Class action alleges apologetics organization misrepresented the ministry and “bilked” faithful Christian donors.
An NFL football player and his wife are suing Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM), claiming the world’s largest apologetics ministry “deceived faithful Christians” and “bilked tens—if not hundreds—of millions of dollars from well-meaning donors.”
Derek Carrier, a tight end for the Las Vegas Raiders, and his wife Dora Carrier were regular listeners to RZIM podcasts and gave the ministry $30,000 in January 2020.
They supported RZIM’s mission to “touch both the heart and the intellect of the thinkers and opinion-makers of society with the truth of the gospel” and trusted the integrity of the ministry’s leadership. They didn’t know that Zacharias had owned multiple spas where he sexually abused employees and had been credibly accused of preying on women in multiple countries.
Now the Carriers say they believe Zacharias and the leadership of RZIM “misrepresented the true nature of their ministry and the use of funds donated in support of their stated purpose.” Ravi Zacharias’s estate, administered by his widow Margaret, is also named as a defendent.
The lawsuit, filed in Atlanta on Thursday, asks the federal court to certify the Carriers as representatives of a class of donors harmed by RZIM. According to their lawyers, the class would include people like the Carriers who gave large sums to support apologetics, but also donors who gave $5, $10, or $100.
“I would imagine the vast majority of donors gave under $100,” Kim Johnson, an attorney representing the Carriers, told CT. “Nobody is going to file a claim for $100. Nobody can bear the costs of going to court for such a small amount. A class action allows us to represent …