Sexual Abuse in the Local Church
Pastors, church staff, volunteers, youth workers, o.k., everybody, please listen closely. This may be one of the most important blog posts I’ve ever written. Continue reading . . .
Pastors, church staff, volunteers, youth workers, o.k., everybody, please listen closely. This may be one of the most important blog posts I’ve ever written. On Saturday, April 5, 2014, our church hosted Gregory Love who serves as director of MinistrySafe, a consulting organization designed to help churches and Christian ministries understand and address child safety risks related to sexual abuse. Greg is joined in this venture by his wife, Kimberlee. Their website is www.MinistrySafe.com.
I know why many of you are about to stop reading and why some already have. Please don’t. You are saying to yourself, “Our children are safe. We get to know our children’s ministry workers before we give them access to our kids. We require that they attend our church for at least six months before they can serve in the nursery or in youth ministry. And best of all, we run background checks on everyone. So this email must be meant for someone else, but not me.”
Oh, really? It’s good that you’ve grown to know those who are entrusted with your kids and that you require that they attend your church for several months. Don’t think that I’m suggesting that is wrong or unimportant. But it does very little to protect your kids. And those background checks you run? Keep doing that. Don’t suspend them. But listen carefully: anywhere from 90-95% of child molesters and predators will NEVER appear in a background check. No, that’s not a typo. It’s not an exaggeration. So read it again and ponder carefully: at best, 1 in 10 child molesters, 1 in 10 of those who end up abusing a kid, will be flagged by a background check. Reverse that and say it again: 9 out of every 10 child abusers will pass a background check with flying colors. So, if background checks are what you’re counting on to keep your kids safe, think again. Please, don’t let your naiveté, indeed your foolishness, put your kids at risk.
One thing, among countless others, that I learned on Saturday is that the average male will abuse upwards of 150 kids before ever getting caught. Read it again. There is so much more I’d love to share with you about this, but time and space won’t allow it. What you need to do is contact Greg Love at www.MinistrySafe.com and avail yourself and your church (or your school or camp or ministry) of the resources they provide.
Don’t say you can’t afford it. Surely you wouldn’t put a price tag on the physical and emotional welfare of your kids. Surely you wouldn’t argue that their sexual safety is not important enough to warrant your investigation of this remarkable resource. Besides that, the cost is minimal. No one asked me to write this blog, least of all Greg Love. I’m not being paid a dime for this. I’m doing it because I care about our children and I trust you care about yours.
Virtually all of MinistrySafe’s resources and training are available on-line. Please don’t ignore this. Do something today, before it’s too late. This is an investment you will never regret making.