US Southern Baptists to keep sex abuser list after ignored claims


Category:  Religion & Ethics

Via:  hallux  •  2 years ago  •  19 comments


US Southern Baptists to keep sex abuser list after ignored claims

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T

The Southern Baptist Convention (SCB), the   largest Protestant denomination   in the United States, has voted to create a database to track pastors and other church workers credibly accused of sexual abuse and a group, with a one-year mandate, to handle abuse claims.

The vote on Tuesday, which came during the denomination’s annual national gathering in Anaheim, California, follows a report by an outside consultant that detailed decades of   mishandling of sexual abuse allegations   and mistreatment of victims by the SBC.

Despite allegations against pastors and others repeatedly reaching the SBC executive, accusers were met with “resistance, stonewalling, and even outright hostility” as officials remained “singularly focused on avoiding liability”, according to the report by Guidepost Solutions released last month.

Among the damning findings was the revelation that staffers on the SBC’s executive committee kept a list of ministers accused of abuse but there was no indication the committee “took any actions” to assure the ministers were not in a position where they could harm others.

‘Bare minimum’

The measures fall short of demands by some survivors, which include a compensation fund for victims and a permanent independent commission to monitor the church’s handling of abuse claims going forward. It was also met by opposition from some representatives of the denomination, who questioned the integrity of the outside consultant who conducted the report.

Bruce Frank, who led a task force that recommended the reforms, called the steps the “bare minimum”, saying “protecting the sheep from the wolves” is essential to the church’s mission.

“How are you going to tell a watching world that Jesus died for them … when his church won’t even do its very best to protect them?” Frank asked gathered representatives of SBC churches from across the country, who refer to themselves as messengers. The SBC claims 13 million members in the US and 40 million worldwide.

At least one abuse survivor, Christa Brown, who has advocated for more than a decade on the issue, called the reforms disappointing.

She and other survivors had sought a permanent commission to oversee compliance, whereas Tuesday’s vote created only a one-year term for such a task force, with an option to renew. She also called for a more “survivor-centric” handling of the list of accused clergy.

“I know people like happy endings, but I’m not feeling it,” she tweeted. “I feel grief. It’s better than nothing but that’s such a low bar.”

Meanwhile, survivors Tiffany Thigpen and Jules Woodson told The Associated Press news agency they were overwhelmed to see support for the task force’s recommendations. Woodsen called the measures “a small step and a healthy, healing step in the right direction”.

The alleged abuses committed at SBC churches, and widespread institutional inaction, gained national attention in 2019 when the Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express-News released a report on hundreds of cases. Those included several in which the alleged perpetrators remained in ministry.

The scandal  echoed   that of the Roman Catholic Church, which has been rocked by a  deluge of allegations   of sexual abuse, spurred by a 2002 report by the Boston Globe newspaper that documented a decades-long campaign of coverups. To date, the US Catholic Church has paid an estimated $3.2bn to settle clergy abuse cases, according to BishopAccountability.org, which tracks the issue.

On Tuesday, at least one church representative questioned the report. “We have a group that celebrates sexual sin, advising us on how to handle sexual sin of abuse,” Indiana pastor Tim Overton said

He was referring to Guidepost Solutions having tweeted in support of Pride Month. The denomination maintains that homosexuality is “sinful, impure, degrading, shameful, unnatural, indecent and perverted”, according to the Human Rights Campaign, which supports LGBTQ+ rights.


jrDiscussion - desc
PhD Principal
1  seeder  Hallux    2 years ago

Meh, it all went south from the get-go:


Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
1.1  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Hallux @1    2 years ago


Professor Principal
2  devangelical    2 years ago

incest, adultery, and pedophilia are 3 of the 4 cornerstones in evangelicalism. 

jesus loves the little children, dontcha know...

Professor Principal
3  Kavika     2 years ago

The Baptists have joined the RCC.

Professor Principal
3.1  devangelical  replied to  Kavika @3    2 years ago

RCC, SBC, FLDS... gee, those self righteous fundies sure do like to act out their kiddie porn fantasies.

Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
3.1.1  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  devangelical @3.1    2 years ago

Speaking of the FLDS, have you watched the show on Netflix called "Keep Sweet: Pray and Obey"? It really is an eye opening expose of religious fundamentalism.

