Saturday, October 10, 2009

No "Christian ethics" for me, please

Question: What do Southern Baptist leaders do with a top official who publicly castigates clergy rape victims as “nothing more than opportunistic persons”?

Answer: They reward him!

Former Southern Baptist president Frank Page was just named as vice-president of evangelization for the North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.

This is the man who publicly denounced clergy molestation victims as “nothing more than opportunistic persons.”

And let’s be clear about something. Frank Page didn’t make that statement merely as an individual. He made it in his official capacity as president of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Furthermore, Frank Page didn’t make that statement in a random, off-the-cuff remark. He made it in writing in a column he wrote for publication in the Florida Baptist Witness.

Ordinary people might imagine that other leaders in the organization would be appalled by such a hateful pronouncement coming from their highest leader and that they would make haste to make an institutional apology and rectify it.

Nope. That’s not what happens in Baptistland.

Ordinary people might imagine that, at least, a man who made such an appalling public statement wouldn’t be promoted within the organization.

Nope. In Baptistland, they praise and reward a man like this -- a man who publicly castigated clergy rape victims as “opportunistic persons.”

And who never breathed a word of remorse for it.

Frank Page has a Ph.D. in “Christian ethics” from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. (Yeah, that’s right, it’s the Baptist-pastor-training-school that now has Paige Patterson at the helm -- the man who called clergy molestation victims “evil-doers.” See a pattern?)

If Frank Page exemplifies “Christian ethics,” then I’ll take plain, old, ordinary ethics every time.

53 comments:

Lydia said...

If you want to see how a few pastors in the SBC respond to questions about Land speaking out against Hollywood supporting Pulanski but ignoring those who support the sexual perverts in the SBC, take a look at the last 2 threads here:

http://kerussocharis.blogspot.com/

Why would pastors in the SBC respond with such sarcasm and rebuke for daring to ask such questions of such a "great man" as Land?

This blog post gives us a clue. This thinking starts at the top and these pastors have a fellow travellor in Frank Page, too. What ARE they teaching in seminary? Basically that they are special and anointed and that those who dare question them are the sinners.

I, for one, am very grateful for blogging. It has given me the chance to see why the Holy Spirit has left the SBC. Our churches are little more than career ladders for the pastors who expect to be followed and never questioned. If asked hard questions, they attack as Page did and call victims of SBC sexual perverts on SBC church staffs as evil opportunists.

When in reality, HE IS THE EVIL OPPORTUNIST protecting his lofty position and title. After all, the victims are not being paid by offerings. Page lives off the offerings of others and receives great acclaim from his position. Asking the hard questions puts him on the spot and we cannot have that.

And they wonder why the SBC is dying.

There is NO WAY I could listen to any teaching by these men who are so calloused to the suffering of little children of sexual molestation by those who claim the Name of Christ. That they could even think that the Holy Spirit is indwelling in a minister who can rape is incredible. These men are Pharisees. And they protect the predators who claim the Name of Christ while they rape and molest.

Page, Land and these other pastors are not unlike the Levite Priest who walked by the beaten and robbed man and would not help him because it would make him unclean. In turn, they cannot admit there is a real problem because they have too much to lose.

They have chosen fame, power and influence over innocent children. They have chosen the way of the world instead of scripture.

If we give them money (to the SBC) then we are supporting them in this.

Thy Peace said...

Grace and Truth to You [Pastor Wade Burleson] > Why Every Southern Baptist Should Know and Care About a Woman Named Pamela Wynona Schoen.

Grace and Truth to You [Pastor Wade Burleson] > At Times It Seems Hard to Tell Who Really Won the War.

Jim said...

While they hijacked the Southern Baptist Convention thirty years ago, Frank Page and those like him do not reflect the rank and file Southern Baptist laity. They represent a megachurch leader mentality whose primary interest is "image" and "the bottom line." They long ago gave up the ethics of Jesus, because it doesn't pay...literally. They have more in common with politicians than prophets and actors than advocates. Don't count on them to respond with compassion for clergy/staff rape victims. They will always circle the wagons; that's their nature. Keep pushing the laity; they may again rise-up, become "Christ's Tigers," and reclaim their churches for the Savior. As far as mega pastors are concerned, forget 'em all; let God sort it out. Matthew 7:21-23 applies.

