Pastor Harry L. Thomas, founder of the Creation Festival, faces serious child molestation charges.
To present the message of the Gospel through music, Pastor Harry L. Thomas launched Creation Festival. Founded in 1979, the twice-annual event quickly became the nation’s largest Christian music festival. Between 50,000 and 100,000 people attend the four-day Christian music events each year. Next year’s Creation Festival will take place in Mt. Union, Pennsylvania and at Kennewick, Washington.
Yet, as organizers prepare to celebrate the festival’s 40th anniversary in 2019, it will have to do so without its founder.
A black eye for the Christian music scene.
Last Friday, the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office charged Pastor Thomas with sexually assaulting four minors. A post on Facebook explained that he was charged with one count of aggravated sexual assault, three counts of sexual assault, and four counts of endangering the welfare of children.
Thomas works as the Senior Pastor of Come Alive New Testament Church in Medford, a township in New Jersey. He allegedly assaulted four children there between 1999 and 2015. The prosecutor’s office withheld information about the victims to protect their identity.
The post reads,
“Thomas was taken into custody yesterday morning and is being treated at a medical facility, where he is under guard by the Burlington County Department of Corrections. A first appearance hearing will be held in the near future in Superior Court. The case will now be prepared for presentation to a Burlington County Grand Jury for possible indictment.”
In a statement, Come Alive New Testament Church and Creation Festival lamented the Pastor’s suspension. It reads,
“It is with deep regret and saddened hearts that the boards of Come Alive International and Creation Festivals have indefinitely suspended Pastor Harry Thomas from all leadership positions with the church, festival, and all associated ministries. While the allegations… unrelated to his roles in these ministries, leadership is actively cooperating with the authorities and has determined this to be the proper course of action at this time until there can be a full investigation. [We request] that all pray for the parties involved.”
Last year, the popular Christian music festival hosted Casting Crowns, Crowder, for King and Country, and Propaganda, among others.
Featured image by Creation Festival