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Pastor in Trump’s “spiritual advisory” council admits to molesting 12-year-old girl

Gateway Church Pastor Robert Morris, confessed child molester Photo: YouTube screenshot

Pastor Robert Morris, who was a member of Trump’s spiritual advisory council in 2016, has admitted to molesting a 12-year-old girl on Christmas night 1982 while staying with her family when he was 20 years old. Morris is now 62 years old.

“When I was in my early twenties, I was involved in inappropriate sexual behavior with a young lady in a home where I was staying,” said Morris, senior pastor of the Gateway Church near Dallas, Texas. “It was kissing and petting and not intercourse, but it was wrong. This behavior happened on several occasions over the next few years.”

Morris’ molestation victim, Cindy Clemishire, told The Wartburg Watch, that Morris befriended her family while preaching at youth revival in Hominy, Oklahoma. He used to stay at her family’s home during his local work.

Even though he was married with a young son of his own, Morris reportedly had Clemishire visit him in his bedroom at her home one time, “told her to lie down on her back and touched her stomach… told her to close her eyes. Then he touched her breasts and felt under her panties,” warning the young girl, “Never tell anyone about this because it will ruin everything.”

He reportedly kept molesting her for five years and told his wife that he was “counseling” the child. Clemishire eventually told a close family friend, and the news reportedly caused the family’s circle of close friends to fall apart.

“In March of 1987, this situation was brought to light, and it was confessed and repented of. I submitted myself to the Elders of Shady Grove Church and the young lady’s father,” Morris wrote. “They asked me to step out of ministry and receive counseling and freedom ministry, which I did. Since that time, I have walked in purity and accountability in this area.”

Morris eventually founded Gateway Church in 2000 — the megachurch now has an estimated weekly attendance of 100,000. When Clemishire sought a settlement for the molestation in 2005, Morris’s attorney said the molestation was the girl’s fault because she was “flirtatious.”

Morris was part of Trump’s evangelical executive advisory board. The group included other anti-LGBTQ+ Christians like Focus on the Family founder James Dobson, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr., Faith and Freedom Coalition founder Ralph Reed, and former Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

Conservative Christians have repeatedly accused queer people of “grooming” and “sexualizing” children while ignoring the Christian church’s long history of child molestation and sexual assault.

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