Lydia said...

Hey Christa, A few pastors over at Wades blog have the answer for you. You see, they say you come on 'too strong" and that is why the leaders do not listen to you. You have too much passion for the least of these. They do not like that.

So, in other words, if you 'come off' the way they want, they will listen to you. So, all you have to do is find out how they want you ask them and approach them and then they will listen!

Oh, it must be good to be king and have secret rules for how the peasants are to approach the great ones.

Jim, you nailed it. Mega churches are running scared though. That is why the new push for sat churches. They could not dare plant a church they do not have control over, though.

But little by little the peasants are waking up and asking "why am I paying these people huge salaries"?

Christa Brown said...

"Oh, it must be good to be king and have secret rules for how the peasants are to approach the great ones."

Yes, and that is exactly what it's like. It doesn't matter how deferential or polite a clergy abuse survivor is. They will almost always be shut down no matter what. It's NOT the failure of the abuse survivors to use the right words or have the right attitude. It's the failure of the leaders to care enough to listen.

All that talk on Wade's blog about how I come on "too strong" reminded me of all the times Baptist leaders have told me that I was too impatient. I've heard that old "it takes time to turn a great ship" line a little too often. But when it comes to protecting kids against clergy sex abuse, I don't honestly worry too much about being too impatient. My far greater fear is that I will have to answer for being not impatient enough.

Lydia said...

Christa, Trust me when I tell you that when these pastors post such drivel instead of dealing with the real issue they only out themselves. I am glad they comment like they do. They are being honest about what they think. And because they are so very wrong more and more will see it and ask themselves why they are supporting such people.

They are cold blooded and arrogant worrying more about their position and what 'side' they are on than the victims and future victims.

Wonder how they would respond if it were their kid. But then we know of one who was doing this to his own kid and had no problem staying in ministry. He claimed the Name of Christ the whole time.

And we know of many who decided to look the other way. That is why they attack the messenger with this drivel. They have no other defense and they like things the way they are. What are a few kids being molested to them? Nothing.

Christa Brown said...

"But then we know of one who was doing this to his own kid and had no problem staying in ministry."

Actually... we know of more than one. For example, here's an older case that made news and that should have been a denominational wake-up call way back then. (And for every case that makes headlines, people ought to figure that there are dozens more that don't.) This particular one involved a missionary who worked for the International Mission Board of the SBC. Even though the area mission director knew that the man had abused his oldest kid, the mission director did nothing, and the man went on to abuse his other kids. Tore up the whole family. But the mission director's excuse was that the man had admitted "only to a little fondling" and said it "happened a long time ago." (Sound familiar?) So, the mission director essentially blamed the child (who understandably had begun having some issues). And of course, later, when the mother was trying to deal with all of it, she wound up getting the usual lectures on forgiveness. (Sound familiar?)

Stories like this one -- i.e., stories that involve kids whose perpetrator was, not only a religious leader but also their parent -- are some of the ones that haunt me the most.

Anonymous said...

"When in reality, HE IS THE EVIL OPPORTUNIST protecting his lofty position and title."


AMEN TO THAT SISTER!!!

I hate how these guys think of themselves as such humble, high men of God. PULEZE! They are shake-down artists, phonys, high-power thugs and liars, too. I hate to even look at them, they are so full of themselves!

Anonymous said...

Coming on too strong, are you kidding me!!!! When you are protecting kids from rape and molestation, they call it "coming on too strong"??

That is one reason why I can't STAND Wade's blog is all the light-weights, the spineless, lofty SBC- game-players over there. They think their "stuff" doesn't stink.

I'd like to see how "intellectual" and patient one of these people would be if one of their kids was molested by, say, someone off the streets and not one of their own rank-and-file leaders. Let's see them try and not come off "too strong".

