No Church Should Hide Sexual Abuse Under the First Amendment – part 1

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Trigger Warning: This post will contain a growing list of MeToo related links to articles on church sexual abuse for the convenience of my followers who need a quick and easy resources to learn more about the overwhelming issues of abuses in churches who harbor criminals instead of notifying the police first. I have included some help references for you as well at the bottom of the post.

We have with out question historically should not have trusted church and youth leaders who had taken advantage of the First Amendment. Could it be considered tampering with a potential crime investigation when  pastors, preachers, priests etc to not call the police first?

 

Our parents used to think church programs were safe for our children. – our parents may have been wrong. copy right Malika Bourne

 

 

I’m not a lawyer, but, i think my question is something we all must think very seriously about. ALL church leaders and volunteers must by law be mandatory reporters in every state. The law must be changed to not allow exceptions for confessions to be covered up by mis-using the First Amendment.

The MeToo movement opened Pandora’s Box of Silence where all too many who had been preyed upon by the abuses of those in a role of power and control had gagged “us”. Every church, house of worship; youth group needs to wake up to the fact that exploiting children for sexual gratification is a crime for the legal system to deal with first. Yes, pray to god for guidance on how to help heal – but for God sake call the police and let them investigate allegations. Internal investigation on allegations of child abuse is not the “spiritual’ leader’s scope of expertise.

  • We can not change the wrong doings of the past. But, perhaps if the laws are tweaked and everyone is more educated we can more rightly balance the scales of justice; by being more informed on how harmful covering our eyes to any kind of sexual abuse and trafficking is; set in place prevention plans and promote healing for those who have fallen prey to predators.
  • I, personally, have raised my voice about abuses against the most vulnerable: children, the disabled, the elderly who are not capable of giving consent. Now that my voice is louder I have irritated dozens of people who “do not want to get involved with other churches dirty laundry.” They “only want to focus on their own spirituality.” And they say, “It’s not my churches problem”.

Well how about setting a good example if you don’t have any problems in your church?

We MUST speak of such delicate matters.

I am not suggesting a witch hunt, but, the harsh reality is that no organization that has children, our most vulnerable citizens, is free from being a playground for child molesters, a serious crime that must be stopped.

  • No matter wonderful a Christian someone appears to be we must protect our children from long term psychological damage. *
  • If you are in a position to be working with children I highly suggest you and your fellow leaders always have a safety plan to protect your students.*
  • The Bible says “Faith without works is dead.” I encourage you to have all the faith you can muster up, but, do NOT be passive. Take action!

Please be aware of wolves in sheep’s clothing. Not everyone who looks so Christian and sits in a pew every service is there to worship God with their whole heart. I am so sorry to say – but get over it. There will be liars sitting in a pew or giving an emotional testimony- I’m sorry to tell you.

*Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will: enter into the Kingdom of … good Christians will be rejected by Jesus if they have not carried out the will of God.”

Why do adults fail to protect children from sexual abuse?

There are no excuses for this. But there are no simple answers, either.

Almost no one believes they would allow harmful sexual behavior to continue if they knew for sure that it was going on.

… Millions have abusive sexual experiences.

…someone else should know about their situation, but does little or nothing to protect them.

… seeking protection and help … met with disbelief, denial, blame, or even punishment. How can that be?

…biggest blocks to acting on suspicions ….divide the world into “good” people, who do good things, and “bad” people, who do evil.

… believe that trying to protect a child from sexual exploitation or abuse is not worth the potential costs

…. incorrectly equate sexual abuse only with violent rape … very serious harm can be caused by many kinds of sexualized interactions with children,

  • including unwelcome touching,
  • exposure to pornography,
  • witnessing sexual acts, 
  • sexually demeaning and/or threatening comments.
Please chick HERE to read this valuable article in its entirety.

Below with be an expanding list of current cases in the news regarding allegations of abuse within certain denominations of churches.

Note from Malika Bourne the No Non-cents Nanna:

Dear readers, as my blog progress I will have clickable links to more references. This is a work in progress. 

