In March 2023 Mike Pilavachi stepped back from his role at Soul Survivor Watford due to an investigation by the National Safeguarding Team (NST) and the St Albans Diocesan Safeguarding Team. He was subsequently formally suspended by the board of trustees as an employee in May 2023. Today Mike informed the trustees of his decision to resign as Associate Pastor, which will take immediate effect.
We have informed the NST of Mike’s resignation and they have assured us that the investigation will continue as planned until it reaches a conclusion.
We remain committed to seeking a just, truthful and transparent outcome to the investigation for all those who have bravely stepped forward to share their concerns and experiences with the NST and the St Albans Diocesan Safeguarding Team.
As trustees, we are committed to a robust and wide-ranging review of the culture, leadership and governance of Soul Survivor Watford with external, independent support. We know that this is an essential step in building a strong, healthy and supportive environment for anyone who attends or visits our church. More details of this review will be shared in due course.
We recognise that many people feel hurt and confused as they process all that has been reported in the media and shared on social media. It takes a great deal of strength to report abuse and we are grateful to all those who have come forward. We would encourage anyone who has concerns related to the investigation to report those to the NST on email@example.com and for other concerns to contact thirtyone:eight on 0303 003 1111, or the Safe Spaces helpline on 0300 303 1056. (More detailed contact details can be found below.)
David Mitchell on behalf of the Soul Survivor Watford Trustees