Keep doing the Lord's work Christa. You are doing the right thing, I promise you this. Thank you, thank you, Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Frank Page disgusts me to no end!

Anonymous said...

Come on girls, let's have a little honest reporting for a change. Frank Page said "some" organizations that advocate the abused are out for the bucks. Not all.

We men would pay more attention to your shrill squawking if you would just be honest in your reporting.

Anonymous said...

OMG, someone actually questioned Christa's reporting integrity????

Shades of Lucifer. I'm sure some Baptist pastor made her do it.

Anonymous said...

"Come on girls, let's have a little honest reporting for a change. Frank Page said "some" organizations that advocate the abused are out for the bucks. Not all."

Well boy, why didn't he 'man up' and name names?

Lydia said...

Here is a question for the brave anonymous man who calls us girls:

Why didn't Frank Page make that "evil opportunists" comment in all the media venues? Why the addition for the Fla Baptist Witness? The link says this:

Page's comments in a point of view article in this week's Florida Baptist Witness. The column is mostly only slightly edited from a column titled "Guarding Against Sexual Abuse" that appeared April 2 in Baptist Press.

That was after Page had been interviewed for by ABC News for a "20/20" report on "Predator Preachers," but before he had seen the story, which aired last Friday.



But Page's updated column this week includes one new paragraph not in the original article.



"Let me also share one other word of clarification," he wrote. "Please realize that there are groups who claim to be one thing when in reality they are another. It would be great if the many groups who are claiming to be groups of advocacy and encouragement in ministry were that which they claim. Please be aware that there are groups that are nothing more than opportunistic persons who are seeking to raise opportunities for personal gain."

I agree he needs to name names of those who are doing it for personal gain. We need to weed them out and call them out on this. Seems strange a man of his title and position would make such a comment without giving examples. But I guess a general broad stroke would suit his purposes better.

Anonymous said...

Come on girls, let's have a little honest reporting for a change. Frank Page said "some" organizations that advocate the abused are out for the bucks. Not all.

We men would pay more attention to your shrill squawking if you would just be honest in your reporting.

October 12, 2009 7:57 AM

This comment has all the earmarks of being written by the typical SBC pastor or SBC seminary student. Which is why the SBC is dying and has no power of the Holy Spirit.

Christa Brown said...

The Anon 7:57 comment is from Plano-man. Those of you who have followed this blog for a while will remember Plano-man, but lately I've been deleting most of his comments when I can. (You know what they say - "don't feed the trolls.") But I deliberately chose to leave this one up for the example it shows.

This is the guy who claimed to have "influential Baptist friends" who say I'm "just a kooky woman." Personally, I thought it was more of a sad reflection on the kind of people some "influential Baptists" are than it was on me.

In that same July 30th comment, Plano-man bid us an emphatic adieu and claimed he wouldn't "participate any longer" on this blog. But of course, he just couldn't stay away and he didn't stick by his word.

So, in September, when he was obviously back, I told him that I had accepted his "adieu" as a permanent good-bye and that I was holding him to his own statement that he wouldn't participate any longer.

When Plano-man still persisted, I told him directly that he wasn't welcome here and said "please do not come back."

But Plano-man doesn't seem to think that the rules of ordinary civility apply to him. He does what he wants. After all, he's a "man" with "influential Baptist friends."

Well... this is just one small example. Plano-man posts similarly-toned comments at least once a day and usually twice or more. He has said that he's from Prestonwood (a very prominent and influential Southern Baptist church in Plano)... but I have no way of knowing for sure whether Plano-man is actually from Prestonwood or not.

As for the substance of Plano-man's latest comment (most of his comments seldom have much substance), I gave links in the original posting and so people can read for themselves about what Frank Page said. When a reporter asked him to specifically name the group he was talking about when he said they were "nothing more than opportunistic persons," Page didn't respond. But, of course, as the reporter himself pointed out, the ONLY group that had been calling on Southern Baptists for reform was SNAP, a group composed of clergy molestation and rape survivors.

