Charisma CEO Calls Exposure of Mike Bickle’s Alleged Sex Abuse a ‘Spiritual Attack’

The Roys Report [Chicago IL]

January 27, 2024

By Julie Roys and Rebecca Hopkins

In a podcast Thursday, Charisma Media CEO Stephen Strang repeatedly called exposure of alleged clergy sexual abuse by Mike Bickle, founder of the International House of Prayer Kansas City (IHOPKC), a “spiritual attack.” He further claimed that “to burn the ministry to the ground is just the tool of Satan.” And he expressed hope that Bickle “reemerges in ministry stronger than . . . before.”

Strang used the strong language during his interview with IHOPKC Executive Director General Kurt Fuller on Strang’s podcast, the Strang Report.

Strang also stated that “charges were leveled about Bickle” on October 7—“the same day that Hamas attacked Israel.” (The first meeting with IHOPKC leaders concerning Bickle’s alleged clergy sex abuse was on Oct. 9, according to members of the so-called “advocate group,” working with alleged victims of Bickle’s.)

“This persecution is coming from within the Christian community,” Strang alleged. “. . . There have been people that are just waiting for this and are downright nasty. To burn a ministry to the ground is just the tool of Satan . . . I hope Mike Bickle—this is my opinion, as his friend—I hope he reemerges in ministry stronger than he ever has before.”

Strang’s comments sparked strong backlash on social media, with people labeling his actions a “PR campaign,” “master class on unbiblical leadership,” and “DARVO,” which stands for deny, attack, and reverse victim and offender.

Even on Strang’s YouTube page, most of the responses were negative.

“The Strang Report just imploded on itself with one of the most bantenly obsurd (sic) videos,” wrote someone named Ron Lagerquist. “. . . This is not an attack from Satan. This is a sad story of a man who could not keep it in his pants and used prophecy to manipulate young women.”

A few commenters supported Strang, though. One wrote Bickle is “innocent until proven guilty” and another stated, “Stephen Strang and General Fuller are taking the appropriate action that I believe Jesus would take.”

The Roys Report (TRR) reached out to Strang for comment, but he did not respond.


Strang’s interview with Fuller published hours after Fuller announced in a video entitled “Enough!” that he would no longer negotiate with the “advocate group” (AG). Fuller also accused the AG of lying and referred to the AG, some of whom were founding members of IHOPKC, as “men I barely know.”

“I cannot and will not work with or concede to the demands of people who do not tell the truth,” Fuller said. “To do so would compromise my own principles and our organizational sovereignty. It would be completely irresponsible.’

The AG is comprised of 15 former, top IHOPKC leaders who brought the allegations against Bickle to IHOPKC leaders privately. Then, when their efforts didn’t produced the desired results, the AG published the allegations in late October.

Fuller and the AG have reached an impasse concerning who should conduct a third-party investigation into the allegations against Bickle. Fuller said he is sticking with the law firm IHOPKC hired in December, the Lathrop Group. The AG has claimed the Lathrop Group is not independent and has refused to work with Lathrop.

A day before Fuller’s announcement, the AG released three videos explaining their many failed attempts to report Bickle’s alleged misconduct to IHOPKC leaders before going public.

In one of them, former executive IHOPKC leader and AG member, Allen Hood, gave a tearful plea to the Church to hold Bickle accountable for the sake of the 24/7 prayer ministry.

“There is a man who had hiddenness for over 20 years,” Allen Hood said on the video. “He is my spiritual father and I’m crushed over it.”

 Yesterday, impassioned charismatic leader Michael Brown urged leaders in the charismatic Christian community to bypass IHOPKC and work with the AG to find an acceptable firm to conduct an independent investigation. Brown also refuted a claim by IHOPKC worship leader Misty Edwards that the AG had a preconceived plan to take down Bickle. Brown called the claim a myth that’s “evil.”

In the interview Thursday with Strang, Fuller defended the independence of IHOPKC’s investigation.

“I’m certain it’s going to show that we had no influence over (the investigator) during the course of her investigation,” Fuller said.

