The Confession of Micah Moore

*Disclaimer:  This post was previously titled “The Acquittal of Micah Moore:  Two Years Too Late.”  I had been corrected by people involved for my usage of the word “Acquittal,” because he was not acquitted of charges which happen in a trial, rather his confession was ruled inadmissible due to a lack of corroborating evidence.  This is a technicality I had dragged my feet on changing, partly because I liked the title and partly because I was overwhelmed at its readership that I wanted to let the piece stay in its original form.  For that I greatly and sincerely apologize.  I did not mean to mislead or misdirect concerning the nature of this situation or the case in detail.  Jonathan Barclay 3/11/2015

Imagine you are in your early twenties.  You love Jesus.  You have given your life to follow God and obey his word.  In your search for God and authentic Christianity, you discover a leader who experiences God in ways you could barely dream of.  He has encounters and convictions which stir your soul with passion to love Jesus.  You become enamored by his power and the new world of spirituality he has opened up.  His wisdom is unlike any you had ever heard.  You join his group and become swept away in the experiences, and, in this environment, years of depression and emotional turmoil seem to have been met by the love of God.  Things in the group begin to become slightly questionable, but you are young and insecure in your faith, so you trust the person who has an abundance of seemingly real, though subjective, experiences.  You engage, hoping, that if you loved God as much as this leader did, you too could have these experiences and know Christ in an authentic way.

Your leader eventually announces the discovery of a spiritual utopia to your group.  He has found a place of likeminded believers with an absorbingly rich prophetic history and unparalleled revelation concerning the word of God.  You and your close friends sojourn up to join this community out of zeal and honest sincerity to pray, worship, and know and love God in a deeper intimate way.  This is a place filled with prophetic fervor which you find exhilarating.  Your groups remains slightly isolated from the larger ministry, but you hold on because you honestly believe the man you followed.  Out of your love for Jesus, you follow this man as he follows Christ.

Things continue to worsen within your small group.  The leader begins doing ministry in highly questionable ways.  Rumors circulate that you are part of a cult.  However, your leader is graduating from the ministry’s Bible school and is, in your mind, clearly being validated by God.  You continue to believe what he says because he has studied the Bible far more in depth than you have.  He has encountered God in ways which you have not, and despite his behavior which may make you uncomfortable or on the outside seems wrong, he continues to hear from God, meaning that you must be missing something.  The leader ends up marrying a close friend and your community celebrates the union.  However, the leader’s behavior begins to turn sexually abusive and contradictory to all you had known.  But God speaks to him and he knows the Bible.  To question him is to question Jesus, and out of your sincerity of faith and now longstanding history of psychological and emotional abuse, you follow along and continue to swear loyalty to this man you have followed.

Then, out of nowhere, all hell breaks loose.  Your group is informed that your leader’s wife, and your dear friend of many years, has been found dead.  Compounding on this devastating emotional trauma, you then are awakened to the reality that the man you had followed was not the prophet you had believed him to be, that what was going on in your group was in fact abuse, and despite your sincere belief that your group wholeheartedly loved God, you were actually part of a cult.  The movement you sought to join has now labeled you and your loved ones as dangerous, deceived, and demonized.

Already in a state of extreme emotional duress, you and your close friends find yourself in a room in front of leaders who you respect and admire who are not only breaking this horrifying news to you, but are also telling you that you are demonized and need deliverance.  One of the leaders before you is respected as a prophet in the greater community.  They are a headliner at prophetic conferences, at one point were president of the ministry’s Bible school, the face of the organization’s prophetic ministry, and have regularly addressed the congregation from stage as a revered prophetic authority.  Terror strikes, knowing that not only have you failed your friend, but you have failed God.  What you once thought were years of passionate devotion to Christ, were apparently, according to this unquestionable spiritual authority, were years you had been fooled and lied to, years spent becoming demonized.  Everything in you fills with shame.  Guilt washes over you and confusion exponentially erupts as you try and make sense of the years, the death, and the fear and guilt of your friend’s death.  Add to that, your entire identity and eternity have been shattered.  As people scream and shake around you as demons are being loudly addressed and you are being shouted at to confess sins, you confess bits and pieces of what your confused mind is thinking and processing, overwhelmed by the situation and desperately wanting to find peace and reconciliation with God.  In this frenetic environment, a confession comes out; a traumatized man’s confused processing of horrific events in a desperate plea to make things right with Jesus.  Overtaken by the terror of this tragedy, you take responsibility for the death and confess to sexual misconduct as you are reeling from the realization of the abuse which you had undergone.  With a true prophet standing over you, unlike the false one who had up until that day been following, you desperately seek peace and absolution with Christ.

