Emails from missionary Josh Kvam (Dec 10-13, 2018)

In a meeting on December 14, 2018, Tom Randall and Christ Community Chapel spokespersons Stacey DiNardo and Jimmy Kozy provided us with two emails allegedly from short-term missionary Joshua Kvam. The emails are dated December 10 and 13, 2018. We have questions about the authenticity of the December 10 email and have reached out to Mr. Kvam for comment.

About the author

Josh Kvam began serving as a short-term missionary at Sankey in the summer of 2013. Kvam blogged about his time at Sankey from July 2013 to January 2014. Kvam’s final blog post, dated January 19, 2014, strongly supported Toto and Jake Luchavez:

I want to let everyone know that I was there with the boys and girls everyday for 6 months and I saw nothing that would indicate any of these allegations were even remotely true. … Please pray for Toto and Jake Luchavez as well as their family. I have spent everyday with them for the past 6 months, and I know these charges cannot be true.

Questions about authorship of the December 10 email

The following features of the December 10 email suggest Kvam may not have been its primary author:

  • While the December 13 email is from Kvam’s email address, the December 10 email is not – rather, it’s sent from Tom Randall’s email address without a forwarding preamble.

  • The two emails are markedly different from each other in tone and style. Most notably, the December 10 email uses unusual spacing which sometimes inserts extra spaces and sometimes omits spaces around punctuation symbols. The December 13 email does not use the unusual spacing style.

  • This punctuation quirk was not part of Kvam’s writing style from 2013-2014 on his blog. However, it is seen elsewhere. “Jimbo”, the recipient of the December 10 email, made several comments about Sankey on Facebook. His original posts don’t use this punctuation style, but some of his comments later in December do (here, here, and here). Someone claiming to represent 25 of the former Sankey youth also commented on Facebook in December using this style. Both commenters discuss the same topics as the December 10 email.

  • The timing and similarity of the Facebook comments and December 10 email suggest a common writer, and we’ve seen writing from Randall himself with the same punctuation style.

December 10 email summary: Kvam claims missionary partner Joe Mauk “took over” Sankey

The December 10 email contains a narrative about missionary partner Joe Mauk allegedly taking over Sankey with armed guards on November 16, 2013. CCC lead pastor Joe Coffey briefly mentioned this incident on January 19, 2019: “And this guy [Mauk] promised that he would wait. And then felt like he couldn’t, and then he went on a rescue operation to try to rescue these girls.” Kvam’s tone when describing the event is quite different:

  • Kvam claims that partner missionary Joe Mauk, his daughter Miriam Bongolan (née Mauk), and others “took over” the Sankey compound with armed men.

  • Kvam says that Randall and his wife had asked Kvam and the other short-term missionary (“Kelly”) to “guard and protect the kids” until the Randalls arrived to handle the complaint. He says they were joined by two DSWD social workers: “Venny” (Venancio Jumawan, the social worker assigned to Sankey as of September 2013), and “Cherry Ann” (Jumawan’s wife).

  • Kvam calls the Mauks “rude and dismissive” and calls Miriam Bongolan “quite a drama queen.” He says that Bongolan “took the kids in rooms for questioning” and that both Kvam and Kelly were “stunned” and “could not believe the attitude and behavior of Mr Mauk.”

  • Kvam says that Randall was called. He says Randall ordered the Mauks to leave, but they insisted on having the guards changed. Kvam says the guards were innocent and insulted by Mauk’s accusations. Kvam says the incident ended when Tom Randall had the police called.

The December 10 email also covers the following topics:

  • December 2013 investigation. The email mentions that when Randall and his wife arrived in the Philippines (December 11, 2013), some DSWD officials questioned everyone about Victim 1’s allegations. (The email does not mention Victim 2, who had also written a letter to Randall in November 2013.)

  • January 13, 2014, NBI raid. Kvam describes the NBI raid/rescue on January 13, 2014, when Randall and the two Luchavezes were arrested and the youth taken into DSWD care as “the second raid of Mr Mauk” and “the worst experience of my life.” Kvam called it a “horrific show of force” and said NBI agents “struck [Randall] painfully to the ground.”

  • Aftermath. Kvam writes, “The whole experience and imprisonment took a horrible physical and emotional toll on Uncle Tom.” Kvam says Randall hired investigators to bring the kids back to Lucena. Kvam also mentions the April 2014 trip where Randall returned to the Philippines and was held at immigration for two days due to being on the Interpol blacklist.

Dec 13 email summary: Kvam blames himself, says Victim 1 was “spreading gossip” and “false accusations” because of a tiff

Kvam’s December 13 email describes a romantic mishap between himself and Victim 1 and claims this was the cause of her “false accusations” against Toto Luchavez. He says she asked if he “liked” her, and he told her he liked her “not meaning a romantic like but a friendship one.” Kvam says he called Tom Randall, who told him that Victim 1 had done this before with other short-term missionaries. He further claims that Tom Randall called Victim 1 as well as director Toto Luchavez, assistant director Sheeree Ann Kaw, and social worker Venancio Jumawez about the situation.

