It turns out the pastor at the center of the film, Paul Burress of Victory Church, has been accused multiple times of sexual abuse. Brent Brookhouse of Bloody Elbow has been looking into this story for weeks now and has posted emails and conversations with most of the key players:
Some former members of the church also have suggested… that some of those involved have been afraid to speak out because of shame tactics used by Burress and [executive pastor Dr. Al] Ogden. These sources suggested that Victory has not hesitated to bring up “sins” that were revealed in counseling sessions in attempts to achieve silence from alleged victims.
Bloody Elbow also reached out to Ogden, asking several questions about his decision on how to handle the allegations. Why were alleged victims not cared for in favor of discussing lawsuit strategies? Why did he consider a sexual assault victim coming forward after other allegations were made some sort of sign of illegitimacy on the alleged victim’s behalf? Was the most reasonable explanation a multinational conspiracy to smear Burress and Victory Church?
As of press time, no one from Victory Church has responded.
I hope Burress gets a well-deserved (metaphorical) knockout punch if the allegations prove to be true. In the meantime, anyone watching the movie needs to rethink this whole idiotic notion of Christian “manliness,” where stereotypical acts of machismo somehow bring you closer to the man Jesus wants you to be. I have yet to hear of a respectable pastor who promotes it.