From this place, you are led to a police station where you repeat the confession, and are promptly taken into custody.  After a little bit of sleep, as well as time to clear your head, you realize what you had confessed to and are horrified.  As you wake up from a nightmare, you realize that you are waking up to an even worse one.  Your statement has already been taken and you are now in jail.  A few miles away, your close friends have been scattered.  Many friends and acquaintances believe that you murdered and sexually abused one of your closest friends.  The organization you left everything to join has completely distanced themselves from you as they warn their members about how heinous your cult was.  The prophet who got the confession out of you has quietly disappeared while rumors about them being placed in protective custody circulate as people, many of whom you knew, believe that your groups of people who just wanted to love Jesus were violent and out for blood.  The narrative which becomes established in the Christian community you loved, is far from the truth, because sometimes it is easier to believe that someone was murdered than believing that a Christian in their community could ever be depressed to the point of committing suicide.  Terrified in your cell, nearby, a congregation which prides itself in compassion and being a voice for the voiceless concerning social justice, releases a collective sigh of relief knowing of your incarceration.  Alone and isolated, with your world destroyed, you fight not trying to think about the things which you know happen to people accused of sexual assault and murder in prisons.  This is your life, because all you really wanted to do was love Jesus with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength.

This week Micah Moore’s testimony concerning his involvement in the death of Bethany Deaton was dismissed by the state of Missouri.  He did eventually make bail, but it is only now that his name is fully cleared.

The lead detective and the coroner ruled her death a suicide two years ago and there was no evidence tying him to the scene of the crime.

Despite Bethany’s autopsy showing no signs of sexual trauma and that she died most likely a virgin, the narrative of sexual assault and abuse still persists, even though there were no other witnesses or testimonies corroborating the evidence.

Shelley Hundley, a revered prophetic leader at the International House of Prayer – Kansas City, disappeared from IHOP community soon after receiving the confession from Micah and taking him to the police.  It is believed by many in the IHOP-KC community that she is in protective custody, perpetuating the idea that the cult was violent despite there being no history of physical violence.  She was brought on stage by leadership and celebrated as a lone voice who was able to discern that there was something wrong and showed great courage by bringing a murderer to justice.  She then disappeared from the ministry and even social media, and there has been no explanation to why, and there had been little done to correct the misinformation dissemination.

Despite there being no announcement from the stage, these rumors concerning the abuse by Micah  and history of physical violence have been allowed to persist, and nothing has been done to correct them.

Within the last year, there have been several individuals who have been asking questions concerning the events of Bethany’s death, Micah’s innocence, IHOP-KC’s handling of the case, as well as questions and concerns regarding other cases and situations where there may have been incidents of spiritual and pastoral misconduct at IHOP-KC.  The overwhelming reaction from staff members and those involved has been one of dismissal and demonization of the individuals who bring up complaints.  The common answer from many is a prompt dismissal of these claims because they are statements made out of pain and bitterness concerning subjective experiences, often citing spiritual leader’s own subjective spiritual experiences in their defense.

After two years of a community openly believing that Micah Moore was a murderer who had sexually abused a dear friend of his, the truth is finally out.  The false narrative concerning Bethany’s death still persists, and to many, Micah is still a monster.  I never knew the man, but I have many friends who did.  Our hearts need to break for the horror he went through.  Micah has suffered a grave injustice, and many were happy and content to unquestionably believe that he was a monster.  Far from being a monster, this tragedy happened to an individual who sincerely just wanted to love Christ.  All of the other evidence aside, Micah’s strongest alibi was IHOP-KC’s webstream.  At the time of Bethany’s death, Micah was in the prayer room, doing his best to love Jesus.

Sources and Other Material:
The Defense’s Motion to Dismiss Micah’s Confession

http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article3406254.html
http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article3496598.html
http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/love-and-death-in-the-house-of-prayer-20140121
https://thecosmiccathedral.wordpress.com/2014/01/22/the-tyler-i-thought-i-knew/

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23 comments

  1. Sarah Fletcher · November 2, 2014

    Wow this is intense. I had no idea about this situation. Thanks for writing it out like this. I appreciate your compassion and empathy!

    Liked by 2 people

    • jonathanbarclay · November 2, 2014

      Thank you.

