‘Fight Church’ Founding Pastor Pleads Guilty to Child Sex Abuse 3 Years After Son Owned Abuse Charge by L. Blair
I am fairly sure I blogged about at least one of these guys a few years ago. Yep, I sure did.
by L. Blair
Joe Burress, the 71-year-old founding pastor of Victory Church in Rochester, New York, also known as the “Fight Church,” has pled guilty to one of two second-degree sexual abuse charges against him three years after his son Paul Burress pleaded guilty to third-degree sexual abuse.
Court documents cited in a recent WHAM report say two teenagers accused Joe Burress of sexually abusing them in separate incidents while they were under the age of 14.
…In March 2018, Paul Burress, who was previously charged with four counts of forcible touching after allegedly groping three women in his Henrietta, New York, home, pleaded guilty to third-degree sexual abuse, a misdemeanor.
Paul Burress, who also served as pastor of Victory Church, gained national attention in 2014 after being featured in a documentary on mixed martial arts called “Fight Church.”
Allegations of sexual abuse and claims that he enjoyed life as a swinger dogged his time at the church’s helm.
“In 2009, Paul showed me fully nude photos of his wife, and also showed me a pornographic video of him having sex with his wife. This occurred on several occasions that year,” an unidentified source wrote in a letter sent to the leadership team of Victory Church in 2013. “I was a single, 21 year-old at the time. This weighed on me for years, until I couldn’t take it anymore and eventually left Victory because of it. A person should be able to trust his pastor. I could not. 1 Cor 4:2 says it is required of stewards that they be found trustworthy.”
While the church is currently led by Pastor Alex True and his wife, Sarah, the church has not escaped its abusive past.
Filed on Monday, court documents allege that the church allowed and even encouraged multiple men with histories of sexual abuse in the past to serve on staff and look after girls in unsupervised settings, (Link): according to a Democrat & Chronicle report.
…Ashton-Krebs, 56, of Penfield, New York, and two other women alleged the church’s leadership created a haven for sexual predators throughout the 1970s and 1980s.