An Update on Anne Campbell and World Magazine Tells Us We are All Abusers Just Like Andy Savage!

“So often survivors have had their experiences denied, trivialized, or distorted. Writing is an important avenue for healing because it gives you the opportunity to define your own reality. You can say: This did happen to me. It was that bad. It was the fault & responsibility of the adult. I was—and am—innocent.” The Courage to Heal by Ellen Bass & Laura Davis” ― Ellen Bass, The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse link

Anne Campbell, widow of Iain Campbell, appears to be getting deserved support

I was contacted by the Scottish Sun last week, asking the usual question: Who is your source and will they talk with us?” They got the usual response. “No, I will not tell you who my source is and they are not interested in talking with you.”

As a quick review:  Last year, I read some media reports that Iain D Campbell, a rock star in certain Reformed theological circles, had committed suicide after it was revealed that he had had multiple affairs with multiple women over decades. However, what caught my eyes was that people on the Isle of Lewis appeared to blame his wife for his despicable and secretive behavior. So I wrote a story about it. Calvinist Leader Dr Iain Campbell Dies By Suicide Amidst Allegations of Affairs and an Out of Wedlock Child. His Wife Gets Blamed!

As you know, my heart is with the victims and somehow I sensed that his widow was being treated poorly while some Scottish Free Church stuffed shirts were trying to resurrect his legacy. Shorty after this post, I was contacted by my impeccable source who wanted to be sure the real story got out there. Blindsided: The True Story of the Circumstances Surrounding the Death of Iain Campbell

I believe that, due to the pressure of this blog along with other media reports, the Western Isles Presbytery was forced to have a hearing and declare Campbell guilty posthumously.

I also did a post discussing some of his writings Looking Further at Iain Campbell and Others: What is a Dishonest Hypocrite?.

Throughout much of the year, I received emails from some of the *stuffed shirts* demanding to know who sent me the emails of IDC’s communications with his lovers. Oddly, they never questioned the emails themselves… I believed that the post must have irritated some folks and led, along with my coverage of Tom Chantry whose trial is in April, to the ridiculously poorly written and deceptive letter meant to embarrass my husband and me. How a Letter Meant to Hurt Dee in Her Church and Community Gave Her a Precious Gift Instead.

When the editor told me that he wanted to write a post showing sympathy for all that Anne Campbell has experienced, I was pleased. WEE ARE SORRY Isle of Lewis church bosses apologise to widow of love-rat minister who killed himself: Anne Campbell was welcomed back warmly to the island on the first anniversary of her husband’s death.

For those of you who are confused, the *Wee*, which I now realize is viewed in a negative fashion, refers to the nickname of the Free Church (Wee Free Church) but I will not bore you with details.

Pals of cheating minister Iain Campbell’s wife Anne revealed she’s back on her home island to rebuild her life after a year of “torment and devastation”.

Teacher Anne, 55, has been warmly welcomed on her return after her husband’s adultery and suicide rocked the staunch Free Church of Scotland community.

And on the first anniversary of his death, she has told friends of the agony she’s endured since fleeing Lewis when loyal members of his congregation accused her of trashing his memory.

She has now returned to work on the island and church chiefs yesterday apologised to Anne for a lack of support during the “unimaginably difficult time” after her husband’s death.

Last night a close pal told The Scottish Sun on Sunday: “The year she’s had and the torment she has endured is horrific beyond words.

“All the worst things that can happen to a family happened to her family in a matter of days.

I guess they found it surprising that a little blog in North Carolina cared about this story. We always care when people have been hurt and let down by the church.

The blog attracted hundreds of hits and comments from islanders as the true extent of the minister’s sordid double life was exposed.

Last night, Mrs Parsons revealed how she refused to budge when high ranking Wee Free officials demanded to know the identity of her source.

She said: “Some people were blaming Anne for what transpired. Sadly, unknowingly manipulated people appeared to blame her for IDC’s sexual indiscretions.

“I heard from some very important people within the Free Church who wanted to know how I obtained the emails since this was supposed to be some sort of confidential deal within the Presbytery.

“They were not at all interested in claiming that they were not true. They were insistent that I tell them who released them to me.

“I reiterated they would never know the name of the person who gave those to me which has frustrated them to no end.”

I intend to look into another situation surrounding the surprise exoneration of another well known pastor, and friend of IDC, Don MacLeod. A number of years ago, he was accused by several women of sex abuse. Apparently, IDC was supportive of him being tried for this mess but, at the last minute, changed his mind. Don MacLeod wrote one of the flowery obituaries for IDC with what appeared (at least to me) to be a vague threat for Anne Campbell to behave. Stay tuned.

World Magazine wrote a post which shows they don’t get it. #metoo #churchtoo

Today, I met with some folks who are doing some research on psoriatic arthritis with which I am afflicted. When they asked what I did, I mentioned I blogged about abuse and the church. One person said “I heard about a story about the standing ovation for that pastor who said he had done something to a student. It was awful.” This woman got it. Sadly, World Magazine does not.

Once we’ve confessed: How should churches handle sexual sins from 20 years ago? by Russell St. John caused a firestorm on Twitter. I wish these editors were smart enough to call a victims’ advocate because they could have saved them some well deserved pushback. But, as you will see, I don’t think they learned their lesson.

Here are some particularly vacuous comments. It is evident that the author does not understand the long. term, devastating effects of sex abuse. Shouldn’t the church be the first institution to stand up for victims?Didn’t Jesus seem to spend a whole lot of time with the abused in society as opposed to the celebrity church leaders of the day?

Here are just a few things that World Magazine got wrong.

1. Savage knew there was unfinished business with Jules. We posted the email which he said he did not answer. The lack of the reconciliation was not unclear whatsoever.

Savage stated, “Until now, I did not know there was unfinished business with Jules.” To what extent they did or did not reconcile is unclear.

2. The church did not report the incident to police. Every church in America knows they must report sexual *incidents* to the police. Fidelity to the disciplinary process does NOT mean a police report is unnecessary. I, personally, do not believe that a process of discipline was in place. Savage was still teaching *True Love Waits* until Jules spilled the beans to her discipleship group and then *out the door* he went. What process? It was a boot kick and the next church was NOT informed.

The congregation’s ignorance of Savage’s particular sin may testify to a shameful cover-up. It may also testify to the church’s fidelity to the privacy of the discipline process.

3. If I hear one more thing about Paul being allowed to be an apostle, I will scream. Paul killed Christians prior to his Damascus Road experience. He then went to Arabia for 3 long year to learn and mature. There is nothing in Scripture that states that, after he was a Christian, that Paul killed more people or sexually assaulted a congregating. Not. one. instance.

If Paul intended to disqualify any man who was ever reproachable, then he disqualified himself and many Christian leaders since.

4. Savage was not self-righteous?  Seriously? He said that he did not tell his next church what happened. He blamed Jules, saying this was an organic moment (ROFL-that is one for the books). He claimed he was merely a college student, etc., etc., etc. This is called obfuscation. Savage was a youth pastor and he knew it and so did many other people. Savage is a minimizer-a typical tactic for an abuser.

Savage was not self-righteous: He confessed.

5. No, World magazine, I  am not a sexual abuser. NO, Mr. St John, I have not sexually assaulted anyone. However, if you think that maybe you and the editors are such abusers, you need to get help really quickly.

Get something straight. Very few people in this world sexually abuse others. Anyone who does has a deep seated power problem that should be explored with trained professionals. It is ridiculous and sin leveling at its most disturbing to say that we all abuse like Savage.

Every Christian knows that Christ forgives the sinner. But, restoration does not mean restoration to the pulpit. It means restoration to the church. Savage is welcome in church but he has no business in the pulpit. What is this deal that pastors who sin get to be restored to the pulpit? Teachers cannot teach after they have sex wit a 17 year old student. Why do pastors get to skip the part of being restored to the church body? Why isn’t that enough?

Jesus restores not only the abused but also the abuser. The culture is not rooting for the restoration of Harvey Weinstein. It does not want a wicked predator to know the mercy of Jesus, but the church should want just that. Each Christian must acknowledge, “I am the abused and the abuser.” Blessedly Jesus restores both.

At Love, Joy, Feminism, Libby Anne wrote a thoughtful piece on the dangerous declaration by World Magazine that all of us are abusers. World Magazine on Andy Savage: “Each Christian must acknowledge, ‘I am the abused and the abuser.’”

What Savage did was wrong because God forbids sexual contact outside of marriage. That Savage harmed Jules Woodson through his actions is less important—the important part is that he sinned against God. And God—evangelicals contend—forgives those who sincerely repent, and washes away their sin, and restores them.

To my knowledge, Paul never sexually abused a minor under his pastoral care, but remember—St. John is lumping all sins together here. Sexually abusing a minor under one’s pastoral care is no different from, say, giving in to temptation and having sex with one’s future wife a month before the wedding. Or coveting.

…And there it is—everyone sins. We are all the abuser, because we all sin. What makes us any better? But for the grace of God, there go I. Growing up, I was taught that no sin was any better or worse than any other. There was no rankings of sin. Sin is sin is sin. We are all sinners; we are all like the abuser. Woodson is just as much a sinner (because we all are) as Savage. This idea makes it nigh impossible to deal effectively with abuse and predation.

Sadly, World Magazine gets an *F* for this poorly written post. I suggest that they hire a group like netgrace.org to educate their editors and staff.

World then wrote a weak second post in which they clung doggedly to the first post and were unsuccessful in their attempt to soften the blowback.

I imagined that this post was written to undo the damage of the first post which was universally derided on Twitter: A painful process: Churches should consider in advance how to respond when pastors or other leaders face accusations of sexual sin or abuse.

Immediately, my hopes we dashed. The author merely states that this is some additional *important* thoughts. A kind of  “What should you do when this happens?” Frankly, it was basic information that any church should know.

The issue of WORLD Magazine dated Feb. 3 includes an article asking: How should churches handle sexual sins from 20 years ago?

I’ve been thinking about another crucial question: How should churches handle accusations of sexual abuse or other sexual sin by a church leader when it’s first discovered?

I wanted to answer: “Call the police. Get the victim some help. Case closed.” But then the author got my hackles up.”

She claimed that Jules was not *forced* to have sex. Baloney!

Excuse me? This young woman was driven down an isolated, dark, dirt road by a huge guy, much stronger than she was and was told to “Do it.” No please, no niceties, etc.

Let me give you another scenario:

Sally’s car breaks down. Sally is all alone on a deserted road and a large man approaches her and strongly suggests that she hand over her jewelry and her wallet. She does so. Would the author say that Sally wasn’t forced to had over her belongings? That is was just a voluntary exchange? Good night!

“Woodson doesn’t claim Savage forced her into sexual activity, but she says she was a stunned teenager who felt overwhelmed and scared by the request from a youth pastor she admired. She considers the encounter a sexual assault.” 

What did the DA have to say about justice?

I am so glad the author brought this up since I have been meaning to do so. What do you think the DA is saying in this statement? It sounds to me that the DA would have liked to have been informed when this happened. Justice should have been sought but it wasn’t since it appears that none of these pastors ever called the police!

