Except with his widow mother, whom he vaguely worshiped, and with Jim Lefferts, Elmer assumed that he was the center of the universe and that the rest of the system was valuable only as it afforded him help and pleasure.”-Lewis, Sinclair. Elmer Gantry. Penny Books. Kindle Edition.
“I must approach this long, legal proceeding as a crusade for truth.”-Tom Chantry, convicted on two counts of assault of a child and four counts of sexual molestation of a child.
“Above all, don’t lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.”―The Brothers Karamazov
I am quite pleased by the response of some folks who are interested in starting a blog (and in one case, a person who has already started a blog) and having a loose coalition of sorts so we can help one another.
I think the best example of how this works is to look at Todd Wilhelm at Thou Art theMan and TWW. Before Todd returned to Arizona from Dubai, I had written about his experience with the Hotel California of the Evangelical Set aka 9 Marks and UCCD. I had already proclaimed him the official hero of TWW since he stood up against the sale of CJ Mahaney’s books at that church because he believed and support the SGM victims while he was working in Dubai. He left the church. For his righteous stand, he was placed on the member discipline list aka* We are going to discipline you even if you are not here.*
A friendship was formed and I got to meet him one time when he visited stateside. He had already started a blog and was pleased to find that Ton Chantry would be tried in Arizona after Todd permanently returned. I was thrilled that he wanted to cover all the Chantry stuff since TWW was getting busier. Lo and behold, Todd did something that I hadn’t seen before. He attended all of the trials, sentencing, etc. and penned meticulous write-ups on the proceedings. He brought us all into the courtroom, helping us to comprehend what was involved in such a trial. Frankly, his coverage was downright fantastic.Todd is gifted at what he does and he honed his talents during the course of these events.
He also gave me permission to repost any of his blog posts so his writings would get out to the audience at TWW. People began to visit TWW and Thou Art the Man- a sort of cross pollination. Our blogs benefited from our ongoing friendship. I personally benefitted from having a blogging friend that I could go to with questions about some of the things I was writing about as well.
I have great hope that a camaraderie of sorts can develop between new bloggers who can shoot ideas off of one another. I am also committed to helping people get their start and to share with them what I’ve learned in the last 10 1/2 years. I believe each person has a unique talent and giftedness that can contribute to the sharing of information about issues in the broader church environment. You can see that by looking at Todd’s posts and my posts. We have different styles yet we both share a common concern.
Besides, Todd has the ability to make me laugh in the midst of the difficult stories that we cover. It reminds me of medical humor. If you’ve eve been around doctors, nurses and other health professionals, you will discover how they make each other laugh in the midst of extremely trying circumstances. You should be here when my daughter who is a nurse, my husband and I get together and discuss the *stuff* of medicine. We laugh and at time, cry, over what we must deal with.
So, here is Todd’s post. I loved his insights into Chantry and Chantry’s friends. I am proud to post his thoughts here and hope in the coming year to have some others join us in what we do. There is so much to talk about!
Once again, thank you, Todd.
In the book, “Let Us Prey: The Plague of Narcissist Pastors and What We Can Do About It,” the authors write:
“Narcissism is typified by an exaggerated sense of self-importance and power, rigidity, the inability to admit error, a sense of personal greatness, the use of power to manipulate and control others, an inability to feel or express remorse, and a lack of empathy for others.”
Having now sat through both of Tom Chantry’s trials, and having read much of his material published on the internet, I believe this description is an accurate portrayal of Tom Chantry. Likely spoiled as a child, he is used to being the center of attention, getting his way, and being accountable to no one. Thus it is no surprise that once the reality of his conviction for sexually molesting a child sets in, the pedophile, as witnessed in his taped phone conversations, cannot accept reality.
According to Chantry, he was “illegally convicted,” all the prosecutors in the back-water state of Arizona should be hung, and the judges sent to prison for life. (In the video below, Chantry apologizes to Judge Astrowsky for his comment, but not Prosecutor Eazer – in fact, he continues his verbal assault of Ms. Eazer in his ridiculous rant.) This is typical behavior of a narcissist; Judge Astrowsky can do something for Chantry, and indeed Chantry implores Astrowsky to free him, an innocent man, in his tirade. Prosecutor Eazer is of no value to Chantry, therefore he feels free to attack her. This brash display in the courtroom should give pause to Al Huber and Karen Chantry, who both testified just prior to Tyrannical Tommy, that son-in-law/husband Tom Chantry was a changed man since he left Arizona.
Al Huber and his daughter, Karen Chantry both testified they had never witnessed any abusive behavior in all the time they knew Tom Chantry! I can only assume they meant they had never witnessed Chantry removing a young boys pants, severely paddle him, and then set the boy on his lap and fondle him.
Al Huber and Karen Chantry surely knew that while Tom was employed at Christian Liberty Academy he pulled a paddle out of his desk and beat a little 5-year-old so severely that the Police were called in to investigate by the boy’s parents. (The parents decided not to file charges, but removed their son from the school.) Left unsaid is the fact that the school’s Headmaster, Philip Bennett, was good friends with Walter Chantry; and Tom’s sister, Becky, married a son of Headmaster (now Superintendent) Philip Bennett, and is employed by Christian Liberty Academy. I should mention that Chantry stated, according to a document signed by his counselor, Devon Berry two years prior to the above-mentioned incident, that he would never spank another child other than his own. I should also mention that Chantry told the Police he had spanked no more than twelve children since he had been teaching at Christian Liberty Academy!
But Al Huber and Karen Chantry would have us believe Tom was a changed man since he left Arizona! Who am I to doubt? After all, Huber told the Judge he believes he is a pretty good judge of character – nobody has conned him for more than a year or two! Let me state the obvious, Mr. Huber; Tom Chantry has conned you for seventeen years.
Tom Chantry is slowly realizing his days of victimizing young boys are over. He likely was convinced in his narcissistic mind that his masterful oratorical skills would convince Judge Astrowsky to “end the tyranny and free an innocent man.”
Sorry, Tom. after conning good and decent people in your little cultic Baptistic world for 49 years, the game is up. Unfortunately for you, the bumpkins of backwater Arizona know an Elmer Gantry when they see one. A jury of twelve of my fellow citizens has convicted you, and a member of the Judicial branch of the Arizona Government has sentenced you to twenty-four years in prison. I’m sure I speak for all my fellow citizens of Arizona when I say that I am happy to see my tax dollars spent on your two court cases. I am happy to help provide for your food, housing and medical needs for the next 23 years, secure in the knowledge that you will not be sexually molesting any more young boys.
In way of explanation, while listening to the sentencing testimony you will occasionally come across some choppy sounding audio. This was caused by me clipping out references to the victims or their families. I chose not to include the statements made to Judge Astrowsky by any of the family members of the victims. I also chose not to include the statement of Bob Selph – where have you been all these years Bob? I pray you now work to right the wrongful neglect you have foisted upon the good people of Miller Valley Baptist Church, although many of them no longer attend that church, and some no longer attend any church. I also chose not to include the statement of Mr. Stevens, Defense Attorney for Tom Chantry. Mr. Stevens was placed in the unenviable position of attempting to justify the bizarre “allocution” of Tom Chantry.