For years, allegations have swirled about medical missionary Donn Ketcham’s inappropriate sexual behavior.
A surgeon serving in Bangladesh with the Association of Baptists for World Evangelism (ABWE) from 1961 to 1989, Ketcham was accused of both affairs with fellow female missionaries and the sexual abuse of 4 women and 18 girls, many times under the guise of medical care.
Those allegations were true, ABWE confirmed today in a 280-page report by Professional Investigators International (Pii), which conducted more than 200 interviews and sifted through 14,000 pages of material during its three-year investigation. (Ketcham and his family refused to speak to Pii investigators.)
“There is no amount of remorse, regret, or shame that can make up for the suffering and pain we caused,” stated Al Cockrell, interim president of ABWE, in announcing the report’s release. “We are offering to meet with the victims in person to express our deepest apology, to pay for counseling for them, and to ensure them we have implemented measures to prevent such deplorable behavior again.”
Last week, ABWE’s board voted to require every leader to undergo abuse training. The missions group has also changed its reporting system and improved accountability and communication, Cockrell told CT in an in-person interview. [His video statement for ABWE is below.]
“We are strong, beautiful women who were once adorable, innocent little girls,” noted Ketcham’s victims on Mother’s Day via their “Bangladesh MKs Speak” Facebook group. “[After seeing the report], we were again faced with ugly, hurtful details regarding our stories. This has been an incredibly difficult, painful, emotional ...1