As a result, Kvam claims, Victim 1 “started all sorts of drama” and was “spreading gossip.” Kvam says she “wanted to get back at everyone because she got in trouble.” He says, “All this started because of a mistake on my part.”

Kvam’s story is hard to reconcile with other narratives of the time period:

  • Kvam’s email does not mention receiving an abuse disclosure from Victim 1 in confidence, but Sankey assistant coordinator Sheeree Ann Kaw said in her affidavit that Kvam had been told about Victim 1’s abuse claims before Victim 1 started sharing more widely in September 2013. Victim 1 confirms this.

  • Kvam describes a situation where he was the subject of unwanted romantic interest, but another witness described the mishap differently – this witness said that the interest was mutual, but Luchavez would not allow them to date.

  • Kvam does not mention being personally accused of anything; he only defends the innocence of Toto and Jake Luchavez. But Tom Randall claimed that Victim 1 had accused Kvam and another American of something (Randall didn’t specify what) prior to her 2013 allegations against Toto Luchavez. He said he had called Kvam, Victim 1, and DSWD about these accusations:

    TOM RANDALL: DSWD, when they interviewed her, and she accuses somebody— when she’s already done it before several times. So we’ve got three Americans, and I’ve just wrote one of them out there, Josh, who had gone through this with {Victim 1} before. And I had to call {Victim 1} and I had to call Josh. And I had to call DSWD and say she’s accused {Redacted}, now she’s accused Josh, and they said, “We’ll take care of it.”

    Victim 1 denies accusing Kvam or any other American of anything. Victim 1 denies being called by Tom Randall about any issue regarding romantic entanglements with short-term missionaries.

Responses to be added

We have reached out to Mr. Kvam for a statement on the content and authenticity of these emails.

We have reached out to “Kelly” to find out if Kvam’s email describes her perspective accurately.

We have reached out to Victim 1 for a statement regarding Kvam’s claims.

Dec 10, 2018 email from Joshua Kvam

From: Tom Randall tomrandall40@{Redacted}
Subject: Sankey raids
Date: Dec 10, 2018 at 5:59:35 PM
To: Jimbo {Redacted}

