This past Sunday, the Houston Chronicle posted an article regarding the Southern Baptist Convention’s lack of response to reports of sexual abuse over the past 20 years within churches affiliated churches. There have been several additional articles in response to this bombshell report since then.
Below is just one of many follow-up articles, and it was posted on The Christian Post. However, the story is being and has been addressed by several popular news outlets as well.
One pastor I know who has been a part of the SBC and has supported it has withdrawn his support until better policies and procedures are in place to address such heavy and egregious matters as sexual abuse and domestic violence. While I understand that the SBC can’t police the churches it partners with, I do feel that the partnership should be rescinded if the church has been found to be turning a blind eye to allegations and or convictions of sexual abuse and domestic violence as one measure of holding the congregation and leadership of the church accountable for what happens and the offenses have continued to be swept under the rug.
When this happens and there’s a concerted effort to sweep it under the rug, it’s a blight to the body of Christ, it’s a knock against the universal church, it’s a hindrance to evangelism and apologetics. How is it that in the 21st century, especially in the West, that anyone can manage to think that the lid will not blow off of a pot that’s been boiling for so long?
I’m almost at a loss of words.
We have to hold our churches accountable. We have to hold our leadership accountable. We have to protect our kids and all of those who can’t protect themselves. We have to help adult women and men, yes adults, not fall prey to predators who’re only wolves in sheep’s clothing. We have to be countercultural - but the culture we have to go against is the pervasive culture of silence and insidious sacrifice in our churches. In another thread, there’s a discussion about unity within the body - but THIS is a breach of unity within the body and an utter sin against God. Yet, people have and unfortunately will continue to turn a blind eye and deaf ear to those who’re suffering at the hands of abusive monsters. Yes, that is strong language; this is a matter near and dear to my heart.
- Do you attend an SBC affiliated church?
- Will you be reaching out your church leaders for them to address your church’s partnership with the SBC?
- What actions do you think the SBC should take moving forward to address allegations and confirmations of sexual abuse and domestic violence within affiliated churches?
- Considering sexual abuse and domestic violence doesn’t just happen within Southern Baptist and Catholic churches, how can we as a body be far more proactive in taking a stand against both in a much better effort to protect those who have suffered or is suffering at the hands of abusers?