Fuller also said the results of Lathrop’s investigation, which just started last month, will be finished “very soon.” (A previous third-party investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct by another IHOPKC employee, Brad Tebbutt, took 10 months.)

Strang repeatedly said he was trying to maintain objectivity about the Bickle scandal, while also denigrating the whistleblowers, whom he accused of trying to “cancel” Bickle.

“These people that apparently are offended or have some kind of grudge or they have some kind of axe to grind, bringing in lawyers which always complicates everything. . . not cooperating with General Fuller and releasing these videos and so forth,” Strang said. “That’s just wrong. They need to be confronted.”

IHOPKC defends Fuller’s accusations against the AG

On Thursday, IHOPKC Spokesman Eric Volz defended Fuller’s allegation the night before that the AG had lied to Fuller.

“General Fuller had heard whispers of a video production that was being created by the Advocate Group,” Volz posted on X. “After Christmas, he met with 3 members of the Advocate Group separately. All denied knowledge of these videos. All 3 are IN the videos which were produced on Dec 20th.”

Jono Hall, an AG member who produced the videos, responded on X that Fuller had asked if he was “editing a documentary” on IHOPKC and Hall said no. Hall said he didn’t tell Fuller about the videotaped interviews, released earlier this week, because he didn’t consider them a documentary.  

“(P)reparing a video statement is NOT a documentary,” Hall wrote. “I did not mention we had filmed a video as firstly I consider them very different things (remember I’ve been in media for many years) – I have filmed very few documentaries, I have filmed thousands of videos.”

Hall further explained that when the advocate group filmed the videos in December, they had hoped that negotiations for a third-party investigation would go well and they wouldn’t need to release them.

“It is truly heartbreaking that this is being played out in the public square,” Hall continued. “(B)ut at the same time – IHOPKC had been consistently maligning the AG in videos and public statements and we thought it might be helpful to communicate as transparently and honestly why this group of friends found themselves in this situation.”

Volz also posted on X yesterday that IHOPKC had asked for a recommendation of a third-party investigator from Boz Tchividjian, a consultant for the AG and attorney for a primary alleged victim of Bickle’s.

Volz said Tchividjian suggested attorney Amy Stier, who previously worked with Tchividjian at Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (GRACE). She’s also working with Tchividjian on a different case, Volz wrote, all of which disqualifies her.

“Ms. Stier’s ongoing working relationship with Boz, prior relationship with IHOPKC, and the rules of professional legal ethics, clearly disqualify her for consideration as a legitimate independent third party,” Volz wrote.

Volz also reposted a video of Strang’s interview with Fuller.

In response, Tchividjian accused Volz of being “selective with the truth.” He said that just as IHOPKC had agreed they wouldn’t discuss the investigation with the investigator they chose (Lathrop), Tchividjian offered to sign an agreement that he would not discuss IHOPKC’s investigation with Stier.

Tchividjian also claimed that Stier had done a previous investigation for IHOPKC in 2018, which would have positioned her well to work with IHOPKC’s chosen investigator.

Tchividjian added that on Jan. 16, he and his clients agreed to IHOPKC’s proposal that they choose an investigator to work with IHOPKC’s chosen investigator, Lathrop’s Rosalee McNamara.

“We actually agreed to YOUR proposal and sent you a name within 24 hours and then we waited . . . and waited,” Tchividjian wrote. “The truth is that it was not until your public post this afternoon that you informed me that IHOPKC was not going to honor its own proposal that you had made to us just over a week ago. Was that a lie??”

Tchividjian finished his thread by accusing Volz of growing the crisis, instead of managing it.

“(Y)ou may be a great crisis manager when it comes to international abductions and persecutions,” Tchividjian said. “You are not a great crisis manager when it comes to matters related to sexual abuse and the Church. In fact, you’ve actually managed to grow this crisis to something even more unfathomable and tragic.”

Julie Roys is a veteran investigative reporter and founder of The Roys Report. Rebecca Hopkins is a journalist based in Colorado.