Yet again, another Young Life (former) Area Director has been arrested for allegedly having sex with a student.  Jeffrey Bondi, former Virginia Beach Young Life are director, was arrested and denied bond, for alleged sex crimes with a then 18 year old student who attended Mr. Bondi’s youth group.

You can read some of the local press concerning this latest sex scandal involving a Young Life leader at the links below:

Bond denied second time for former ministry leader accused of sex crime in Virginia Beach

Former Virginia Beach Young Life employee indicted for sex crime

Young Life’s handling and non-answers, to this ex-leaders direct question to his being “terminated” from YL ministry, is ridiculous and enlightening at the same time.

A Gay Christian's Journey

Excerpt from a recorded phone call with Ann Shackelton, Senior Vice President of Human Resources for Young Life.

Me: Yeah, I’m just wondering what the process was, what was communicated to you regarding any actions that I took that may or may not have contributed to my termination on August 31st 2015.

Ann Shackleton: Yeah. [Long pause] Ummm. Yeah, I don’t know, I know that we have our internal process, and we have our kind of documentation of all of that. We don’t really talk about the process. Did you have questions about your situation in particular?

Me: Yeah, I was just wondering when and how you, I think was it your- ultimately, it was your decision- to terminate me, is that correct?

Ann Shackleton: Umm, I was definitely a part of that decision, and we don’t use that language, terminate, umm, probably, as it comes, as it comes…

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For a long time I’ve wanted to highlight the fact that Young Life is strictly anti-gay.  It is YL’s position that being gay is a sin and in direct opposition to God’s will and word.  It’s not an uncommon belief for Christians who believe the Bible is the literal word of God.

A couple times in the history of this site, I’ve had YL folks comment that YL is for everyone and that gays are welcome just like anyone else.  What I think they really mean, is that you’re welcome to attend club or camp in the hopes that you will see the light, confess Christ and renounce your sinful sexual orientation.

A recent comment at Young Life Watch had this to say:


I was in YL in highschool and decided to quit my senior year because they would not allow a gay man on the trip to camp. I witnessed a lot of favoritism, homophobia and emotional abuse (and was a victim).

Another blogger, posted this concerning his being ousted as a Young Life leader:

I have shared my experience regarding being terminated for being gay, and then the great lengths they went to to deny and lie about their policies and actions when I started telling students and parents and also said I would go to the media with the story. You can read about my experience here:

Another Young Life leader felt compelled to quit after she was asked to take down a facebook post supporting gay rights.  It was only afterwards that she learned Young Life banned gays from being leaders.  You can read her story below.

Lastly, a piece that Salon posted about a college football player.  He came out as bisexual and was forced to step down as a Young Life leader:

Agree or not, the facts are that Young Life does not welcome gays as leaders. Their have been reports of them being unwelcoming to gay students as well.



The body of a teen who went off a cliff and drowned at Young Life’s Malibu camp has been recovered.  It’s reported that the teen was playing volleyball near the cliff when he went for a ball and fell over the cliff, into the waters below.

You can read news reports here  and here.


A 19 year old student attending Young Life’s Malibu summer property is presumed drowned after going missing in the water.

You can read a news account here and a statement from Young Life concerning the tragedy here.

Our thoughts go out to all involved.

Very sad news tonight.

According news reports, a Florida teen has fallen to their death at Young Life’s Carolina Point camp in South Carolina.  The teen fell over 100 feet from a pendulum swing known as the “Freebird” event.

You can read news reports here, here, and here.

Young Life has released this statement:

We are saddened to report that we’ve had a tragic accident here at Carolina Point. On Monday afternoon, July 13, a camper became detached from and fell off a swing. Camp staff called emergency medical assistance and immediately began administering CPR. To our great sorrow, this young woman has passed away. All of us at Carolina Point and across Young Life grieve with this young woman’s family and friends. We do not yet know how this occurred. At the moment our focus is on those grieving over this tragic accident. This is a very sad day for all of us. The safety of campers and guests is our highest priority at Young Life Camps. As an extra measure of caution, all swings are closed across all Young Life Camps as we determine the cause of this accident.​

Our thoughts go out to all those affected by this tragic accident.


About one year ago, Mechanic Dude stopped by and began to share his story.  A story that ends in tragedy…suicide.  You can read MD’s account of it here. But  beyond the tragedy of his son’s death, was the frustration he felt towards Young Life and the role he feels it played in his son’s decision to take his own life.  The reactions here on the Christian Agnostic and Young Life Watch have been mixed. Some Young Life folks have expressed sympathy, others have expressed a mix of sympathy towards MD but do not understand how he can blame Young Life.  But beyond that, a few have come in guns blazing and accused MD of making up the whole story, in an orchestrated effort to “take down” Young Life. The comment that pushed me to actually confirm MD’s story was this comment:

I have been around Young Life for more…

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