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Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Sexual Abuse in the Church - Warn, Report, Resist

Luke 22:25-26 And he said unto them, The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.

On Sunday, Dec. 9 (2018) the Star-Telegram of Ft. Worth, Texas published a long overdue article on the cover-up of sexual abuse in Independent Fundamental Baptist churches. 

I say overdue because I've heard rumors and undocumented reports of such goings on for years, and things have repeatedly been swept under the rug, ignored, or denied. A few notable cases have been dragged out to the light of day and been prosecuted, such as Bob Gray (of Jacksonville, Florida) and Jack Schaap (son-in-law of Jack Hyles) There have been others as well.

In July this year, Pastor Stacey Shiflett of Calvary Baptist Church in Dundalk, Maryland called out a former pastor of that church after reportedly doing a considerable amount of research and investigation with the leaders of his church into an allegation of sexual abuse against the said former pastor. This former pastor happened to be Cameron Giovanneli who was then president of Golden State Baptist College in Santa Clara, California, a Bible college noted among IFB churches. The college is part of the campus and ministry of one of the few well known IFB mega churches, North Valley Baptist Church which is the kingdom of Pastor Jack Trieber (that wasn't a mistake, it is his kingdom, not Christ's). Sadly, although Giovanneli resigned from his position at Golden State, he was warmly received in a church in Florida and is now working with youth again. The monstrosity of this defies all sound reasoning - Christian or secular. [Also see Brother Shiflett's update statement here.]

The reporters at the Star-Telegram did an extensive research and exposed the massive cover-up and how it is accomplished within various IFB churches. The threats, the shuffling of men from one church to another, the vile abusers' ability to continue on in ministries simply because they belong to "the club," the pastors' fear of having their reputation "ruined" by exposing the guilty to their just punishment - it is all very enlightening, but sadly not surprising.

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