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Stories tagged with: sexual abuse

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  • Pressler sexual abuse claims dismissed

    by David Roach, posted Thursday, October 18, 2018 (4 days ago)

    BP file photo.
    HOUSTON (BP) -- A Texas court has dismissed several defendants and multiple counts in a lawsuit alleging sexual abuse by retired Texas state district judge Paul Pressler.

    The lawsuit filed by plaintiff Gerald Duane Rollins in October 2017 alleged sexual misconduct by Pressler and also sought to hold several other defendants responsible, including the Southern Baptist Convention. Harris County District Judge R.K. Sandill's Oct. 15 order granting summary judgment dismissed, among other matters, all claims against the SBC because the statute of limitations has ... Read More

  • Greear's Sexual Abuse Advisory Study underway

    by David Roach, posted Friday, September 21, 2018 (one month ago)

    Photo by Morris Abernathy
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Southern Baptist Convention President J.D. Greear's Sexual Abuse Advisory Study is now "actively involved" in phase one of its two-year process, the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission announced Sept. 19 following appropriation of $250,000 for the study by the SBC Executive Committee.

    The study will receive the first $250,000 of overage for the 2017-2018 Cooperative Program Allocation Budget, according to a Sept. 18 EC vote. Expenditures for the study will be administered by the ERLC, a partner with Greear in the initiative, and reimbursed by the EC on a quarterly basis. Read More

  • EC WRAP-UP: Sex abuse prevention, pres. search, DR

    by BP Staff, posted Wednesday, September 19, 2018 (one month ago)

    Photo by Morris Abernathy
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- An initiative by Southern Baptist Convention President J.D. Greear to address sexual abuse in the church will be funded by the first $250,000 in Cooperative Program overage for 2017-2018, by a vote of the SBC Executive Committee.

    Other highlights of the Executive Committee's Sept. 17-18 meeting in Nashville included a report from the EC presidential search committee and a report on Southern Baptist Disaster Relief following Hurricane Florence. Two retiring leaders of Baptist state conventions were honored with resolutions of appreciation.

    In appropriating money for Greear's Sexual Abuse Advisory Study, an initiative in conjunction with the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, the EC acted on behalf of the SBC "to provide two years of funding ... to study ways to address sexual abuse and related issues in a church or ministry context," according to a recommendation approved by the EC. The funding will be drawn from an anticipated $5 million overage from the 2017-2018 CP Allocation Budget. Read More

  • #MeToo, church awareness focus of study

    by Bob Smietana, posted Tuesday, September 18, 2018 (one month ago)

    iStock
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- In recent months, churches have been rocked by high-profile accusations of sexual misconduct among clergy.

    While the Catholic church's continued abuse scandal has dominated the headlines, Protestant churches have also seen high profile pastors accused of sexual misconduct.

    A new LifeWay Research study shows one in eight Protestant senior pastors say a church staff member has sexually harassed a member of the congregation at some point in the church's history. One in six pastors say a staff member has been harassed in a church setting. Read More

  • Greear: Catholic abuse report requires 'bold steps'

    by David Roach, posted Wednesday, August 15, 2018 (2 months ago)

    iStock
    HARRISBURG, Pa. (BP) -- A Pennsylvania grand jury's report alleging unprecedented levels of sexual abuse and cover-up by Roman Catholic clergy has drawn reaction from Southern Baptists.

    Southern Baptist Convention President J.D. Greear said Southern Baptists should respond to the report by taking all steps necessary to eradicate sexual abuse "from within our community." Commentators from two SBC seminaries noted both the unique ways Roman Catholic doctrine may have contributed to the alleged offenses and the ways evangelical Protestants likewise have shamed themselves through sexual misconduct. Read More

  • Greear announces sexual abuse study group

    by David Roach, posted Thursday, July 26, 2018 (2 months ago)

    DURHAM, N.C. (BP) -- Southern Baptist Convention President J.D. Greear has announced he will form a Sexual Abuse Presidential Study Group in partnership with the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission.

    A release from Greear's office stated, "This presidential study group will consist of outside experts and Southern Baptist leaders who will advise Greear on issues related to sexual abuse, sexual assault, domestic violence and related subjects."

    Greear's office told Baptist Press the study group's members will be announced at a later date. It will be a "working study group" with "fluid" membership, including outside experts, denominational leaders and local church pastors, Greear's office stated. Read More

  • IMB's Platt initiates sexual abuse investigations

    by Art Toalston, posted Wednesday, July 25, 2018 (3 months ago)

    RICHMOND, Va. (BP) -- Two "thorough, outside, independent" investigations have been initiated by International Mission Board President David Platt into the IMB's handling of any past sexual abuse allegations and into its policies of zero tolerance for such abuse.

    Platt also stated a public apology to Anne Marie Miller, who has alleged sexual abuse by an individual who subsequently became an IMB missionary yet was not reported to authorities following a 2007 IMB inquiry into the matter.

    Platt's actions and apology were relayed to Baptist Press in a statement today (July 25), which is posted at the IMB's website. Read More

  • #MeToo confronts small churches, bivocational pastors

    by David Roach, posted Wednesday, July 25, 2018 (3 months ago)

    Photo by Matt Miller
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Amid the #MeToo movement, conferences and seminaries have heightened their focus on training pastors to prevent and report sexual abuse.

    But associational leader Sean McMahon worries those training efforts are leaving out a sizable group of pastors: small church and bivocational "heroes" who "work 55-60 hours a week in their normal job," serve 20 hours with the church and "never take a Sunday off."

    "Most bivocational pastors don't get to go to conferences," said McMahon, executive director of the Florida Baptist Association in Tallahassee. "Most bivocational pastors never set foot on a seminary campus.... To be able to get some real training in their hands" on abuse prevention and reporting "is huge." Read More

  • SBC seminaries: #MeToo is 'wakeup call for the church'

    by David Roach, posted Wednesday, July 18, 2018 (3 months ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Southern Baptist Convention seminaries long have sought to train ministers in personal integrity, but amid the #MeToo movement, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary President Daniel Akin said, they have "heightened the alert."

    From Southeastern in North Carolina to Gateway Seminary in Southern California, SBC seminaries are training students and faculty to recognize and deal with abuse, reemphasizing personal sexual morality and offering resources to those struggling with sexual sin.

    Southeastern has "raised the flag and heightened the alert," Akin told Baptist Press, "given the cultural trends that we're now encountering, given the technological world in which we live" where moral failings often are widely publicized. Read More

  • IMB, ex-missionary's accuser differ over abuse response

    by David Roach, posted Wednesday, July 18, 2018 (3 months ago)

    FORT WORTH, Texas (BP) -- The International Mission Board and an alleged sexual assault victim of a former missionary have presented differing accounts of how the board handled an investigation of the alleged misconduct.

    After Baptist Press published a July 16 update on the case of former IMB missionary Mark Aderholt -- who has been charged in Fort Worth, Texas, with sexual assault of a child under 17 -- his alleged victim, Anne Marie Miller, sent an email to BP disputing the IMB's representation of its 2007 investigation into the alleged misconduct. Miller was 16 and Aderholt 25 when the assault allegedly occurred in 1996-1997. Read More