News by email Donate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

Mike Pilavachi 1 banner.png
Soul Survivor Watford
Mike Pilavachi 1 thumb.png
Soul Survivor Watford
World News

Mike Pilavachi under investigation over safeguarding concerns

by Kelly Valencia

The founder of the Christian youth festival Soul Survivor, Mike Pilavachi, is being investigated after safeguarding concerns were raised with the Church of England.

An online statement on the church's website said it's neither a "criminal investigation" nor a "clergy disciplinary matter", and the concerns relate to "non-recent" matters.

The 65-year-old, who's also part of the pastoral team at Soul Survivor Watford, has stepped back from all ministry while the investigation is carried out.

The statement was read out to the congregation on Sunday and was issued on behalf of the Church of England National Safeguarding Team, the St Albans Diocese, and the Soul Survivor Watford trustees.

Pilavachi was awarded an MBE for services to young people in 2019 and is best known for hosting Soul Survivor. This annual Christian festival ran from 1993 to 2019, with an average attendance of 30,000 teenagers each summer.

The rest of the leadership team, including Rev Andy Croft and Rev Jon Stevens, will continue to lead the church while the independent investigation, led by the Church of England and working closely with the Diocese of St Albans, takes place.

David Mitchell, a trustee and one of the church's founding members, has also issued a statement urging the congregation to refrain from making any quick conclusions.

"Nothing should be inferred from Mike stepping back," Mitchell said.

"This is perfectly normal following the start of an investigation that has not reached a conclusion. We mutually agreed this was the best step because of the importance of correct procedures being followed."

Rev Andy Croft is normally the chair of board of trustees but has decided to step back "due to his close personal relationship with Mike".

No formal timeline regarding the investigation has been communicated.

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email