Is a Child Sexual Abuser Hiding Out in Your Church?
In Greek mythology the Trojan horse was the means by which the Greeks successfully brought their army into the city of Troy. The Greeks hid their soldiers in a hollow wooden horse and then left it on the shores outside the city of Troy. The people of Troy took the horse inside, not knowing what was in it; and it became the means to their destruction. The Greeks later emerged from the horse and took the city captive. Interestingly, the people of Troy would not listen to the warnings that were given to them and they paid a high price for their ignorance and unwillingness to heed the warnings. If you don’t screen the the people you allow to come in and work with your children, you may have a Trojan horse in your midst. He or she looks like a “gift” on the outside, but what lurks within is a child sexual abuser. Much like the people of Troy, many churches have not listened to the warnings. For those who refuse to listen, the price is enormous and the consequences are devastating. A few months ago, while having dinner with a pastor and his wife, I heard the Lord speak to my heart and say, “The enemy is coming into my house and harming my children and I have had enough. I want you to teach churches how to protect my children.” At that time, I knew sexual abuse was taking place in churches but I really didn’t know how prevalent the problem is. I was staggered by the statistics – one in three girls and one in seven boys will be sexually abused by the time they are eighteen.
Every day it seems, we hear another news report of a child sexually abused by someone at a church, school or daycare. Here are some recent examples of child sexual abuse:
Daycare Center Jan 2012 – A Miami jury awarded 3 million dollars to a nine-year-old girl who was sexually abused at least ten times when she was five years old by the daycare owner’s thirteen-year-old son. Church Jan 2012 – The 48 year old youth pastor at the Bible Church of God in Fort Lauderdale was arrested and is in jail without bond. He is now accused of molesting six boys over the course of nearly two decades and is facing 30 counts of sexual battery, sexual assault, and molestation. He was also the dean at Lauderdale Lakes’ Eagle Charter Academy for six years and a counselor for the Fort Lauderdale Boys and Girls Club. School April 2012 – In Minneapolis, MN a former teacher, coach, lawyer and police chief who prosecutors said spent 50 years abusing dozens of young boys - was sentenced to 18 years in prison. He had a career teaching and coaching at posh private schools, working as a police officer and later police chief, earning a law degree and then becoming an instructor at a local college. In 2010 a young man told his mother that Jacobs, a trusted family friend who often took the boy on outings, had been sexually abusing him since a 2007 camping trip. Five days after the youth confided to his mother, Jacobs was charged with two counts of first-degree criminal sexual abuse. More than 20 people came forward to claim Jacobs had abused them. The earliest case was 1962, when he was a 19-year-old camp counselor and student. Court filings show that over the years some people around Jacobs suspected him of molesting young boys but did little to stop him. YMCA camp officials and administrators of at least three private schools dealt privately with accusations against the man; none went to police.
Closson Insurance can help you protect your children, your workers and your ministry.
Sexual abuse is horrid no matter where it happens, but when it happens in the House of God, a place that is supposed to be a shelter…how does the child victimized by this unspeakable offense trust in a loving, Heavenly Father? With so much at stake…we must do all that is within our power to protect children from being sexually abused.
We’ve developed a complete program to help you protect the children in your care – a procedure manual, a training workbook, a training presentation and announcement flyers!