Keep Sweet: Pray and Obey | Official Trailer | Netflix - YouTube

Professor Principal
3.1.2  devangelical  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @3.1.1    2 years ago

I did see it. the literal definition of a cult.

Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
3.2  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Kavika @3    2 years ago

The reality is that the RCC and the SCB have about the same percent of abusers as any other large group that entrusts children and teens to individual employees such as public and private schools, scouts, summer camps, doctors and sports medicine even at the highest levels like the Olympics. The only real difference is that a church is expected to be a moral leader in the community and one might think that if they are truly backed by a real God that has actual power and ability then such vile acts of sexual abuse and molestation should be at least fewer than other non-religious organizations. Clearly that is not the case.

Professor Principal
3.2.1  Kavika   replied to  Dismayed Patriot @3.2    2 years ago

I've seen that % of abuses before. The bottom line is that both the RCC and Baptists are supposed to be the moral authority and for decades sexual abuse that both have been involved in, and tried to hide in every way they possibly could. 

When the churches hold the power over their followers and commit these crimes they have no moral authority or any reason people should follow their teachings. 

Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
3.3  Sean Treacy  replied to  Kavika @3    2 years ago

Other groups too.

Professor Principal
3.3.1  Kavika   replied to  Sean Treacy @3.3    2 years ago

That was a big story in Indian country. IMO, they should hang those involved in this horrific crime right alongside the hundreds/thousands priests, monsignors, bishops, and cardinals that committed those crimes and or covered them up for centuries in the RCC. 

Professor Principal
3.3.2  JohnRussell  replied to  Kavika @3.3.1    2 years ago

The Boy Scouts sexually abused far more kids than the Catholic Church did. 

  1. Boy Scouts sexual abuse claims top 92,000 amid ... - Los Angeles …


    Boy Scouts   deluged with 92,700   sexual abuse   claims, dwarfing U.S.   Catholic Church’s   numbers   Boy Scouts   of America will face   more than   92,700 claims of   sexual abuse in   a …


We have to stop acting like the Catholic Church is the only guilty institution. 

The Catholic Church is a small part of this problem. 

Professor Principal
3.3.3  Kavika   replied to  JohnRussell @3.3.2    2 years ago
The Catholic Church is a small part of this problem. 

That is a crock of shit JR. The RCC has violated the rights of children in numerous countries. They do their best to hide the abuse both sexual and physical they fight lawsuits, declare bankruptcy, attempt to get laws changed, and for decades hide the abusers and left thousands of kids at risk of the POS. 

Professor Principal
3.3.4  JohnRussell  replied to  Kavika @3.3.3    2 years ago

Priests Commit No More Abuse Than Other Males

The Catholic sex-abuse stories emerging every day suggest that Catholics have a much bigger problem with child molestation than other denominations and the general population. Many point to peculiarities of the Catholic Church ( its celibacy rules for priests ,   its insular hierarchy ,   its exclusion of women ) to infer that there's something particularly pernicious about Catholic clerics that predisposes them to these horrific acts. It's no wonder that, back in 2002—when the last Catholic sex-abuse scandal was making headlines—a   Wall Street Journal-NBC News poll   found that 64 percent of those queried thought Catholic priests "frequently'' abused children.

Yet experts say there's simply no data to support the claim at all. No formal comparative study has ever broken down child sexual abuse by denomination, and only the Catholic Church has released detailed data about its own. But based on the   surveys   and   studies   conducted by different denominations over the past 30 years, experts who study child abuse say they see little reason to conclude that sexual abuse is mostly a Catholic issue. "We don't see the Catholic Church as a hotbed of this or a place that has a bigger problem than anyone else," said Ernie Allen, president of the   National Center for Missing and Exploited Children . "I can tell you without hesitation that we have seen cases in many religious settings, from traveling evangelists to mainstream ministers to rabbis and others."

