Expert: 400 Church Leaders Will Resign This Sunday Because Names Surfaced in Ashley Madison Hack

The Ashley Madison hack will have a serious effect on churches. According to Ed Stetzer, as many as 400 pastors, deacons, elders and church staff members may resign this Sunday after their names surfaced on the list of users revealed in the Ashley Madison hack.

In a post on his Christianity Today blog, The Exchange, Stetzer said the number is based on “conversations with leaders from several denominations in the U.S. and Canada,” adding, “To be honest, the number of pastors and church leaders on Ashley Madison is much lower than the number of those looking to have an affair.” Along with being a contributing editor for CT, author and professor, Stetzer is the executive director of LifeWay Research, and a well-regarded expert on church leadership. He is also the executive editor of the Christian leadership publication Facts & Trends. All that to say, Stetzer is well-informed, and his number is likely accurate. Former social conservative lobbyist and Christian reality TV star Josh Duggar and Christian vlogger Sam Rader recently released their own statements, acknowledging that they were both users of the site, which facilitates adultery.

Top Comments

Geo Ammerman


Geo Ammerman commented…

My church puts it well: "We don't shoot our wounded, but we don't send them to the front line either." --- Pastors who are struggling need to step back and get healthy, for their good and their congregations. We're living for eternity not next Sunday.

David Foreman


David Foreman commented…

Yes. They're only human. We need to forgive them, and nurture them back to leadership.
Then they can continue to bash gays, deprive women of their rights, and continue to pretend to speak for God while missing the teachings of Jesus altogether.


Greg Piper


Greg Piper commented…

This is a misleading headline - it should say "up to 400" so it's clear that Stetzer is forecasting, not that he has a specific list.

Divorce Minister


Divorce Minister commented…

While I find this truly sad news, I am glad the truth is being exposed and the church is FINALLY talking about adultery as a real problem. I regularly minister to individuals who have survived the infidelity of their spouse/former spouse. A big challenge is to get the church to see these individuals and support them. I truly hope the churches taking action on these leaders also extend support and care to their spouses whose world has just been turned upside down.

Rachel King Batson


Rachel King Batson commented…

It's seriously time for us to add some humanity and transparency back to leadership and create outlets for leaders to be honest. Instead, we follow and defend Christian isolationists who ironically put their families on TV. Then, we point in disgust when they fall. It's just a strange juxtaposition with our subculture. We have no forethought in the way that we view above reproach/never do anything wrong (it's not even close to possible), then we utterly abandon people when they fail us. At some point, we have to stop repeating the cycle.

I wrote about it this week, too. I believe this church mentality actually led to the death of my father of a few years ago, so it's pretty close to home for me.

Harold Nwariaku


Harold Nwariaku commented…

When people make mistakes or sin such as this, maybe we should separate the moral consequences from the human and societal ones. As people who they have hurt, we have a right to demand certain "penalties", and this is okay, as long as they have hurt us directly. If they have broken any laws, legal or local church laws, such should be applied accordingly. Morally, and spiritually however, we must allow God handle the matter and not seek revenge for ourselves. From a personal experience, I can tell you that God knows how to collect. Let's not sit here and prescribe punishment. Who is without sin?

Alina Gomes


Alina Gomes commented…

my friend's step-aunt makes $97 an hour on the computer . She has been without a job for 5 months but last month her pay was $18819 just working on the computer for a few hours. look at here.....


Please log in or register to comment

Log In