“Using the current statute we would have some possible options but we are limited to the law as it was at the time of the offense in 1998. As a result, we are unable to investigate and seek justice to the full extent of what … we normally would in such a case.”

Yes, there is a power dynamic between a youth pastor (which he was) and a student.

It appears the author agrees that there is a clergy/member power dynamic. Thank heavens there is something for me to grasp onto here.

In whatever way the law might apply or might not apply in specific cases, the underlying principle is important: Abuse of spiritual authority can lead to a range of serious harm, including spiritual trauma that can be hard to overcome.”

She raised the question if the age of consent might be a mitigating factor in such circumstances. 

Seriously? Is this author even attempting to play the *it was consensual” card here?  Any pastor who has sex with a student in the high school ministry should be reported to the police. Understand that a schoolteacher cannot have sex with a 17 year old student in Texas. Why might the author think that it should be different for pastors? Does the author even understand that a pastor who has sex with a parishioner could get in real trouble even if that person was 40? I know a pastor who was slapped with a civil suit for doing just that.

It’s important to know the particulars in your own state about what the law requires in connection with mandatory reporting, including how age of consent might or might not apply. If there’s any doubt or questions, call local police to make sure.

World Magazine seemed to take Savage’s statements at face value.

World Magazine, read your own writing. Savage admitted that he didn’t tell people in his next church because he was *embarrassed.* Therefore, Savage never truly confessed what happened to him. So why does World assume that Savage has been telling the truth about the entire organic escapade?

Look carefully at this statement made by the author. In this particular instance, why didn’t the author say Savage *claimed* to leave the church after admitting his sin to the pastors? Where are the corroborating statements in this matter? What sin did he admit to?

“In Savage’s case, he did leave the church in Houston after admitting his sin to the other pastors. But it’s unclear how long he remained in his own pastoral position.

Frankly, at this point, we have not idea what was said and not said to the pastors in his previous church. But we do know one thing. Savage did not tell the truth to some people and freely admits it.

After he left Texas, Savage returned to Memphis. The next year, according to his LinkedIn profile, he became pastor of college students and young singles at Germantown Baptist Church. In a recent radio interview, Savage said he didn’t tell the leaders of Germantown Baptist what had happened with Woodson because he was embarrassed. Germantown released a statement saying its leadership didn’t know about what happened in Texas until Savage publicly acknowledged it this month.”

Note how they treat a similar statement by Jules. They do NOT take her statement that she did not receive help at face value. Savage’s. statements are clear. Woodson’s are not…

Again, it’s unclear what transpired in the days and months after Savage’s encounter with Woodson, but it is clear that Woodson doesn’t think church leadership helped her sufficiently.

The rest of this article is more of the same old, same old:
Pray for wisdom. (I would never have thought of that!)
Get help for the victim. (Duh!)

Frankly, I would like to know what was behind this World Magazine “Take up the cross for Savage* post. I wonder if the coming backlash against CJ Mahaney at T4G 2018 might be behind it. After all, it was so many, many years ago, and people like Al Mohler, Mark Dever and Ryan Fullerton think he is to e pushed at all costs. Who cares about some dumb victims, right?


Comments

An Update on Anne Campbell and World Magazine Tells Us We are All Abusers Just Like Andy Savage! — 182 Comments

  1. @ Forrest:
    I am wondering about that statement. Savage is claiming he was only a college student. He was the youth pastor and they know it. My guess is they are going to dump this on the church leaders-Bradley and Cotton- and try to get Savage off. Make no mistake about it. They want Savage to come back. Savage should leave the ministry like David Brown of SNAP suggested.
    I wonder how Cotton and Bradley will respond if they get thrown by Savage under the bus.

  2. They got a woman to write “it wasn’t sexual abuse” article for them. Typical.

    This group of men does not hate rape! They don’t hate child rape! They don’t hate any sexual abuse. But they do hate and abhor any unsubmissive woman or child that has the audacity to tell anyone. This group of men want people to quit hating rapist, and start pitying, protecting, and babying rapist. They also want to rally people to hate rape victims with them.

    As someone who was sexually abused as a young child when someone tries to switch the blame off the rapist on to the rape victim, I always conclude he is afraid he is going to get caught; that his victim is going to start telling. He wants everybody hating rape victims because it helps him.

  3. dee wrote:

    I wonder how Cotton and Bradley will respond if they get thrown by Savage under the bus.

    These three and Conlee are all complicit in some way. Either by doing, lying, or covering. None of them should be leading anything.

    As far as World Magazine is concerned, I had to stop reading it about eight years ago. Too many triggers by clueless “Christian” writers and “leaders.”

  4. The whole country is watching the scandal of Larry Nasser. Heads are beginning to roll with the cover-up. And here is the CHURCH rolling over and playing dead…..once again the secular people get it…while the church does not.

  5. I read the first World article and was deciding if I should respond. There was so much wrong with his illogical thinking that I decided against it. The ‘christianese’ that is often spouted nowadays.It is hard to stomach. I watched part of the Highpoint service and Chris Conlee broke out the spiritual baloney machine stating how the church was calling a special prayer and fasting time with a special preacher invited. No mention of just saying ‘we are sorry and we blew it. We were wrong-we did not go to the police like we should have. We will have mediation and make it right with Jules’. Jesus said to the popular gurus of the day that they needed to attend to the weightier matters. Oh, and God spoke to Chris Conlee as well. As Spike Lee once said, ‘Do The Right Thing’!

  6. “He confessed.”? As far as I can tell, he didn’t confess. He didn’t confess to what he really did: clergy sexual abuse. It is disturbing this magazine misses that painfully important detail.

  7. The news about Anne Campbell’s vindication is so good to hear.

    The Andy Savage defenders, however, are just digging a deeper hole for themselves. Do they realise that with every strike of the pen, World Magazine is scandalyzing the name of Jesus? Everyone is not a sexual abuser. What is wrong with these people? This is reminiscent of J.D.Hall insisting that everyone is a child molester. I can’t even….

  8. So World Magazine joins the ranks of the ideologically possessed. In the face of irrefutable evidence and logic they appear to hallucinate. Usually such a reaction arises for differing reasons. Is it cognitive dissonance, they are unable to come to grips that the big name preacher can be slimy and should be held accountable, or is it corruption, they know better but are deliberately distorting, or is it just stupidity.

    Typically we are cautioned not to assign bad motive when simple stupidity will suffice, but in this case the latter may not be the best choice. YouTube is littered with videos of those similarly possessed who think they are speaking with consistency when instead they become yet another embarrassing train wreck that goes viral attracting internet gawkers. With enough enablers maybe they can pull off DARVO: Deny, Attack, and Reverse Victim and Offender. Although it is not likely succeed, those suffering from cognitive deficit or corruption will likely keep trying that angle.

    In this particular case World Magazine does not have a very well grounded World View.

  9. dee wrote:

    @ Forrest:
    I am wondering about that statement. Savage is claiming he was only a college student. He was the youth pastor and they know it. My guess is they are going to dump this on the church leaders-Bradley and Cotton- and try to get Savage off. Make no mistake about it. They want Savage to come back. Savage should leave the ministry like David Brown of SNAP suggested.
    I wonder how Cotton and Bradley will respond if they get thrown by Savage under the bus.

    My take on this is that Bradley and Cotton are expendable to Conlee. Conlee will always do what he thinks is best for Conlee, so whether Savage is reinstated or thrown to the wolves depends on whether he is seen by Conlee as a net asset or liability.

  10. Forrest wrote:

    dee wrote:
    @ Forrest:
    I am wondering about that statement. Savage is claiming he was only a college student. He was the youth pastor and they know it. My guess is they are going to dump this on the church leaders-Bradley and Cotton- and try to get Savage off. Make no mistake about it. They want Savage to come back. Savage should leave the ministry like David Brown of SNAP suggested.
    I wonder how Cotton and Bradley will respond if they get thrown by Savage under the bus.
    My take on this is that Bradley and Cotton are expendable to Conlee. Conlee will always do what he thinks is best for Conlee, so whether Savage is reinstated or thrown to the wolves depends on whether he is seen by Conlee as a net asset or liability.

    I’ve thought that for quite some time now.

  11. Thersites wrote:

    So World Magazine joins the ranks of the ideologically possessed. In the face of irrefutable evidence and logic they appear to hallucinate. Usually such a reaction arises for differing reasons. Is it cognitive dissonance, they are unable to come to grips that the big name preacher can be slimy and should be held accountable, or is it corruption, they know better but are deliberately distorting, or is it just stupidity.

    No big surprise here. Three people connected to World Magazine: Tim Challies, Al Mohler, and John Piper.

  12. I really really really cannot get my head around the statement that we are all abusers and abused. I once took part in a women’s service – forget the details – but we all had to confess that we too were guilty of the recent torture of some women in a country 5000 miles from ours. I remained silent, I had enough problems dealing with my own personal sins…without feeling any guilt at my supposed complicity in this one. No, most of us are not abusers and never ever would be, except on the delusional planet, the reality-free zone the likes of Savage appear to inhabit.

  13. @ Thersites:
    When World Magazine first came out, I was a subscriber. During the early years, I attended a dinner event here in Raleigh, and Marvin Olasky was the guest speaker. I continued to subscribe to World Magazine a while longer, and then the articles began to concern me. My subscription expired and has never been renewed. Now I see what was going on behind the scenes with the Neo-Cal influence.

  14. If this piece was Russell St. John’s literary debut, he may have difficulty finding other places to post his articles in Christian media. What the heck were World Magazine editors thinking?! The magazine promotes itself as “Reporting the news from a Christian worldview — interpreting world events under the reality of the Christian faith.” St. John’s report on Savage is not the predominant Christian view on this matter, nor an interpretation voiced by multiple other Christian journalists. The “reality of the Christian faith” is that a growing number of real-deal Christians are getting sick and tired of reports of “pastors” who fail morally being covered and promoted by ministry peers, rather than being disqualified from ministry. Perhaps the editors just wanted to cut St. John a little slack on his divergent reporting, since he is a graduate of their 1-week course on how to write.

    Does WM have a link to the New Calvinist movement? I see that Piper and Challies are contributors.

  15. What a relief that Anne Campbell is getting the love and support she deserves (and hopefully the adult Campbell children also).

    I’m also glad she received a public apology from the church. How painful to have to endure marital betrayal, shock, tragedy and sorrow in the glaring public eye. To have (what you thought were) the facts of your life turned completely upside down, and the husband and father you thought you knew become a total stranger. Then to not be able to speak with him anymore…because he’s gone. And then get treated harshly by the church you love. My heart really goes out to the whole family.

  16. She has now returned to work on the island and church chiefs yesterday apologised to Anne for a lack of support during the “unimaginably difficult time” after her husband’s death. [snip]“All the worst things that can happen to a family happened to her family in a matter of days.

    If nothing else comes through stories like and the others about sexual abuse, churches (and individuals) need to began to realize…

    You get ONE chance to do this thing right and that is at the beginning. You provide support at the beginning. You call the police at the beginning. You believe at the beginning. If you do it wrong to start with, no amount of work done afterwards will entirely fix the damage.