Since the mid-1980s, insurance companies have offered sexual misconduct coverage as a rider on liability insurance, and their own studies indicate that Catholic churches are not higher risk than other congregations. Insurance companies that cover all denominations, such as Guide One Center for Risk Management, which has more than 40,000 church clients, does not charge Catholic churches higher premiums. "We don't see vast difference in the incidence rate between one denomination and another," says Sarah Buckley, assistant vice president of corporate communications. "It's pretty even across the denominations." It's been that way for decades. While the company saw an uptick in these claims by all types of churches around the time of the 2002 U.S. Catholic sex-abuse scandal, Eric Spacick, Guide One's senior church-risk manager, says "it's been pretty steady since." On average, the company says 80 percent of the sexual misconduct claims they get from all denominations involve sexual abuse of children. As a result, the more children's programs a church has, the more expensive its insurance, officials at Guide One said.

The only hard data that has been made public by any denomination comes from John Jay College's study of Catholic priests, which was authorized and is being paid for by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops following the public outcry over the 2002 scandals. Limiting their study to plausible accusations made between 1950 and 1992, John Jay researchers reported that about 4 percent of the 110,000 priests active during those years had been accused of sexual misconduct involving children. Specifically, 4,392 complaints (ranging from "sexual talk" to rape) were made against priests by 10,667 victims. (Reports made after 2002, including those of incidents that occurred years earlier, are released as part of the church's annual audits.)

Experts disagree on the rate of sexual abuse among the general American male population, but Allen says a conservative estimate is one in 10. Margaret Leland Smith, a researcher at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, says her review of the numbers indicates it's closer to one in 5. But in either case, the rate of abuse by Catholic priests is not higher than these national estimates. The public also doesn't realize how "profoundly prevalent" child sexual abuse is, adds Smith. Even those numbers may be low; research suggests that only a third of abuse cases are ever reported (making it the most underreported crime). "However you slice it, it's a very common experience," Smith says.

Most child abusers have one thing in common, and it's not piety—it's preexisting relationships with their victims. That includes priests and ministers and rabbis, of course, but also family members, friends, neighbors, teachers, coaches, scout leaders, youth-group volunteers, and doctors. According to federal studies, three quarters of abuse occurs at the hands of family members or others in the victim's "circle of trust." "The fundamental premise here is that those who abuse children overwhelmingly seek out situations where they have easy and legitimate access to children," he said. "These kinds of positions offer a kind of cover for these offenders."

Professor Principal
3.3.5  JohnRussell  replied to  Kavika @3.3.3    2 years ago

Child sexual abuse occurs everywhere that males have unsupervised access to children. As a percentage of the total child sex abuse cases , those by the Catholic Church are a small percentage. Public schools, scouting , protestant church youth groups, athletic clubs, choirs, summer camps, and most of all , families, all have child sexual abuse.

I understand as an Indian you have a very legitimate reason to be anti-Catholic, but to single out the Catholic Church for child sexual abuse and ignore all the rest is just wrong. 

Professor Principal
3.3.6  Kavika   replied to  JohnRussell @3.3.5    2 years ago
I understand as an Indian you have a very legitimate reason to be anti-Catholic, but to single out the Catholic Church for child sexual abuse and ignore all the rest is just wrong. 

I don't ignore the rest but the RCC is one of the worst. They have paid out over $4 billion in settlements with probably many millions more coming. They have avoided taking responsibility and transferred pedophile priests to unsuspecting parishes. They have a major hand in running ''Indian Boarding Schools'' in the US and Canada as well as Australia which resulted in the sexual abuse and other crimes of tens of thousands of Indian kids. And worst of all they deny and deny for decades. 

Stop trying to give cover to the RCC.

Professor Participates
3.3.7  bugsy  replied to  JohnRussell @3.3.5    2 years ago
Child sexual abuse occurs everywhere that males have unsupervised access to children

And in many cases, women.

Professor Principal
3.3.8  JohnRussell  replied to  Kavika @3.3.6    2 years ago

The Catholic Church is not the only institution that covers up these crimes. Its that simple.

As I said, I recognize that particular harm was inflicted on indigenous people by the Catholic Church. 

Professor Principal
4  Ender    2 years ago

So the church only tracks them and keeps a file....

Yet some Baptists are leaving because of women being allowed to be pastors.

So with pedophiles, just hide them but a woman being a pastor is a step too far....


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