In a Baptist Church, the Pastor and Church leaders are looked up to by members of the congregation, especially young children. This enormous amount of power and influence the church has over its members creates dangerous opportunities for childhood sexual abuse in the Baptist faith.
The Star-Telegram investigated and discovered at least 412 allegations of sexual misconduct in 187 independent fundamental Baptist churches and their affiliated institutions, spanning 40 states and Canada.
Twenty-one abuse allegations were uncovered exclusively by the Star-Telegram, and others were documented in criminal cases, lawsuits and news reports. But victims said the number of abused is far greater because few victims ever come forward.
One hundred and sixty-eight church leaders were accused or convicted of committing sexual crimes against children, the investigation found. At least 45 of the alleged abusers continued in ministry after accusations came to the attention of church authorities or law enforcement.
This confirms that childhood sexual abuse is as prevalent in the Baptist Church as it is in the Roman Catholic Church. The crazy thing with the Baptist Church is that they have no procedures set in place for tracking abusive clergy members who are transferred out of state, for removing accused abusers from the Church, or for informing members that their officials have been accused of abuse against children. The absence of a central agency for Baptist Churches to report child molesters has resulted in church officials moving from one church to another without their new home ever learning about the history of sexual abuse.
If you or someone you love was sexually abused by a clergy member in the Baptist Church, please let our Florida Sexual Abuse Injury Attorneys at Whittel & Melton help you understand your options for pursuing a civil case against your abuser. The consequences of sexual abuse are severe and stay with you forever. We want to help you move forward. Call us today at 866-608-5529 or contact us online for a free consultation.