    Not to say that you can’t be sorry after and try to change things for the better, but the most important thing you can do if you really sorry for how you acted is change your attitude and the culture so the NEXT time, everyone supports right away, no hesitation.

  17. The only good thing about that World Magazine article is that it exposed what they actually think about this.

  18. Lea wrote:

    You get ONE chance to do this thing right and that is at the beginning.

    True. Step up. Show who we really are. Love, hopefully. God is love.

    “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.” 1 John 3

    Nothing to do with “theology” or “sola” or whatever. It’s love, in action, that all can see. This is our witness.

    IDC types build a false dynasty with empty words concealing evil lives. It’s not about what is said – the life lived speaks the real message.

  19. About the issue of whether we are all abusers and abused:

    Yes, that is an awkward sentence, but let me share my thoughts on the matter. If the writer of the article meant that we all sexually abuse people and that we all have been sexually abused then I agree that his statement is not accurate; even though there seem to be an awful lot of people who do abuse and an awful lot who say that they were abused.

    If, however, the writer meant something more comprehensive than just sexual abuse, if he meant that we all hurt and damage other people (even if unwittingly) and if he meant that we have all been hurt and damaged by other people (even if unintentionally) then I agree with the writer of the article.

    I think that part of a problem we all have is that we do not really understand what the other person is trying to communicate. I, and I assume we, ‘hear’ what the other person says through the lens of ‘if I had said that this is what I would have meant’ and I rather frequently am mistaken about what was being said.

    I also think we must not take the attitude that Jesus condemned in the man who prayed how thankful he was that he was not a sinner like the other guy. I am not excusing anything. I am not sin leveling. I am trying to be consistent with what I see in Jesus’ attitude. —and what I see in my own life experience–

    Don’t you just love sentence fragments. Free speech surely extends to grammar and usage. I don’t know about you all individually, but I have hurt other people and I have been hurt.

    IMO Savage is missing a great opportunity to voluntarily remove himself from paid ministry and instead find first a good secular job and secondly become a witness to the church of doing the right thing for the larger good of the church and not just what he wants for himself.

  20. “Spiritual Baloney Machine” — love it! It exists in every communion, alas, and it’s especially active on the Internet.

    “There is a sin that is mortal (deadly).” I guess this verse is not in the sin-levelers’ Bible.

  21. Song of Joy wrote:

    What a relief that Anne Campbell is getting the love and support she deserves (and hopefully the adult Campbell children also).
    I’m also glad she received a public apology from the church. How painful to have to endure marital betrayal, shock, tragedy and sorrow in the glaring public eye. To have (what you thought were) the facts of your life turned completely upside down, and the husband and father you thought you knew become a total stranger. Then to not be able to speak with him anymore…because he’s gone. And then get treated harshly by the church you love. My heart really goes out to the whole family.

    My heart goes out to her too. But because i have my own past with tremendous betrayal i have to wonder if she will be ok back on the island. These people that have finally apologized… sounds rather hypocritical to me. I would not trust one of them.

  22. @ Max:

    “The magazine promotes itself as “Reporting the news from a Christian worldview — interpreting world events under the reality of the Christian faith.”
    +++++++++++++++++

    ha — “a christian worldview”. Code for propaganda to control the plebians.

    even as a kid, whenever i heard or read this mentioned and described, something felt not quite right — like i was being tricked. something dishonest behind the scenes — like i was being manipulated for the sake of the welfare of shadowy people in power (although i wouldn’t have been able to word it like that).

  23. Germantown released a statement saying its leadership didn’t know about what happened in Texas until Savage publicly acknowledged it this month.”

    I must have missed this statement. Is there any way that church didn’t ask, before they hired him, the most basic of questions…’Why did you leave your last job?’???

    If they did, he lied.

  24. Divorce Minister wrote:

    “He confessed.”? As far as I can tell, he didn’t confess.

    I’m really tired of hearing this as if it absolves him of something when he only did so once he was publically exposed. You don’t get points for that!!

  25. okrapod wrote:

    I don’t know about you all individually, but I have hurt other people and I have been hurt.

    Yes. But on the other hand, words mean things. IF you are writing something, professionally, you should take care to say what you mean. They are also taken in the context of the article, where we have an abuser and an abused person, who have been conflated.

    But the same sentiment of ‘it could have been me who did this terrible thing’ has been expressed many times in this segment of the world. So maybe they do mean exactly what they said. It is for them to clarify, if they have been unclear.

  26. When it comes to repentance and restoration, I’d like to analogize to my own profession.

    If a judge violates the canons of judicial ethics in my state (which have the force of law) the judge can face investigation and discipline. A minor violation might be making a disclosure of a potential conflict of interest off the record instead of on the record. The disclosure can be worded exactly the same way but if it is not on the record it does not meet the letter of the canons. This violation would likely be disciplined by the state commission on judicial performance by way of a confidential letter. Repeated violations could lead to higher levels of discipline.

    A more serious breach of the canons would be a judge taking a bribe and then attempting to cover it up when called on it. The commission could go straight to removing the judge from the bench, and then refer the case to the state bar court should the now ex-judge try to become a licensed attorney again.

    In both cases the judge might be truly repentant. Staying on the bench would be very understandable following the first discipline while making sure the judge never sets foot in a courtroom ever again is the only follow-up to the latter.

  27. World Magazine Tells Us We are All Abusers Just Like Andy Savage!

    EVERYBODY DOES IT! SEE? SEE? SEE?
    “Let ye who is without SIN cast the first stone…”

  28. Max wrote:

    If this piece was Russell St. John’s literary debut, he may have difficulty finding other places to post his articles in Christian media. What the heck were World Magazine editors thinking?! The magazine promotes itself as “Reporting the news from a Christian worldview — interpreting world events under the reality of the Christian faith.”

    My personal experience with WORLD Magazine was an “Anniversary of Roe v Wade” issue that showed up on the break room tables at work many years ago. Issue included “essays” on Roe v Wade set many years in the future. The one that stood out to me was:

    Mid-21st Century. The Human Genome is decoded and PROVES Intelligent Design (AKA Young Eaerth Creationism – Genesis 1 encoded in the genome?) and PROVES Evolution is FALSE. Result is a Great Revival that overturns Roe v Wade and Makes America CHRISTIAN again.

    I am not making that up. Only thing I can compare it to is the bad Furry fanfic wish-fulfillment trope of “One morning everyone woke up and discovered We All Morphed into FURRIES Overnight! Yiff! Yiff! Yiff!”

  29. Guest wrote:

    They got a woman to write “it wasn’t sexual abuse” article for them. Typical.

    Ever heard of the term “Judas Goat”?

    This group of men does not hate rape! They don’t hate child rape! They don’t hate any sexual abuse. But they do hate and abhor any unsubmissive woman or child that has the audacity to tell anyone.

    MRA/PUA/Manosphere with a Christianese coat of paint, with visions of the Republic of Gilead dancing in their heads.

  30. Lea wrote:

    Germantown released a statement saying its leadership didn’t know about what happened in Texas until Savage publicly acknowledged it this month.”

    I must have missed this statement. Is there any way that church didn’t ask, before they hired him, the most basic of questions… “Why did you leave your last job?”???

    Now, wait a minute! Didn’t Germantown plant Highpoint? If so, they not only failed to thoroughly vet Savage when they hired him at Germantown and when they planted him at Highpoint. It is customary (or should be) to make a careful and critical examination of all pastoral candidates. It’s my understanding that Conlee knew of Savage’s moral failure when he took him on to help plant Highpoint … at which time, Conlee should have told Germantown. I may be wrong about Highpoint being a Germantown plant, but I seem to remember that in the reporting somewhere.

  31. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:

    “Only thing I can compare it to is the bad Furry fanfic wish-fulfillment trope of “One morning everyone woke up and discovered We All Morphed into FURRIES Overnight! Yiff! Yiff! Yiff!””
    ++++++++++++++++++

    now THAT’s funny! and an apt description.

  32. @ Tim:

    Thanks, Tim. Let me say how it works in medicine. The medical licensure board would investigate and determine some action which can range from relatively mild to forever loss of license depending on the situation. Obviously dementia would be loss of license while need for further education might result in requirement for further education plus a period of practice under the supervision of another physician for a prescribed period of time, for example. Personal drug abuse would require treatment and reconsideration while abuse of prescribing of controlled substances would be seen as crime or possible crime certainly. We also have actual ethics violations on the one hand, and practices which are not ethics violations but which are unwise; the latter might end up with a little talk from the malpractice insurance carriers but not end up with the licensure board.

    In other words, it is a bit more complicated with us, if I understand your comment about how you all handle things. This may be one reason why my take on some things tends to be more nuanced that some other people’s take on some things.

  33. @ Lea:

    “I’m really tired of hearing this as if it absolves him of something when he only did so once he was publically exposed. You don’t get points for that!!”
    +++++++++++++++++

    confession (however partial, cowardly, and @$$-covering)…..

    what about the consequences?

    the consequences one’s actions had for others? actions that had enormous consequences for someone else?

    (not speaking to you, Leah, but to the air. or to all the christian spin doctors and the putty-in-their-hand masses)

  34. Thersites wrote:

    In this particular case World Magazine does not have a very well grounded World View.

    Oh but they do Thersites, they do!
    It’s called a ‘Biblical’ world view.

  35. @ okrapod:

    I chose examples from the extreme ends of the ethics continuum but I think the journey from one end to the other would reveal similar nuances to what you describe.

  36. The more I read about the underbelly of evangelical Christianity, the angrier I get. I’m afraid to trust anyone anymore that calls themselves “evangelical”.

  37. What makes this such obvious and hideous sexual abuse is what Savage told Jules to do. Had he taken down a dirt road and parked and hugged and kissed her, that would clearly be sexual abuse—abuse that someone might want to shrug off after 20 years. But the oral sex component is shocking. It screams at us who Savage really is. A standing ovation? Good night! And WORLD Magazine? What has been written and published is a disgrace. Is there no one among the editors—or at the church—-who can picture that dark night and what that poor girl was told to do FOR her youth minister. It’s sickening, absolutely sickening!

  38. Abigail wrote:

    The whole country is watching the scandal of Larry Nasser. Heads are beginning to roll with the cover-up. And here is the CHURCH rolling over and playing dead…..once again the secular people get it…while the church does not.

    That’s only sort of true. For decades that scandal was buried beneath the supposed preservation of the name and honor of a “successful” and highly awarded and respected organization, namely gymnastics. Every girl he abused after the first one is a needless sickening failure. Yeah I’m glad he’s in jail. Should have been decades ago. People fail and their failures hurt others – in church and the world.

  39. Joe Reed wrote:

    Abigail wrote:
    The whole country is watching the scandal of Larry Nasser. Heads are beginning to roll with the cover-up. And here is the CHURCH rolling over and playing dead…..once again the secular people get it…while the church does not.
    That’s only sort of true. For decades that scandal was buried beneath the supposed preservation of the name and honor of a “successful” and highly awarded and respected organization, namely gymnastics. Every girl he abused after the first one is a needless sickening failure. Yeah I’m glad he’s in jail. Should have been decades ago. People fail and their failures hurt others – in church and the world.

