• veggietart

    So who’s going to protect the children from predatory clergymen?  The defense of a man who preyed on teenagers sickens me.   I can only be glad they didn’t suggest the girls were “asking for it”.   Yeah, when he’s not trolling for teens to assault, he’s preaching “the Lord’s word”.  And people wonder why I hate organized religion.

    As for doing the right thing, maybe “doing the right thing” is making sure a convicted sex offender is not in a position to ever have access to kids again, and that doesn’t mean kicking kids who’ve done nothing wrong out of your congregation but kicking out a pastor who has.

  • enonomi

    First of all the children wern’t banned – “Because of his legal requirements, children are sent to a separate building and service.” Second, and I know this is an unpopular point of view – someone who has done their time – and is going to counseling – needs to be given a second chance. Because of the horrifying nature of the crime we, as a society, have made punishment of sex offenders a life-sentence – even though their jail sentence isn’t. Either we have to accept that someone who has done their time, and is in counseling, is capable of rehabilitation or we say this is a crime so horrible that only a death sentence will satify our need for vengence.” I’m an athiest, but in this instance I’m going to have to side with the church people – if we believe redemption or rehabilitaiton is possible – we have to provide the framework for it. I applaud this congregation for doing so.

  • julie-watkins

    This church appeared to do it the right way: he’s publically confessed & people are warned. I think the “life sentence” is because of science, not unfairness. If the psychological science findings that, on average, the chance for child abuse recidivism is high then it’s not inappropiate to have life-long restrictions. Same as a blind person shouldn’t have a driver’s liscense.

     

    One of the reasons why the Catholic pedophile priest problem got so bad is an ideology of “true repentance” vs. science. There’s bad ideology that god’s grace can “cure” bad behavior — iow, certain mental illnesses aren’t acknowledged. That’s dangerous. Another reason is there’s such a shortage of priests. Another reason is their entitlement behavior that their “brotherhood” is most important, so favored collegues are given more “benefit of doubt” than accusers who are strangers. Then their arrogance and keeping secrets increase the damage.

     

    Then there’s the problem of an overly-broad definition of “sex offender” that can put a lifetime burden on poor people for public urination (a homeless person who has no where to “go”, & tried to hide it but got caught), for consential sex, for youth who traded sex for shelter or food. That kind of criminalization of the poor and vulnerable isn’t fair.

     

    The dangerous trade-off here is a powerful person can be given too much “benefit of doubt”. I hope truely repentant people have the attitude that “I don’t want to take any chances. Help me stay clean.”

  • colleen

     

    Parole/Probation and post incarceration restrictions aren’t about vengence or punishment, they are about protecting children from men who are inclined to sexually abuse them. I mention this because your analysis fails to  mention  that consideration.

    Your notion that such men should be allowed access to children because they are in “counseling” fails to protect children as does the absurd notion that it’s a “life sentence”.  Most adults (and particularly those of us who care that 1 out of 4 girls and 1 out of 6 boys are sexually abused) place a higher priority on protecting children from such abuse than fulfilling the spiritual and social needs of child rapists.

     

Mobile Theme