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New Plan From SBC - Dealing with Sexual Abuse

by Sim Lee  
2/22/2019 / Legal

"If we don’t get this right, our churches will not be a safe place for the lost,"..J.D. Greear, Pres. SBC

Coming to grips with last week's findings that certain SBC's leaders and volunteers had sexually abused over 700 alleged victims, President J.D. Greear and a newly formed Advisory Board have suggested that any SBC church that does not act upon reports be expelled from fellowship with the SBC and that a registry of offenders be established going forward.

Because the SBC is based on the independence of the local church, such recommendations would be hard to establish as uniform church policy. Among those leaders who want their own church compliant, they also want more involvement and transparency from law enforcement and from other churches so offenders within the SBC do not simply move away and then get new jobs with another SBC church elsewhere.

Support for these initiatives is wide spread, especially after the the Houston Chronicle published the story that "it had found that there have been more than 700 victims of alleged sexual abuse by 380 Southern Baptist leaders and volunteers since 1998 ...Some 220 have been convicted and 100 are still in prison."

The Committee also wants to see better background checks of clergy and volunteers, better sharing of information between churches and a re-examination of their ordination process. Hopefully this latest response by the SBC will cause other denominations to take a second look at their sexual abuse reporting and prevention systems and toughen things up.

With the high number of sexual abuse victims identified everywhere, such as the 7000 that the Catholic Church recently re-estimated to be victims within their own churches, I think we can all agree that any new ideas and thoughts, like those of the SBC, are another necessary step in the right direction for the safety of women and children

*"SBC head suggests expelling churches, creating registry to address sex abuse" by Leonardo Blair, CP Church & Ministries, 2/19/2019

Sim Lee is a retired NE Iowan who loves all of God's creatures.

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