    I agree with Abigail. The church should have a higher standard than the world. Sadly, in this case, it does not.

  40. Isn’t the story over at SGM/SGC, that Calvinist Reverend Charles Joseph MaHaney, – that he covered up the sexual abuse/rape of some twenty individuals under his watchful care over the years, and failed to report the perpetrators to the police? Also he that had the church pay for the perpetrators legal defense, while confounding, pressing for concessions, and essentially ignoring the victims?

  41. As a teen, Andy Savage was out front in Germantown Baptist Church’s ‘True Love Waits’ virginity campaign to Memphis youths:

    The Commercial Appeal, January 5, 1995, “Virginity Promoters”

    “‘Virgin’ billboards and bus signs around town…financed by Germantown Baptist Church…’True Love Waits,’ born in Nashville, asks teenagers to sign pledge cards promising to abstain from sex until marriage…Andy Savage, an 18-year-old freshman at the University of Memphis and a member of Germantown Baptist Church, took the pledge as a virgin who doesn’t mind any ribbing. ‘I took the pledge not because of AIDS or other reasons. Number one is my spiritual concern. Most of my decision came just because I’ve grown up in a Christian home and asked Christ to come into my heart at a young age,’ he says.”

  42. @ Jerome:

    I guess if we are getting, well, forthright then it needs said that oral sex has been suggested as a way to have sex while remaining virginal.

  43. Jerome wrote:

    Andy Savage, an 18-year-old freshman at the University of Memphis and a member of Germantown Baptist Church, took the pledge as a virgin who doesn’t mind any ribbing.

    Huh. So this timeline falls in a bit too…he was in some sort of up front position at Germantown, and going to the UofM before he moved to Texas? This is rather curious.

    I think this True Love Waits thing rotted people’s brains. I also can’t help but think of some pretty vicious satire I’ve seen on this that mostly slammed girls with purity rings…Here is the boy version I guess?

  44. “Sally’s car breaks down. Sally is all alone on a deserted road and a large man approaches her and strongly suggests that she hand over her jewelry and her wallet. She does so. Would the author say that Sally wasn’t forced to had over her belongings? That is was just a voluntary exchange? Good night!”

    Crimes are getting reported this way in the effort not to ‘criminalize’ the perpetrators. There will be a robbery and/or beat down following what is euphemistically termed a dispute or a disagreement. In like manner to the above scenario, one might say “I disagree with your request for my phone and wallet backed up by your outnumbering me 6 to 1 with no police around.” Circumstances just might influence the outcome in such case.

  45. “World Magazine seemed to take Savage’s statements at face value.”

    It’s the authority priority, which seems to be such a default in incoprorated churchdom, and appears to only being encouraged more at the training centers as documented here.

  46. okrapod wrote:

    @ Jerome:
    I guess if we are getting, well, forthright then it needs said that oral sex has been suggested as a way to have sex while remaining virginal.

    In the Nineties that was called “Clinton Sex”.

    And there are other ways to get as jiggy as you can while preserving Technical Virginity:
    Like that NSFW song & music video “Loophole” by Garfunkel & Oates (“Driscoll Sex”).
    Or Commander Douggie “Little Lord Fauntleroy” ESQUIRE with his Handmaid.

  47. @ okrapod:

    While I am being forthright let me also add that there is now attention being paid to an increase in throat cancer due to human papilloma virus contracted many years! before during oral sex. Back in the day, say 20 (?) or so years ago this HPV issue with throat cancer was not known-no uptick in cases had occurred until much later-but apparently oral sex was prevalent enough to explain the current throat cancer problem.

    My question has been as to whatever could AS have been thinking; it all seems so bizarre-not to mention sin and crime but also bizarre. Sadly he may have been going along with some more or less prevalent thinking of the day. I don’t know that; just reporting some things going on that might be interesting in considering this issue. I also do not know what the people in the churches that have mishandled this situation may have been thinking, and I am not too sure I want to know what their prevailing underlying attitudes may have been or may be, but perhaps they were not all that shocked with it all. Maybe some thought it was really not all that bad at the time. Now that is a sobering thought.

    In a recent interview at Sundance Justice Ginsburg talked about the MeTwo an the demonstrations and mentioned that things are different now compared to “20” years ago-changed for the better now. She actually said “20 years” ago.

    I am not in the least minimizing what he did, but I am trying to understand how on earth so many people did not seem to care all that much about it at the time.

  48. Lea wrote:

    I think this True Love Waits thing rotted people’s brains

    Though I was NOT raised anywhere near Christianese Purity Culture (just First 1960s Suburbia with strong Nifty Fifties Retro), somehow I ended up with ALL the Purity Culture tropes and attitudes. The fear, the disgust, the fear, the Virgin/Whore Dichotomy, the fear, the Gothard-style self-vow, the fear.

    BAD Craziness. It’s probably a major factor in why I never married — or for that matter, never got beyond a first date (with one major exception from 1981-86).

  49. elastigirl wrote:

    @ Max:

    “The magazine promotes itself as “Reporting the news from a Christian worldview — interpreting world events under the reality of the Christian faith.”
    +++++++++++++++++

    ha — “a christian worldview”. Code for propaganda to control the plebians.

    “Christian worldview” has become a red flag for me, too. Especially when it comes from Christian schools, whose main selling point is that they educate from a christian worldview.

    I’ve been around long enough to know that there isn’t a singular “Christian worldview” unless you are talking about the most basic concepts. Like, there is a God, who is the Creator. Usually, it really means that “we are going to indoctrinate you in the details of our particular theology, because we have it all figured out.”

  50. Jerome wrote:

    Andy Savage, an 18-year-old freshman at the University of Memphis and a member of Germantown Baptist Church, took the pledge as a virgin who doesn’t mind any ribbing.

    Too much irony.

  51. @ Forrest:

    “My take on this is that Bradley and Cotton are expendable to Conlee.”
    ++++++++++++++++++

    it’s just business, nothing personal.

    since churches these days take on the business world model, they also take on cold calculating decision-making. it’s just business. 😐 they have a product with a brand in a competitive market.

    except when it’s their friends & family, of course.

  52. elastigirl wrote:

    now THAT’s funny! and an apt description.

    In the past several years in Furry (and later Brony) Fandom, I have read a LOT of bad fanfic.

    And so much of Christianese attempts at fiction remind me of BAD Fanfic, Mary Sue Author Self-Inserts and all. (For that matter, so does everything I’ve heard about Atlas Shrugged, but that’s just the same story arc as Bad Christian Apocalyptic with different fanservice pitched to an audience of Brights. Or Best-Sellers like Twilight and 50 Shades, which DID start out as wish-fulfillment fanfics.)

  53. Lea wrote:

    Huh. So this timeline falls in a bit too…he was in some sort of up front position at Germantown, and going to the UofM before he moved to Texas? This is rather curious.

    Agreed. Being at a Texas college/institution and then transferring to University of Memphis makes sense. Starting there going elsewhere for several years then coming back doesn’t. Unless he stopped out for several years and then went back to finish up. His LinkedIn profile says U. Memphis was 1997-2000 but he started his youth pastorship at Stone Bridge/Woodlands Parkway in June 1995 as a full time position (which presumably doesn’t leave much time for college). Elsewhere he said he started after his freshman year (presumably 1994/1995). I would guess he stopped out so his actual years at U Memphis seem to be

    1994/95
    1998/99
    1999/2000

    with possibly the autumn semester of 2000 and maybe some summer session courses or transfer credit (someone who knows U Memphis would know the actual possibilities).

  54. GSD [Getting Stuff Done] wrote:

    “Christian worldview” has become a red flag for me, too. Especially when it comes from Christian schools, whose main selling point is that they educate from a christian worldview.

    “Christian Worldview(TM)” — Buzzword or BS?

    (I first heard the term in the Eighties/Reagan Years; for some reason I associated James Dobson with the term back then.)

  55. okrapod wrote:

    In a recent interview at Sundance Justice Ginsburg talked about the MeTwo an the demonstrations and mentioned that things are different now compared to “20” years ago-changed for the better now. She actually said “20 years” ago.

    20 years ago was not the dark ages. It was not the 50s! Sexual harassment was talked about, getting a huge boost in discussion right around 98 of course. Things have changed sure, mostly technology related, although I had the internet starting at least by the mid90’s, personal computers, etc.

    My thought is, the church was and often still IS focused too much on ‘personal purity’ and not so much on dynamics of power.

    [Sidenote: I have also heard about the HPV/throat cancer/oral connection. I don’t think it figures into this much, because the purity culture would say everything is forbidden. People avoiding just regular (?) sex would still do other things. It’s possible many evangelicals are getting poor sex ed, which is another issue)]

  56. Is WORLD Magazine connected with the World Net Daily website, or are they two separate entities with similar names? Both sound like real pieces of work.

  57. okrapod wrote:

    I guess if we are getting, well, forthright then it needs said that oral sex has been suggested as a way to have sex while remaining virginal.

    We could also say (by way of suggestion) that he didn’t ‘know her’ in a ‘Biblical’ sense.

  58. Lea wrote:

    My thought is, the church was and often still IS focused too much on ‘personal purity’ and not so much on dynamics of power.

    I wonder if this is related to the Evangelical emphasis of Personal Salvation and ONLY Personal Salvation?

  59. Muff Potter wrote:

    We could also say (by way of suggestion) that he didn’t ‘know her’ in a ‘Biblical’ sense.

    As Little Lord Fauntleroy ESQUIRE did when he got caught.

  60. @ Thersites:

    “So World Magazine joins the ranks of the ideologically possessed. In the face of irrefutable evidence and logic they appear to hallucinate. Usually such a reaction arises for differing reasons. Is it cognitive dissonance, they are unable to come to grips that the big name preacher can be slimy and should be held accountable, or is it corruption, they know better but are deliberately distorting, or is it just stupidity.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++

    corruption, like this: i suspect the Godfather has issued some orders from the shadows. Al Mohler is on the Board of Directors.
    ———–

    relevant:

    Comment from Ingrid Schluetter, Janet Mefferd’s former producer, upon resigning:

    “All I can share is that there is an evangelical celebrity machine that is more powerful than anyone realizes. You may not go up against the machine. That is all. Mark Driscoll clearly plagiarized and those who could have underscored the seriousness of it and demanded accountability did not. That is the reality of the evangelical industrial complex.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton/2013/12/05/ingrid-schlueter-resigns-from-janet-mefferd-show-over-mark-driscoll-plagiarism-controversy/#SQcbgRxyuzAxiI30.99

  61. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Lea wrote:
    My thought is, the church was and often still IS focused too much on ‘personal purity’ and not so much on dynamics of power.

    I wonder if this is related to the Evangelical emphasis of Personal Salvation and ONLY Personal Salvation?

    Not in any way I learned it growing up. And I’m not too far from Andy’s age.

    You are still supposed to be kind and treat others well…just because your salvation is personal doesn’t give you license to treat others like dirt.

