Church and Sexual Predators
Church is not the answer it is the problem: Boycott church
Exploitation of Religious Cover
∗ “Religious Cover” is the outward demonstration of religious practices or doctrine that covers over more sinister intentions and behaviors.
∗ Used to gain access and trust of children and their families (eg. youth workers, pastors, teachers, and coaches. or even SP volunteers!)
∗ Hard core offenders maintaining significant involvement with religious institutions “had more sexual offense convictions, more victims, and younger victims.” Eshuys & Smallbone, Religious Affiliations Among Adult Sexual Offenders (2006)
∗ Exploitation of Religious Issues
∗ Issues of faith are often distorted & manipulated to coerce victims in submitting to abuse and to be quiet about it
I want to describe a child molester I know very well. This man was
raised by devout Christian parents and as a child he rarely missed
church. Even after he became an adult, he was faithful as a church
member. He was a straight A student in high school and college.
He has been married and has a child of his own. He coached little
league baseball and was a choir director at his church. He never
used illegal drugs and never had a drink of alcohol. He was
considered the clean cut, all American boy. Everyone seemed to
like him and he often volunteered in numerous civic community
functions. He had a well-paying career and was considered “well
to do” in society. But from the age of 13 years old, this boy
sexually molested little boys. He never victimized a stranger..all of
his victims were “friends”….I know this child molester very well
because he is me!
- Convicted child molester
Christianity is not the solution- it is the problem
I considered church people easy to fool…they have a
trust that comes from being religious. They tend to
be better folks all around and seem to want to believe
in the good that exists in people. I think they want to
believe in people. And because of that, you can easily
convince, with or without convincing words.
- Imprisoned Offender
Christianity is not the solution, it is the problem.
Sex offenders are often religious and many of them
attend church. In a study of 3,952 male sex offenders,
93% of these perpetrators described themselves as
"religious" (Abel & Harlow,2001).
Sex offenders maintaining significant involvement
with religious institutions have “more sexual offense
convictions, more victims, and younger victims" (Eshuys
& Smallbone, 2006; Firestone & Moulden, 2009).
Child sexual abuse is 75x more common than pediatric
∗ One child molester per square mile in the United States
– Dept. of Justice
∗ 38% of all girls and between 9%-16% of boys will be
sexually abused by their 18th birthday.
∗ With 75 million children in the United States, this translates
to almost 15 million children who will be sexually victimized
over the next 18 years!!
∗ 40% of children between 10-17 have been sexually
The silence is overwhelming as church members choose to point their fingers outward at gays and transgenders......
Most recent statistics have found that 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men are sexually abused by the time they turn 18. What does this mean for the American Church?
∗ A 200 member church (100 women and 100 men) would have
approximately 41 child sexual abuse survivors…..20.5%!!
∗ Yet very few Pastors ever mention it let alone preach a sermon
∗ How would pastors respond if;
∗ 20.5% of their congregation had cancer;
∗ 20.5% of their congregation had lost a child; or
∗ if 20.5% of their congregation had lost their homes in a natural disaster?
Child abuse allegations against American churches average
70 per week. - Christian Ministry Resources
∗ 42% were volunteers
∗ 25% were paid staff
∗ 25 % were other children