TRIGGER WARNING 

I highly recommend you educate your self one step at a time. This subject is overwhelming. Take notes in a little private note book.

 

NEW LAW COULD OPEN FLOODGATES ON DECADES OF CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE WITHIN JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES

https://www.newsweek.com/jehovahs-witnesses-child-sex-abuse-lawsuit-1453610?amp=1&fbclid=IwAR2yWvmB3yeXM8timMWROl1KEhlfc-f4Vhq8ddFvZdbNPm7xYW8Do4T_kE0

It can take years, even decades, for victims of child sexual abuse to gather the strength to go to authorities. By then, the statute of limitations may have run out, leaving them with no legal recourse.

But a law going into effect in New York today could open the door to a deluge of new abuse lawsuits: Signed earlier this year, the Child Victims Act (CVA) temporarily lifts the statute of limitations for civil suits alleging abuse, regardless of the age of the plaintiff or how long ago the abuse allegedly occurred. While the “window” the CVA opens expires after one year, legal experts expect thousands of lawsuits to be filed in the coming months. End quote from NewsWeek

It is my understanding and experience that most Christian families try hard to follow the directions of what their church believes dictate. When some one crosses the personal boundaries of a child most parents are unprepared to know what to do. Therefore they first go to their pastor for prayer and guidance. but, that pastor is only qualified to do Biblical training – not investigate or judge a crime.

Not to disrespect the Bible, but Biblical ways are outdated for our modern times as far as crime investigations. The leaders of the Tribes of Israel must have done an amazing job of shepherding their community back then. But life today is more complicated for any church leaders to take on roles, such as police investigations. Child molestation is not a petty quibble of he said/ she said – it is serious life altering crime.

Worse, yet, no child is cognitively developed, yet, to give consent to a predator. A child is threatened with shame to be obedient to the adult who is trusted. The experience(s) can be so emotionally overwhelming that the child blocks it out for years or decades.

There are signs and symptoms, but, all too often in a church setting it has been falsely interpreted as a sin on the child’s part. But being sexually exploited is not ever the child’s fault.

 

“He groomed Michael, made him think sexually abusing him was part of the religion,” attorney Irwin Zalkin…tells Newsweek. “Like, ‘I’m going to teach you what you need to know to be a man.'”

At 21…brought the allegations to church elders. A religious tribunal was convened but because Jehovah’s Witnesses have a “two-witness rule”—any act of wrongdoing must be corroborated by two witnesses—Ewing wasn’t believed. Accused of engaging in homosexual activity, both he and his abuser were disfellowshiped, a severe form of excommunication where family and community cut all ties. Click HERE to read full post.

https://www.newsweek.com/jehovahs-witnesses-child-sex-abuse-lawsuit-1454001?fbclid=IwAR33tLAGovfc7TJacuF4W93eCHc9dKjeZxOEKJBtZngtQWRYdN_AHGzTmjA

 

  • This next article may seem way off subject aS IT IS not ABOUT SEXUAL ABUSE. But, please trust me, churches that abuse use many of the same power and control techniques to hook people. If I don’t post it while I have the tab open , I might lose this article. I do not mean to offend people – nor MLM’s But, please think about the patterns of behaviors that get you pumped up to sell with an unattainable goal.
  • Please file this information in your memory bank – it will make sense when you need it. Many of us who have left abusive relationships will wonder why we did not see the sign and symptoms that we were being manipulated to not accept the truth of wrong doing.

Again, TRIGGER WARNING for some people.

 

MLMs hook people with the promise of becoming independent business owners with unlimited earning potential. But for many, getting caught up in an MLM turns out to be a nightmare. That’s especially true for women, who make up the majority of consultants for these companies.

So how do even seemingly intelligent people fall prey to MLMs despite the overwhelming evidence that they’re thinly veiled pyramid schemes? Often, it has to do with the cult-like tactics used to recruit and motivate participants.