  62. Lea wrote:

    My thought is, the church was and often still IS focused too much on ‘personal purity’ and not so much on dynamics of power.

    Agreed, and carried to the opposite extreme from the libertine sex-culture of the secular world.

    Lea wrote:

    [Sidenote: I have also heard about the HPV/throat cancer/oral connection. I don’t think it figures into this much, because the purity culture would say everything is forbidden. People avoiding just regular (?) sex would still do other things. It’s possible many evangelicals are getting poor sex ed, which is another issue)]

    I haven’t looked much into the research on the HPV virus. What’s the general consensus? Is there a causal link or is it mainly a casual link? I’l wager that fundagelicals will insist that it’s causal and proof positive that the Almighty disapproves of oral eroticism.

    And yeah, I think you’re right about Evangelicals and sex ed, and that’s just it, there is no sex ed, just incontrovertible and iron-clad dogma, power dynamic or no, one-size-fitz-all, no discussion, no Ifs, no Ands, and no Buts.

  63. So, I’m reading the patheos article about the world article, and it quotes this:

    “Men of great faith are also men of great sin.”

    This is a very interesting way to put it, as if ‘great faith’ cannot exist without ‘great sin’. What is this, the ‘tragic flaw’ school of thought? No wonder they accept these abuses so easily!

  64. Lea wrote:

    So, I’m reading the patheos article about the world article, and it quotes this:
    “Men of great faith are also men of gr

    Really? How about women of great faith? What kind of, and how many agregious sins would I have to commit to be a “woman of great faith”? ……… Or would they just call me a Jezebel?

  65. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    I wonder if this is related to the Evangelical emphasis of Personal Salvation and ONLY Personal Salvation?

    I guess we could revisit the reformation here and now, but I think I won’t go there at this time. Pope Francis got another recent quote in the media on this issue about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ-or not. That is really too volatile an issue for discussion in my opinion.

  66. Lea wrote:

    So, I’m reading the patheos article about the world article, and it quotes this:

    “Men of great faith are also men of great sin.”

    Yes, so the leaders must be given a little leeway …

    If they weren’t men of great faith, they wouldn’t be led into temptation so much by the evil one. The very fact that they sinned is proof of their great faith. You can’t hold it against them …

    Or so the logic goes.

  67. World Nut Dayly.
    That’s all anyone needs to know.

    When I think World Nut.. I think Marvin Olansky. It’s been years, but from memory, Olansky was either associated with or close to Reconstructionism. What I can say, is neither Compassionate Conservatism, nor Social Capital, have any connection to doctrines found in Scripture. They are just fabricated junk.

    Any association with Reconstructionism, is more noteworthy then World Nut’s insensitivity towards girls who were grouped and molested by clergy.

  68. Joe Reed wrote:

    That’s only sort of true. For decades that scandal was buried beneath the supposed preservation of the name and honor of a “successful” and highly awarded and respected organization, namely gymnastics.

    It’s completely true. Some churches have buried abuse and passed on ministers, pastors and priests to new congregations to save face.

  69. For an account of the Professor Donald Macleod case in which Iain D. Campbell was such a strongly pro-Donald Macleod activist and publicist, see http://www.freechurchcontinuing.org/publications/books/item/when-justice-failed-in-church-and-state
    Any who refused to give Professor Macleod their full and unqualified support were excommunicated — and in fact many ministers were, in accordance with what Iain D. Campbell had called for publicly, libelled in terms of the Greater Excommunication — publicly declared to beyond the possibility of redemption and to be totally shunned by all Christians.

  70. Nathan Priddis wrote:

    World Nut Dayly.
    That’s all anyone needs to know.

    A few years ago on a visit to the East Coast, there were these large billboards on Route 15 between Harrisburg and Gettysburg:
    “WHERE’S THE REAL BIRTH CERTIFICATE?”
    Down in the lower right corner was a small World Net Daily logo.

    And any “news” website with Pat “Blame the Jews” Buchanan and Hal “Pin the Tail on The Antichrist” Lindsay on their editorial masthead has already blown their credibility to all but their drooling fanboys.

  71. Nathan Priddis wrote:

    Any association with Reconstructionism, is more noteworthy then World Nut’s insensitivity towards girls who were grouped and molested by clergy.

    Reconstructionism = The Handmaid’s Tale as the goal for a Future Christian America.
    By any means necessary.

  72. Max wrote:

    If this piece was Russell St. John’s literary debut, he may have difficulty finding other places to post his articles in Christian media. What the heck were World Magazine editors thinking?!

    I read it and it seemed familiar. It’s just a possibility, but I wonder if St. John is a pseudonym for one of the bigwigs.

  73. I have a very similar story to jules – the biggest difference is that I was in love with the youth pastor (he was also an elder) at 17 (he was 31)and our relationship was definitely inappropriate but sex did not happen until I was 18. He would not let me talk to anyone about our relationship even my best friends, and It was spiritually and emotionally abusive and controlling. Eventually the church found out and he went berserk and was furious at me and denied everything But eventually confessed and blamed me for essentially seducing him for years and then when that didn’t work he just basically said he was weak and he fell into sin. Despite how poorly he reacted when confronted, The church decided to cover it up and keep him on as youth pastor but make him step down from being an elder (for “personal reasons”) and they asked me not to have anymore contact with him (or him me) and said they would “understand if (I) didn’t come back because it would be too difficult for him and for me”

    I was pretty upset because i loved him and he wouldn’t speak to me and he was very angry, the church told me there was nothing to be done about it and that nothing criminal had happened because I was 18 when we had sex and that they were disappointed in me for making such bad choices, and in him too but that it was really going to be hurtful to the church and his ministry so they weren’t going to tell anyone.

    This was in Texas and I always believed that they were telling me the truth and that there was nothing criminal since I was 18 but something made me actually look into the law pertaining to consent in TX this week And I wonder if anyone could clarify. There is an exception to age of consent being if the accused is clergy (22.011 (10)) and so I am feeling like they should have reported it? Or at least offered to report?

    Any opinions? Our story goes on and gets worse (about a year later he called me up and said he couldn’t live without me and i took him back and we started dating in the open and no church official said anything to us about it , ever. We got married a year later and they did our wedding. And about 2.5 years after that we were divorced because i found out he was cheating with prostitutes . And the church told me they never thought he loved me and they didn’t want to do the wedding but they went along with it because they gave him the benefit of doubt. He (my ex the youth pastor told me during our divorce he only married me because the church found out and he thought it saved his reputation if he married me. And that’s how I felt too. Like when he asked me to start seeing him again it felt like it erased some of the shame and gave validity to our previous scandal.

    but basically I’m feeling very angry at the church right now because Wayback then I did not have a voice and a shamed me and I believed what they were saying, and now I am angry that they protected him and supported him instead of me.

    I’m angry and I don’t know what I want to do with this info. I could meet with them but I’ve tried before and they are defensive and essentially say it took two to tango. I’ve considered an open letter but

  74. Nathan Priddis wrote:

    World Nut Dayly.
    That’s all anyone needs to know.

    World (wng) and World Net Daily (wnd) appear to be different organizations with very different roots. I don’t see a direct connection.

  75. @ Tim:
    I called my cousin, a US magistrate judge, regarding a personal legal matter, because he is a lawyer and a relative. His response? No comment.

  76. Lea wrote:

    Is there any way that church didn’t ask, before they hired him, the most basic of questions…’Why did you leave your last job?’???

    If they did, he lied.

    Most likely, he lied because if he told them what happened really, they wouldn’t accept him. Of course, he wouldn’t say that he lied – he “told them what they needed to hear.”

    Max wrote:

    It is customary (or should be) to make a careful and critical examination of all pastoral candidates.

    You would think it should be, but this is the evangelical church we’re talking about. They seem to be more concerned about what the candidate will do for them than they are about how the candidate will pastor them.

  77. Muff Potter wrote:

    @ Nancy2 (aka Kevlar):
    At best you gals prolly only count as 3/5 of church life. Make any ruckus beyond that? Yeah you’re a Jezebel, and in need of church discipline.

    3/5 Compromise. Brown vs, board of education …… with a twist!

  78. Kari wrote:

    Most likely, he lied because if he told them what happened really, they wouldn’t accept him. Of course, he wouldn’t say that he lied – he “told them what they needed to hear.”

    Since it was his home church, I’m guessing they didn’t even ask.

  79. JYJames wrote:

    @ Tim:
    I called my cousin, a US magistrate judge, regarding a personal legal matter, because he is a lawyer and a relative. His response? No comment.

    Same response my cousin would get from me.

  80. Kari wrote:

    Most likely, he lied because if he told them what happened really, they wouldn’t accept him. Of course, he wouldn’t say that he lied – he “told them what they needed to hear.”

    “Needed to hear” or “WANTED to hear”?

  81. Muff Potter wrote:

    proof positive that the Almighty disapproves

    It is a A highfalutin way of looking at natural consequences, but then if you bring in deities do you get less argument?

  82. elastigirl wrote:

    Al Mohler is on the Board of Directors.

    One of the issues with recruiting for non-profit boards is people who come to leverage their own agenda and expand their influence instead of looking for a place to serve and be a responsible citizen. When the motivation is to be a servant the number of boards you can be on is limited as you cannot do a good job if you are spread too thin. On the other hand when the motivation is what you can get, then what the heck, no limits.

    All too often someone who has their name spread across all manner of things is lauded for their altruism, experience has taught me to be more skeptical.

  83. ishy wrote:

    Since it was his home church, I’m guessing they didn’t even ask.

    Probably true – there is a reason that the church is a perfect context for abusers; that’s even part of the Ministry Safe training.

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    “Needed to hear” or “WANTED to hear”?

    Needed so that they would make him a pastor. Answer the questions correctly and you get the prize.

  84. Lea wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Lea wrote:
    My thought is, the church was and often still IS focused too much on ‘personal purity’ and not so much on dynamics of power.

    I wonder if this is related to the Evangelical emphasis of Personal Salvation and ONLY Personal Salvation?

    Not in any way I learned it growing up. And I’m not too far from Andy’s age.

    You are still supposed to be kind and treat others well…just because your salvation is personal doesn’t give you license to treat others like dirt.

    Tell that to my Baptist erstwhile boss who subscribed to the “Kiss Up, Kick Down” management style, treated her subordinates like pond scum, viciously retaliated against the slightest sign of independent thought or creativity, suppressed and penalized initiative, denigrated hard work and achievement, micromanaged us as if we were children (e.g., designing a all the designers’ layouts for them even though she had no training)…yet was utterly convinced of her supreme Christian righteousness.

    She once told me that she saw herself as the “servant” of the department. I thought, “Lady, you are the biggest Queen Bee I have ever known in all my puff.” I was *far* from alone in this assessment, and that’s the understatement of the millennium.

    Sorry, but I have bitter personal experience with the Once-Saved-Always-Saved folks, who apparently see no need to make a daily examination of conscience, much less ever admit they’re at fault for *anything*…much less ever say “I’m sorry.” I’ll stick with my sinful “publican” friends who recognize their need for constant repentance and conversion, thank you very much. I never got as much grief from my supposedly “unsaved” bosses as I got from my “saved” ones, and that’s the honest truth.