Dear Jimbo , thanks for reaching out to me . I am married now
and have a son and daughter! We are both teaching and
coaching in {Redacted} area and experiencing Gods goodness
everyday .
  I gave my deposition in the Philippines but it was never
needed because Uncle Tom dropped the case and the
charges against the Mauks for armed trespassing
,endangering children , impersonating police , and
undermining DSWD authority so they are now just history.
Uncle Tom showed forgiveness and grace towards the Mauks
by doing this but I don't think it was ever appreciated . The
police were angry and were pushing Uncle Tom to press
charges when he arrived from the USA.They had filed a report
and took statements. They were upset the Mauks had slipped
away and avoided arrest . But Uncle Tom did not want them
going to jail even though it was a foolish , arrogant and
dangerous thing they did. I was there that day Joe Mauk ,
Miriam Mauk, Shane ? ,and several of Mauks friends took
over our compound with armed men and frightened the kids
and all of us with his demands and statements that "He was
now in charge"! I was one of two short term missionaries with
Kelly and We were told to guard and protect the kids by Uncle
Tom and Aunt Karen until they arrived from the USA to handle
the complaint. We were also joined by two DSDW social
workers in charge of the kids by required government
regulations. DSWD officers Venny and Cherry  Ann were loved
and respected by the kids . The Mauks were rude and
dismissive toward the four of us despite Venny identifying us
as designated Authority by the government and Uncle Tom to
watch the kids . Mr Mauk introduced Shane as a policeman
and also in Authority? Miriam Mauk (quite a drama queen
)took the kids in rooms for questioning despite Vennys
protests and warning them it was against the DSDW and
law . Mr Mauk then arrogantly called Venny corrupt ?! When I
found out later that Mr Mauk was Uncle Toms friend and fellow
missionary both Kelly and I were stunned ! She and I are both
from strong missionary and pastors family backgrounds and
we could not believe the attitude and behavior of Mr Mauk
could reflect any missionaries we have ever been around !
Calls were made to Uncle Tom in Ohio and he was bewildered
that the Mauks had brought armed men and taken control of
his orphanage and compound. The kids were terrified and it
was a dangerous situation especially if Uncle Toms military
friends came to protect the kids and compound . They even
went through our homes ? Uncle Tom by phone ordered Mr
Mauk to leave . But he wanted the guards changed claiming
they were covering up criminal behavior?The guards were not
guilty of anything accept doing their jobs of protecting the
kids and the compound.They were insulted by Mr Mauks
accusations. Uncle Tom was finally out of patience and had
the police called. Mr Mauk gathered his armed men and family
and ran out of there very quickly. I think this signaled the end
of Tom and Karen's friendship with the Mauks .
When   Uncle Tom and Aunt Karen arrived from the USA
,DSWD officials came and spent the week questioning
everybody about the complaint of {Victim 1}.
The second raid of Mr Mauk brought more armed men from
the Government this time and woke us all up early in the
morning. There were NBI agents with guns and DSWD agents
from Manila ( not Lucena ?) and TV cameras filming the whole
horrific show of force and arrests for the news. . I was not far
from Uncle Tom when they suddenly struck him painfully to
the ground and handcuffed and the kids went crazy wanting
to protect him and telling agents he has an injured body and to
quit hurting him.Toto and Jake were also handcuffed but not
hurt . I could not believe they were handcuffing Uncle Tom
and taking him away ? This would be the kids worst
nightmares in the days that followed. Then they took all the
kids and put them in a bus with Some of Mauks friends? Aunt
Karen was left standing in the yard wondering what had just
happened and was in shock. Aunt Karen arranged for Kelly
and I to fly home ASAP because she was afraid we might be
arrested considering all the different people the Mauks had
accused of  crimes. That morning will always be the worst
experience of my life and more so for all the kids . They called
it an emergency raid again , but there was no emergency. We
had just come home from a wonderful BBall tour and everyone
was celebrating and singing just the evening before the ill
advised raid. The whole experience and imprisonment took a
horrible physical and emotional toll on Uncle Tom .But  He still
had an incredible ministry to inmates , guards and their
families despite his circumstances and condition . He was so
worried about where they took his kids he hired 2
investigators to go find them and bring them home to Lucena.
It took up to 3 months to get them all to Lola Joyce's
compound and begin to recover. But they could never get
John Paul ,the youngest , released and he was held for 4 long
years . This really broke Uncle Toms heart because he and
John Paul were very close .They played chess and performed
unicycle shows together and were inseparable both at Sankey
and during the whole basketball tour before the raid. I visited
Uncle Tom when he finally was released and came home to
Ohio .The betrayal of friends and some prison difficulties were
troubling him and obvious to observe . He smiled less then
Before and looked older for awhile.
He prayed every morning for the kids and went back with Aunt
Karen to see the kids and get them back to school and
counseling and whatever they needed to recover . But then he
was arrested at airport immigration and spent two days in
custody before being allowed to enter the country. Because of
the arrest and false accusations he was put on Interpol's
blacklist and his lawyers had to correct the mistake. He and
Karen were encouraged to see a lot of the kids and vice versa !
He never stopped praying for John Paul's release but he was
not allowed to visit or give food or gifts to him?! I think This is
what hurt him most , the kids traumas and John Paul's
pointless and heartless detention without contact. I think after
John Paul was finally released and Uncle Tom went to visit the
Kids and finally hugged John Paul something was healed in
his heart . I have been amazed despite what was done to
Uncle Tom how he continued to have such a powerful ministry
the past five years .
Thanks for allowing me to share some of my story of what I
witnessed so long ago . I still love and pray for all the kids and I
am amazed at their overcoming faith. Thanks for your
friendship for Uncle Tom and asking me to be a part of your
efforts to tell the whole story. Gratefully , Josh Kvam
Sent from my iPhone

Dec 13, 2018 email from Josh Kvam

From: Josh Kvam {Redacted}
Subject: Fwd: Story clarification
Date: Dec 13, 2018 at 11:11:20 AM
To: Uncle Tom Tomrandall40@{Redacted}

Begin forwarded message:
From: Josh Kvam <{Redacted}>
Date: December 13, 2018 at 11:03:45 AM EST
To: Uncle Tom <tkrandall40@{Redacted}>
Subject: Story clarification

While I was at the orphanage My job was to pour into the
boys, and Kelly's job was to do the same for the girls. That
being said we were constantly with everyone. We hung out
with all the kids and had relationships with them all. I had a
friendship with {Victim 1}, and one day she asked me if I liked her.
I said yes not meaning a romantic like but a friendship one.
After this I called Uncle Tom and he said this was a problem
because she had done this before with past short term
missionaries. Uncle Tom called her on the phone and Spoke
with her as well as Ate Shea, Venny, and Toto. After this she
started all sorts of drama with the other kids spreading
She tried to split everyone apart because I made a silly
mistake and she wanted to get back at everyone because she
got in trouble.
Having been there every moment for 6 months I can say
without a doubt none of the things that Toto and Jake were
accused off were even remotely true. All this started because
of a mistake on my part, and I have had to watch as my
friends and family have been dragged threw the mud.

I hope this helps to clarify things and finally have this stain of
these false accusations removed from the ministry.

Josh Kvam