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/multilevel-marketing-companies-mlms-cults-similarities_l_5d49f8c2e4b09e72973df3d3?ncid=engmodushpmg00000003&fbclid=IwAR2a7qMyBQbQ2X-DD6s4RByMm4nODJBl0VyGi27J7bdDEcZJIxbi-OZ_1PA

 

In the News

It is not just the priests in the Catholic Church. Predators are taking advantage of boys and girls in every denomination. ( Please forgive me, I am not intending to omit adults victims in the post. )

Repentance and forgiveness will not stop a predictors nor undo the damage a molester or rapist did. Yet the alleged perpetrators will lies and make the victims feel guilty- then the church leaders may blame the child for something they can not legally consent to.

TRIGGER WARNING 

South Florida Pastor Accused of Molesting 15-Year-Old Boy

No Non-cents Nanna note: Males are victimized and preyed on as well as females.

 

According to the report, the boy’s mother later recorded a conversation she had with Lyn, where she confronted him about the incident. Lyn told her he was “praying and fasting for forgiveness,” the report said.

Click link to read:

https://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/South-Florida-Pastor-Accused-of-Molesting-15-Year-Old-Boy-542178381.html?fbclid=IwAR2WJn864E5OTEMZp4li4AOQeLjkI-L0oklaoEMIW-gjr6RpYYqrLLdtcrU

 

Another woman comes forward to allege sexual abuse at Madison’s Calvary Gospel Church

.. was sexually abused and groomed from a young age to accept it. The waves and winks began from the stage during Sunday morning services….the man wrote notes…that he would put in her coat pockets and hide in other places for her to find.

“I remember him waving at me and making faces and winking,” …“It was the winking that always made me feel a little weird, but I was so young. I was only nine.”

Standing in front of dozens of women and admitting to an act she later realized was abuse was a humiliation…still has not processed and avoided dealing with for years..

“…terrified. … humiliated… I didn’t really understand why I had to do it, but I did because I didn’t want to go to hell,” she said. “But they made me take responsibility as if I was the one at fault.”

Click link to read:

https://madison.com/ct/news/local/govt-and-politics/another-woman-comes-forward-to-allege-sexual-abuse-at-madison/article_0622245f-73b4-508a-b27c-d03e5192b1c6.html?fbclid=IwAR2uIsdsXfKu-FZFjilSWFYGPYmQaBATuFqTPgU6HYm_GGR4SBsODDYLpYE

 

No Non-cents Nanna Note: The lies that predators use to threaten to keep silent their vulnerable prey can sound so religious.

Docs: Pastor told victim only way of freeing her from ‘dark place’ was sex

 he asked a 17-year-old girl to take off all her clothes because “he wanted to clear (her) head.” …“in order to free her mouth,” he had the girl perform oral sex on him.

… he had sex with the 17-year-old “to fix her fears.”

… she was 14. She traveled to a conference …with… his family and other members of.

…he asked if anyone wanted to be baptized. The 14-year-old said she did, and G took her to his hotel room, supposedly to call her father and ask for permission. In the hotel room, G asked her “to show him how she kissed her boyfriend,”

 

Click the link to read the article.

https://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/crime/crime-and-courts/2019/08/14/second-alleged-victim-emerges-sex-case-involving-sharonville-pastor/2014263001/?fbclid=IwAR0kqYM59wbstXhTMBPtpM0ldFRjCvQvYkliHhlD_QIAZIZLNfmOryBMwk8

 

Former Arkansas pastor charged with 2 counts of rape

by Josh Snyder | August 14, 2019

 

2014, when she was 11. At that time, K… was a pastor … and the family was living in a “parsonage home” provided by the church…

K… reportedly threatened to hurt the teen and her younger siblings if she ever spoke about the abuse… The teen said she came forward because she was afraid K… might commit similar acts on her siblings.

Authorities interviewed K… he denied having any sexual contact with the girl…

…told investigators the teen and his wife at the time were upset that he left and were “trying to get him back.”

… he insinuated during the interview that the child made advances toward him in the past, but he “counseled her about that.”

Click HERE to read the full article 

https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2019/aug/14/former-arkansas-pastor-charged-2-counts-rape/?fbclid=IwAR27uevkwRlCR0wCvTFY8e_mYOMOYtYYAfFJj_HdoQrp8fv9XLd2pszhMus

 

Editorial: State laws must protect victims of child sexual abuse

  • Aug 14, 2019

Look what look the state of Wisconsin is doing..