Christa Brown said...

Lydia asked why Frank Page didn't make the "nothing more than opportunists" comment in all the media venues. Page didn't include the "nothing more than opportunists" statement in the Baptist Press, but then inserted it as an addition to his column when he ran it in the Florida Baptist Witness.

Obviously, I can't know what was going on in Frank Page's mind, but here's what I believe the reason was. My own perpetrator was a very prominent children's minister who had worked most recently at the church of former Florida Baptist Convention president Dwayne Mercer. (I suspect Mercer and Page are friends based on an AP photo of them together and other things.) So ... Page apparently decided to try to publicly rehabilite the image of my perpetrator among Florida Baptists by castigating me and my group as being "nothing more than opportunists."

Of course, what Page should have been doing was publicly saying what was known about my perpetrator ... that another minister swore to his knowledge of the minister's abuse of me as a kid, that the largest statewide Baptist convention in the country had concluded there was "substantial evidence" of abuse, that he was listed in a secret Texas Baptist file of "known offenders." But nooooooo.... Frank Page didn't bother with saying any of that stuff, did he? Instead he chose to publicly castigate the group that was calling for accountability of Baptist clergy and for warnings to parents in the pews.

Christa Brown said...

Incidentally ... I just want to say how much I appreciate the strong voices of so many of you on this blog and other blogs. When someone says some authoritarian, over-the-top piece of nonsense, you don't let them get away with it. It meant a lot to me just to see some of your comments over on Wade's blog.

Anonymous said...

Plano man might be aka: Cooper, Brady and RM on other blogs such as Wades, FBCJax, Warburg Watch and BBCOpenforum.

He despises women. Calls them 'wenches' over at WW.

Lydia said...

" My own perpetrator was a very prominent children's minister who had worked most recently at the church of former Florida Baptist Convention president Dwayne Mercer. (I suspect Mercer and Page are friends based on an AP photo of them together and other things.) So ... Page apparently decided to try to publicly rehabilite the image of my perpetrator among Florida Baptists by castigating me and my group as being "nothing more than opportunists."

That is a typical tactic to protect those who protect predators in the SBC. After the Gaines scandal of protecting a pedophile minister of prayer, Gaines had speaking engagements in several SBC venues.

It is called circling the wagons to protect those who protect perverts.

Christa Brown said...

"He despises women. Calls them 'wenches'..."

Yeah. I've certainly seen plenty of Plano-man's low view of women here. But of course, he's got lots of "influential Baptist friends" (or so he says) and so maybe he thinks that kind of talk is normal? Or maybe he learned it at Southwestern Seminary?

Anonymous said...

"Frank Page said "some" organizations that advocate the abused are out for the bucks"

He must of been referring to the SBA PASTORS that are only in it for the buck!

You come off so arrogant! We all know he was referring to Christa. Christa definately isn't in it for the money. You are an arrogant jerk. Sure hope YOUR kids aren't raped!

Anonymous said...

Or maybe he learned it at Southwestern Seminary?

yep and par for the course at Prestonwood. You oughta get a load of many of the people there.

Word verification: colde

colde is right within the SBC

Joe Blackmon said...

Christa,

I have a question. Reading Page's quote I'm not sure how his saying "there are groups that are nothing more than opportunistic persons" means he is saying all survivors of clergy abuse are opportunistic persons. Is there something in the context that I'm missing?

I wish folks at the top level of the SBC would realize that even though all SBC churches are autonomous a list of known sexual perverts would be a good thing to compile. Of course, individual churches need to do their due diligence and do some heavy background checking but a centralized list would be another tool in the tool box, so to speak.

Lydia said...

I wish folks at the top level of the SBC would realize that even though all SBC churches are autonomous a list of known sexual perverts would be a good thing to compile. Of course, individual churches need to do their due diligence and do some heavy background checking but a centralized list would be another tool in the tool box, so to speak.

