. I have also hurt the name of Jesus and have sought His forgiveness.
Over several recent years, I have privately sought and received regular professional treatment for my sexual sin and addiction struggles. I’m committed to getting healing and freedom from my sin and have decided to cancel my remaining tour dates this year and to postpone all future commitments in order to devote all my time and energy on getting healthy spiritually, mentally and physically.
Those closest to me—my family, team and close friends—have known about this battle for some time, and now you do too. I’m ashamed of my behavior and I’m so sorry for hurting so many people. I don’t blame anyone but myself. I’m responsible for my actions and I’ve repented and am taking full ownership. I realize it will be difficult for some people to ever forgive me, and I accept that as a result of my bad decisions and actions.
My entire career has been lived out on stage, and even though I’ve shared many of my life struggles with my audiences, I’ve lived in constant fear of the darkest parts of my life being exposed publicly. My greatest fear has been that those who have loved and supported me would hate me if they knew everything about me. I now humbly seek forgiveness and mercy and love—not just for me, but for those I’ve hurt along my path. I’m so sorry.”
It is rumored that certain Christian leaders have known about Crist’s sexual misconduct for some time, which is why Charisma felt compelled to come forward with the story.
The women who spoke out about their experiences with Crist confirm that it is not their hope to destroy his career but rather to warn others.
“I would like to believe that our stories matter on a larger scale,” said *Nora, another woman targeted by Crist. “And that the voices of several women are enough to at least make people pause before booking him or have some accountability checks in there.”
See more from this story on CharismaNews.org.