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Did the Pope’s Deacon invoke Lucifer’s name during the Easter Vigil Mass?

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Ignorance knows no bound

 

There are a lot of videos floating in facebook and youtube accusing the church of worshiping Satan which is way out.

No he is not praying to Lucifer

1. The translation of the Latin language to English is WRONG.

2. This beautiful song is called the Exultet. It is a hymn of praise, sung in the Easter liturgy by Catholics and those of some other faiths.  The word “Lucifer” within it means the MORNING STAR, not Satan.  And by extension, the word Lucifer can mean something or someone outstanding, pre-eminently Jesus Christ.

3. Most religious scholars from ALL faiths are in agreement that Lucifer and Satan are not the same person. The confusion arose from mistranslated text in older versions of the Bible. That issue was rectified and newer versions clearly state Lucifer is NOT Satan.

4. In the video: “Flammas eius lucifer matutínus invéniat” becomes ” Flaming Lucifer finds mankind”?
What? Whoever translated this apparently FLUNKED first-year Latin. Flammas is in the accusative—a direct object, so how in the world is it translated as an adjective? And humáno géneri (mankind) doesn’t show up in this line, so why is it inserted as a direct object? For those who are ignorant of Latin, this video can be mildy persuasive. But for those who do know Latin, this video is ROFL-quality entertainment.

5. Actual Translation of the song in English not the garbage translation by Anti Catholic Bigots Hate Group.

Flammas eius lúcifer matutínus invéniat:
ille, inquam, lúcifer, qui nescit occásum.
Christus Fílius tuus,
qui, regréssus ab ínferis, humáno géneri serénus illúxit,
et vivit et regnat in sæcula sæculórum.

May this flame be found still burning
by the Morning Star:
the one Morning Star who never sets,
Christ your Son,
who, coming back from death’s domain,
has shed his peaceful light on humanity,
and lives and reigns for ever and ever.

French Translation:
Qu’il brûle encore quand se lèvera l’astre du matin, celui qui ne connaît pas de couchant, le Christ ressuscité revenu des enfers, qui répand sur les hommes sa lumière et sa paix. Garde ton peuple, nous t’en prions, ô notre Père, dans la joie de ces fêtes pascales. Par Jésus Christ, ton Fils notre Seigneur, qui par la puissance de l’Esprit s’est relevé d’entre les morts et qui règne près de toi pour les siècles des siècles. Amen.
.

Do you see the word Satan in the song? of course not unless its doctored by Anti Catholic Bigots Hate Group.

 

credit to: Joseph, Dawn, Valerie, Ran

 

Scandals in Protestant Churches

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Sample protestant sex scandals at the main newspaper publications do not publish in the headline news. The media is so bias against the Catholic Church because they don’t publish protestant sex scandals in the front page. If you find one you will read it in the back page and with few description.
WARNING: THIS ARTICLE IS ABOUT AN OFFENSIVE SITUATIONAND THEREFORE CONTAINS OFFENSIVE MATERIAL. PARENTALDISCRETION IS HIGHLY ADVISED.

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He was held on $300,000 bond on two counts of possessing child pornography and one charge of promoting child pornography.
Smith was fired from Exel, a Fort Worth-based computer logistics company. He also resigned Wednesday as pastor of Landmark
Baptist Church, where he had served for 31/2 years. His wife of 13 years, Julie Smith, said the allegations stunned her.
“He’s never hurt our children. As far as I know he’s never hurt anyone’s children,” she said.
source: http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/news/archive/2002/11/22/national1324EST0630.DTL

PASTOR BOOKED FOR MOLESTING SCHOOLGIRL. A girl, 15, was molested at a church-run school in Birmingham by Rev. James E.
Johnson, of Ensley, according to police. He was charged with 2nd degree sexual assault, a misdemeanor.
Source: _Birmingham News_ 11/21/92.

BAPTIST VOLUNTEER PREYED ON GIRLS? Thomas Road Baptist Church in Phoenix failed to screen churchvolunteer John Herman Kuiper
for a criminal record when it permitted him to drive a church bus & volunteer at youth events. Kuiper, who had been convicted
in 1991 of a felony charge of 3rd degree sexual assault, was arrested in Phoenix for molesting 5 girls. As a church bus
driver in Fort Collins, Colorado, he had received a deferred sentence for molesting a little girl, 5. Rev. Ken Adrian, church
pastor, complained to media that the publicity was not good for his Phoenix church.
Source: _Arizona Republic_ 11/4/92.

LUTHERAN COUNSELOR NABBED. St. Paul Lutheran Church youth counselor John Wayne Nase, 40, Phoenix, was accused of multiple
counts of child molesting, sexual conduct with a minor & kidnapping. Police say he ordered a boy, 12, into the choir loft &
performed sex acts on him after Nase’s Sunday confirmation classes.
Source: _Arizona Republic_ 7/21/92.

REDEEMER CHURCH SETTLES SUIT. Redeemer Lutheran Church, Redwood City, made a secret settlement to a victim of youth counselor
James A. Weller, who had sought $25,000. The victim said the pastor and other church officials interrupted Weller when he was
molesting the victim, then 13, but failed to report it. Weller had been dishonorably discharged from the Navy for sexual
molestation and had a record when he was hired by the church. He was convicted in 1990 of 27 counts of sex crimes against 4
boys and a girl, including oral sex, rape and pornography. He is serving a 4-year prison sentence.
Source: _Redwood City Tribune_ 5/19/92.

PROMINENT EVANGELICAL RESIGNS; NO CHARGES? Prominent Sunday-school teacher/leader James C. Truxton, 77 resigned his
positions at the 5,000-member First Evangelical Free Church in Fullerton. The founding president of Mission Aviation
Fellowship admitted he was stepping down because of “molestation perpetrated by me in the past upon young girls within &
outside this congregation”. Truxton & his wife’s memberships were revoked They were told not to set foot on church property
again. Both had been teaching second-graders; the wife was called “culpable”. At least 7 church members in their 20s & 30s
said they were molested by Truxton as children. The statute of limitations has expired; no criminal charges were filed. When
parents 20 years ago complained to Mission Aviation Fellowship officials about Truxton, they were told a psychologist at
Fuller Seminary evaluated him, concluding he was in no need of help.
Source: _National & International Religion Report_ 10/19/92.

PASTOR OUSTED FROM 4,500-MEMBER CHURCH. Pastor David Hocking of Calvary Church in Santa Ana was forced to resign after
confessing to an affair with a married woman. Hocking, 51, is married with grown children.
Source: _National & International Religion Report_ 10/19/92.

PASTOR GETS 13 YEARS FOR INCEST. Springfield Baptist Church pastor Jon L. Walker, 43, was sentenced to 18 years in prison for
molesting a relative for 2-1/2 years, beginning when she was 13. Twenty persons pleaded for leniency, including the local
NAACP president. Walter’s defense was to accuse his wife of concocting the charges to get even with him because he had an
affair with a young church member! Deputy DA Karen Gray said the letters of support were “a sad testimony to the fact that
Mr. Walter’s life has been a fraud”.
Source: _San Luis Obispo Telegram Tribune_ 8/5/92.

VICTIM SUES CONVICTED MINISTER. Rancho Cucamonga pastor John Marshall, convicted of sexually battering an ill man, 25, is
being sued for $1 million by victim Kirk Judy, along with his church, the American Baptist Churches of USA & of the Pacific
Southwest. The 6’2″, 200-lb pastor overpowered the 5’6″, 140-lb victim at a bedside counseling visit. He got only 2 years of
probation. The suit alleges that Marshall had committed other crimes, & that the 2 Baptist groups should have known about
them.
Source: _Ontario Daily Bulletin_ 7/29/92.

CHARGES AGAINST JUBILEE CHRISTIAN CENTER. Two assistant pastors at Jubilee Christian Center, San Jose, were charged with 4
felony counts of lewd & lascivious conduct with children, stemming from assaults on 4 boys, ages 10-15, at the church between
September 1988 & February 1992. Charged are Pablo Geraldo Boas, 28, & David Ernest Brimmer, 39.
Sources: _L.A. Times_ 12/19/92, _San Francisco Examiner_ 1/10/93.

MORMON TEACHER GETS 30 YEARS. Sobbing Mormon Sunday School teacher John Allen Midgett asked for God’s forgiveness before
being sentenced to 30 years in state prison for molesting & terrorizing 8 girls, ages 5-10. A parent testified Midgett turned
her cheerful, trusting daughter into a frightened, scarred recluse. He was also ordered to pay $10,000 in restitution
Source: _San Diego Times Union_ 1992, _Los Angeles Times_ 9/12/92.

CANCER VICTIM ALLEGES MISCONDUCT. Carolyn Kruse, Aurora, filed suit against her minister and church, saying he coerced her
into a sexual relationship when she went for counseling while ill with Hodgkin’s disease. Sued is John R. Leonard, pastor of
Harvest Christian Center, who told the congregation Kruse was possessed by a demon.
Source: _Rocky Mountain News_1/1/92.

EPISCOPAL PRIEST SETTLES. Episcopal Rev. Paul Robinson agreed to pay $575,000 in damages to Mary Tenantry, mother of 5, for
luring her into an extramarital affair while counseling her.
Source: _Reuters/Boston Globe_ 8/92.

COUNSELING VICTIM GETS $300,000. The Bear Valley Church of Christ & its former minister Homer Wolfe agreed to pay $300,000 to
a man whom Wolfe sexually assaulted during family counseling sessions. Earlier, a boy, now 17, was awarded $450,000 by a jury
for similar charges. Wolfe, 59, has not been criminally charged. He told parishioners to undress & massage themselves, &
masturbated during counseling sessions, also touching parishioners. The fundamentalist Church of Christ teaches that
nonchurch members will go to hell. Wolfe now lives in Texas.
Source: _Rocky Mountain News_ 8/2,29/92.

FUGITIVE RELIGIOUS LEADER NABBED. Fugitive religious leader James Randazzo, convicted in 1989 of sex crimes, had skipped the
country in 1990 & was nabbed in Hungary after a manhunt. He will now be sentenced on 10 counts of sexual exploitation of
children & drug use. Randazzo founded Spiral of Friends Church in Molina.
Source: _Pueblo Chieftain_ 10/29/92.

CONGREGATIONAL MINISTER RENEGES CONFESSION. Facing 11 felony counts stemming from molestations of 2 young brothers since
1987, Rev. Boardman Kathan says a damaging statement he gave police in July was coerced. Former chair of the Region 16 Board
of Education, Kathan retired last summer as associate minister of the First Congregational Church of Cheshire in Waterbury.
Police say their investigation shows he molested a boy, 17, numerous times over the past 5 years, & once molested his
brother, now 12.
Source:(Waterbury) _Republican American_ 1/23/93.

Holy Way leader Clarence “Brother Will” Williams was arrested after a 19-year-old woman said he brainwashed her into having
sex starting when she was 15. The member of the sect said he forced sex upon her and other women more than 40 times between
1987-1990. Williams, who pleaded guilty 5 years ago to “cleansing” underage members by ordering them to bare their breasts,
was 2 months short of completing his 5-year probation. Terms of probation prohibited practicing aspects of his religion such
as nudity, fondling children, and having non-related children spend the night. In 1986 prosecutors interviewed about a dozen
girls and their mothers who described a religious ritual in which they would strip and fondle each other at Williams’
command. Williams claimed thiswas _Bible_-based: “Our belief is that biblically if you have a problem within yourself, it is
because of sin or weakness, and about the only thing that’s goingto cleanse you of that is if you expose it before the
Lord.”
Source: _Palm Beach Post_ 2/26/92.

ACCUSED PASTORAL COUNSELOR A PHONY. Port Charlotte church school principal Albert Joseph Clerico Jr., 47,charged with sexual
misconduct by a psychotherapist by means of therapeutic deception, claims to be licensed by a nonexistent “scripturally
based” group, National Christian Counselors Association & to have attended the nonexistent Carolina University of Theology.
State investigator Robert Ford charged that Clerico “did cloak himself in the guise of Christianity & did represent to the
female defendant that sexual contact” was part of the treatment. Clerico maintains his position as “pastoral counselor”
exempts him under state law from charges. Police miked the victim & recorded Clerico making sexual advances, soliciting her
comment on his graphic fantasies & telling her to perform oral sex. He was arrested after the 75-minute “counseling session”.
He has been suspended as principal of Community Christian School of First Baptist Church in Port Charlotte, & as minister of
First Baptist Church, which operates the school.
Source: _Sarasota Herald-Tribune_ 8/4/92.

MINISTER GUILTY. Murrayville minister L.G. Gilsrap pleaded guilty to 2 counts of child molestation after the state high court
in 1991 overturned a 1989 conviction for molesting young boys at church.
Source:_USA Today_ 3/6/92.

“WOUNDED SOLDIER” LEAVES CHURCH. Senior pastor of Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, with 12,000 members oneof Atlanta’s largest
churches Q stepped down, admitting an “improper” relationship with a female church employee. Charismatic Rev. Don Paulk, 53,
sermonized, “I am not here today as a martyr or hero, but as a fallen, wounded soldier … My family’s forgiveness was second
only to the forgiveness of God.” His brother, Bishop Earl Paulk, berated the media for exposing the “weaknesses” of others,
an blamed “Satan”, promising Don would return.
Source _Atlanta Constitution_ 5/11/92.

DEKALB CHURCH BLESSES COVER-UP. A sex scandal, now encompassing 4 ministers from one family, has been uncovered at the
Cathedral of the Holy Spirit in DeKalb, Georgia, praised by former President Bush as one of his “1,000 Points of Light”. The
$12 million racially diverse 7,700-seat church with a TV program, social services, lost half of its 12,000 members following
revelations that its minister, Bishop Ear Paulk, had an adulterous affair. Other church employees or members have stepped
forward to say they had affairs with the bishop’s brother, Rev. Don Paulk, & his nephews Rev. Duane Swilley & Rev. Alan
Mushegan. Women charge the ministers coerced them into having sex in order to “serve God.” The church filed, then dropped a
slander/libel suit against several former members & staffers, resulting in a gag order by a DeKalb judge forbidding them to
discuss thei allegations of sexual misconduct. It promotes a doctrine of “covering”, blessing cover-ups of sexual misconduct
& requiring submission to authority. Don Paulk accuses former church schoolteacher Rebecca Moses of seducing him, saying “I
know now what it was like for Samson to place his head in the lap o Delilah.” Six victims have not filed suit, but are asking
for legislation making it a felony in Georgi for clergy to have sex with members of their congregations.
Sources: AP/_Atlanta Journal/Constitution_ 11/14/92; _USA Today_ 12/18/92; _Boston Globe_ 1/9/93.

DAVIS FACES MORE CHARGES. Rev. L.R. Davis, charged in Illinois with criminal sexual misconduct, child pornography, and
perjury, was also charged with assaulting a teenage boy in San Diego. Davis, 57, is a prominent Waukegan minister with
Christian Fellowship, Inc. Two fellow ministers, Michael Camer, 30, and David Annstrong, 33, are indicted on lesser charges
Young boys may have been brought from Tijuana, Mexico to Davis’ San Diego church for molestation. AIR FORCE CHAPLAIN
COURT-MARTIALED. Capt. Perry W. Bell, 37, pleaded guilty to adultery with 6 women, conduct unbecoming an officer, and
bringing discredit upon the armed forces. He was also convicted o attempted seduction of a 19-year-old Air Force cadet who
fought off advances in his chapel office. The Scott Air Force Base chaplain was court-martialed and given 3 months in jail.
He could have been sentenced for up to 12 years. In exchange for guilty pleas, the Air Force agreed to a brief sentence and
dropped other charges of indecent advances, possession of a pornographic videotape while in the United Arab
Emigrates during the war against Iran, ordering an enlisted man to obtain a pornographic tape, and dereliction of duty. Three
of the victims were Air Force Officers, others were a sergeant, a sergeant’s wife seeking counseling, and an enlisted woman.
The senior Protestant chaplain sought out vulnerable women seeking help for emotional upsets.
Source: _Edwardsville Intelligencer_ 2/19/92.

DAVIS GETS 31 YEARS, CLEMENCY ASKED. The founder of the notorious First Christian Fellowship Church of Waukegan, Rev. Lloyd
Davis, 57, flanked by many supporters, was sentenced to 31 years in prison for criminal sexual assault, child pornography &
sexual abuse. He imported teenaged boys from Mexico for sex. Lake Co. Judge Christopher C. Starck said: “The burning question
in this case is whether this man is a minister or a monster, a pastor or a pedophile.” Starck said he is all of those things.
Davis is believed to have molested children since the 1960s. Former church members accuse him of running a cult making sexual
demands on supporters & locating all churches near Naval bases, where he is known for trying to lure young sailors into his
churches for sexual purposes. About 374 persons wrote letters to the judge asking for mercy. “He is the greatest person there
is,” insisted Martha Allsopp, a Kenosha church member. He faces more charges in California. Two other ministers from his
Waukegan church, David Lee Armstrong & Michael Carner, go on trial in March. In January, 200 supporters led by Rev. Peter
Paine of the Christian Fellowship Church presented a request for clemency for Davis to the Illinois Prisoner Review Board. “I
believe L.R. Davis may be the most sexually dangerous man to have ever walked the streets of Lake Co.,” maintains Assistant
State’s Attorney Jeff Pavletic.
Sources: _Chicago Tribune_ 8/15/92, AP/
_Quad-City Times_ 8/15/92, _News-Sun_ (Lake Co.) 1/15/93.

LUTHERAN PASTOR CONFESSES TO 13 YEARS OF CRIMES. The 500 members of Christ Lutheran church in Palatine were sent a letter
informing them that Rev. Wayne Tellekson has confessed to sexual misconduct while he was pastor from 1975 to 1988. He was
removed from his current St. Paul, Minn. church when a former victim confronted Tellekson.
Source: _Chicago Sun-Times_ 1/15/93.

LAWSUIT ALLEGES CLERGY MALPRACTICE. David S. Guppy filed a civil suit for clergy malpractice, misrepresentation, fraud &
other counts against Rev. F. Scott Luthy, resigned pastor of St. Stephen Evangelical Lutheran Church, Rockford. Guppy says
the minister seduced his wife, a parishioner, than misused his counseling relationship with Guppy to conceal the
affair, urging him to have an affair of his own.
Source: _Jackson Citizen Patriot_ 7/31/92.

2,000 SUPPORT MINISTER MOLESTER. About 75 supporters from the Christ Universal Church picketed before the Criminal Courts
Building in Chicago in support of Rev Paul Hall, 47, convicted of sexually abusing a boy, 13, in 1989. He had been free on
appeal since then. His 4-year sentence began in January. The Illinois Appellate Court, which denied him a rehearing, received
more than 2,000 letters in his behalf.
Source: _Chicago Sun-Times_ 9/3/92, 1/8/93.

LUTHERAN PASTOR NABBED. Dirk van der Linde, 43, pastor at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Waterloo, was charged with intent to
commit sexual abuse of a boy, 14. He is affiliated with the Missouri Synod. Relatives complained about a 2 month delay in
arresting him. An aunt said she believed the delay stemmed from racism, because the victim is black & the minister white. “It
would not be this way if it had been a black minister molesting a white child,” she said.
Source: _Waterloo Courier_ 9/23/92, _Des Moines Register_ 9/24/92.

“SOUND DOCTRINE” PASTOR QUITS. After nearly 20 years as pastor, Rev. Wendell Beets, of Sound Doctrine Church, resigned
following a claim of sexual impropriety with a female church member, 19. A married couple who were also ministers at the
church expressed indignation that “he would attack a 19-year-old girl”, & concern that Beets will tart a new church &
continue preying on the congregation. Louise & Clarence Ellis of Cedar Rapids say others have criticized them for speaking
out against Beets.
Source: _Cedar Rapids Gazette_ 8/29/92.

BAPTIST YOUTH PASTOR NABBED. Youth minister-Sunday School teacher William Speaker, 21, of First Baptist Church in Excelsior
Springs, was charged with a felony for sexually molesting a boy, 14, while chauffeuring him to church activities.
Source: _Kansas City Star_ 8/21/92.

JURY ACQUITS PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH. A Louisville jury of 6 men & 6 women found in favor of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in
a $5 million sexual-harassment suit brought by Janet Gellhaus. The employee claimed her superior Nagy Tawfik sexually
harassed her, pressuring her into a sexual relationship by threatening to fire her. Church attorney Michael Valenti,
apparently conceded the relationship when he said after the acquittal (shades of the U.S. Senate): “The lesson should be you
need to immediately tell people about it, you need to immediately investigate your rights, you need to use some common sense
& say ‘no’.”
Source: Presbyterian Outlook_ 9/7/92.

BAPTIST PASTOR GOES TO TRIAL. Indicted for 6 counts of aggravated sexual battery & 5 counts of sexual battery was Rev. George
Walker, 64, of New Tazewell, who has pastored a number of area Baptist churches. He is accused of victimizing a female piano
student instructed by his wife for 4 years.
Source: _The Daily News_ Middlesboro, 12/24/92.

PRESBYTERIAN REFORM URGED. The Presbyterian General Assembly, meeting in Baltimore in June, voted 446-78 to recommend
abolishing the statute of limitations for reporting sexual misconduct by clergy. The church, citing critical proportions, has
a 3-year time limit for reporting sexual misconduct by church officials. The vote must be ratified by 2/3 of the church’s 171
regional presbyteries. It also voted 491-26 to establish a policy on sexual misconduct, advising local churches to set up
“sexual misconduct response teams” & notify secular authorities “when appropriate”. The adopted policy said there is evidence
that “10-23 percent of clergy nationwide have engaged in sexualized behavior or sexual contact with parishioners, clients,
employees, etc., within a professional relationship”.
Source: AP 6/12/92.

UNITARIAN GUILTY ON 6 CHARGES. Northboro minister Mack W. Mitchell, 56, was convicted on 6 of 23 charges of sexual assault
involving a Tibetan woman who testified he sexually abused her as a teenager after offering to sponsor her education in this
country. “I came her with a lot of wonderful dreams, and my dreams were shattered,” said the victim, now 23. With the
conviction, “I can dream again and become a whole person again.” Rape and assault-battery charges are still pending against
him by another Tibetan woman.
Source: _Worcester Telegram & Gazette_ 5/15/92.

RAPIST-MINISTER GETS 12 YEARS FOR INCEST. Suspended associate rector of a Tucson Episcopal church, Stephen P. Apthorp, 56,
pleaded guilty in Massachusetts to repeatedly raping his stepdaughter between her 10th and 16th birthday, an estimated 830
incidents of abuse. He was sentenced to 12 years in prison. Charges included indecent assault and battery, rape and
distribution of pornographic materials to a minor. The assaults began in 1980 when a Lincoln, Mass. congregation asked him to
leave because he was abusing alcohol, ignoring their problems, and “using the women of the parish like they were some kind of
fringe benefit”, Apthorp said. He was suspended from the Tucson church. His contract as a counselor for Tucson General
Hospital’s Westcenter was not renewed. He gave nationwide worships and lectures based on a book of advice for clergy with
alcohol and drug addictions. The 21-year-old victim, who publicly identified herself as Mimi Coleman, noted the betrayal made
her suicidal, gave her eating disorders and nightmares, shameful feelings over sex, continuing gynecological problems,
feelings of someone always watching her, feelings of panic whenever she sees a man in a clerical collar, and feelings that
she is a freak. “Never have I seen him practice what he preached, and I heard him preach a lot.”
Source: _Arizona Daily Star_ 3/13/92; _Boston Herald_ 5/7/92; _LincolnJournal_ 5/14/92.

LUTHERAN MINISTER REMOVED. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America removed Rev. Wendell Henkenmeier of Marblehead from the
ministry after a panel found him guilty of sexual misconduct & destructive practices during counseling of 5 victims.
Source: _Union-News_5/30/92.

SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER IMPRISONED. Groton Sunday School teacher Leslie Richard Danielson, 63, was sentenced to 5-10 years
after pleading guilty to sexually abusing 6 children under 14 years. He is already serving up to 10 years for a 1991
conviction involving 4 other children, but will be eligible for parole in 4 years.
Source: _Boston Herald_ 5/22/92.

BAPTIST CONVICTED OF RAPING BOY. A jury convicted Baptist minister Edward Quakenbush, of New Testament Baptist Church, town
of Wyoming, of raping & molesting a teenage boy in his church over a 4-year period, starting when he was 12. Members of his
church & family sobbed & shouted at jurors & a police detective who testified that the pastor had confessed to the
molestations. Quakenbush later denied confessing.
Source: AP/_Daily Telegram_, Adrian, Ml 9/12/92.

BRONSON MINISTER ARRAIGNED. First Congregational Church minister David Covert Moore was charged with 5 counts of criminal
sexual conduct of 4 children under the age of 15. In July he checked himself into Pine Rest Christian Counseling Services in
Grand Rapids.
Source: _Jackson Citizen Patriot_ 8/29/92.

CHURCH EVANGELIZERS PREYED ON LOW-INCOME KIDS. Menfrom a rural Baptist church known for its aggressive evangelizing of
children are suspected of molesting as many as 22 boys & girls. The associate pastor, volunteer bus driver & a third church
member are believed to have fondled some & raped others, ranging in age from 3 to 10, on church buses & property. Charges
involving 10 victims were brought against Associate Pastor Timothy Lee Leonard, 32, of North Sharon Baptist Church near Grass
Lake, & volunteer Sunday school bus driver, church deacon Mark Foeller. Three other church members are being investigated.
The suspects went to low-income housing projects or trailer parks in 4 counties, telling parents they would “take the
children to church & teach them about God”, according to Det. Robert Fitzpatrick, Jackson Co. Men would walk up to children
in their yards, coaxing them with treats to come to weekend services or summer _Bible_ school. Leonard was relieved of church
duties involving children in August, after police started investigating him when a doctor reported suspected abuse in a child
with a sexual disease. He also worked as instructor & gym teacher in the North Sharon Christian School, enrolling about 65
students. Church members were not informed, even after the arrests. In November, Gail Ganger, who lives 5 houses from the
church, organized a Sunday morning picket after learning that the church secretary knew about the allegations, yet still
recommended Leonard as a babysitter for her children. He & his wife Nadine had babysat for her 3 children 7 times since Oct.
1. About 2 dozen protesters carried signs saying “Clos It Down.” “The church knew about the allegations of child molesting,
but nobody told me about it. This church should not be able to carry on business as usual,” she said. “What a wonderful thing
it is to be part of a church where adversity happens,” said Rev. Bill Wininger, senior pastor. In January, Leonard was
released after 72 days in jail after 10 charges were dropped over the objections of the DA by Washtenaw Co. Dist. Judge
Thomas Shea, saying victims were either too young to testify or could not pinpoint the time of their assaults. Leonard still
faces 2 2nd degree criminal sexual conduct charges. Although he resigned from the church, church funds are being used to help
support his family & pay his legal expenses. The pastor said if he is acquitted, “I’m sure he would be welcomed back with
open arms.”
Sources: _Ypsilanti Press_ 11/12/92, _Detroit Free Press_ 11/12/92,
_Toledo Blade_ 11/18/92, _Jackson Citizen Patriot_ 11/16/92, 2/1/93.

LUTHERAN LEADER ADMITS CHARGES. Lutheran pastor David L. Anderson admitted having sexual relations with a number of boys and
young men while pastor of a leading Lutheran congregation in Moorehead, Minn. He resigned from the clergy of the Evangelical
Lutheran Church in America and as vice president for college relations in St. Olaf College in April, admitting sexual
misconduct with minors, college students, and male parishioners from 1973-1985. He confessed only after a parishioner
approached a staff member at the 4,000 member church with allegations in March.
Source: _Star Tribune_ 4/20/92.

LUTHERAN PASTOR RESIGNS. For the third time Rev. Rod Broding has left a job after being accused of sexual improprieties. The
Lutheran pastor resigned from First Lutheran Church in Pine River following accusations he admitted to sexual misconduct
there, but denies earlier accusations. Bishop Roger Munson, who oversees the Northeastern Minnesota synod of the Evangelical
Lutheran Church in America, said, “The church will assist in providing counseling to work through this turmoil & pain so that
healing & wholeness can be experienced in their lives.”
Source: _Star Tribune_ 10/22/92.

AIR FORCE CHAPLAIN RAIDED. Deputies raided the home of Veterans Administration chaplain Rev. Donald G. Phillips, of Butler
County, seizing 500 video tapes, movie equipment and restraints following a tip that he produced pornographic movies with
young girls. The Baptist minister recently received the highest recognition awarded a VA chaplain, “the Award for Excellence
in Chaplain Service”.
Source: _St. Louis Post-Dispatch_ 2/19/92.

BAPTIST VOLUNTEER CONVICTED. Granite State Baptist Church volunteer David Kirsch, 39, of Salem, was convicted of sexually
assaulting 6 young girls through the church from the late 1970s to the mid-1980s.
Source: _USA Today_ 9/25/92.

CLERIC FACES INCEST, RAPE CHARGES. Rev. Eugenio Matos of Spanish Mennonite Church, Trenton, father of 12, was charged in
March with raping his daughter from the time she was 5 to 15 years. In April he was charged with endangering welfare of a
child and 2 counts of aggravated sexual assault when a 23-year-old woman told investigators he repeatedly raped her while she
was between the ages of 8 and 10.
Source: _Trenton Times_ 4/28/92.

MINISTER & GIRLFRIEND INDICTED. Trenton pastorFranklin Tucker, 37, Final Call Ministry, was indicted for molesting his
girlfriend’s daughters, 9 & 15. His girlfriend was indicted for forcing her daughters to recant the allegations to police.
The abuse came to light when the 9-year-old told a school official, who contacted police.
Source: _Trenton Times_ 9/15/92.

NUDE MINISTER CONVICTED. Rev. Bruce Rentz, found guilty of indecent exposure after a state trooper saw him jogging naked and
chased him to his home, has resigned as minister from Greenbush Presbyterian Church. He was ordered to perform community
service, pay a $50 fine, and get counseling.
Source: _Union News_ 5/14/92.

TOP EPISCOPAL PRIEST RESIGNS AMID SEX SCANDAL. The highest-ranking U.S. Episcopal priest, who ironically headed a national
committee examining the church’s position on sexuality, resigned in October following charges he sexually abused young men in
his congregation. Rev. Wallace A. Frey, rector of St. David’s Church in DeWitt, is married with 2 grown children. A church
official said he had been involved in “sexual misconduct over a lengthy period with some male, young adults & a teenager
under his pastoral care”. The official said the number of victims appears to be “less than 10”.
Source: NYT News Service/_Chicago Tribune_ 10/7/92.

CIVIL SUIT: 11-YEAR-OLD MOLESTED. A family in Dare County, North Carouna is suing Methodist minister Carl M. Eller for
abusing their daughter, 11, as well as the North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church, a bishop and a reverend
for knowing of his history of sexual misconduct but doing nothing about it. The family says she was molested when her father,
a carpenter, was installing cabinets in the parsonage. Eller pleaded no contest to a charge of criminal assault on a female.
However, the family said that in 1987 Eller had molested or made lewd comments to 4 women at his church, and forcibly kissed
and touched 2 girls age 13. Three women had lodged formal complaints with the church, but the only action was to transfer him
from Aurora to Hamlet.
Source: _News & Observer_ 1/15/92.

SUPPORTERS GATHER FOR CONVICTED “FRIEND”. Pastor Roy McKinley, 45, who stepped down from Milan Friends Church after being
charged with molesting a teenage girl, pleaded guilty to gross sexual imposition and related charges. Supporters, including a
minister, crowded the courtroom where McKinley pleaded for mercy.
Source: _Toledo Blade_ 5/25/92.

SEXUAL HARASSMENT SUIT HITS CHURCH. A female employee at World Harvest Church in Columbus has filed a lawsuit saying the
father of the pastor sexually harassed her, also naming the church & its pastor as defendants. Naomi Endicott, 48, said Rev.
Rodney L. Parsley knew about the harassment but did nothing to stop it. James G. Parsley, his father, was her supervisor &
made unwanted sexual advances, even offering money for sex, she said.
Source: _Columbus Dispatch_ 10/17/92.

WOMAN SUES EPISCOPAL PRIEST. A Fostoria woman is suing Rev. Douglas Hodges, of Trinity Episcopal Church, Bishop James Moodey
& the owner of a counseling center, alleging the priest forced her to have sex as “treatment”. The abuse occurred at a
counseling center & the church. Shelley & Daniel Lebay seek more than $700,000 in damages.
Source: _Columbus Dispatch_ 10/9/92.

CHURCH SUED FOR NEGLIGENCE. One of several girls who said Alva minister Rev. Robert Bruce Brigden molested her is suing the
First Presbyterian Church for failingto check his background before hiring him. Allegationsof sexual crimes were made at his
former position in Kansas. Charges allege that he molested Alva church girls, ages 4 to 14. The church posted his bond.
Source: _Tulsa Tribune

PRESBYTERIAN MINISTER GETS 40 YEARS. Rev. Robert Bruce Brigden was sentenced to 40 years in prison for molesting young girls
in his congregation, convicted on 8 counts of lewd molestation & 1 count of rape by instrumentation involving a girl, 7.
Bridgen, 57, was accused of molesting 11 girls, aged 4 to 14, during the 4 years he was at the Alva church. His congregation
put the church up as bond, insisting he was innocent. He was placed in protected custody. Brigden blamed his arrest on a
girl, 4, whose parents were the first to take the children’s allegations seriously. “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned,”
Brigden wrote his wife about the 4-year-old, whom he described as “4 going on 400 years old”, saying she invited him to spend
the night in her bed, & was mad that he declined.
Source: _Tulsa Tribune_ 8/92, _Tulsa
World_ 9/3/92, _Daily Oklahoman_ 6/14/92.

MINISTER MOLESTER OF 400 SENTENCED. Eugene Church for the Deaf minister Joseph Bernard Ponder, 47, was sentenced to 2 years
for violating probation in 2 felony convictions of 1st degree sexual abuse of boys. He had received a year in jail for 2nd
degree sexual abuse of a boy, 14, in 1988. Officials believe an estimate that he molested 400 boys may be low. “Thismay be
the most prolific abuser of young boys who has ever stood in this court,” said prosecutor Kent Mortimore. “His whole life has
revolved around this his ministry, his choice of careers to put himself in contact with potential victims.” Ponder denies
abusing the boy during a swimming incident, and failed to complete court-ordered sex offender treatment. Source:
_Register-Guard_ 3/5/92.

CHURCH VOLUNTEER CHARGED WITH CHILD PORNOGRAPHY. Church volunteer Seven Jon Long, 41, was arrested for sodomy and taking
pornographic pictures of young girls under 12 from Assembly of God Church in Rogue River, where he was a youth volunteer. He
told detectives his pictures were art.
Source: _Daily Courier_, Grants Pass, 4/17/92.

CONVICTED PASTOR “RIGHT WITH LORD”. Rev. Virgil Carpenter, 48, pastor of Bible Missionary Church in Ontario, was convicted of
sodomy & sexual abuse of a girl, 9, over a 1-1/2 year period. A jury convicted Carpenter of 2 felony counts of sodomy & 4
felony counts of sexual abuse. He faces 5 additional felony charges in 2 upcoming trials. “I’m really not worried,” he told
supporters who had gathered in the
courtroom before the verdict. “I’m right with the Lord.”
Source: _Corvallis Gazette-Times_ 10/11/92.

LAY PREACHER WITH AIDS TRIED TO INFECT KIDS? Lay preacher Adam Brown, of Roseburg, Oregon, infected with HIV, was indicted
Nov. 13 for sexually abusing children to infect them with AIDS, including 5 counts of attempted murder, 9 counts of sodomy, 4
counts of rape, 5 counts of reckless endangerment, & 3 counts of sexual penetration with a foreign object. Boys & girls
told police he molested them repeatedly, threatening them with knives, scissors & matches. One boy said Brown rubbed semen
into a scratch on his arm. Another said Brown burned a _Bible_, warning that Satan would come unless the child stopped
resisting. Alleged victims include a 3-year-old girl, 7-year-old girl & 8-year-old boy. AIDS tests so far for the children
have been negative.
Source: AP/_Boston Globe_11/29/92.

YOUTH PASTOR JAILED FOR ABUSING GIRL. Sentenced to 60 days in jail for molesting a young girl was Michael Wayne Cross, 32,
youth pastor of Oregon City Evangelical Church. He must undergo a sex offender treatment & register with the state for life
as convicted sex offender. The girl, now 17, said he sodomized her numerous times over a year. An officer said the crimes
occurred at the church or at church functions.
Source: _Oregonian_ 10/29/92.

PROMINENT METHODIST PASTOR WITH AIDS EXPLOITED PARISH? Following the death on July 4 of Rev. William O. Walker, a prominent
Eugene pastor at First United Methodist Church, it was discovered he not only died of AIDS but had used his ministerial
position to make sexual advances to at least 12 men, including 6 ministers. Walker infected his wife Carol with AIDS; she
died in 1990. In November a church superintendent told parishioners that Walker had been accused of making sexual advances to
2 male teenagers at a Methodist church camp 17 years earlier.
Source:_Register-Guard_ 12/6/92.

CHURCH COUNSELING TURNED ABUSIVE. A Fairless Hills couple filed suit against a church counselor and Calvary Full Gospel
Church, alleging the pastor referred them to abusive Aldo Maselli. The depressed woman said he told her he “had prayed about
it and that God told him that it was OK for him to express his feelings of love”, initiating a 2-year sexual relationship.
The suit by Rebecca and Steven Hicks charges negligent, reckless practices contrary to accepted counseling standards, and
battery and sexual abuse.
Source: _Bucks County Courier Times_ 5/20/92.

DEACON ACCUSED OF ASSAULTING 8 GIRLS. Victory Baptist Church deacon Daniel Eaves, 34, was arrested for sexually assaulting 8
girls, ages 3 to 14, at his Springfield home and during youth groups last year.
Source: _Philadelphia Inquirer_ 4/25/ 92.

PRESBYTERY REMOVES PASTOR. The Pittsburgh Presbyteryremoved the associate pastor of the prominent East Liberty Presbyterian
Church on charges of sexual misconduct. Rev. Howard Eybers, 43, is accused by 3 women of making sexual overtures.
Source: _Pittsburgh Post- Gazette_ 3/7/92.

SEXTON GETS 35 YEARS. A sexton at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Whitehall Township was sentenced to 35-70 years in jail
for molesting boys. Adam Tannous, 61, of Allentown, agreed to plead guilty to 7 merged charges of involuntary deviate sexual
intercourse, after originally being charged with more than 4,000 crimes. One victim said Tannous bragged of having sex with
400 boys over the past 40 years. He was removed as pastor of St. George’s Episcopal Church in Hellertown in 1970 because of
similar allegations. In 1972, he was arrested on a morals charge in Emmaus. He was “treated”, not jailed, then expelled from
the ministry. Despite this record, St. Stephen’s hired him in 1976 to be custodian, saying he was rehabilitated. Many victims
say Tannous caused them alcohol problems by plying them with liquor.
Source: _Express-Times_ 12/17/92.

CULT PASTOR NOT PROSECUTED. Officials in Clearfield & Delaware counties won’t prosecute doomsday pastor Anthony Marcolongo of
Johnstown, despite allegations by 6 women followers of sexual assault. “We thought this wasn’t the type of case that tax
dollars should be spent on,” said Assistant DA Sheldon Kovach. The women said the minister broke them physically, making them
work 18-hour days, & filled them with fear of doom in Hell if they did not have sex with him.
Source: _Clearfield Progress_ 9/1/92.

METHODIST MINISTER PLEA BARGAINS. Rev. Wally Walton, Grace United Methodist, Pierre, pleaded no contest to felony charges of
incest & sexual contact with a minor, & was immediately jailed. Walton has agreed to provide details of “sex crimes & illicit
sexual activities” against latchkey kids, Girl Scouts & otherchildren. Additionally, Walton’s wife Betty was charged with
sexual contact with a child, incest, & failure to report a felony. Also indicted are Walton’s adopted twin daughters &
son-in-law, facing similar charges. Walton drove a bus for a local latchkey program. Mrs. Walton worked with the Girl Scouts.
Fellow minister Rev. J. Edwin Coates of the First United Methodist Church in Mitchell, accuses social workers of being
overzealous, & said the arrests were indicative of a “police state” & a witchhunt. Prosecutor Mark Moreno excused the delay
in charging Walton by saying: “If you charge a minister as I’ve done, you’d better be sure that you have some concrete
evidence, because it’s going to totally annihilate his future.” Walton voluntarily surrendered his ministerial credentials.
Methodists dropped a 2-year statute of limitations on disciplinary problems in May 1992, with no time limit on sex offenses.
Source:_Rapid City Journal_ 7/28,29,31/92, 8/1/92.

METHODIST COVER-UP ALLEGED. No charges were broughtwhen youngsters in Piedmont told police & social services they were
molested in 1983 by Rev. Wally Walton (see above) at Piedmont Grace United Methodist Church. After a 2-year sabbatical,
Walton became pastor at Grace United Methodist in Pierre, where he has been charged with sex offenses against children.
The Methodist hierarchy decided he was “not a danger to anyone”, permitted him to give sermons during his 2-year break, &
“felt he should be given another chance”, said Rev. Dick Fisher, formerly Westem Dist. superintendent of the Methodist Church
in Rapid City. “We had two concerns at the time: to protect the people & save a person for the ministry.”
Source: _Rapid City Journal_ 7/29/92.

MOLESTING MINISTER-BROTHERS CONVICTED. Youth ministerDon McCary, 48, was sentenced to 72 years of prison for molesting 4 boys
at his Baptist Church in Chattanooga, Tenn. His twin brother Ron McCary, a Christian comedian and pastor, is in prison after
committing aggravated rape on a boy, 6. Their older brother Richard McCary spent 2 years in the California prisons in the
1980s after conviction on 6 charges of child molestation. Explains sex offender therapist Deloris Roys, Don McCary “had a
perfect camouflage … For the person who uses religion as a camouflage, it gives them the mantle of being an OK or holy
person. We all imbue religious people with the idea they wouldn’t hurt us. They have instant authority, a power we don’t
have, a mantle of respect.” Don McCary had been youth/choir director for 15 years at Central Baptist Church of Hixson, Tenn.
He recorded lewd conversations with young boys and gave copies to his brother Ron in jail.
Source: _Birmingham News_ 5/9/92.

$10 MILLION SOUGHT FROM BAPTISTS. Five civil lawsuits asking for $10 million in damages were filed against the Southern
Baptist Convention for sexual assaults by convicted minister Donald McCary, of Chattanooga, sentenced in April to 72 years in
prison for assaulting 5 boys. James Guenther, general counselor for the SBC in Nashville, shrugged off the suits: “We’ve
probably had a dozen of these cases where a plaintiff has undertaken to show that SBC controls a minister.” He says no SBC
agency beyond the level of the congregation has legal or disciplinary authority over pastors. McCary’s twin brother is also
in prison for abusing children; their older brother is on parole for similar charges.
Source: _Birmingham News_8/21/92.

BAPTIST CHARGED WITH INDECENCY. Charged with indecency for fondling a preteen girl in 1991 was Norman “Buddy” Wilcoxen, 60,
former pastor of Calvary Baptist Churc in Bastrop.
Source: _Austin American-Statesman_ 10/17/92.

POLYGAMOUS HILLBILLY PREACHER CHARGED. The leader of the Evangelistic Tabernacle in Martinsville was charged with felonious
seduction & taking indecent liberties with a minor when he “married” a 16-year-old high school junior. Although already
married, he was not charged with polygamy since he did not legally marry the teenager. Rev. Elwood Gallimore, 42, was also
charged with performing marriage ceremonies without a license. His favorite topic for sermons is polygamy, citing such
polygamous biblical characters as David & Solomon. He said the _Bible_ will be his only defense during the trial. Gallimore,
whose dutiful 42-year-old wife was hospitalized for “nerves” after the second “marriage” was proposed, says he is being
prosecuted by “jealous” men. A magistrate ordered him to stay away from the teenager on Jan. 19.
Source: _Washington Post_ 1/21,27,28/92.

PROMINENT EPISCOPALIAN REMOVED. Nationally known Rev. W. Graham Pulkingham, now living in Virginia, wassuspended temporarily
from the Episcopalian priesthood after admitting he initiated a sexual relationship with a man he was counseling, destroying
the man’s marriage. Church officials asked everybody to pray.
Source: _Denver Post_ 8/92.

METHODIST LEADER ADMITS IMPROPER RELATIONS. Newly retired Rev. Edward W. Bauman, once named one of the country’s top
preachers by _Time_ Magazine, admitted in a September letter to the Foundry United Methodist Church in D.C. to “relationships
of a sexual nature … with several women in the congregation”. Bauman, 65, has a TV show, “Bauman _Bible_ Telecast”, airing
worldwide. The admission came only have 2 women filed grievances with Bishop Joseph Yeakel; one had sought counseling from
Bauman. Bauman agreed to seek counseling at Johns Hopkins Hospital & to retire. After a 3rd woman came forward. Bauman agreed
to write a letter to the congregation & make financia restitution to 2 women. Bauman insists the relationships were “fully
consenting” & “could not be interpreted as harassment”. Among Bauman’s congregants were Sen. Bob Dole & Elizabeth Dole, &
former Sen. George McGovern. According to the national United Methodist newsletter, 13% of pastors in 5 Protestant
denominations acknowledged having intercourse with parishioners.
Source: _Washington Post_ 9/18/92.

LUTHERAN PRINCIPAL ACCUSED. Denying charges of indecent liberties with a student is John P. Rossow, who resigned in March as
principal of Central Lutheran Christian School, Tacoma. Now a senior, the youth said Russow took him on outings and French
kissed him for hours when he was a 5th grader, and tried to masturbate him at a state park after plying him with whiskey. A
teenager said, “He had kids at his house a lot.”
Source: _Morning News Tribune_ 4/8/92.

METHODIST MINISTER PLEADS GUILTY. Rev. Lawrence “Larry” E. Trim, 55, of Evangelical Methodist Church in Methow, pleaded
guilty to 3rd degree rape of a child, in connection with an assault of a boy, then
13. Source: _Wenatchee World_ 9/17/92.

CONVICTED MOLESTER RECRUITING BOYS. A convicted child molester barred in Pennsylvania from recruiting choirboys to tour in
Europe is now operating out of Morgantown, WV. John B. Shallenberger, 74, was convicted in 1985 of indecent assault, indecent
exposure and corrupting the morals of a Dutch choirboy, 11. He was convicted in 1961 and 1975 on similar charges. In 1990, a
judge ordered him to reveal his criminal record while recruiting boys and to pay a $5,000 fine for violating a 1978 agreement
with the Bureau of Consumer Protection to reveal his background. He has not paid the fine or signed the petition.
Shallenberger insists, “Every choirmaster and every music teacher in the country knows of my criminal record … You would be
surprised at how many parents beg me to take a second brother on tour.” His July in Paris tour was handled through the
Children’s Choir Federation.
Source: _Pittsburgh Post-Gazette_ 2/15/92.

CONVICTED MOLESTER STOPS TOUR. Following an investigation by the West Virginia attorney general’s office, convicted child
molester John B. Shallenberger, 74, folded his Children’s Choir Federation, soliciting boys from grades 4-7 to take 2-week
singing tours in Europe. He had been convicted in 1975 & 1961 for child molestation. In 1991, Pennsylvania authorities
charged him with ignoring a court order to reveal his child molestation
convictions to the parents of recruited children, so he moved to West Virginia. Shallenberger has moved back to Pennslyvania
& is running an elevator repair company.
Source: _Charleston Gazette_ 7/8/92.

MINISTER PLEADS GUILTY TO ABUSING NIECE. Baptist minister Rev. Ernest Lee Rowsey, 51, of Wharton Missionary Baptist Church in
Bim, pleaded guilty to 1count of 1st degree sexual abuse, involving his niece. Originally, he was charged with molesting 2
nieces between 1976-1982, but they agreed to drop all but onecharge against their uncle. The kids were molested for 6 years
starting from ages 5 & 7. Rowley’s sister also said he molested her as long ago as 1969, but at that time, child sexual abuse
was a misdemeanor, & the statute of limitations has expired.
Source:_Charleston Gazette_ 11/1/92.

“NOT A TIME FOR JUDGMENT.” The arrest of Brookfield minister Richard O. Bidwell for lewd & lascivious conduct is “not a time
for judgment” but “a time when we in the Christian community need to offer our support & our prayers,” opines Rev. Kenneth
Wheeler, an official with the Greater Milwaukee Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Bidwell, pastor of
Calvary Lutheran Church, married with children, was arrested at a park in the afternoon with his genitals exposed, in the
company of another exposed man.
Source: _Milwaukee Sentinel_ 7/14/92.

NEW BRUNSWICK PREACHER CONVICTED. Calling his crimes a “most sick, disturbing and tragic matter”, Justice Thomas Riordon
convicted Pentecostal preacher Rev. Aubrey McCallister of touching, fondling and sodomizing a young girl for 10 years,
beginning when she was 7. The assaults took place at his home and church Sunday school in Minto, New Brunswick. He was
convicted of the same offense 2 years ago and sentenced to 5 years in jail but was granted a new trial. His loyal
congregation packed the courtroom during both trials, and had to be warned not to repeat their angry outburst. Followers
shook the convict’s hand and said they were sticking by him. The victim, now 20, was jeered by the minister’s congregation.
McCallister called her “daddy’s little girl” and rewarded her with Oreo cookies or told her to pray for
forgiveness after each encounter. “Aren’t we sneaky? If we ever get caught, mom would kick us both out,” he
told her.
Source: _Telegraph Journal_, Saint John, N.B., 3/6/92.

“GOD HAS FORGIVEN ME FOR WHAT I’VE DONE.” Nova Scotia religious leader Harold Jollimore, 63, convicted in December of sexual
and indecent assault of young girls, was sentenced to 2 years in prison. He preached biblical passages while sexually abusing
neighbor girls. One 9-year-old who had a breakdown after 8 years of abuse has been in therapy since 1978. He attracted
children by running a candy and soda postore on his property. He told the judge, “God has forgiven me for what I’ve done,”
saying he doesn’t understand why the victims haven’t been able to “put this behind them”. He was also ordered to take
psychiatric counseling during a 3-year probation.
Source: _The Spectator_ 2/11/92.

“HORRIFIC” HARASSMENT IN CHURCH OF CANADA PROMPTS STUDY. The task force on sexual abuse, exploitation, and harassment urged
the Church of Canada to develop a code of ethics for ministers because of ~horrific proportions” of sexual harassment in the
church. The panel said women are more likely to be sexually harassed in the church than in the workplace. “A
five-denominational study [in the U.S.] conducted in 1987 found 5.5% of therapists had sex involving intercourse with their
clients, while 12.6% of clergy admitted to sexual involvement including intercourse with their parishioners,” reported Rev.
Peter Lougheed of Evanville, Ontario. Many ministers are engaging in personal counseling without any training or codes of
ethics, said Walter Faquharson, moderator of the United Church. LUTHERAN TEACHER CHARGED. Arrested for sexually assaulting
boys at John Calvin Christian School in Burlington, Ontario is Theodore Richard Vanderveen, 30, who taught 4th grade for 4
years.
Source:_Spectator_ 3/2/92.

CHURCH SUED FOR CHOIRMASTER’S ASSAULTS. St. George’s Cathedral & the Anglican church are being sued over a choirmaster’s
sexual assaults on choirboys. John Gallienne is serving a 6-1/2 year sentence for abusing boys. Now 17 plaintiffs are suing,
claiming damages, plus interest & costs. The suit in part claims church officials were aware of Gallienne’s misconduct & held
at least 5 meetings over a 6- year period to discuss them, yet took no action to protect boys.
Source:_Ottawa Citizen_ 11/11/92.

ANGLICAN PRIEST SUSPENDED WITH PAY. Owen Sound minister Jim Francom was suspended With pay from St. George’s Anglican Church
after being charged in July with rape & assault of a girl under 14. The assaults were alleged to have occurred in London,
Ontario between 1975-1984
Source: _Ottawa Citizen_ 8/18/92.

PASTOR GETS 6 MONTHS. Pastor Ed Brennan, 45, of Whitehorse Christian Bible Fellowship Society, got 6 months in jail and 3
years’ probation for sexually assaulting a young married parishioner in the Yukon.
Source: _Spectator_ 12/17/91.

ANGLICAN BISHOP CHARGED FOR SOLICITATION. Anglican Bishop Owen Dowling, 57, of Canberra and Goulburn, was recently charged
with soliciting a male off-duty cop for prostitution.
Source: _Christian Century_ 5/13/92.

New South Wales Anglican priest Eric William Griffith, 50, of Gratton, was jailed for 18 months after pleading guilty to 3
counts of indecent assault & 4 counts of gross indecency against a boy, 14.
Source:_Courier-Mail_ 11/15/92.

SETTLEMENT SHROUDS BAPTIST CASE. A secret settlement was reached just before a civil suit went to jury against Moffett Road
Baptist Church minister Henry Hobson, Mobile, for sexually abusing a girl, 14. Hobson admitted having sexual intercourse with
the girl he referred to as an adopted daughter, once when she accompanied him on church “visitation”. He admitted she “wanted
out”, but called her a “pleasant diversion”. At first he denied her accusations and asked her to say she had lied, for
“damage control”. He resigned in April 1991 after a suicide attempt when the girl confided in the youth pastor about him.
Attorney Robert Cunningham, Jr. told jurors that many church members shunned the 9th grader, blaming her. His attorney
argued, “It certainly was not part of his job to have sexual intercourse with her, and therefore the church is not
responsible,” adding: “He thought it was better she learn about sex from him rather than some young boy at school.”
Source: _Mobile Register_2/12/93.

CULT LEADER GETS 16 YEARS. Fugitive religious leader James Randazzo, convicted in 1989 of sexual exploitation of children,
was sentenced to 16 years in prison. Founder of Spiral of Friends cult, he videotaped sex sessions with teenaged children
during “therapy”. His wife Colleen is serving an 8-year prison term. Randazzo had skipped the country, but was
nabbed last fall in Hungary.
Source: _Rocky MountainNews_ 1/30/93.

MAYER (FINALLY) GETS 3 YEARS. The Rev. Robert E. Mayer, 53, implicated in numerous cases of sexually abusing minors, was
sentenced to 3 years in prison for molesting a girl, 13. Four men also testified during the trial about Mayer’s advances
toward them 9 years ago, when they were 13 and 14. “The evidence indicates a long history of sexually inappropriate conduct
with children and adults,” said prosecutor Mark Cavins. “This crime was not committed on impulse or spur of the moment.”
Mayer is the first priest in Cook Co. tobe sentenced to prison. He continued to maintain his innocence, pleading for mercy:
“As God is my witness I was never alone with the girl,” Mayer told thejudge. Judge Thomas Durkin replied, “God is not your
judge today.”
Source: _Chicago Tribune_ 2/6/93.

YOUTH MINISTER CHARGED. Garden City Church of Christ youth minister Rev. Cameron K. Huffman, 41, was charged with 21 counts
of child molestation for molesting a young boy for a year. Huffman had admitted to being a pedophile during a counseling
session. When the church in Columbus was notified of Huffman’s admission, it fired him and informed the congregation, also
calling police. Police received complaints against Rev. Huffman from other Indiana cities and states, but the 5-year statute
of limitations hashampered some investigations.
Source: _Indianapolis Star_ 1/28/93.

METHODIST MINISTER ASSAULTS DEPRESSED TEENAGER? A lawsuit filed in February accuses United Methodist minister R. Gene Voss of
sexually assaulting a female teenager during counseling sessions for depression at the First United Methodist Church,
Crawfordsville. In 1984 her minister began fondling the 15-year-old, initiating intercourse when she was 16. “Over the next
four years Gene Voss raped the plaintiff over 60 times,” says the lawsuit. The woman has incurred more than $65,000 in
treatment for abuse. Voss gave up his minister credentials in 1991. She is also suing the Crawfordsville church and the
United Methodist South Indiana Conference. “You can say anything in a lawsuit,” was the cavalier response of the conference’s
legal advisor.
Source: _Indianapolis Star_ 2/4/93.

LUTHERAN TEACHER CHARGED. St. Paul’s Lutheran elementary school teacher Gerald J. Bauer, Jr., 31, was charged with molesting
a student, 12, during a visit to his home. The Farmington Hills teacher was charged with 1st and 2nd degree criminal sexual
conduct. Source: _Detroit Free Press_ 2/13/93.

MORE CHARGES DISMISSED AGAINST BAPTIST. Washtenaw Co. Dist. Judge Thomas F. Shea threw out 2 charges of 1st-degree criminal
sexual conduct against Baptist deacon Mark Foeller, leaving 6 counts of criminal sexual conduct. The deacon and bus driver at
North Sharon Baptist Church is accused of raping a boy, 9, twice, at the church, which has a campaign to bus low-income
children from 4 counties to its Sunday school and church camp. The dismissals follow earlier dismissals against assistant
pastor Timothy Lee Leonard, 33, originally charged with 12 similar counts. Judges dismissed all his charges, saying the
alleged victims were either too young to testify or that their testimony was too vague. At least one family will file a civil
lawsuit against the North Sharon Baptist Church and Leonard, according to Ann Arbor attorney Mark A. Hopper. “We will sue the
church for negligent hiring and negligent retention of those workers.” Leonard has been invited back to the church and is
directing its music programs. A mother told a reporter she was “stunned” and “numb” by the judge’s decision. Shea ruled
that a 9-year-old could not testify about being raped in the church nursery, because she couldn’t say on which day it
happened.
Source: _Jackson Citizen Patriot_ 2/5&18/93.

MOLESTER STILL LISTED IN CHURCH ANNUAL. A LutheranChurch-Missouri Synod pastor who admitted to sexually molesting a Duluth
boy and who is being sued for molestation by 3 others, is still listed as a pastor in good standing in the synod’s 1993
Lutheran Annual. Rev. Daniel Reeb admitted in 1991 that he molested a parishioner, 13, several times in the 1960s, and made
official testimony about it to church officials. His victim and several others have filed lawsuits. Reeb resigned a year ago,
but was put on “restricted status” and can still preach. He moved to Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Source: _News-Tribune_ 3/3/93.

LUTHERAN PASTOR ADMITS SEX WITH BOY. Cloquet pastor Wayne Vetter of Zion Lutheran Church pleaded guilty to 1st degree
criminal sexual contact with a juvenile. He is in counseling for sexual abuse and is expected to be sentenced to a
correctional center. He served ministries in Madison, Wis., and Grand Forks, N.D. A man came forward to say Vetter had
molested him in Grand Forks, but the statute of limitations has expired. Vetter admitted to a habit of anonymous Sex
in public places.
Source: _Duluth News-Tribune_3/19/93.

POLL REVEALS WIDESPREAD ABUSE. 7% of Minnesotan protestants personally know someone who has been sexually abused by a member
of the clergy, while 5% of Catholics did, and 2% say they have been touched by a clergyperson in a way that made them
uncomfortable, according to a _Star Tribune_/WCCO-TV Minnesota Poll phone survey of 1,222 Minnesotans was taken from Jan. 26
to Feb. 5. 1991 survey of Minnesota clergy showed 15% of mainline Protestant clergy admitted to an affair outside of.
Source: _Star Tribune_ 2/21/93

CHARGES REDUCED FOR PASTOR. Third-degree sexual assault charges were reduced to attempted contributing to delinquency of a
minor against Beatrice pastor Rev. Norman Scott Callahan, 50, associate pastor of Centenary United Methodist Church. He is
accused of sexual contact with a boy, 15, and was suspended for 60 days from his post.
Source: _Omaha World-Herald_3/20/93.

MENNONITE REV. RAPED DAUGHTER? The Rev. Eugenio Matos, 61, was charged with 18 counts of repeatedly raping his daughter over
an 11- year period. The pastor of the Spanish Mennonite Church in Trenton has 12 children. He is accused of sexually
assaulting the girl when she was 5 in 1981, continuing the abuse until his arrest in March, 1992. Source: _Trenton
Times_ 2/4/93.

EPISCOPAL PRIEST CHARGED WITH SEXUAL BATTERY. An Episcopal priest, Douglas Hodges, 57, was charged with sexual battery, a
3rd-degree felony, in a 1991 incident involving a parishioner in counseling. A Fostoria woman and her husband, who said
Hodges had sexual intercourse with her during counseling, had previously filed a civil suit against Hodges, Bishop James
Moodey of the Episcopal diocese of Ohio, Trinity Episcopal Church, Fostoria, and the owner of the counseling center. An
episcopal official says Hodges is no longer a priest, but declined further comment.
Source: _Toledo Blade_ 2/11/93.

PARISH SUPPORTS PORTLAND PREYING PASTOR. Prominent pastor Rev. Willie B. Smith, 64, former president of Ecumenical Ministries
of Oregon, is accused of sexually abusing 3 teenage girls at First African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church. He was charged
with 11 counts of 1st degree sexual abuse, a felony, and 1 count of 3rd degree sexual abuse, a misdemeanor. Pastors in the
community werequick to speak about his “exemplary” work. Two of the victims told police Smith had cornered them in his church
office and groped them. A third said she was repeatedly abused by Smith for 16 months, beginning in September 1990. The
victims were 12, 13, and 17 at the time of the incidents. Almost every parishioner lined up to hug,kiss and reassure Smith
following the arrest.
Source: _Oregonian_ 3/13,15/93.

EPISCOPAL PRIEST, “ABOVE REPROACH”, SUED, INVESTIGATED. Six women including one filing a $4 million civil lawsuit have
accused ByronBruce Newell, 60, former assistant pastor of Falls Church Episcopal Church, of sexual molestation or advances.
The plaintiff alleges Newell forced her into sexual activities during counseling sessions at the church for 2 years, telling
her that her sexual feelings toward him would bring her closer to God. Episcopal officials said they removed him from his
pastoral role and ordered counseling after learning of complaints by women in 1988. However, they only launched a full
inquiry last September. Newell, now a fundraiser for Trinity Episcopal School for the Ministry near Pittsburgh, is named in
the suit, along with the church, the diocese, the bishop and church pastor John W. Yates ll. According to the suit, Yates
told the woman what happened during counseling was her fault, and did not act on complaints from 5 other women that Newell
had verbally or physically harassed them. The dean of the seminary insisted Newell “has more than amply repaid our trust. His
behavior has been above reproach”.
Source: _Washington Post_ 3/20/93.

PASTOR ADMITS ABUSE OF GIRLS. Admitting having intercourse with a female teenager and indecently touching another, Rev. Larry
G. Johnson pleaded guilty to 2 counts against him dating from 1977-79 while pastor of Buffalo Wesleyan Church. He recently
resigned his position as superintendent of the Dakota District of the Wesleyan Church
Source: _Rapid City
Journal_ 2/28/93.

1988, Lancashire, England. Congregational Church Minister Garvock convicted of raping 4 yr. old girl.

1988, Winchester, England. 2 Anglican vicars, a choirmaster, a solicitor, and an already convicted molester jailed on 21
charges of sexually abusing boys at church outings, YMCA and churchyard.

1990, Solihull, England. Pentecostal Minister D. Stenhouse jailed on 5 charges of indecent assault on boys aged 12 to 15.

1991, England. Baptist Minister Ashby Breneman jailed for molesting 6 boys at his Christian Youth camp.–

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Lake Wales, FL. The pastor at the Church of the Nazarene has been charged with sexually assaulting a male 17-year-old youth leader three times in 2001. The Rev. Gene Francis, 52, of Lake Wales, was arrested Tuesday and charged with unlawful sexual activity with a minor. (Sarasota Herald-Tribune, June 4, 2003)
Lake Wales minister arrested in sexual assault case

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Tuscon, AZ. The Rev. David Valencia, 47, assistant pastor of a Pentecostal church is expected in court Wednesday on rape charges issued by Pennsylvania authorities. In Pennsylvania, Valencia was an assistant pastor at Christ Church at Grove Farm, an interdenominational church that uses Anglican liturgy. The pastor of Christ Church, the Rev. John Guest, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that Valencia was dismissed in late 2001 because he was found to have pornography on an office computer after he was warned about a similar incident months earlier. (Tucson Citizen, May 31, 2003)
Rev. David Valencia allegedly had sex with a 17-year-old girl he was counseling

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An associate pastor of a San Fernando Valley chapel was sentenced to 32 months in prison on Tuesday for failing to register as a sex offender. Ilger, a former second-grade teacher, was convicted in 1988 of molesting four students in his San Luis Obispo classroom. After being released from jail, Ilger and his family moved to Los Angeles, where he took a position with Hope Chapel of the Valley in Canoga Park. “We’ve lived and learned a painful lesson,” the Rev. Jeff Fischer of Hope Chapel said outside court. Fischer has said he and about 30 church elders knew that Ilger had molested young girls before he was hired.
Sentencing (Associated Press, April 3, 2003)

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Marty A. Hynes, 33, is charged with eight counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor, three counts of criminal sexual penetration of a minor and one count of attempted criminal sexual contact of a minor. Hynes was a youth pastor at the First Assembly of God church when the alleged incidents occurred, between July and December 2001. (Las Cruces Sun-News, March 24, 2003)
Trial of former youth pastor begins

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Dayton, OH. A Trotwood minister, whose lawyer said he has been a “sex addict” since age 10, sought treatment rather than face trial in a Brookville police-run Internet sting that presented a virtual 14-year-old boy in a chat room. But a Montgomery County judge denied his plea for treatment Tuesday. Turner’s attorney, Dwight Brannon, wrote “He had his first sexual experience with another male at the age of 19 while in college. Shortly after he began surfing the Web . . . his addiction slowly began to grow.” Turner had been pastor of Anchor Community Church, 38 S. Fairgreen Drive, for seven years when he was arrested last summer. (Dayton Daily News, 01.29.2003)
Minister arrested in police-run Internet sting

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Riviera Beach, FL. A prominent minister, his church and deacon have reached a $600,000 settlement with a mentally disabled man who accused the minister of rape. The Rev. Thomas Masters, pastor of the New Macedonia Church of Riviera Beach, and Church Mutual, insurer for the church, negotiated the settlement with the man, according to his attorneys and court papers filed Monday. The man, who has the mental capacity of a 7-year-old, attended New Macedonia and accused Masters of coercing him to smoke crack cocaine and then raping him twice on church property over Thanksgiving weekend in 1991. (The Palm Beach Post, January 14, 2003)
West Palm Beach minister, church pay $600,000

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Anaheim, CA. Anaheim pastor admitted Monday he fondled two teen-age girls 18 years ago while working as a part-time counselor at a Colorado church a decade before he was assigned to an Orange County church. “I was acting like an irresponsible teen-ager. There’s no excuse for what I did,” the Rev. Greg Tucker of Anaheim First Church of the Nazarene told The Orange County Register. The church settled lawsuits by two women, who said Tucker, then 22, molested them when they were 16. A Colorado jury sided with the women in a civil trial, ordering Tucker to pay the two $70,000. Tucker said he never told church leaders about the indiscretions before his ordination in Southern California seven years ago. In Colorado, sexual relations with a teen-ager were not considered criminal then, which led the women to sue for civil damages. The former youth pastor is now a senior pastor in a Nazarene Church in Anaheim, CA. The Nazarene General Superintendent’s remarks about the case were very telling, i.e. “This happened a long time ago. . .the man has ‘grown’ since then. . . isn’t the Christian faith all about forgiveness. . .”(North County Times, April 17, 2002)

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A Christian pastor in Indonesia was sentenced to four years imprisonment for sexually abusing seven refugee children under his care, officials said Tuesday. Saderah Sudiro, a Protestant clergyman with the Foundation For the Village Bible Society, was found guilty Monday of molesting refugee children ages 14 and 15 in his house in Solo in Central Java, said prosecutor Ika Ria Wati. “For more than a year he abused the minors who sought refuge in his foundation,” said Wati. (Associated Press, April 30, 2002)
pastor gets four years for molesting refugee children

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CHELSEA, VT. Pastor faces trial or stiffer sentence for child molestation. A judge on Tuesday denied a plea agreement for a former Newbury pastor accused of child molestation. The decision means Rev. Joseph A. Rinaldi may go to trial or receive a stiffer sentence on charges of molesting children while he was pastor of the Newbury Bible Church and principal of the Newbury Christian School between 1993 and 1998. “The crimes you committed are heinous crimes,” said Vermont District Court Judge Amy Davenport. “They are crimes that have left long lasting scars on their victims. And it is because of that, in the court’s view, the court cannot accept the plea agreement.” Rinaldi had pleaded guilty to five counts of lewd and lascivious conduct with a child in exchange for a prison sentence of two years. He admitted fondling three boys in his care. (The Associated Press, December 03, 2002)
http://www.caledonianrecord.com/pages/top_news/story/beec6c67c
Newbury Pastor Pleads Innocent To Molestation

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South Kingstown, New Zealand. 53-year-old Bruce C. DiMaria,the pastor of the Church of the Nazarene in Wakefield who also served as a teaching assistant in the South Kingstown School District’s Farm School for learning-disabled students was arrested Friday by North Kingstown police and charged with three counts of second-degree sexual assault for alleged incidents involving a 17-year-old female student who has autism and cerebral palsy. (NKStandard Times, Nov. 17, 2002)
Youth Paster charged

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Denver, CO. Denver police arrested a 26-year-old youth minister with St. John’s Church of God in Christ after a 15-year-old member accused him of sexual assault. (November 15, 2002, Rocky Moutain News)
Youth Paster arrested
News Report

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Tulsa, OK. Son Minh Rockstroh, 48, was arrested Saturday on three counts of rape by instrumentation and one count of lewd molestation of a child. He was jailed about 2 a.m. Saturday and is being held in lieu of $200,000 bail. The allegations have no apparent link to his work as a schoolteacher but to his leadership of a small religious group called Church Life, Tulsa police said. The victim and her mother met Rockstroh through Church Life, whose members meet in each others’ homes, Detective Chuck Haywood said. “There is not a pastor of the church, but everyone considered him to be the guy in charge,” Haywood said of Rockstroh. During an interview with police, Rockstroh admitted that he had molested the girl on three occasions, jail records show. (Tulsa World, 11/12/2002)
Church Leader Arrested

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TISHOMINGO, OK. Kentucky pastor accused of raping a 12-year-old Oklahoma girl has surrendered to Johnston County officials. The Rev. Chadwick L. Keathley, associate pastor of Ark of Mercy Church of God in Winchester, Ky., responded Tuesday to an arrest warrant issued Aug. 26. Prosecutors charged Keathley, 27, with lewd molestation, first-degree rape and rape by instrumentation. He was released after posting a $25,000 cash bond and an Oct. 22 preliminary hearing was scheduled. The alleged incident occurred during summer 2000 at a Church of God gathering at Camp Bond Youth Camp near Tishomingo. (The Winchester Sun, Sept. 2002)
Pastor surrenders to Oklahoma officials

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Concord, NH. Charles Gravenhorst, the self-described pastor who once preached his fringe Christian ministry on Concord Community TV, was arrested again yesterday, this time by federal agents for allegedly sending obscene material over the Internet and for using the Internet to induce teenage girls to engage in sex acts. Gravenhorst, 45, was charged earlier this year with sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl in her Windham, Maine, home. The police said that he had met the girl over the Internet. (August 13, 2002, Concord Monitor)
Pastor arrested again on sex charges
http://www.cmonitor.com/stories/crime/2002/new%5Fgravenhorst%5Farrest%5F2002.shtml

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Cape Coral, Florida. The FBI has issued an arrest warrant for a former minister and radio evangelist after seizing child pornography, weapons and other items from his home, records show. Troy Cecil Snowden, 59, was indicted last week by a federal grand jury on charges of possessing child pornography, wire fraud, transporting a child for illegal purposes and possession of a shotgun. (August 11, 2002), AP.
Evangelist on child abuse charges

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Baton Rouge, LA. A Baton Rouge minister is of jail on a $15,000 bond Wednesday following his arrest on molestation charges. Danny W. Johnson, Jr. was a youth pastor at an unknown church here in Baton Rouge where he molested a juvenile girl from 1997 to 1999, according to police. (July 9, 2002, WBRZ)
Minisiter arrested on molestation charges
WBRZ report

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Charlotte, NC. A worker at a Charlotte church after school program has pleaded guilty to four counts of taking indecent liberties with a minor. Investigators said Larry McCrae, 38, fondled three boys, 10 to 14 years old during the after school program at the Chapel of Christ the King Church on East 17th Street in Charlotte. (July 2, 2002, NBC6-TV)
http://www.nbc6.com/news/local/nbc6-070202-ag-mccrae.3f88315a.html

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Fort Waye, IN. A 65-year-old former church elder of Calvery Temple was arrested Friday and charged with molesting a teen-age boy he had taken to movies and ballgames in 2000, police said. (July 1, 2002, The Journal Gazette)
Ex-church elder charged with molesting
http://www.bradenton.com/mld/fortwayne/2002/06/30/news/3579693.htm

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NEW PORT RICHEY, FL — The mother of a 5-year-old girl has filed a lawsuit against the Gospel Outreach Church of New Port Richey, alleging that her daughter was molested because church officials failed to screen the background of a church volunteer. Alfonso Morales, 54, pleaded guilty last month to molesting the girl on a church bus in May 2001. He also pleaded guilty to molesting a second 5-year-old girl in the church parking lot in November 2000. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Morales was previously convicted in New York of sexual battery on a child. He was released from prison in 1992 after serving five years. (June 25, 2002, St. Petersburg Times)

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Lake Wales, FL. William Benjamin Wells, 36, pastor of Christian Harvest Ministries, was arrested on June 6 and charged with two counts of molestation on a victim less than 12 years old, two counts of sexual assault on a victim under 18 years of age, and one count of sexual battery on a victim under 12 years old. (June 20, 2002; Lake Wales News)
Paster Wells arrested
News Report

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Kansas City, KS. Reginald G. Robinson, 24, a resident of Kansas City, was charged by the Jackson County Prosecutor on Monday, May 20, with one count of statutory rape, three counts of statutory sodomy and one count of child molestation.According to the police report, most of the incidents of molestation occurred in the basement of the Beth Judah Ministries Church of God In Christ. (The Call, June 14, 2002)
Church Youth Leader Charged In Molestation Of 13 Year Old

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Baker, LA. A Baker minister accused of molesting four children is being sought after failing to surrender to East Baton Rouge sheriff’s officials Thursday. An East Baton Rouge Parish grand jury indicted McFarland on Wednesday on four counts of sexual battery, two counts of oral sexual battery, four counts of molestation of a juvenile, four counts of aggravated crime against nature and two counts of second-degree kidnapping. The indictment accuses McFarland of performing sex acts with four children from 1990 through 1998. The children ranged in age from 8 to 16. Prosecutor Kim Brooks said McFarland initially met the children while working as a minister at Hightime Evangelistic Center in Baker. (June, 14, 2002, The Advocate)
Rev. McFarland arrested on multiple counts
Newspaper Report

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Dekalb, GA. A DeKalb County judge sentenced Pastor Troy Brown of the Greater Anointed Tabernacle Worship Center to 70 years in prison on 25 counts of child molestation. Prosecutors say Brown abused a 15-year-old boy who attended his church. (May 30, 2002, WSB-TV)
Troy Brown sentneced to 70 years
Troy Brown sentenced on 25 counts DeKalb minister remains defiant

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Columbus, GA. After four days of testimony and lawyers’ arguments, the child molestation case against the Rev. Wilmer D. Williams will remain without a verdict through the Memorial Day weekend, Muscogee Superior Court Judge Robert Johnston decided Friday. (May 25, 2002, Columbus Ledger-Enquirer)
Report in Cincinnatti Enquirer
Minister on trial

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England. Brother Stair Arrested: Criminal Sexual Conduct & Breech Of Trust. Mr. Stair’s wife Teresa claims “Brother” Stair admits to having sex with several “women” at the community. The claims and charges revolve around the fact that the women in question were underage, which means they were under the age of eighteen when Ralph Stair allegedly had sex with them. “Brother” Stair is sixty-nine. (May 16, 2002 ) Youth Paster charged

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Payne County, OK. Former youth minister of River of Life Church, Rex Jason Sumner, pleaded guilty in Payne County District Court on Friday to four counts of oral sodomy, four counts of lewd molestation, one count of second-degree rape and one count of indecent proposal to a child. (April 16, 2002, The Daily O’Collegian, Oklahoma State Univ.)
Former Youth Minister pleads Guilty
Ex-youth leader admits abuse
Report: Sex Scandal Brewing at Riverside Church

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Newbury, NH. Joseph A. “Pastor Joe” Rinaldi, 60, is charged with five counts of lewd/lascivious conduct with a child. He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted. The charges cover a time period from 1993 to 1998 and involve three boys whose ages ranged from 10 to 15 at the time of the alleged abuse. An affidavit refers to other alleged victims, one as old as 19. Rinaldi met the boys through the Newbury Bible Church, where he was pastor, and/or the Newbury Christian School, where he was principal. (The Caledonian-Record News, April 9, 2002)
Newbury Pastor Pleads Innocent To Molestation

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SPRINGFIELD, TN. A former youth minister was sentenced to eight years in prison yesterday after he pleaded no contest to charges that he raped one of his congregation’s 13-year-old boys. Before his arrest, Spain had worked two years as a youth pastor at the First Assembly of God Church. (Tennessean.com, March 2, 2002)
Former youth minister sentenced in boy’s rape

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CASSOPOLIS, MI. – A former Cass County minister was sentenced Friday to at least 10 year in prison for molesting a child. John Charles Yeager, 54, pleaded no contest to a sexual assault charge. Yeager is already serving an 8-20-year term in a case involving another sex offense. The sentences will run concurrently. In 1998, he was convicted of molesting a teenager who knew one of his daughters. Yeager was once a pastor at First Congregational Church in Constantine. (Feb. 7, 2002; WWMT TV) Convicted pastor sentenced again
WWMT report

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RAYMOND, NH. — A 20-year-old man who alleges a Raymond youth pastor molested him when he was 14 has told authorities that the church member often came to his house to punish him with a wooden cutting board and paddle, a police affidavit said.

Cranford was hired as a full-time youth pastor in February 2001. Despite being a registered sex offender, Cranford was hired as an associate youth pastor and the music minister at the New Life Assembly of God church. According to the affidavit, Cranford allegedly got on top of the boy, pinned him down, and performed a sexual act. Cranford was convicted of sexually assaulting a child while serving as an associate pastor at a church in Groton, Mass., police said. (Jan. 26, 2002; The New Hampshiore Union Leader)
Raymond man alleges he was molested as a teen
http://www.theunionleader.com/articles_show.html?article=8385
Victim’s emotional scars often last a lifetime
http://www.theunionleader.com/articles_show.html?article=8405

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Republic, KS. The pastor of a Republic church faces three to 10 years in prison in Kansas on six sexual abuse charges that date back to 1979. Russell Winkler, pastor at Republic’s First Christian Church for the past eight years, pleaded no contest to the charges Friday in an Atchison, Kan., courthouse. The judge found him guilty of six counts of aggravated enticement of a child. The abuse occurred between 1979 and 1981 while Winkler was associate pastor and youth director of the First Christian Church in Atchison. The victims were all boys, ages 12-13. (The Springfield News-Leader, Jan. 1, 2002)
Minister pleads no contest to sexual abuse charges that date back to 1979

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Eastland, TX. Case No. 31,691-98, is set for trial 04/23/01 in the 12th judicial district of Angelina County, Lufkin Texas. Defendants in this case are e)United Pentecostal Church International (UPCI) in Saint Louis MO, k)Texas District of the United Pentecostal Church,)United Pentecostal Church of Eastland Texas, n)Bobby Hart and Jonathan Mark Hart. Jonathan Mark Hart was convicted in Eastland, TX, Feb. 1999, on 3 counts of sexual assault of a minor child. The female children were 15 and 16 years of age and members of the Youth Group at Eastland United Pentecostal Church. Jonathan Hart attended Bible College at o)Gateway College of Evangelism and was acting Assistant Pastor at the Eastland United Pentecostal Church. He and his wife were the designated Youth Directors as well. Assaults on these young girls occurred on Church property and on Church related trips supervised by Jonathan Hart. Bobby Hart is the Father of Jonathan Hart and was also the Pastor of the Eastland Church at the time of the assaults. Bobby Hart appointed Jonathan Hart to both leadership positions. (2001)
Pentecostal minister Charged
Press Release

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MEADVILLE, LA. A Meadville minister was arrested Friday for an alleged sexual offense with a 9-year-old girl. Derwin Rogers, 43, was being held without bond Friday on charge of statutory rape of a female younger than 12 years old, said Franklin County Sheriff James Newman. Rogers, the pastor of Emmanuel Full Gospel Church in Meadville, is believed to have assaulted the girl at a house near the church that belonged to a church member, Newman said. Rogers is also being charged with sexual battery charges filed by a 19-year-old former employee at the day care. Rogers pleaded not guilty to the charges last week in Franklin County. (The Natchez Democrat, Dec. 1, 2001)
Minister charged in rape of girl

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FORT WORTH (AP) – A former North Texas pastor has been indicted on counts of sexual assault and indecency with three children, and police say allegations against the man go back at least 10 years.

Evidence collected at Jon Warnshuis’ house in Argyle has led to accusations that he sexually abused at least five boys in Argyle, Grapevine and Laredo, police say.

On Thursday, a Denton County grand jury returned three indictments against Warnshuis, 41, alleging two counts of indecency with a child, eight counts of sexual assault and four counts of aggravated sexual assault, District Attorney Bruce Isaacks said.

Argyle Police Chief William Tackett said the indictments involve three children at Oak Hills Evangelical Free Community Church near Argyle, where Warnshuis was pastor for four years.

In the mid-1980s, Warnshuis moved from California to Texas, where he worked toward a master’s degree in divinity from Dallas Theological Seminary, officials have said.

Police are also investigating accusations of sexual assault of boys at a church that Warnshuis attended in the early 1980s in Escondido, Calif. Saturday, November 10, 2001.
Youth pastor faces charges, arraignment lists sexual abuse count
Church rebuilding faith after pastor’s disgrace

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DENVER, CO. – A convicted child molester whose appeal of his sentence led to shorter terms for more than 1,500 sex offenders is accused of molesting a 14-year-old student from his Bible-study class. Fort Lupton police issued a warrant Monday for Vance Martin, 35, on charges he sexually assaulted the girl. He had not been arrested Tuesday. (10/30/2001) AP.
Colorado child molester accused of assaulting girl in Bible-study class
Molester in Jail on New Charges
Dark History Eludes Church’s Eyes
Molester in Jail on New Charges
Church Problems

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Sonoma County, CA. A judge ruled yesterday that Rev. Dick Bruner, a Petaluma resident and former pastor at Christ Church North Bay in Novato, will stand trial for allegedly molesting a 13-year-old boy. According to the alleged victim, now 16, Bruner molested him on three different occasions in 1998. Two of the alleged incidents happened at a retreat near Occidental, the youth said, and the third took place at Bruner’s home. The alleged victim said Bruner, 59, kissed him on the lips and rubbed his inner thigh in one incident. Another time Bruner, allegedly, asked the boy to sit on his lap while the pastor was wearing only a towel and kissed the boy again. (The Petaluma Argus-Courier, Oct. 10, 2001)
Petaluma pastor faces molest trial

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WORCESTER, Mass. – A judge has rejected a Millbury man’s assertion that he was seeking religious solace when he confessed to church leaders that he sexually abused three girls and has refused to suppress the statements as evidence against the man. Daniel R. Ferris, 56, a former Sunday school teacher, citing the so-called ”clergy-penitent privilege,” hoped to prevent a jury from hearing his confessions. State law prohibits members of the clergy from disclosing confessions made to them in their professional capacity or any conversation made from someone seeking religious comfort or advice. Ferris is awaiting trial in Worcester Superior Court on charges of indecent assault and battery on a child, indecent assault and battery, and posing a child in state of nudity. (9/22/2001, Portsmouth Herald)
Judge refuses to suppress statements in abuse case

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Bishop, GA. Minister Larry Michael Holmes, pled guilty to molesting a 14-year-old girl, and was sentenced to five years in prison followed by 15 years of probation. (Aug. 17, 2001, Athens Banner-Herald)

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Boston, MA. – A popular minister credited with turning around the lives of troubled youth resigned Friday amid allegations that he fondled a teen-ager in his care. Williamson allegedly touched an 18-year-old five years ago. The man, now 23, has told police of the alleged sexual assault, according to the Rev. Gilbert Thompson, pastor at New Covenant Christian Church where Williamson was a congregation member and a deacon. (July 22, 2001, Cape Code Times)
Youth Paster arrested
http://www.capecodonline.com/cctimes/archives/2001/jul/22/bostonyouth22.htm

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PERKASIE, PA. A Perkasie man who volunteered as a youth ministries leader at an Upper Bucks church faces up to 90 years in jail after admitting in Bucks County court in Doylestown yesterday that he sexually abused 20 boys.

Howard Earl White, 39, will be sentenced within 90 days, following an evaluation by the state Megan’s Law board, which will determine if he is a sexually violent predator.

County Judge Kenneth Biehn revoked White’s $375,000 bail and ordered him held in county prison until sentencing. But at the urging of White’s attorney, Richard Fink, Biehn agreed to allow White to turn himself over to prison officials Friday, so that arrangements can be made to place him in protective custody at the jail.

White, of South Main Street, hung his head and looked at the floor as the charges against him were read aloud in court. He did not testify, and refused comment as he left the courthouse. June 26, 2001; Bucks County Courier Timeshttp://www.phillyburbs.com/couriertimes/news/news/897306.htm

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A lifelong member of one of Atlanta’s largest and best known churches, the Cathedral at Chapel Hill, filed suit this week charging founding pastor Bishop Earl Paulk with child molestation. The charges are the most serious yet in a string of sexual misconduct allegations against Paulk and several other male members of his family that span decades.

Jessica Battle, daughter and granddaughter of prominent members of Paulk’s staff, said in her suit that from the time she was 7 until she was about 11 years old, Paulk “engaged in a pattern of conduct . . . that included caressing her, fondling her sexual organs, performing oral sex on her and having sexual intercourse with her.” She also charged that five years ago, when she was 17, Paulk had forcible intercourse with her. Some of the acts occurred on church property or during church-sponsored events, according to the suit, filed Wednesday in DeKalb County State Court. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Apr. 14, 2001)

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Grayslake, MD. Rev. Kurt Behrel, 51, pastor of a Grayslake church, was arrested and charged with molesting two boys in the 1980s. Officers found cocaine and illegal guns in Behrel’s home during his arrest. (02.06.01, The Daily Herald)

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EVERETT, WA. Forrmer youth pastor has been charged with fondling a 10-year-old boy he met at church. A charge of first-degree child molestation was filed Monday against Michael J. Babcock, 31, formerly a pastor at Sonrise Chapel. Under questioning with his lawyer present, Babcock admitted he touched the boy sexually during a sleepover at his home in July 1999, Snohomish County Deputy Prosecutor Tobin Darrow wrote in documents filed in Superior Court. (12/12/2000, AP) http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/fndl12ww.shtml

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PACE, FL. – A Panhandle minister faces a possible life sentence after he was arrested and charged with molesting children and young adults who lived with his family.

Floyd W. Linder Jr., 54, was arrested by sheriff’s investigators and charged with 9 counts of capital sexual battery and 3 counts of sexual battery. Sheriff’s investigators also obtained warrants charging 2 additional counts of sexual battery 15 years ago when Linder lived in Pensacola.

Linder, pastor of Pace Apostolic Church, was being held without bail at county jail.

Santa Rosa County sheriff’s skesman Jim Lyle said Linder has been investigated several times for sexual abuse since the 1990s, but he was able to keep his victims from talking by threatening to kill his wife. But Beverly Linder died in May of a stroke and Floyd Linder was arrested after detectives again interviewed his alleged victims, Lyle said.

Linder’s victims ranged in age from 5 to 24 years old when they were assaulted, records show. But Sherell Farmer, Linder’s stepdaughter, denies her stepfather assaulted anyone. “I live right behind him. There’s no way,” said Farmer, 33 and the oldest of eight girls and one boy raised by the Linders. AP 10/1/2000
Pace pastor pleads not guilty
Child molester preacher sentenced; Pace pastor gets 20 years

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Two South Carolina preachers – the Rev. Johnny William Cabe and the Rev. Shelton Joel Shirley, both of Hisway Ministries – were charged with bilking believers out of $7 million in an overseas investment fraud(unknown 3/24/2000)

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TAMPA, FL. – The search of an unpaid storage locker turned up pictures of young naked boys and led police to a church youth counselor who now faces child sex charges.

Marvin C. Thompson, 52, was being held without bond on 8 counts of sexual battery and lewd and lascivious conduct with children after his arrest in connection with sexual acts on two boys, ages 5 and 8.

Thompson had worked as a volunteer counselor for the Royal Rangers, a youth group affiliated with Temple Terrace Faith Assembly and had worked with at least one other Tampa church youth group, according to investigators.

The alleged victims, however, were not members of the church groups, they said. Police said Thompson had not paid his rental fee on a storage locker and when the owner opened it, he found hundreds of pictures of naked boys. The owner called police.

Detectives said they are searching for other possible victims and that after his arrest, Thompson told officers of sex acts with children dating back to the 1960s. AP 6/7/2000

Church counselor arrested on child sex charges(http://www.polkonline.com/stories/062200/sta_sex-charges.shtml)

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CLEARWATER – A former pastor has been sentenced to 20 years in prison after pleading no contest to charges he molested two young girls.

Rev. Charles Robinson, 63, former pastor of an AME Church in St. Petersburg, pleaded no contest to 5 felony charges of sexual contact with parishioners, ages 13 and 15, in 1998 and 1999.

Investigators said while sexual relations were consensual with the older girl, the younger teen told police he forced her. Under Florida law, it is illegal for an adult to have sex with a minor even if the contact is consensual.

In an agreement with prosecutors, Robinson pleaded guilty to 4 counts of handling and fondling a child under 16 and one of performing a lewd and lascivious act.

Robinson faced a maximum sentence of 75 years in prison if convicted at trial. The prosecutor said the minister was offered the plea agreement because the victims’ families wanted to avoid the trauma of trial.AP 6/7/2000

Minister gets prison in sex case (http://www.sptimes.com/News/070800/TampaBay/Minister_gets_prison_.shtml)
St. Petersburg minister sentenced to 20 years in sex case http://www.polkonline.com/stories/070800/sta_sex-case.shtml

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FREEHOLD. NJ. – A street preacher who helped “society’s rejects” has been sentenced to six years in state prison for sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl in his care.

Superior Court Judge Ira E. Kreizman acknowledged that Michael R. McCarthy, 56, had done some good during his years as a minister. But he told McCarthy he had done “a terrible thing” as the girl’s legal guardian.

“There are some lives you have saved,” he said. “But there is at least one life that has been ruined by what you have done.”

The victim, now 20, told Kreizman that she didn’t know what to do when the assaults started. She no longer trusts men, she said.

An evaluation of McCarthy concluded that he was not a repetitive and compulsive sex offender but that he was “opportunistic, hedonistic and exploitive,” Kreizman said. “She was the clay, he was the potter,” the judge said. “He was able to mold her in the impression he wanted. She was incapable of resisting.”

McCarthy first addressed the judge, then turned to the victim and apologized. “I am terribly sorry for what happened,” he said. “It was a horrible event in my life, and I apologize to the victim. I apologize for any hurt or harm I have done. I realize the gravity of what I have done.”

McCarthy told Kreizman he was concerned about what would happen to the people he shelters at his Set Free Ministries in Long Branch if he goes to jail. His wife works full time as a flight attendant and is the sole support of the family, he said.

“My concern is not for myself,” he said. “I understand I am responsible and have to pay for what I have done.”

Shortly after his arrest in 1996, his attorney said McCarthy denied the allegations. McCarthy said the girl – entrusted to his care at age 14 by her father because of family conflicts – invented the charges because his wife was going to punish her for refusing to do household chores. He pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree sexual assault in Dec. In exchange for the plea – which the victim agreed with – 7 other counts, including one of witness tampering, were dismissed.

As McCarthy was led away in handcuffs, some of his supporters who packed one side of the courtroom began to cry. Others were angry.

“You happy now?” one man said angrily to a woman sitting next to the victim. “Loser,” she replied. A court attendant called for order as the victim and her supporters were led out of the courtroom. Ashbury Park Press, 6/24/2000

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GAFFNEY, NC. – A 22-year-old church youth minister has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for molesting a teen-ager in 1998.

A jury found Chad Severance, of Bessemer City, guilty of fondling one teen-age boy. Severance is expected to be tried in two similar cases later.

All three boys were members of the New Harvest Church of God, which hired Severance as minister of music in May 1998. The boys said Severance would make excuses to spend the night with them either at their homes or at his.

Each described waking during the night to find Severance fondling them.

Severance, who serves as a minister of music at a North Carolina church, denied the charges. During testimony, he said he never slept with any of the boys when they visited his home. He said he was invited to stay at the home of one of the boys by the teen’s mother. 7/23/2000

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TULSA – A former Sunday school teacher who was sentenced to more than two life terms in his state case for multiple sex crimes against children has been indicted by a federal grand jury.

John Perry Sanger, 54, of Bristow, was indicted on one count each of use of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct to produce visual depiction, interstate transportation of child pornography and possession of child pornography in the July through Sept. 1999 incidents. The fourth count would require the forfeiture of his real estate in Bristow and a considerable amount of computer and electronic equipment if he is convicted of the possession count.

Sanger pleaded guilty in state court March 29 to 3 counts of rape by instrumentation and 2 counts each of lewd molestation, indecent exposure and lewd acts against a child under the age of 16. A judge ordered him to serve two consecutive life sentences, plus 20 years, as punishment.

Bristow police have contended that Sanger’s case might include up to 20 victims, although the charges stemmed from only two, a 9-year-old boy and his 12-year-old sister, who attended church with Sanger.

The boy testified at the state hearing that he had on several occasions accepted invitations to go to Sanger’s home to play computer games. On one of these occasions, the boy said, he was asked to take pictures of a nude Sanger on a bed with five “grown-up” women. The girl testified at the preliminary hearing that Sanger once asked her and another girl to undress during a game of “strip” poker at his home. Other juveniles were in the house when the victim lost a card game and Sanger performed a sexual act with her, according to a court affidavit. Federal charges were alluded to in Nov. when officials revealed that the FBI was also investigating the case.

An FBI agent said then that prosecutors would not take the case before a grand jury until federal officials had investigated further. World 6/10/2000

Local Briefs Man pleads guilty to sex crimes http://www.news-star.com/stories/031700/new_sexcrimes.shtml

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KNOXVILLE, TN. The former youth minister of a Powell church faces charges of sexual exploitation of a minor. The charges come after a computer consultant found pornographic images of children on a church laptop, according to the church’s senior pastor.

Jason Patrick Edelen, 24, was arrested on child pornography charges, according to an arrest report at the Sheriff’s Department.

Edelen was served with criminal warrants shortly after midnight, according to the arrest report. Edelen faces charges of sexual exploitation of a minor and aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor, the report states. Both charges are felonies.

The charges apparently stem from an investigation that began after a computer consultant scouring a church computer for viruses came across files containing pornographic images of children, according to Brian Kearns, the senior minister at Lighthouse Christian Church.

According to the Tennessee Code Annotated, both offenses deal with the possession of materials depicting minors engaged in sexual activity or simulated sexual activity.

According to Kearns, on June 26 church officials discovered files containing pornographic images on a church-owned laptop computer. The next day, church leaders confronted Edelen, who had permission to use the machine, Kearns said.

Kearns said Edelen resigned minutes after being told he was suspended. Kearns said officials then turned the information over to authorities for further investigation. He said church officials believe the incident only concerns images obtained over the Internet.

“There’s no evidence there was physical interaction with anyone,” Kearns said, adding that he didn’t believe that any children in the church’s youth group saw any of the images.

Edelen was the first youth minister ever at Lighthouse Christian Church, which was founded in March 1998. Edelen was hired two months later.

“This is difficult to take,” said Kearns, who has known Edelen since Kearns was a youth pastor in Springfield, Kent. “We’re serious about this. Our goal is to restore him back to health and a part of that is discipline,” Kearns said. He said the church also arranged for Edelen to obtain counseling after the discovery of the files.

Records show Edelen was jailed in lieu of $7,500 bond. News-Sentinel 10/3/2000

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Youth pastor faces charges

Arraignment lists sexual abuse count

HERMISTON — A youth pastor was arraigned Thursday on charges of one count of first-degree sexual abuse and eight counts of using a child in display of explicitly sexual conduct for a person to observe. The suspect is a former Hermiston School Resource Officer. Jay Brian Lynch worked for the Hermiston Police Department from January 1994 through July 1997, when he told Chief Andy Anderson that he wanted to give up his law enforcement career to seek a career in the church. He became youth pastor at Hermiston’s Church of the Nazarene. “I almost fell out of my chair when I heard about it,” Anderson said of Lynch’s arrest. Lynch is 42 years old.

