By Damien Fisher
Church Militant’s board covered up for founder Michael Voris as he allegedly groomed male staffers while openly living a double life and paying staffers “poverty wages” while giving himself raises, according to several ex-employees who say they were fired for speaking out this week.
“The very cover-up tactics that Church Militant has railed against for 15 years are now being used against faithful former employees,” the group said in a fundraising statement.
Voris, who resigned just before Thanksgiving, is still a board member and is already planning a comeback, they said. Voris’ return to being in front of the camera was always part of the plan when he resigned for violating Church Militant’s morality clause, they said.
The group of eight Church Militant employees led by Dave Gordon say they were forced out of the organization’s Ferndale, Michigan offices on Friday, seven with police escorts. The group is now trying to raise $255,000 to “save the apostolate.”
As of Saturday morning they had raised $50.
Voris, who claims to have been cured of homosexuality, was allegedly actively pursuing homosexual encounters, including with employees, they said. Voris’ lifestyle was known to board members.
“Our band of brothers was formed in light of the recent revelations that our former CEO Michael Voris had re-embraced the homosexual lifestyle while the Board of Directors attempted to cover it up,” they said.
The group said they protested the layoff of one employee during a board meeting, and called for the board to step down. Their statement lays out their reasons as follows:
“1. Entertaining allowing Michael Voris, who seemingly groomed a former employee and lived a homosexual double life while posturing as a beacon of Christian virtue, to resume employment at Church Militant after he completes a 12-step program
- Delaying naming a CEO beyond what is necessary to responsibly vet and appoint a successor
- Advocating to deceive donors by putting out an official statement that Voris resigned due to health concerns
- Turning on an employee for vigorously objecting to renewed Church Militant employment for Voris and to a deceptively worded statement explaining Voris’ resignation.
- Failing to come up with a content plan that would ensure Church Militant’s future success.
- Keeping Michael Voris on the board of directors as a nonvoting member.”
Gordon released a video in the early morning hours of Saturday, but made it private a couple of hours later.
“Guys, I’m overtired and mad and not thinking clearly. I want to think hard about whether posting that Church Militant video is in fact morally right. So I’ve put it as private for now. Will make the call tomorrow,” Gordon wrote on Twitter/X.
Viewers who watched the video while it was still public say Gordon alleges Voris was sending semi-nude photos to staffers, sent one such photo to a potential donor, invited an employee to his house while gay porn was playing on his computer, and groomed at least one male staffer. At least one such photo has been circulated on Twitter.
Gordon and the employees also accuse Voris of financial mismanagement. Gordon reportedly said they were paid poverty wages while Voris gave himself raises.
In the GiveSendGo appeal, the ex-employees say, “We have little doubt that St. Michaels Media / Church Militant will come at us with legal action. Two group members have already been contacted by Church Militant’s lawyer Kate Klaus.” Klaus is one of the attorneys who quit the legal case attempting to defend Church Militant against defamation, after Niles was caught hiding evidence during her deposition.
Gordon also said on Twitter/X that Church Militant “forgot to sign” his nondisclosure agreement, and that he has revoked consent to their lawyer.
— David Gordon (@DavidRobertGor1) December 2, 2023
In Voris’ public video announcing his resignation, he said “I am not sure exactly when I will be back, if I am indeed back in front of the camera,” and he urges viewers to continue supporting his “apostolate.” Voris’ “investigative reporter” Christine Niles, in her public resignation video, also said she hoped to return to Church Militant as a contributor, and also urged viewers to continue funding the organization.
Voris did not respond to a request for comment.
UPDATE: As of Saturday evening, the group of former employees had lowered their goal to $75,000 and received $75 in pledges.
UPDATE: Gordon made the video public again on Saturday evening. Here is the video: