Executive Leader of IHOPKC Resigns in Wake of Mike Bickle Scandal

The Roys Report [Chicago IL]

January 5, 2024

By Rebecca Hopkins

David Sliker, a member of the International House of Prayer’s (IHOPKC) executive leadership team (ELT), has resigned effective immediately, the embattled Kansas-City ministry announced on social media yesterday. Sliker also resigned as president of IHOP University.

“After seven years of faithful service, our dear brother in Christ, David Sliker, has decided to step down as President of IHOPU,” the statement says. “David is also stepping down from the IHOPKC’s Executive Leadership Team, effective immediately. This was a mutual decision made in the best interest of the IHOPKC community and David’s family.”

This is the latest resignation following allegations last October that IHOPKC founder Mike Bickle sexually abused multiple women while also pastoring and then leading a prayer movement that spread around the world. IHOPKC’s executive director Stuart Greaves resigned in December.

Greaves, Sliker, and the rest of the ELT have come under fire for mishandling reports of abuse and requests for a third-party investigationThe Roys Report (TRR) also previously reported that Sliker required a couple to go through a Matthew 18 process with IHOPKC staff Brad Tebbutt after they requested Tebbutt’s firing. Tebbutt had been accused of sexually molesting a minor at a previous church. Tebbutt also left in early December in a “mutual decision,” according to a Dec. 28 X post by IHOPKC’s spokesperson Eric Volz.

“Not once has there ever been a report of misconduct or inappropriate behavior by him,” Volz wrote of Tebbutt.

Volz later replied to criticism of IHOPKC’s response to GRACE’s recommendations in the Tebbutt situation, calling Tebbutt a “model staff member.”

“I have been told that all the students loved him,” Volz wrote.

Jennifer Roach, Tebbutt’s victim from a previous church, said in a lawsuit against him that he fondled her and engaged in sexual intercourse with her beginning when she was 14. But Tebbutt told a IHOPKC leader that what had occurred was “inappropriate” but more of an “emotional connection,” according to a 2019 investigative report by Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (GRACE). Tebbutt also reportedly said the interactions were “sexual” only in that they involved “kissing and (engaged in inappropriate touching).” According to Tebbutt, all the sexual contact was “above the clothes” and “nothing below the belt.”

Volz said that “former leaders” were responsible for implementing GRACE’s recommendations, which included implementing a safeguarding committee to guide the organization in how to respond to abuse.

“It’s interesting that Dave’s resignation came on the heels of questions people are asking about Brad and Brad just resigned,” former IHOPKC staffer Susan Tuma told TRR. “It was sort of this move to . . . pin it on former leaders.”

Meanwhile, Sliker hasn’t responded to his critics’ questions, Tuma said.

“He hasn’t answered any questions about it,” Tuma said. “It hasn’t been addressed. There’s just a lot of questionable actions of his handling of this scenario.”

Sliker was allegedly present for an Oct. 24 meeting at which a man whose wife alleges Bickle sexually abused her shared those allegations with the ELT. On Oct. 29, Greaves announced the ELT had asked Bickle to stop preaching or engaging in ministry on Oct. 26. Greaves later said IHOPKC responded within 24 hours of “official notice,” of the allegations.

A leaked audio recording between Sliker and a whistleblower who confronted Sliker about the timeline of Sliker’s knowledge and response appears to show Sliker using expletives to say it was a “lie” that he knew any earlier.  But an advocacy group has refuted this timeline, saying that the ELT knew of the allegations by Oct. 10.

IHOPKC’s statement didn’t address any recent criticisms about Sliker, but praised his “service and dedication.”

“We honor David’s service and dedication,” the statement says. “He is loved by the IHOPKC community and he remains in good standing with this spiritual family.”

Former IHOPKC staff are concerned that with Sliker’s discipline-free resignation, victims won’t get answers, said Josh Rainwater, who runs a Facebook support group for former IHOPKCers.

“I believe I share many of my fellow past student and staff members’ concerns that as Dave leaves, he takes with him crucial information that stakeholders require to understand why we are here,” Rainwater told TRR. “I fear this is an example of IHOPKC being as willfully ignorant as legally possible regarding the disproportionate human costs of their movement.”

IHOPKC has appointed Matt Candler as IHOPU’s new president, according to the statement.

“Matt and his leadership team will be communicating all the necessary information with the faculty and students in the coming days,” the statement said. “Thank you for continued prayers in this season.”

Responses on social media

Some people online responded with praise of Sliker and IHOPKC.

Malachi O’Brien wrote on X: “I am immensely grateful for Dave Sliker and his service/leadership. Mostly grateful for his friendship & love for Jesus. This is a solid step forward for the future of @ihopkc I am more and more confident about the work of General Fuller & @EricVolz Definitely not playing.”

Chris Robbins on X wrote: “Many of us in the silent majority want the “resignations” to end and the pathway for Mike to return to leading us on in prayer and story telling to continue. It’s time for an armistice.”

But others questioned the resignation.

A user going by A Tale Told by an Idiot wrote on X: “Sliker was a cancer but I fear that he metastasized in IHOPKC and I’m not sure it’s worth saving at all.”

Another user, AD, wrote on X: “The rebranding and whitewashing has begun. Tip of the iceberg.”