  85. @ April:

    April, I think it would depend on how long ago this was as to whether the clergy-parishioner rule was in place. Someone (Erp?) looked it up and it came into effect around the mid-1990s. And yes, this rule applies in ALL cases of clergy-parishioner sex, with or without consent and without age limitation. As with Jules though (again) depending on how long ago it was, you could have a statute of limitations issue. But – lawyers and prosecutors answer these questions.

    However, the church totally screwed up in allowing him to stay in leadership of ANY kind. They also totally screwed up in blaming a child who had been groomed by a pastor for any part of the “relationship” – it doesn’t work that way. And they’re still screwing up by not taking responsibility for their screw ups!

  86. @ Appin Stewart:

    “Any who refused to give Professor Macleod their full and unqualified support were excommunicated — and in fact many ministers were, in accordance with what Iain D. Campbell had called for publicly, libelled in terms of the Greater Excommunication — publicly declared to beyond the possibility of redemption and to be totally shunned by all Christians.”
    +++++++++++++++++

    a story that deserves to be told.

    (what scum)

    (scum is bad enough. but scum who do what they do hiding behind God, biblical and gospel are….. i don’t think i have a strong enough word)

  87. @ elastigirl:

    “i don’t think i have a strong enough word”
    ++++++++++

    well, Helen Hunt’s description of HMOs in “As Good As It Gets” would do just fine.

  88. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Tell that to my Baptist erstwhile boss who subscribed to the “Kiss Up, Kick Down” management style

    Sorry you had so much difficulty with you boss.

    Personally, all of my bad bosses were Catholic.

  89. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    Nathan Priddis wrote:

    World Nut Dayly.
    That’s all anyone needs to know.

    World (wng) and World Net Daily (wnd) appear to be different organizations with very different roots. I don’t see a direct connection.

    I should make a big clarification here so I don’t give inaccurate info.
    World and World Net Daily are not the same organization. Olansky was, and I believe still is with World. I consider World the more respectable and Evangelical.

    I no longer draw a clear distinction between Evangelical media, and secular Conservative or Nationalists propoganda.

    Another example would be CSN Radio, also called Calvary Satellite Radio. The network’s Sekulow programming is Administration propaganda. I cite this a the clearest example. CSN also combines programming from celebrity Evangelicals with chronic fear of the end times. I have heard endorsements of Brietbart as a legitmate news source, on the live call-in answer program.

    To summerize.
    1. A hybredized form of godliness has emerged over the centuries, but one that denies the power thereof.
    2.The Evangelical
    Church is the largest component of a business/social/religious/
    nationalist unity front.
    3.This front cannot survive without a minimum level of ideological homogenization within the Church.
    4. The success of the Church is now ballot box dependent.

  90. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Nathan Priddis wrote:

    World Nut Dayly.
    That’s all anyone needs to know.

    A few years ago on a visit to the East Coast, there were these large billboards on Route 15 between Harrisburg and Gettysburg:
    “WHERE’S THE REAL BIRTH CERTIFICATE?”
    Down in the lower right corner was a small World Net Daily logo.

    And any “news” website with Pat “Blame the Jews” Buchanan and Hal “Pin the Tail on The Antichrist” Lindsay on their editorial masthead has already blown their credibility to all but their drooling fanboys.

    World Net Daily has a long history of peddling fake news and supporting conspiracy theories. Their credibility is non-existent.

  91. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Tell that to my Baptist erstwhile boss who subscribed to the “Kiss Up, Kick Down” management style, treated her subordinates like pond scum, viciously retaliated against the slightest sign of independent thought or creativity, suppressed and penalized initiative, denigrated hard work and achievement, micromanaged us as if we were children (e.g., designing a all the designers’ layouts for them even though she had no training)…yet was utterly convinced of her supreme Christian righteousness.

    Sounds like one horrible boss I had, though I have no idea what her religious beliefs were. She may have been an atheist for all I know. Have no idea.

    She believed in Management By Fear.

    She was incompetent to boot. She kept blaming me for mistakes made by people in another career field in our department because she didn’t understood their job duties vs. mine (in my career field).

    She also had the nerve to complain or act wounded that nobody in our department wanted to exchange pleasantries with her, chat with her by the water cooler, or sit with her at lunch.

  92. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Sorry, but I have bitter personal experience with the Once-Saved-Always-Saved folks, who apparently see no need to make a daily examination of conscience, much less ever admit they’re at fault for *anything*…much less ever say “I’m sorry.”

    My mother was a Baptist. Trust me, some of them lay it on thick. My mother actually forbid me to defend myself from bullies becuase if I did so, their feelings might be hurt, and Jesus wouldn’t want me to hurt the feelings of someone who was abusing me, now would he?

    My mother was also quite big on telling my siblings and me (if she felt we were misbehaving or about to make a poor choice) “What would Jesus do?”

    I also grew up believing in OSAS. Not all Baptists are created equal.

  93. @ April:
    Email the Deebs with your story and read the previous threads on TWW. The same issues have been discussed in relation to Jules’ story. Bottom line is that he did commit an offence and so did the church when they failed to report it. The church was only seeking to protect itself. They had and continue to have no real interest in anything else.

  94. Daisy wrote:

    Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Tell that to my Baptist erstwhile boss who subscribed to the “Kiss Up, Kick Down” management style, treated her subordinates like pond scum, viciously retaliated against the slightest sign of independent thought or creativity, suppressed and penalized initiative, denigrated hard work and achievement, micromanaged us as if we were children (e.g., designing a all the designers’ layouts for them even though she had no training)…yet was utterly convinced of her supreme Christian righteousness.

    Sounds like one horrible boss I had, though I have no idea what her religious beliefs were. She may have been an atheist for all I know. Have no idea.

    She believed in Management By Fear.

    She was incompetent to boot. She kept blaming me for mistakes made by people in another career field in our department because she didn’t understood their job duties vs. mine (in my career field).

    She also had the nerve to complain or act wounded that nobody in our department wanted to exchange pleasantries with her, chat with her by the water cooler, or sit with her at lunch.

    Gosh, that sounds real familiar. Too many stories like this.

  95. @ Forrest:
    In a way, I’m wrong to lump fringe elements of the Right, along with more reputable organizations. World has bonifide journalism.

    But yet I think it’s fair to say they share common goals. When I think World, I think Christian World View. Or put another way, Evangelical cognitive dissonance.

    As the Scriptures put it: ..if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness..

    Reality must be filtered through the useless teachings of men. And those teachings are progressively political and authoritarian.

    World is not going to call out any tribe or doctrine connected to the Texas incident. This is manipulative coverage meant only to get out ahead of the story. An obligatory mention, and move on. World is focussed on continuing the Christian World View at all cost.

  96. elastigirl wrote:

    “Any who refused to give Professor Macleod their full and unqualified support were excommunicated — and in fact many ministers were, in accordance with what Iain D. Campbell had called for publicly, libelled in terms of the Greater Excommunication — publicly declared to beyond the possibility of redemption and to be totally shunned by all Christians.”
    +++++++++++++++++

    a story that deserves to be told.

    One that’s been waiting for 20 years.

    However it may perhaps be that the suicide of one of Professor Donald Macleod’s principal defenders and the circumstances in which it took place may perhaps lead to a few people stopping to think about the matters arising from allegations of 20 years ago against Mr Campbell’s great hero and mentor — allegations the subjects of which have never to this day been addressed by any Church court and which the General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland has not only refused to address but refused to permit to be addressed or even raised.

  97. @ okrapod:
    World may have been thinking generally but that is the big problem and fall out from the Neo Cal Movement. I noticed it for years as they put all sin in one big category and never seem to be specific unless it involved not obeying leaders. And it becomes more difficult when our very existence is sin because we are born “depraved and unable”. We can’t expect basic human decency because sinners, sin? I have never understood the focus.

    We end up with an imbalance of mercy and justice. And are even expected to celebrate injustice! What’s even sadder is the church often doesn’t have higher standards when it comes to leaders or special people!

    Since our very being is sin in so many Christian circles these days (or sin is no big deal in others), I have moved away from that term and look through a filter of individual good/evil. Not saying that always works but it helps clarify. And we can judge fruit. We must.

  98. April wrote:

    The church decided to cover it up and keep him on as youth pastor

    I am continually appalled to see stories of these reactions by churches! I’m so sorry.

  99. ishy wrote:

    Since it was his home church, I’m guessing they didn’t even ask.

    Maybe not. Although to hire someone to work with young people (even if they weren’t children) without even doing the most basic checks seems a bad plan.

  100. Did anyone else get the feeling like the World Magazine article didn’t want to engage the facts at any level? Everything was based on ideological constructs like “we are all abusers and abused”. Savage’s vague confession was accepted at face value while Jules’ factual statements were completely ignored.

    The phrase “so heavenly minded you’re no earthly good” comes to mind.

  101. The opening comment is particularly important. Those of us who have been hurt by church both have a need to tell our stories, and to have others tell our stories.

    My heart goes out to Anne, too. There is nothing worse than facing abuse, then being told by church officials that your concerns are trivial, or, even worse, that they support your abuser. Or, as happened to me, allowing church members and “leaders” to bully you for speaking out. My hope is that Free Church officials will not view the situation as a “one-and-done,” but rather as an opportunity over time to rebuild and restore fractured relationships.

  102. @ Robert M:
    “The phrase “so heavenly minded you’re no earthly good” comes to mind.”

    So true. But when one believes we are all totally depraved and “unable” then all sin becomes the same whether abuse, rape or yelling at your kids, or defying an elder and are treated the same at church depending on your title providing you follow their prescription for restoration.

    CJ Mahaney gave us an early glimpse of this practice at SGM. A 3 year old victim of sexual molestation was considered the “same sinner” as her 16 year old molester and she must forgive him. The pastor who told her that better not ever meet me. My inner mama bear won’t hold back.

  103. Lydia wrote:

    So true. But when one believes we are all totally depraved and “unable” then all sin becomes the same whether abuse, rape or yelling at your kids, or defying an elder and are treated the same at church depending on your title providing you follow their prescription for restoration.

    Well that’s because some people place more importance on one person’s interpretation of Scripture than on Scripture itself, but I know you know that.

  104. Lea wrote:

    Probation! And the parents agreed? Ugh.

    Probably trying to spare their child the trauma of testifying at at trial. Can’t say I blame them, but how horrible that they had to choose between protecting their child and pursuing meaningful justice.

  105. Robert M wrote:

    The phrase “so heavenly minded you’re no earthly good” comes to mind.

    Heavenly minded?
    I have no desire to go to their ‘heaven’ whatsoever.

  106. Lydia wrote:

    CJ Mahaney gave us an early glimpse of this practice at SGM. A 3 year old victim of sexual molestation was considered the “same sinner” as her 16 year old molester and she must forgive him. The pastor who told her that better not ever meet me. My inner mama bear won’t hold back.

    Look at the bright side Lyds, the sick and twisted religion these guys peddle is on the wane and it will not see the end of this century.

