Bill Gothard is being sued for sexual abuse by 10 women who were previous members of Gothard’s ministry. Gothard, who had close ties to the Duggar family as their minister for years, is facing his second round of sexual abuse accusations after 30 women accused him of sexually harassing and molesting them back in 2014.
According to Sport Act News on January 8, The former head of the Institute of Basic Life Principles, Gothard is now 81. He resigned after the first round of accusations emerged in 2014. The lawsuit accuses Gothard of sexually abusing some of the women and also concealing sexual abuse that some of the young women suffered at the hands of their own family members.
One example given from the case comes from an unnamed plaintiff who went to Gothard after she was raped by her father and she alleges that she was then raped by Gothard. The 81-year-old Gothard, who has never been married, adamantly denies the allegation brought about in the lawsuit. He said “That’s horrible,” he said. “Never in my life have I touched a girl sexually. I’m shocked to even hear that.”
HNGN News today describes the minister as: “Gothard was a leader of the Christian homeschooling movement that pushed modest dress codes for women, promoted large families and shunned rock music. He founded the Institute of Basic Life Principles (IBLP) in 1961, which is an organization of training centers that provide religious guidance for families and youths.”
Gothard’s teachings “rely upon absolute submission to patriarchal authority,” reports Sports Act, and they were brought to the national public light on the TV show “19 Kids and Counting.” The Duggar’s were staunch members of this church and when news broke of Josh Duggar sexually molesting five young girls as a teen, including his own sisters, the church came under “renewed scrutiny.”
IBLB former members have described how they were taught to obey the authorities of this ministry along with family members even if it meant they had to endure sexual abuse. Reports indicate that each of the 10 plaintiffs in the lawsuit are seeking at least $50,000 in damages.
Update: “After the (Duggar) family’s oldest son Josh confessed to molesting five young girls (including his sisters Jessa and Jill) in 2003, he was sent to a faith-training facility owned by Gothard’s IBLP and enrolled in the Integrity Construction Institute program to be “cleansed by a godly mentor,” according to HNGN.