October 12, 2009 4:14 PM

I agree, Joe. But even a good background check would not have found Paul Williams at BBC. His victim had to come forward many years later. Even then it did no good. Gaines was more than prepared to keep him on staff until it became public.

there has to be some sort of disfellowship for churches who do such things. It is the only way to send the message that the SBC, as a whole, takes this heinous crime seriously. Perhaps more pastors and members would think twice before protecting another pervert.

The problem is that decisions are made based on who they like. Who is 'one of us'.

Did you not read Christa's explanation about why Page may have added that paragraph to the Fla Baptist witness? She is guessing but it makes sense. Another big wig protected a pervert.

Joe Blackmon said...

there has to be some sort of disfellowship for churches who do such things. It is the only way to send the message that the SBC, as a whole, takes this heinous crime seriously.

Outstanding idea. Pretty sad it isn't done already.

Anonymous said...

I do enjoy reading about myself when I tune into your blog Christa. Seems that I have touched a nerve haven't I?

Christa Brown said...

The Anon 8:07 is, of course, Plano-man. Just another small example out of a very great many.

Christa Brown said...

"The problem is that decisions are made based on who they like. Who is 'one of us'.

And the instant a clergy abuse survivor starts talking, they automatically become THE OTHER. And the much-loved pastor is always automatically "one of us." This extremely common and very human dynamic is why there must be some sort of outside, professionally-staffed review board to responsibly assess clergy abuse reports and to provide the local congregations with more objective information.

Anonymous said...

Just checking in before lunch to read a bit more of your bigotry.

I do notice that the vast majority of blogs are written by women (yours, the one in Memphis, and the Wartburg Women). Perhaps you girls should stay home and pay attention to your wifely duties instead of blogging all the time.

Are do all of you still even have husbands??

Christa Brown said...

10:26 is Plano-man again.
I'll go back to deleting his stuff soon. Just thought I'd leave a few up so people can see what sort of man has "influential Baptist friends." You'd think some of those "friends" might teach him some civility, wouldn't you?

Interesting that he asks about whether we "girls" have husbands, isn't it? I heard that this guy likely had a messy divorce.

Jim said...

Christa, may I make a suggestion? When angry, impotent men, such as anonymous 10:26 a.m., write to attack you rather than contribute to the conversation, ignore them. Let them throw their little tantrums, but forget about them...their observations are not worth the space it takes to respond. Can we all agree not to comment on their attack comments any more; that just deflects to conversation away from the issue of child sexual abuse.

gmommy said...

"This extremely common and very human dynamic is why there must be some sort of outside, professionally-staffed review board to responsibly assess clergy abuse reports and to provide the local congregations with more objective information."

I feel so strongly that "outside, professionally staffed" is essential after experiencing the "investigation board" at BBC.
The man I spoke with was the one considered "outside" but not only did he have major connections to the big power brokers at BBC but he also had no control over what happened to the information he collected from victims of the clergy sexual predator.
The Presbyterians may have done a little better with their outside elders that are brought in when there are problems but they aren't professionals.
Shouldn't ministers have a board to report to like doctors or even like Real Estate agents????
Makes no sense that ministers have more freedom and less accountability than any other group.

Christa Brown said...

"Shouldn't ministers have a board to report to like doctors or even like Real Estate agents????"

Yes!!!
And like teachers, nurses, lawyers, police officers, pharmacists, barbers, etc. etc. etc.

The answer is an emphatic yes. Gmommy has hit the nail square on the head.

john said...

The problem with such a board in the SBC right now is that it would be headed by Page P and other power broker's pupils and worshipers.
Ladies, please continue to stand your ground. The very fact that the leaders of the SBC have gone to the trouble to identify you, give you titles [names] and encourage other loyalists to share in their put downs is proof that your message is getting through. When they do not like what someone says, rather than discuss it or handle it in a Christlike manner, they choose to try to destroy the person doing the talking. Good work!!

gmommy said...

John,
The board needs to be filled by outside professionals not other ministers. I've experienced what it's like to have a board filled by ministers or deacons.

