It is the nature of fundamentalist religion, of whatever stripe, to be authoritarian, sexually repressive, and patriarchal. But beneath that there is also the lingering stench of sex abuse — human nature will not be denied, and when healthy sexual expression is not supported its dark side pedophilia emerges. I have done many pieces on the Roman! Catholic Church, and several on the Ultra-orthodox Jews. Now comes a report from inside the Evangelical Protestant world about what is going on there.
Evangelical Sex Abuse Record ‘Worse’ Than Catholic, Says Billy Graham’s Grandson Boz Tchividijian
SARAH PULLIAM BAILEY – The Huffington Post
AUSTIN, Texas (RNS) The Christian mission field is a ‘magnet” for sexual abusers, Boz Tchividjian, a Liberty University law professor who investigates abuse said Thursday (Sept. 26) to a room of journalists.
While comparing evangelicals to Catholics on abuse response, ”I think we are worse,” he said at the Religion Newswriters Association conference, saying too many evangelicals had ‘sacrificed the souls” of young victims.
‘Protestants can be very arrogant when pointing to Catholics,” said Tchividjian, a grandson of evangelist Billy Graham and executive director of Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (GRACE), which has investigated sex abuse allegations.
Earlier this summer, GRACE spearheaded an online petition decrying the ‘silence” and ‘inattention” of evangelical leaders to sexual abuse in their churches.
Mission agencies, ‘where abuse is most prevalent,” often don’t report abuse because they fear being barred from working in foreign countries, he said. Abusers will get sent home and might join another agency. Of known data from abuse cases, 25 percent are repeat cases, he said.
Still, he says, he sees some positive movements among some Protestants. Bob Jones University has hired GRACE to investigate abuse allegations, a move that encourages Tchividjian, a former Florida prosecutor. ”That’s like the mothership of fundamentalism,” he said. His grandfather split with Bob Jones in a fundamentalist and evangelical division.
‘The Protestant culture is defined by independence,” Tchividjian said. Evangelicals often frown upon transparency and accountability, he said, as many Protestants rely on Scripture more than religious leaders, compared to Catholics.
Abusers discourage whistle-blowing by condemning gossip to try to keep people from reporting abuse, he said. Victims are also told to protect the reputation of Jesus.
Too many Protestant institutions have sacrificed souls in order to protect their institutions, he said. ”We’ve got the Gospels backwards,” he said.
Tchividjian said he is speaking with Pepperdine University, a Church of Christ-affiliated school in California, about creating a national GRACE center.
Phi Beta Iota: Sex abuse is not the same as pedophelia, and the participation of members of a religion is sex abuse is not the same as the Vatican actively selling children removed from unwed mothers into pedephilia rings, or conspiring with the FBI and others to manage elite pedophilia rings on the axis of evil from Boston to NYC to DC and across the country with Kansas as a central hub. We certainly see the hypocrisy and the individual moral weakness, worse among pastors, but we find it very hard to believe that anyone can compare with the Catholic Church when it comes to Satanic evil crimes against humanity on a global scale.
Mini-Me: Gay Pedophile Cabal Across the Vatican & Globally-Distributed Archbishops and Cardinals? What do Skull & Bones, the Bohemian Grove, Some Flag Officers, and the Vatican Have in Common? A Culture of Impunity and Betrayal of the Public Trust