Extract from UK Board letter to Zacharias Trust Staff
The following extract is from a letter sent on 23rd December 2020 by the Board of Zacharias Trust, the UK branch of RZIM, to its staff based in the UK.
23 December 2020
It is clear that this global ministry has been damaged in this country by the historic and current issues which have been raised in recent weeks. What is taking place in the US has significant ramifications for how the ministry is viewed in the UK and elsewhere, and mistakes have been made. We are committed to addressing them and to alleviating their impact as much as possible. We also recognise that the alleged victims have not been listened to or treated with compassion in the past.
We recognise this has been difficult for all staff and some are concerned that their credibility is being affected and their own reputations are being damaged by events that are outside their control. We recognise that we have to act swiftly to rebuild trust with our staff so that they can in all conscience continue to work with us. We must also rebuild trust with our partner churches and with supporters in order that our speakers can be welcomed to the right platforms in the UK to present the Gospel to their audiences.
We are therefore, as a matter of urgency, seeking a meeting with the US Board to confirm our mutual commitment to the following:
- A profound apology to any victims and a commitment to engaging and listening to them to reach a point of reconciliation.
- Ensuring Zacharias Trust in the UK inputs into the public announcement that will be made when the investigation report is issued.
- A commitment to reform radically the governance, leadership and accountability of the RZIM organisation globally and to recognise the need to transform our culture by reconnecting to the Gospel values that underpin our organisation. We anticipate that there will be significant change across the global organisation.
- A prayerful and consultative reflection on how the ministry should move forward from this point, and if so, what changes are required. That consultation will include all staff, key partners and supporters.
Conversations between the UK and the US on these subjects have already started. We believe that some of these reforms should be implemented before the findings of the investigation are made public, which means coming to an agreement in the next few weeks.