Wisconsin laws need to be reworked in order to ensure that instances of child sexual abuse are reported to the proper authorities and to ensure that legal avenues are open for the victims of abuse to seek justice.

Capital Times investigative writer Katelyn Ferral in her “Stolen Childhoods” report. Published last week, Ferral’s article tells the stories of former members of a Pentecostal church … “concealed allegations of sexual assault among its congregants for over 30 years, and continues to perpetuate a culture of fear and control that fosters abuse.”

“Under current Wisconsin law, the right of childhood victims to bring legal action expires at the age of 35. This extends to victims of sexual assault, incest, and other forms of child sex abuse.” Their Child Victims Act would remove the time limit.

Click the link to read the full article.

https://madison.com/ct/opinion/editorial/editorial-state-laws-must-protect-victims-of-child-sexual-abuse/article_1224fa9a-960a-5be5-94d0-00a17e88db8b.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=user-share&fbclid=IwAR3tAFHDXFrVYLt1CsdAqeDIXXmXjMZpXMKV6b9Yj_r30_JNovzp677G998

 

…to be continued…

Click HERE for part 2

This post is the opinion of Malika Bourne along with short quotes and links to articles related to my subject of sexual abuse in churches that I have found to contain good information.

Disclaimer: This post is only for educational eye-opening purposes. it should not be considered legal advice nor take the place of therapy.

Please consult an attorney and a therapist if you find anything in this link that triggered a related memory.

 

 

Helpful References

RAINN | The nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization https://www.rainn.org/

 

… an American is sexually assaulted. And every 9 minutes, that victim is a child. Learn More … What are the warning signs for child sexual abuse? Read More …

FALSE ALLEGATIONS OF CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE

Note: The content of this fact sheet was taken in part from: Cyr, M. and Bruneau, G. (2008). Assessing false allegations of child sexual abuse. In M. St-Yves and M. Tanguay, eds., The Psychology of Criminal Investigations: The Search for the Truth (pp. 199-228). Toronto: Carswell.

 

On the basis of a representative sample of 7672 cases of abuse investigated by child protection authorities in Canada, Trocmé and Bala (2005) noted that only 4% of the 35% of unsubstantiated cases were deemed to be the product of intentionally fabricated false allegations.

https://www.inspq.qc.ca/en/sexual-assault/fact-sheets/false-allegations-child-sexual-abuse

 

12 Confronting Child Sexual Abuse Statistics All Parents Need to Know

11. Survivors of childhood sexual abuse are 10 to 13 times more likely to attempt suicide. (Plunkett A, O’Toole B, Swanston H, Oates RK, Shrimpton S, Parkinson P 2001).

In my experience, children do not lie about sexual abuse and the research would indicate this. Please educate your child in Body Safety. I truly hope they may never need this knowledge but think of it as a safety belt — just in case.

We also know that children who are being sexually abused may first disclose to a friend. If that friend has been educated in Body Safety they will know to tell a trusted adult on their Safety Network. Educating children in Body Safety is in the best interests of all children.

8. In 98 percent of child abuse cases reported to officials, children’s statements were found to be true (NSW Child Protection Council, cited in Dympna House 1998).

9. 1 in 3 adults would not believe a child if they disclosed sexual abuse (Australian Childhood Foundation, 2010).

2. 95 percent of sexually abused children will be abused by someone they know and trust (NAPCAN 2009).

Click HERE to read entire article.

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/12-confronting-statistics-on-child-sexual-abuse_b_587dab01e4b0740488c3de49

 

CULT CHILD

“It is 1973 when Sila Caprin’s mother is recruited into a religious cult, Sam Fife’s Move of God. Within the year, Sila and her older siblings, Leis and Jeremy, along with all of the family’s belongings, are packed in a U-Haul headed from California to Massachusetts. …Google Books
Originally publishedJune 26, 2014
To view and/ or purchase on Amazon.com click HERE
To view and/ or purchase on Barnes & Noble click HERE