You know...I don't know how there could be a board that wasn't rigged against the victim if the SBC people have anything to do with it. More and more I see how the Baptist don't mind coming right under the radar rather than being above reproach. They get to hide behind their autonomy on this too. Reminds me of when the deacon officer explained to me why they didn't HAVE to report that PW was a child molester. My question was why would church leaders WANT to just get by the law when it comes to a child molester?????

john said...

gmommy,
You are correct when you say it should be filled with outside professionals. This is the catch. The SBC even when they agree not to use pastors still want cotroll and will find their own professionals to do their work. It always amazed me how the SBC could find people who were outsyanding in their respective fields to buy into a questionable agenda.
Another problem is the massive egos of so many pastors. They run their churches this way as well. They declare themselves to be experts in the fields of finance, building, education, politics, etc. If challenged they hide behind the claim that it is God's work, they are God's man, therfore God must have equiped themwith perfect knowledge.
When it comes to the criminal element in te pulpits I am sure they believe that their way of taking care of the perps is both God inspired and above the courts in the land.
There is nothing in the Bible to back up such a position but they insist on taking it anyway.
Gmommy, it will take people like you ,Christa, and other very insightful women to help raise the awarness of how this situation has gone amuck. If enough good women and secure men can come togeter and continue to push for justice I believe truth and justice will win out.

Anonymous said...

Good evening ladies and all pastor haters around the country.

If you want pastors to be accountable to some board then go join the Methodist church. It ain't gonna happen in a Baptist church.

Sleep tight girls. I'll be sure to post something for your enjoyment in the morning.

Joe Blackmon said...

An independant board is a great idea. I don't see it hapenning in the SBC. Maybe on a local association level but even then I'm not sure that it would work. But yes, something needs to be done to examine charges to see if they are true or false.

Jim said...

The SBC, made up of locally autonomous churches, is not reluctant to disfellowship some of those churches if they "call" a female pastor or if they refuse to discriminate against members based on sexual orientation. Yet, taking identical action against congregations which cover-up, protect and over-look child sexual abusers is too difficult. Yeah. Right! I have come to believe the leadership of the SBC and some mega church pastors are protecting one another. From what? I'm not sure, but I don't think it is very pretty. If we keep digging we will find out why they are afraid to shine a light on their sexual abuser colleagues. Is it reasonable to believe they are afraid the light might just be a mirror?

Anonymous said...

They are afraid to admit anything because of liability.

"It always amazed me how the SBC could find people who were outsyanding in their respective fields to buy into a questionable agenda."

This is EXACTLY why Peacemakers has so little credibility in certain circles. Some churches brought them in to handle some situations and they side with the churches and come to find out they get lots of donations from these celebrity pastors and their friends. Not to mention speaking gigs and conferences.

If a church asks you to mediate your conflict with Peacemakers, beware. they do not want to upset the churches too much because they are a source for donations.

One place this was evident was at the SGM churches over some abuse situations.

Just call the police.

Christa Brown said...

"Just call the police."

I certainly agree that people should call the police. Absolutely. However, it is also critical that there be other avenues for imposing accountability on clergy in addition to the criminal justice system. Why? Because about 90 percent of child molestation cases CANNOT be criminally prosecuted. This is why most other major faith groups have denominational review boards to assess clergy abuse reports. Even if such review boards cannot put credibly-accused clergy-perpetrators in prison, they can at least take away the weapon of high trust that they carry as a minister. And for Baptists, we have actually requested that they do LESS than what other major faith groups do. We haven't asked that denominational entities remove men from ministry. Rather, we have simply asked that the denomination create a review board to objectively and responsibly assess abuse reports and to inform local congregations of assessment determinations.

Anonymous said...

"I certainly agree that people should call the police. Absolutely. However, it is also critical that there be other avenues for imposing accountability on clergy in addition to the criminal justice system. Why? Because about 90 percent of child molestation cases CANNOT be criminally prosecuted. "

Except for the ones who do not speak out later, why are so many not prosecuted? Is it because a child cannot articulate what happened to them.

Christa Brown said...