      Like

  2. richard · November 2, 2014

    Great article Jonathan. We really need to be able to view Micah as a person and not a monster. Your article really helps in that regard.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. markrandallpixley · November 2, 2014

    Really looks different from an outside perspective…I think without being judgemental that there is some cleaning up at the house of prayer that needs to take place…if your passion for Jesus fails to care for the prisoner or the emotional widow, what good is it? I also feel it is important for credibility to bring the “prophets” out of hiding and expose whatever part they might have had in directing a stream of accusation towards others without any sense of accountability…hiding behind a wall of “we must protect the prophet because the accused are violent” is completely out of sync with how the prophetic is to function, as a matter of fact it is the OPPOSITE of how prophets are to behave…any word given that requires you to hide the prophet is invalidated in the New Covenant model…we are obviously not in Kansas anymore Toto…

    Liked by 2 people

    • jonathanbarclay · November 3, 2014

      I agree that there is strong need for correction and reform. For me, the issue is not necessarily bringing Shelley to justice. My contention and pain is in the way she was brought on stage by leadership, hailed as a hero for catching a murderer, and then disappeared soon after as rumors of her being in protective custody disseminated. The leadership kept the narrative going. They offered no compassion towards Moore, let alone any room to doubt his guilt. Two years later and the majority of people involved in the ministry believed a lie that was never corrected. One of the highest profile ministers disappeared without any clarity or reason for it. For me, this situation was not about protecting the prophet, rather it was burying the prophet in order to protect the image of the ministry.

      Liked by 3 people

  4. Micah Moore · November 3, 2014

    The role of the International House of Prayer in this whole situation is absolutely reprehensible. They threw me to the fucking wolves and then walked away dusting their hands off. It is sickening that people so emphatic about “hearing the voice of the Lord” would show no interest in uncovering the truth. That Mike would state with his typical God-endorses-me-matter-of-factness that Shelley Hundley was a hero who had solved a mystery and I was a murderer shows their self-interest and their disregard for factual information. Further, their public statements about what happened at Shiloh could not be further from the truth. Their only basis for the way they handled everything was to defend their own public image, not to defend the innocent. They are not prophets, they are manipulators and liars who psychologically enslave people and call it love.

    It is unfortunate that my own understanding of loving Jesus was so skewed. IHOP certainly didn’t help that, but I have to take responsibility for my own participation in a group that would follow a person like Tyler, isolate others, and distant ourselves from loved ones with a callous air of elitism. So horrible. I am regret and pained that I ever chose to be apart of it, but I am grateful I finally see Tyler for what he is. And I’m glad I now see IHOP for what it is. (To me, they are just two flavors of the same poison.)

    I appreciate your compassionate post, Jonathan. It’s certainly odd to read a stranger’s account of my story, but I think you captured it fairly well. I’m ecstatic the nightmare is finally over.

    I hope all those who are considering involvement with IHOP know that it’s ok to have your own song on your tongue. Don’t let them steal it from you in the name of Jesus.

    Run.

    -Micah

    Liked by 5 people

    • Micah Moore · November 3, 2014

      *I regret and am pained

      Like

    • richard · November 4, 2014

      Micah – I am so sorry for all the trauma and turmoil you have experienced over these last few years. I can’t even imagine what it has been like for you and the sorrow you continue to bear. Though I never really got to know you, when I did meet you, you struck me as a genuine and enjoyable person. I do hope the best for you and that you will be able to recover from these traumas and flourish in the years to come.

      I am wondering if you or others might be able to share additional detail concerning what happened at Shiloh, i.e., how many meetings there were, how long they were, what IHOP leaders were there, what things were said to you all, etc.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Micah Moore · November 5, 2014

        Thanks, Richard. I just remember when I met you, you were making jokes about your tendency to be sarcastic, which I got a kick out of. I think you playfully said something to someone like, “Hey, guess what? I’m not being sarcastic anymore!” I’m sure I’m misquoting you, but the gist of it was like that.

        I think I’m going to try and write a short narrative pretty soon about some of the stuff that happened, which will obviously include the Shiloh meeting.

        Liked by 3 people

    • Boze Herrington · November 4, 2014

      I’m glad you’re free, Micah. I’m so sorry for the hell you were put through.