  107. Lea wrote:

    Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Sorry, but I have bitter personal experience with the Once-Saved-Always-Saved folks

    If I have a bad experience with a catholic, I don’t assume they are all bad.

    I’m not saying that. And I’ve had bad Catholic bosses. But they didn’t think and act as if they were “in like Flynn” while the rest of us were the unsaved, unwashed​ masses. Because that’s NOT how Catholics are trained to think.

    Theology has consequences. If you never make an examination of conscience, you’re much less likely to recognize that you are behaving like a total jerk. My jerky Catholic, Lutheran, Episcopalian, Jewish, and agnostic bosses may have been pretty rotten. But they weren’t self-righteous prigs, exuding unshakeable confidence in their own spiritual security and superiority. I’ll take good old honest jerkiness any day over Jerkiness with a Side Order of Self-Righteousness. YMMV.

  108. Anonymous Grandma wrote:

    but how horrible that they had to choose between protecting their child and pursuing meaningful justice.

    I have to wonderful if she will not be further harmed later realizing how little justice was done here. Its hard to know without being there, but I tend to think if there was enough to force a plea for 15 YEARS probation (if I read that correctly?) there was enough for some sort of sentence. I think the system screwed up.

  109. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    YMMV.

    I disagree with your assessment of theology here, but I’m also not interested in another of these ‘catholics vs everybody else’ arguments because they are tiresome.

    I made my point.

  110. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    So, I’m reading the patheos article about the world article, and it quotes this:
    “Men of great faith are also men of gr

    Really? How about women of great faith? What kind of, and how many agregious sins would I have to commit to be a “woman of great faith”? ……… Or would they just call me a Jezebel?

    Several years ago, prior to marriage, I noticed that all the books on how to date/court/pair off the Christian way had a bad habit of acting like the Fruits of the Spirit only applied to women. As in, they would be talking to women, and describing what a guy should look for/ what a woman should aspire to be and invariably they would note Galations 5:22-23. But when it came to what to look for or aspire to in a man, they would not reference those verses. Instead, they would reference Ephesians 5 and verses about church leadership. I don’t think I read a single dating book that actually said men should exhibit the Fruits of the Spirit.

    Then I got married, and felt like the marriage books again told women to submit and work on the Fruits of the Spirit, while men were told to exercise their authority and make decisions and be leaders. In some cases, they would list behaviors that women can find frustrating if their husband exhibits them (anger, not listening, etc) and then proceed to act like those are just part of what makes a man a man.

  111. @ Catholic Gate-Crasher:
    “The fundamentalist approach is dangerous, for it is attractive to people who look to the Bible for ready answers to the problems of life…..Fundamentalism is a danger. That is clear. It is absolutely incompatible with Catholic faith…”

    (Catholics and Fundamentalism, The Catholic Bible, Personal Study Edition)

    Is this how Catholics are trained to think?

  112. Rachael Denhollander tells more about the rejection she received from her “church” when she protested their support for JC Mahaney: “The ultimate reality that I live with is that if my abuser had been Nathaniel Morales instead of Larry Nassar, if my enabler had been [an SGM pastor] instead of [MSU gymnastics coach] Kathie Klages, if the organization I was speaking out against was Sovereign Grace under the leadership of [Mahaney] instead of MSU under the leadership of Lou Anna Simon, I would not only not have evangelical support, I would be actively vilified and lied about by every single evangelical leader out there. The only reason I am able to have the support of these leaders now is because I am speaking out against an organization not within their community. Had I been so unfortunate so as to have been victimized by someone in their community, someone in the Sovereign Grace network, I would not only have their support, I would be massively shunned. That’s the reality.“
    New interview today at CT: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2018/january-web-only/rachael-denhollander-larry-nassar-forgiveness-gospel.html?share=

  113. Lowlandseer wrote:

    @ Catholic Gate-Crasher:
    “The fundamentalist approach is dangerous, for it is attractive to people who look to the Bible for ready answers to the problems of life…..Fundamentalism is a danger. That is clear. It is absolutely incompatible with Catholic faith…”
    (Catholics and Fundamentalism, The Catholic Bible, Personal Study Edition)

    Is this how Catholics are trained to think?

    Not sure what you mean by “trained to think”.

    If you mean Catholics are trained to think like “Fundamentalists with Rosaries”, NO. (Except maybe for the Ultra-Trads, but they’re a fringe movement, TRUE “Fundies with Rosaries (and Tridentine Latin Mass)”.)

    However, the original quote probably IS the official policy of the Church. (No Unwritten Rules on that particular subject!)

    As Lewis said once, “Good philosophy is necessary, if only to oppose Bad Philosophy”.

  114. Thank you for this post.

    On a related note, I was troubled by this article.
    I was surprised to see anyone object to safety standards in the context of children’s ministry classrooms. All churches should be committed to the highest possible standard of safety and protection for children.

    https://world.wng.org/2017/11/the_new_rules

  115. ER wrote:

    Several years ago, prior to marriage, I noticed that all the books on how to date/court/pair off the Christian way had a bad habit of acting like the Fruits of the Spirit only applied to women. As in, they would be talking to women, and describing what a guy should look for/ what a woman should aspire to be…

    My first thought was that those books were written from a male POV. Then…

    But when it came to what to look for or aspire to in a man, they would not reference those verses. Instead, they would reference Ephesians 5 and verses about church leadership. I don’t think I read a single dating book that actually said men should exhibit the Fruits of the Spirit.

    …Looks like “Boyz Rule, Gurlz Drool! RAWR!”

    Then I got married, and felt like the marriage books again told women to submit and work on the Fruits of the Spirit, while men were told to exercise their authority and make decisions and be leaders.

    i.e. “Men PENETRATE! COLONIZE! CONQUER! PLANT! Women Lie Back And Accept.”
    The trope of Power Struggle Uber Alles: Hold the Whip or Feel the Whip, nothing in between.

  116. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    But they didn’t think and act as if they were “in like Flynn” while the rest of us were the unsaved, unwashed​ masses. Because that’s NOT how Catholics are trained to think.

    But it IS how Really Truly REFORMED Elect are trained to think.

  117. Muff Potter wrote:

    Robert M wrote:
    The phrase “so heavenly minded you’re no earthly good” comes to mind.
    Heavenly minded?

    I have no desire to go to their ‘heaven’ whatsoever.

    Once a Minister told a Rabbi that the night before he had dreamed of the Rabbi’s Heaven — a bustling city filled with people working, playing, dreaming, loving, and generally just living their lives. And the Minister was disturbed by the “worldliness” of this Heaven.

    The Rabbi replied that the night before he had also dreamed — of the Minister’s Heaven. He described a small-Middle-American town, clapboard bungalows, white picket fences and all.

    “But what were the people there like?” The Minister asked.

    “What people?” the Rabbi replied.

  118. Daisy wrote:

    She also had the nerve to complain or act wounded that nobody in our department wanted to exchange pleasantries with her, chat with her by the water cooler, or sit with her at lunch.

    i.e. “HOW! DARE! THEY!”
    Fits the personality (or should that be Personality Disorder?)

  119. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    My first thought was that those books were written from a male POV. Then…

    If they included any direction to men whatsoever, then yes, they were written by men. Otherwise, they were written by women, who would frequently describe abuse going on in their own marriages, and they did not recognize it as abuse. It was just the way men are, and women needed to learn how to put up with it. That was a huge part of the reason that I initially concluded that I simply wasn’t cut out for a Christian marriage and was there-fore called to singleness.

    I am married now, to a Christian man who exhibits lots of the Fruits of the Spirit and is not abusive by any metric. But for a long time there I was convinced that what made a man a real man of God made him thoroughly unattractive to me.

  120. Kari wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    “Needed to hear” or “WANTED to hear”?
    Needed so that they would make him a pastor. Answer the questions correctly and you get the prize.

    And of course it is Righteous to lie for The Greater Cause.
    Ask any Party Ideologist of Soviet-ear Pravda or TASS.

  121. Thersites, Muff, Lydia, EVERYBODY:

    Recently I acquired a copy of JMJ/Christian Monist’s book Butterflies in the Belfry, Serpents in the Cellar (which I had read in online draft as he was writing it on his old blog and had corresponded with him steering him to an editor in a now-defunct writer’s group). He covers a LOT of the questions as to how Christendom ended up with what we’ve got in America today, and his historical/theophilosophical trace seems to make sense.

    Quick summary is a form of toxic Dualism (from Platonic Greek Philosophy) cross-fertilized with the original Gospel as the Church crossed over from Jewish to Hellenistic/Goyisha culture and we’ve been seeing the influence ever since, from New Calvinism to Rapture Ready.

    Here’s Amazon’s listing: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0997759100/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1485362032&sr=8-1&keywords=butterflies+in+the+belfry

    P.S. He needs the sales.

  122. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    But it IS how Really Truly REFORMED Elect are trained to think.

    One thing I can’t figure out about New Cal theology is the apparent contradiction between their worm theology and their penchant for church discipline. I do see that they seem to only bring up the worm theology when one of their pastors is found in grievous sin and/or abuse. Suddenly it vaporizes when it comes to peons.

  123. Raswhiting wrote:

    “… if the organization I was speaking out against was Sovereign Grace under the leadership of [Mahaney] instead of MSU under the leadership of Lou Anna Simon, I would not only not have evangelical support, I would be actively vilified and lied about by every single evangelical leader out there.” (Rachael Denhollander, Christianity Today)

    Yep. A revealing statement. If you touch the “anointed”, the rest of the boys will gang up on you! Shame on Dr. Mohler for sheltering Mahaney in Louisville and T4G for continuing to give him a stage. C.J. must be a key link for preserving the New Calvinist movement – when I listen to him speak, I can’t imagine why.

  124. Rachael Denhollander article, Christianity Today:

    “The ultimate reality that I live with is that if my abuser had been Nathaniel Morales instead of Larry Nassar, if my enabler had been [an SGM pastor] instead of [MSU gymnastics coach] Kathie Klages, ”

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2018/january-web-only/rachael-denhollander-larry-nassar-forgiveness-gospel.html?share=
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    why is ‘[an SGM pastor]’ in parentheses? what shadowy forces pulled strings to have her direct statements edited this way?

  125. ishy wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    But it IS how Really Truly REFORMED Elect are trained to think.
    One thing I can’t figure out about New Cal theology is the apparent contradiction between their worm theology and their penchant for church discipline. I do see that they seem to only bring up the worm theology when one of their pastors is found in grievous sin and/or abuse. Suddenly it vaporizes when it comes to peons.

    RANK HATH ITS PRIVILEGES, LOWBORN!
    BY DIVINE RIGHT!

  126. Nathan Priddis wrote:

    I no longer draw a clear distinction between Evangelical media, and secular Conservative or Nationalists propoganda.

    I’ve been wondering lately why our country is so polarized. It seems like it is becoming mostly two sharply divided halves with each calling the other “fringe.” Each side has its own media outlets, celebrities, litmus tests, politicians, etc. Both sides even have their own conspiracy theorists. I find it depressing.