"...why are so many not prosecuted?"

Because, by its very nature, sexual abuse is a crime that silences its victim. That is an extremely common and very significant component of the psychological damage. By the time the child grows up and becomes psychologically capable of dealing with the trauma of it, the statute of limitations for criminal prosecution has usually run.

Interestingly, contrary to what many might expect, some studies suggest that adolescent abuse victims may be even less likely to disclose than younger children. Researchers suggest that this is because younger victims sometimes "disclose accidentally"... i.e., they inadvertently say something that raises the suspicion of a parent and the parent then brings the case to light in time to have it criminally prosecuted. By contrast, adolescent victims are better at keeping their mouths shut, and even in the rare case where an adolescent victim may begin to think they might want to say something, they are also better at predicting what the likely reaction of people around them will be (i.e., the blame-the-victim reaction)... and that too serves to keep them silent. And victims who stay silent, which they usually do, internalize a huge weight of shame, self-blame and trauma... trauma that is left untreated. And they are usually incapable of reprocessing and dealing with that trauma until much later in life... at which time it is usually too late for criminal prosecution.

Joe Blackmon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe Blackmon said...

if they refuse to discriminate against members based on sexual orientation

Oh, you mean if they follow what the bible clearly teaches and refuse to allow a practicing homosexual to become a member or begin church discipline against a church member who refuses to repent of that sexual sin. Because, since they'd be following the clear Biblical model it isnt' discrimination. And since it's a choice it isn't a orientation, thank you very much.

They should also disfellowship churches if it is shown that they or their leadership did, in fact, habor a pediphile or help cover it up. The only defense for a church should be them firing the leadership who covered up (in these cases, it looks like senior pastors are the ones doing that). Otherwise, it should be assumed the church was ok with what he did.

Jim said...

Joe, the issue being discussed here is not whether sexual orientation should be a consideration of church membership. We are discussing SBC willingness to disfellowship churches which support/accept some practice otherwise condemned by the Convention, yet will not apply that same discipline to deal with child rapists. It appears that in the SBC, having a female pastor or ministering to openly gay members is unacceptable, while allowing child rapists and other sexual abusers to continue in pulpits and on church staffs is accepted and protected. Help me understand in what universe that makes sense?

Christa Brown said...

A few of my own prior columns on this inconsistency among Southern Baptist leaders:
Baptist autonomy ignored in investigating gays, but not clergy child molesters

Kicking out gays but keeping clergy-perps

Autonomy Schmonomy

Joe Blackmon said...

Joe, the issue being discussed here is not whether sexual orientation should be a consideration of church membership.

Actually, you made it an issue. You brought it up. Thanks. And again, since you said it thereby making it fair game for rebuttal, Christians recognize that homosexuality is a choice and therefore not an orientation.

If a church had a pastor, oh let's just make up a name, err, umm, Steve Losses of Bell-look Baptist Church and that pastor kept a staff member employed after he had found out that said staff member had mollested a child or commited other sexual sins and that pastor and the staff member were not fired then it should be assumed that the church approved of what the pastor did and the church should be disfellowshipped.

Elisabeth said...

I'm glad you said the church that had a pastor who covered up for the pedophile and kept the pastor should be disfellowshipped, Joe. Like Christa and Jim have said, it's inconsistent and doesn't make sense that churches are kicked out for seeming to tolerate certain sins, yet "autonomy" is suddenly used as an excuse to keep churches in who have harbored a child molestor.

Joe Blackmon said...

it's inconsistent and doesn't make sense that churches are kicked out for seeming to tolerate certain sins, yet "autonomy" is suddenly used as an excuse to keep churches in who have harbored a child molestor.

I totally and completely agree. I would further add that in my most humble opinion I don't think there should be a statute of limitations on child molesters. If you do it, you should have to live for the rest of your life with the knowledge that you could still go to jail for it.

Thy Peace said...

Off Topic:

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Anonymous said...

Stop So. Baptist's Lawyers too Crista...they are often advising the leadership in SBC.