We now know that Ravi Zacharias, the late Christian apologist, turned out to be a serial sexual abuser. Up until this point, some of the women who worked at Zacharias-owned spas and were victims of his abuse have spoken privately with reporters but not publicly.
Now one of those women is going on the record. In an interview with reporter Julie Roys, spa owner Vicki Blue — who ran a place called Touch of Eden in Georgia from 2004-2007 — admits that she would have come forward sooner, but feared for the safety of herself and her daughter.
Last May, Vicki Blue discovered through her husband that the famed apologist, Ravi Zacharias, had died.
“I’m glad,” Blue recalls saying. “Now he can’t hurt anyone anymore.”
“When the first (Miller & Martin) report came out, I cried for three days,” Blue told me. “I felt so bad. All those ladies and maybe girls. I figured there were hundreds.”
Blue claimed that Zacharias kissed her multiple times and touched her inappropriately during what should have been routine massages. He also masturbated in front of her “50 to 100 times.”
For more than a decade, Blue kept silent about what happened. She said when she left the spa in 2007, Zacharias threatened to “ruin” her and [daughter] Becca if they ever told anyone about the abuse.
“Ravi kept talking about an anonymous donor that he could get limitless money from,” Blue said. “He said, ‘I can keep it going and make your life miserable until you die.’”
Blue now views what Zacharias did as abuse. But back then, she says she was vulnerable and confused, adding, “It’s hard to explain. When someone gives you spiritual advice and you know everything he says about God is true, yet he’s also doing these things to you — it took years of therapy to realize I didn’t do anything wrong.”
While Zacharias can’t respond to these allegations, a man with his power and influence could certainly do all that and Blue’s statements are in line with what other women have already said. It’s also important to keep reiterating how much harm Zacharias inflicted upon women. We’ve unfortunately seen time and again how Christian men who abuse their power — from John Crist to Josh Duggar to Andy Savage — are often easily forgiven and welcomed back into their old positions. All they have to do is say the right words, not necessarily change any of their problematic behaviors.
Women like Blue, on the other hand, carry the stigma of being victimized a lot longer. They are frequently reprimanded for being “bitter” simply for wanting justice. They are often accused of not being Christ-like if their forgiveness doesn’t mean supporting their abuser in a ministerial role where they still have access to new victims.
Evangelicals have a long, problematic history of equating all sins as equal in consequence; it’s the same mindset that leads some of them to use “homosexuality” and “bestiality” in the same sentence. When all sins, from running a red light to sexual assault, are treated as equally wrong, then nothing can ever be considered truly evil.