    By contrast, Jesus’ apostles and disciples were a very diverse crowd. He included the equivalent of alt-right, alt-left, religious figures, government insiders, common laborers, both rich and poor, pacifists and military commanders, and the list goes on. He lived in politically and militarily charged times, yet we don’t have any quotes from him about those topics. Instead, he focused on the Kingdom of God and mankind’s relationship with God. The NT writers followed that lead. These very different people were able to look past their ideologies to advance the kingdom.

    I am wondering what would happen if Christians would ssimilarly spend less time playing in the realm of ideology. TWW does a great service by highlighting dysfunction in the church but without getting ideological. I believe this is where the focus should remain for this ministry.

    While I have my own ideological views, I try not to air them here because these threads tend to go sour when political ideology becomes a factor.

  127. From Rachael’s interview with CT: “The reason I lost my church was not specifically because I spoke up. It was because we were advocating for other victims of sexual assault within the evangelical community, crimes which had been perpetrated by people in the church and whose abuse had been enabled, very clearly, by prominent leaders in the evangelical community.”

    They were fine with her pursuing justice against Nassar, but they were not okay with her advocating for abuse victims within the SGM. That’s what cost them their church.

    A few years ago, my (pre-teen) daughter noticed the difference in how her school handled her report of bullying and how the church handled something that she had reported. There were consequences for the school incident that she was notified about, but the church incident didn’t seem to have any consequences that she was aware of. At that point, I knew that she needed to be in a church where her experiences were taken seriously. We aren’t even connected to the notorious organizations…

  128. Kari wrote:

    They were fine with her pursuing justice against Nassar, but they were not okay with her advocating for abuse victims within the SGM. That’s what cost them their church.

    Ms. Denhollander has national visibility right now, given her boldness to come forward in the Olympics scandal. Mahaney, SGM, and their supporters should be very concerned if the spotlight shifts to them.

  129. Leslie wrote:

    I hope the spotlight does shift to them.

    If it does, Mohler, Dever and the T4G elite will drop him like a hot potato to protect their potato skins. Driscoll learned how much the New Calvinist who’s-who loved him when he became a liability, rather than an asset, to the reformed movement.

  130. I had the privilege yesterday of going to a luncheon where the guest speaker was Daniel Borenstein of The East Bay Times and San Jose’s Mercury News. He was addressing a group of sitting Grand Jurors and Alumni Grand Jurors. He said that just this week there were more buy outs and layoffs at the newspaper. The amount of investigative reporters in 2010 was 25. Now it is 3. He said that now that that investigative journalism is being diminished it is more crucial than ever that other Watchdog groups take up the slack. Newspapers used to rely on advertising for their cash flow. Thanks to the internet that is no longer the case. What Newspapers exist are being bought up by special interests.

    I think that due to the current circumstances , informed watchdog groups are going to be more important than ever, Atthe local, state and national level. And in the Evangelical Christian Community. Pretty soon the watchdog groups may be the only voice.

    TWW and Spiritual Sounding Board have been great watchdogs and great reporters of abuse. I think the future depends on supporting these groups to get the truth out.

    Also, support your local newspaper. We need these investigative reporters also.

  131. An interesting and timely post over at SBC Voices “Five Years Since the SBC Resolution ‘On the Sexual Abuse of Children'” is drawing comments related to the way things have been handled in Southern Baptist ranks with Andy Savage, as well as Mahaney/SGM. http://sbcvoices.com/five-years-since-the-sbc-resolution-on-the-sexual-abuse-of-children-and-earlier-sbc-level-actions/

    Some of the comments on that post:

    “I understand that C.J. Mahaney is going to be a speaker again at T4G, which involves 2 prominent SBC leaders. They have to be ignoring the resolution to do that. So there’s an area where there needs to be progress.” (Louis)

    “There is some history behind the 2013 resolution and the Highpoint case offers a number of examples of what not to do … To my knowledge there is only one case where any church was excluded from a SBC association over a clergy sex abuser on staff.” (William Thornton)

    The Southern Baptist Convention, and its 45,000+ churches, obviously need to take these matters more seriously. Passing a resolution at a national meeting doesn’t cut it if individual leaders and churches ignore it. If a resolution “On the Sexual Abuse of Children” doesn’t get your attention and motivate you to do the right thing, what will?

  132. GreekEpigraph wrote:

    @ April:

    April, I think it would depend on how long ago this was as to whether the clergy-parishioner rule was in place. Someone (Erp?) looked it up and it came into effect around the mid-1990s. And yes, this rule applies in ALL cases of clergy-parishioner sex, with or without consent and without age limitation. As with Jules though (again) depending on how long ago it was, you could have a statute of limitations issue. But – lawyers and prosecutors answer these questions.

    However, the church totally screwed up in allowing him to stay in leadership of ANY kind. They also totally screwed up in blaming a child who had been groomed by a pastor for any part of the “relationship” – it doesn’t work that way. And they’re still screwing up by not taking responsibility for their screw ups!
    …. thank you- and It was 02 I believe that they found out I looked at the statute of limitations a couple days ago and it did seem like I was passed them, but even just hearing that someone agrees that they did the wrong thing feels like a little justice so thanks

  133. @ Raswhiting:
    I was wondering if anyone would link that article to this thread…very powerful story. It’s heartbreaking to think that she had to leave her church because she was taking a stand against C.J. Mahaney. The saddest thing is that when I read the article, there was an ad for the next “Together for the Gospel” conference (where C.J. Mahaney will speak) right above the article.

  134. Apologies for this OT, but I just saw a blog at patheos and I don’t know where to put it. This is advice to PASTORS that says:

    Touching doesn’t just communicate affection, it communicates ownership… When you refrain from touching another man’s stuff, you subtlety communicate your respect for him.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/gloryseed/2018/01/on-getting-keeping-masculine-men-in-church/

    Maybe this is why young girls are up for grabs? They are nobody’s ‘stuff’ yet.

  135. CT has another article about the Andy Savage deal, which makes a good point (despite quoting Owen S. at one point) that we would never accept a judge ruling on an issue where they had a conflict of interest, like working with or being ‘good friends’ with someone accused, so why are we giving people like Conlee a pass on ruling on their own good friends? Conlee even tries to play that as a reason he can be trusted rather than a complete bias towards Andy, as we would clearly see in a non-church context.

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2018/february-web-only/should-churches-handle-sexual-abuse-investigations-internal.html

  136. Lea wrote:

    CT has another article about the Andy Savage deal

    Thanks for the link Lea. The following jumped out at me:

    “Given that church leaders are often personally close, this calls into question their ability to be impartial when judging one of their own … friendship is one of the reasons we should doubt his (Chris Conlee) ability to uncover the whole truth, to be fair, and to carry out justice for all parties … This is why judges are supposed to recuse themselves when they know one of the parties involved in a case, or when they have an economic interest that might be affected by the outcome.”

    Chris Conlee needs to recuse himself from directly handling this matter. His involvement in hiring an “independent” auditor to look into things still shows his fingerprints on it. He needs to sit out of the pulpit for a while – he’s letting his emotions get in the way. Most of Christendom would agree.

  137. “If we want the church to be a safe place of healing, we can’t afford to cover up the truth.” (Christianity Today)

    And that’s the truth! The Andy Savage story has exposed a systemic problem of organized religion in America … church leaders protect their own in far too many places.

  138. Lea wrote:

    Maybe this is why young girls are up for grabs? They are nobody’s ‘stuff’ yet.

    What we would say to this is BS. They are their own stuff, made in God’s image. 🙂

  139. GreekEpigraph wrote:

    April, I think it would depend on how long ago this was as to whether the clergy-parishioner rule was in place.

    It happened it 2002 so after the rule was in place but probably too long for statute of limitations?

  140. April wrote:

    GreekEpigraph wrote:

    April, I think it would depend on how long ago this was as to whether the clergy-parishioner rule was in place.

    It happened it 2002 so after the rule was in place but probably too long for statute of limitations?

    This is a question for a lawyer or prosecutor from the State of Texas to answer, since I don’t have a clue. There are differing statutes of limitations depending on the crime, that I do know.

  141. @KenF (aka Tweed)

    “By contrast, Jesus’ apostles and disciples were a very diverse crowd. He included the equivalent of alt-right, alt-left, religious figures, government insiders, common laborers, both rich and poor, pacifists and military commanders, and the list goes on. He lived in politically and militarily charged times, yet we don’t have any quotes from him about those topics. Instead, he focused on the Kingdom of God and mankind’s relationship with God. The NT writers followed that lead. These very different people were able to look past their ideologies to advance the kingdom.

    I am wondering what would happen if Christians would ssimilarly spend less time playing in the realm of ideology. TWW does a great service by highlighting dysfunction in the church but without getting ideological. I believe this is where the focus should remain for this ministry.

    While I have my own ideological views, I try not to air them here because these threads tend to go sour when political ideology becomes a factor.”

    Indeed. A lot of what humans think is mere dirt. “Amen, amen I say to you, you can not see the kingdom of God unless you are born from above”. A spirit filled Christian has undergone a complete paradigm shift. We’re supposed to do away with many of these things and self-descriptions of ourselves. To die to things of the world and simply seek the kingdom of God. Whatever ideology that may still align with that is just coincidence.

  142. @ Lea:
    Found an update on the situation. Apparently, part of the reason for no prison time is that the assailant is legally blind. Of course, he wasn’t too blind to tie up and rape a little girl, but apparently he’s too blind to pay the penalty. (Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time I’ve heard of predators getting a pass because of their disabilities.)

    Also, the girl’s parents are suing the three churches involved, one of which wants to introduce evidence of the girl’s alleged prior voluntary sexual activity. According to the article, their reasoning is that if you’re a 12 or 13 year old who’s already had sex with a boyfriend, then you’re already so damaged emotionally that being bound and sodomized by some random church camp worker isn’t that all that significant, in terms of causing trauma.

    I’m so disgusted that I don’t even have words for it.

    Source: http://newsok.com/rapist-gets-probation-for-attack-on-13-year-old-at-baptist-church-camp-in-oklahoma/article/5581413

  143. GSD [Getting Stuff Done] wrote:

    elastigirl wrote:

    @ Max:

    “The magazine promotes itself as “Reporting the news from a Christian worldview — interpreting world events under the reality of the Christian faith.”
    +++++++++++++++++

    ha — “a christian worldview”. Code for propaganda to control the plebians.

    “Christian worldview” has become a red flag for me, too. Especially when it comes from Christian schools, whose main selling point is that they educate from a christian worldview.

    I’ve been around long enough to know that there isn’t a singular “Christian worldview” unless you are talking about the most basic concepts. Like, there is a God, who is the Creator. Usually, it really means that “we are going to indoctrinate you in the details of our particular theology, because we have it all figured out.”

    It’s usually dog-whistle language that means little more than “Calvinist neo-conservative”.

  144. I’m married to a “legally blind” woman. The legal definition of blindness is fairly broad, taking in those with 20/200 vision (which means you’re really really nearsighted) and/or a narrow range of vision. She can get around by herself relatively well, except at night. This joker could obviously see well enough to be the camp cook and to pick the victim and tie her up.
    To say someone is “legally blind” is not necessarily “cane and a dog” blind.

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