New allegations surface against Haggard: Confidential settlement revealed

February 24, 2009

The pastor of a Colorado Springs megachurch who succeeded its disgraced founding pastor, Ted Hag gard, revealed to congregants January 25 that the church’s insurance company arranged a confidential settlement with a male church volunteer who alleged that he had had a sexual encounter with Haggard.

Pastor Brady Boyd of New Life Church said he has known of the settlement for the 18 months he has been the church’s pastor. Denying that the settlement was hush money and calling it “compassionate assistance,” Boyd said the church broke its silence about it after the man went public with his allegations only days before a documentary on Haggard was shown on HBO television.

In November 2006, Haggard re signed as president of the National Association of Evangelicals and as pastor after Mike Jones, a male escort in Denver, came forward with charges of gay sex and drug use.

The latest allegations came from Grant Haas, now 25, who said in a Colorado Springs television interview that he told Haggard he was kicked out of Moody Bible Institute in Chicago over his “struggles with homosexuality.” Haas told the Associated Press that Haggard masturbated in front of him on one occasion and said that the pastor sent repeated messages to him describing his sexual experiences and drug use.

Boyd told church members that there was an “overwhelming pool of evidence” pointing to an “inappropriate, consensual sexual relationship” between Haggard and an unnamed young man. “For the last two years, we carried the burden, the weight, of this information to protect you,” he said.