      Liked by 2 people

    • jonathanbarclay · November 4, 2014

      I’m truly sorry for all of that hell you went through, and I am pained in the way it was buried. You have a world of my respect for coming out of all of this, and I am happy that the nightmare is over. I hope I did no disservice in telling what I could extrapolate from all I have heard and read and thank you for your kind words. I hope you the best moving forward, and I pray the truth does come out. May your future be bright and may your song soar. World of respect for you, world of respect.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Micah Moore · November 5, 2014

        No disservice, man. It was kind of uncannily accurate. My dad read it and said, “It’s like he was there with you!”

        Liked by 3 people

      • jonathanbarclay · November 5, 2014

        Wow. I’m glad and honored to help get this out there. You and your family have been in my prayers for quite some time and I am happy light is beginning to shine. Your story is important and necessary for so many people and so many reasons. I know that from your story and life countless others will find a voice, hope, justice, restoration, and healing. If I can help anymore in anyway, I would be happy and honored to help.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Elexa Dawson · November 4, 2014

      Micah, I’m really unable to wrap my head around everything you’ve been through. I was a part of a dangerous church (also affiliated with the New Apostolic Reformation bullshit) and I thought I had problems… you are in the unfortunate position of giving me some perspective. I hope you find peace underneath all the weight.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Julia Miller · November 5, 2014

      Micah you certainly have all of my respect. You took responsibility in your comment which is so much more than IHOP did. Sure we all do stupid stuff, what makes a man is whether he owns up to it. Says so much about a person. My heart breaks for you. I’m so sorry for all the pain you went through at the expense of another’s public image. You’ve got a bright future, believe it!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Kurt · November 4, 2014

    Great Post. Two years later and somebody finally gets it…Sorry it took this long Micah. Love you kid.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Pingback: My Heart Breaks for Micah – and Bethany | Sketches By Boze
  7. Meg · November 5, 2014

    while I hold nothing but fond memories of my time spent at IHOP (more specifically fire in the night), this whole situation is heartbreaking and personally I appreciate all of the insight you all have given, everyone involved in this tragic ordeal are in my prayers. IHOP aside, Jesus is in the business of restoration and I believe Micah and others affected will find it.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. seekeroftruth · November 5, 2014

    “Let’s make a few things clear about this press release.
    Micah has NOT been “proven innocent’ or acquitted. That requires ALL the evidence to be heard and decided upon by a jury of 12 peers. Not just the evidence that the defense wants made public.

    The investigation was not thoroughly or properly invested. A full autopsy wasn’t conducted until 2 weeks after her death and her body had been embalmed and touched by who knows how many people. We will never know what evidence was lost.

    Our family was not “consulted” in the DA’s decision to drop charges, as if we were in agreement. We were simply informed with no choice in the matter.

    There are so many holes in the suicide theory-I mentioned just a few on my post. I believed at first that she had killed herself as we were told. However, I am convinced, now more than ever, that she did not and could not have killed herself in that manner.

    To call this decision “ethical” and for “justice”? Just don’t be so naive to think that this is the complete, factual and unbiased story. I no longer believe that our court system is about truth, justice or advocacy for crime victims. It’s a political and legal crap shoot and incidental if justice happens.”

    The Family of Bethany Deaton

    Liked by 1 person

    • jonathanbarclay · November 6, 2014

      I first and foremost want to apologize if I in any way did anything to speak ill of Bethany or detract from the horrific tragedy of her death. I never met her, but I have heard stories and have read some of her writings and wish I had. From all I heard, she loved Jesus and people in a way which was unparalleled, and she wrote in a way with wonder and limitless creativity.

      I did not write this with any intention of doing a disservice to your family at all, or to Bethany’s memory. I felt compelled to write to give humanity to a situation where it had not been given and to ask questions concerning the narrative promoted in Kansas City which had not been asked.

      I am incredibly sorry about what you said about the DA not contacting you. That, in and of itself is a grave and terrible injustice, and is outright reprehensible. I cannot begin to imagine or attempt to understand what you are going through, and you are definitely in my and my family’s prayers.

      I looked for a link to the post you mentioned and would like to post it here in the comments. I searched through blogs and Google, but could not find it.

      So much concerning this incident has yet to come out and be public, and my prayer and hope is that justice is done and everything comes to light. Again, I deeply apologize if I in any way did a disservice to her memory or her name.

      Jonathan Barclay

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Pingback: What 48 Hours Didn’t Tell You About Micah Moore | The Cosmic Cathedral
  10. Pingback: La triste historia de Bethany Deaton: IV – Adiós preciosa Bethany | Intentando ser un buen cristiano... intentando
  11. Pingback: La triste historia de Bethany Deaton | David Gaitan

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