Typically, neither the churches nor the ministers who turn a blind eye are ever held accountable. Just a few examples: pastor Steve Gaines is still in the pulpit at Bellevue; minister James Crittenden is still in the pulpit at Southmont; and music minister James A. Moore is still in the pulpit at First Baptist Church of Farmers Branch.
In fact, music minister James A. Moore was much-lauded recently. He was presented the Texas Choirmaster Award, which is the most prestigious award given by the Texas Choral Directors Association. He is described as “a person who has exhibited unparalleled leadership in the choral field.”
Is he deserving of such an award? Probably. He always did have an incredible voice.
But he should also be known for his lack of leadership in protecting kids and for his role in concealing clergy child molestation.
Moore knew about another minister’s “sexual contact” with a minor, and didn’t warn others. (See church’s court-filed acknowledgment of music minister’s knowledge in ¶ 16) He knew, not only because I told him when I was a kid, but he also knew because the perpetrator himself talked about it. (Moore’s sworn affidavit at ¶ 4) Yet, Moore kept it quiet. And the perpetrator moved on to another church where he continued as a children’s minister.
Years later, Moore had a second chance to do the right thing. He failed all over again. He made excuses. He said he didn’t know “details.” But he knew there was “sexual contact” – shouldn’t that have been enough? He said it was “consensual.” Isn’t that frightening? This is a man who spent his career working with high school kids as a choir director. How can he even imagine that a 29-year old married minister could have “sexual contact” with a 16-year old girl, and that it could somehow be “consensual”? That’s pure, raw, dangerous, arrogant ignorance.
That’s something James A. Moore should also be known for.