‘NASHVILLE (BP) – A Missouri Baptist pastor says his church will no longer partner with a popular camp due to a lack of transparency amid abuse allegations.
Pastor John King cited recent information that has “been made clear” to First Baptist Church in West Plains, Mo., that leadership of Kanakuk Kamps, based in Branson, haven’t been forthcoming in their knowledge of credible accusations made against a former staff member. The disaffiliation with Kanakuk will continue until “the truth of their knowledge about what happened with Pete Newman is openly confessed,” the statement read.
First Baptist had previously hosted a Kanakuk day camp called Kampout! in the church parking lot. King’s announcement came in a May 2 letter to parents explaining why First Baptist was canceling a scheduled Kampout! for this summer.
In a phone call with Baptist Press, King expressed that the decision was based on ensuring that survivors of Newman’s abuse – many he knew personally – would have their voices heard.
“No one is trying to burn Kanakuk down,” he said. “What we want is the truth and those who didn’t fire Pete Newman after credible accusations of abuse came to light be held accountable.
“No one is going to put this to rest until the truth comes out.”’https://www.baptistpress.com/resource-library/news/missouri-church-cuts-ties-with-camp-accused-of-mishandling-abuse/