The sexual abuse charge against Lynch involves a girl under the age of 14, said Chris Brauer, Umatilla County district attorney. The charges of using a child in display of explicitly sexual conduct involves two girls under the age of 14. A secret indictment on Sept. 27 led to Lynch’s arrest on Wednesday and his arraignment the following day. At the arraignment, Judge Eric Valentine appointed a public defender to represent Lynch and set bail at $250,000. A pretrial conference is scheduled for Oct. 17. (EONI, Oct. 6, 2002) Youth pastor faces charges

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Rev. Marchand of New Testament Fellowship Church is convicted of sexual molestation, neglect and physical abuse of his children in 1994 (Worchester Telegram & Gazette, May 28, 2000)
Appointment of guardian may add to cycle of abuse

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Los Angeles CA. Faith Healer Molests Children. Carlos Catalan, 49, a faith healer with no known religious affiliation, is being held on 15 counts of rape, two counts of sodomy, three counts of lewd acts with a child and one count of child molestation.Catalan would tell young women that having sex with him would lead to healing for family members. He told one young woman, aged 16, that unless she sacrificed her virginity to a saint channeled through him, that her father would die. (05.18.00, Reuters)

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AURORA, IL. – Rev. Paul Goodman, 54, has been indicted by a grand jury on 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse with 3 teenage girls. The television minister, who runs weekly church services at Provena Mercy Center, is accused of having sexual contact with the teens, ages 13, 16 and 17, according to the indictment.

His family is calling the allegations a gross misunderstanding. His wife, Arvis, said the situation began last fall when her husband wrote a letter to one of the teens. She called the note a “written lecture” on dating, with references to caressing. The minister’s family contends that the note fell into the hands of one of the girls’ aunts, who went to state authorities worried that the letter might be a sign of an abusive relationship.

Charges were leveled against Goodman after a grand jury gathered testimony from witnesses. Goodman was taken into custody without incident in Chicago. He was being held in Kane County Jail on $100,000 bond awaiting arraignment.

Arvis Goodman said she and her husband have been members of Faith Deliverance Church in Aurora. The couple run the Sinners Repentant Church of Jesus Christ, a group that Goodman said ministers to people with alcohol and drug problems. The Goodmans also are known in Aurora for their cable-access television program, “God’s Information Station.” 3/31/2000

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AURORA, IL. – A self-proclaimed minister and schoolbus driver faces multilple charges with soliciting sex from two 18-year-old males assigned to court-ordered community service at the church he ran from his home. Terrance Johnson, 45, was charged also with bribery and record-tampering for allegedly offering to falsely report that the men had finished their work in exchange for sex. He resigned as bus driver when local school officials got wind of the police investigation, and after more than 50 calls from concerned residents to investigators, more charges might follow. Tribune 1/28/00, 12/28/99, 12/3/99

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BOSTON – A mother, her son and another man have been charged with trying to bilk the Archdiocese of Boston out of $850,000 by claiming sexual abuse against a priest.

Sean Murphy, 35, his mother, Sylvia, 57, and Byron Worth, 41, have been indicted on conspiracy and attempted larceny charges. The trio claimed that Worth, Sean Murphy and his brother were sexually abused by a priest when they were children, said the State Attorney General. In 1998, Sean Murphy allegedly sought $850,000 from the archdiocese.

Police determined that at the time of the alleged abuse, neither Murphy nor Worth lived in the community where the abuse supposedly occurred. To support the scheme, Sylvia Murphy created phony school records showing that the family had lived in the town more than two decades ago, the DA’s office said.

An archdiocesan spokesman said no payments were made. Murphy’s brother, whose name was not released, was not charged. AP, 2/25/00

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DETROIT – Kevin Cain, 37, a Salvation Army choir director, has been charged in 5 separate cases of sexual abuse involving 8 boys, all of whom are expected to testify. One case dates back more than 8 years.

He faces 21 counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and 3 other sex-related charges. He faces up to life in prison if convicted of just one first-degree criminal sexual conduct charge.

Cain gave the youths money, clothes, alcoholic drinks and marijuana in exchange for sex, according to Detroit police. When police began investigating Cain last Aug., he fled but turned himself in this Jan.

He has pleaded not guilty and is being held in the county jail. The Salvation Army has fired Cain, who was a part-time employee.

Police said Cain has no known convictions. Free Press, 2/23/00

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SOUTH KITSAP, WA. A youth pastor at a South Kitsap church has been charged with third-degree child molestation, alleging he had sexual relations with a 15-year-old member of his youth group. Cecil Gregory Foust, 40, a youth pastor at South Park Assembly of God, was arrested Feb. 1. He pleaded innocent at his arraignment Friday. The alleged relationship began during a youth group trip in December, Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Jim Harris said. They allegedly had sexual contact on several occasions. Those contacts occurred in the church van when he drove her home, Harris said. (2/5/2000, The Sun, Bremerton, WA.)
Youth pastor charged with molestation
http://www.thesunlink.com/news/2000/february/0205a1f.html

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NORTHFIELD, MN. – Pastor and youth minister Grant Junior Grayson, 32, was sentenced to 9 months in jail after pleading guilty to sexually assaulting a 12-year-old boy whom he took to his house and on church trips. He will be on probation for up to 25 years, must pay over $6,000 in fines and restitution, register as a sex offender, refrain from drugs and alcohol and complete treatment. AP, 2/12/00, 12/7/99
Arrest
Guilty Plea

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RALIEGH – Non-denominational minister Howard Hunichen, 36, pleaded for nearly an hour in his own defense, imploring a judge not to believe he is a “cruel, evil beast” who beat infants senseless and raped people. But Superior Court Judge Henry Hight Jr. imposed the maximum sentence of 6 years in prison as soon as Hunichen finished speaking and said it was not enough.

Hunichen was found guilty of shaking, stomping and hitting 7-month-old Zachary Fortner to force him to crawl and walk and be quiet. The boy was left with severely limited mental and physical abilities, and is not expected to recover.

His parents, Kevin and Lisa Fortner, face felony child abuse charges and their 2 daughters have also been removed from their custody. During the trial they testified that Hunichen assaulted them and forced Lisa to have sex with him. The district attorney, however, is not considering bringing rape charges against Hunichen. News & Observer, 1/21/00

Howard Hunichen

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MARLOW Robert George, 53 Melbourne Pentecostal born again Christian and revival church member. Receives 3 year and 6 month jail sentence in VIC County Court after pleading guilty to 3 child sex offences, including 1 count of committing unlawful sexual intercourse and 2 of performing indecent act, against boy, aged 13, in 1997 during business trip to Nadi, Fiji. Court hears Marlow, of Blackburn, performed “sordid activities” on boy after giving his family gifts of money, food and presents. Judge says Marlow, who was described in court as “deeply religious”, displayed “ultimate act of hypocrisy” by baptising victim in waters of Nadi Bay. (Victoria, Australia, 2000).

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SAMPSON Lloyd Luciano, 47 WA Pentecostal born again Christian and New Apostolic Church minister. Receives 10 year jail sentence in WA court after being convicted on 15 child sex charges, including 5 counts of committing unlawful sexual intercourse and 3 of indecent dealing, against 3 sisters, aged under 15, in WA. Offences surface after youngest girl complained minister was hurting her and wanted to commit suicide. Court hears minister married with 2 children. (Western Australia, Australia, 2000).

CLEVELAND – Rev. Charles O. Clarke, 74, pastor of Freedom Chapel, was placed on 5-years probation for molesting 5 boys during the last 18 years. He pleaded guilty in Oct. to 5 counts of gross sexual imposition as part of a plea agreement. Judge Janet Burnside said she gave that sentence because Clarke is not a pedophile and unlikely to repeat the offense. She said and investigation had disclosed his preference was for age-appropriate women. He does, however, have to register with law enforcement authorities every year for the next decade. Plain Dealer, 11/30/99

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The Rev. Andras Pandy, a Belgian minister and religion teacher, was charged with murdering five family members and sexually molesting his daughters. (unknown, 7/3/99)
Pastor, 74, faces incest and murder charges

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BERGEN, NJ. – A state judge sentenced a New York City man to 180 days in the county jail for lewdness in front of children, saying that the Salvation Army captain brought disrepute to the organization and that he still does not fully appreciate the consequences of his actions. Philip Bentley, 33, was convicted by a jury in March on counts of child endangerment, criminal sexual contact, and lewdness for masturbating in front of 3 boys who were riding their bikes in the woods.

Bentley, who also was a minister for the Salvation Army, will be required to continue counseling and will remain on probation for 5 years. He also will be required to register as a sex offender and must stay away from children.

On June 20, the 3 boys – then aged 13, 14, and 18 – were riding their bikes in the woods in a park when they noticed Bentley watching them. Bentley then removed his clothes and started masturbating, said the county assistant prosecutor. He said Bentley was in the area that day because he had been driving children from the New York Salvation Army group to a nearby camp.

The judge could have given Bentley probation but said he was concerned because Bentley admitted “acting out,” in similar ways twice after he was arrested. Bergen Record, 8/14/99

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The Rev. David Kingston, a leader of the Latter-Day Church of God, a polygamous Mormon offshoot in Utah, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for marrying his 16-year-old niece against her will as his 15th wife. (unknown, 7/3/99)

ALBUQUERQUE, NM. – A former Church of Christ minister has been sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for torching or vandalizing 4 Mormon churches, including one where his ex-lover was the organist.

Prosecutors said Walter Grassie, 50, went on his rampage because he was upset when the organist, Sharlene Jensen, broke off their 8-year affair in 1998, saying her Mormon faith bars her from getting a divorce.

Grassie was also ordered to pay nearly $3 million in restitution to the Mormon Church. Grassie, who spent 25 years as a Church of Christ preacher, was separated from his wife and working on his father’s farm at the time of the vandalism.

He was convicted of burning a church in Roswell and splashing paint, spraying graffiti or destroying furniture at 3 other churches. Grassie also was convicted of burning a car belonging to Jensen’s son.

Prosecutors said Grassie’s actions were part of a campaign of violence against the Jensen family and Mormons in general. Grassie’s lawyers said his brain was “poisoned by love” and asked that he be sent to a prison hospital for treatment. The judge granted the request. AP 7/21/99

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AKRON. OH. – The family of 15-year-old murder victim Cassandra Blondheim has filed a wrongful death suit against evangelist Ernest Angley and his various ministries. The suit says that the man accused of the murder, Shane Partin, was retained as a volunteer at the Cathedral Buffet despite repeated warnings about his behavior.

Partin has been charged in the Jan. stabbing death of Cassandra at the Cuyahoga Falls restaurant, which is own be Angley’s ministries. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. Cassandra also was a volunteer there, and the suit alleges that she complained repeatedly to Angley and other ministers that she had been harassed and stalked by Partin. Plain Dealer 7/30/99

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JOHNSON CITY – A monk was found guilty of indecency with a child for his relationship with a boy at a monastery in east Texas.

Jonathan I. Hitt, 38, known as Fr. Jeremiah, was convicted on 8 counts stemming from incidents at the Christ of the Hills Monastery in the summer of 1997. The monastery is near Blanco. He could face up to 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000.

The 14-year-old victim, who was a novice monk studying at the monastery, testified during the weeklong trial that he had several sexual encounters with Hitt. Despite feeling awkward about the episodes, the youth testified he didn’t object on the advice of Sam A. Greene Jr., the spiritual leader of the religious enclave. Greene, 54, known as Fr. Benedict, also was charged with indecency with a child. He hasn’t yet gone to trial.

The boy’s 47-year-old mother testified he had struggled in public school and that she had hoped the monks would provide individualized lessons and serve as father figures for him. The attorney for the defendant claimed during the trial that she was a “scorned woman” whose advances Hitt had rebuffed.

The Russian Orthodox Church recently broke ties with the monastery because of its refusal to let church officials inspect records and the premises. Christ of the Hills opened near Blanco in 1980 and is best known for its icon of the Virgin Mary that the monks claim weeps tears of myrrh. AP 10/27/99

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WALDORF, VA. – After an emotional 6-hour court hearing, a judge sentenced a former Waldorf minister to 18 months in jail for repeatedly sexually abusing his 12-year-old stepdaughter throughout the spring of 1992.

John Joseph Damba, 42, one of the co-founders of the Gathering Place church here, was sentenced to 10 concurrent years, all but 18 months of which was suspended, for the abuse, which took place over several months in 1992 at the family’s home. The victim, who is now 20, came forward to report Damba to the police this year after the emotional effects of the abuse resurfaced during premarital counseling.

In the lengthy sentencing hearing, Judge Steven G. Chappelle heard testimony from the victim, whom he called “brave,” and from a string of Damba’s supporters and church members who described Damba’s deep anguish over the repeated incidents of sexual fondling.

Indicted in May on 8 counts of child abuse and third-degree sexual offense, Damba pleaded guilty to reduced charges of 2 counts of child abuse in Sept.

Chappelle chastised Damba at the end of the hearing, saying that any man who went into a 12-year-old girl’s bedroom to touch her sexually was committing a “cruel and evil act.” Damba told his stepdaughter that he was ashamed of what he had done.

The young woman read from a prepared text with her head bowed, frequently overcome by emotion. She said that while she had initially forgiven her stepfather for the abuse, years of hurt and confusion had followed. “Nothing healed the pain,” she said. “I still felt alone.” She said that finally confronting the abuse, going through counseling and notifying the police has been a freeing experience. “I feel like I am myself again,” she said.

His wife, Darlene Damba, described a “broken, weeping” Damba who begged for his wife’s and stepdaughter’s forgiveness shortly after the girl told her mother of the abuse in June 1992. The mother said they tried family counseling and used Christian healing books. However, the victim said she had not gone to counseling at the time.

The Gathering Place, a nonaffiliated Christian church established in 1996, has been shaken by the allegations against Damba, who was asked to step down from his position as “worship minister” shortly after the allegations surfaced this spring. The 100-member congregation has been deeply divided – with members supporting either the Dambas or the victim, who no longer attends church there.

“Mr. Damba has manipulated his religious community into shunning her,” Collins said during the hearing.

Church Pastor Paul Goodwin disagreed. “We’re really praying for the families, that there will be healing and restoration,” Goodwin said. “There are no winners in a situation like this. It saddens the whole church community.” Washington Post,11/7/99

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LA CROSSE, WI. – The former pastor of a Chicago church was facing charges of sexually assaulting two teenage girls in a La Crosse, Wis., Bible class nearly 20 years ago. Richard D. Ahlberg, 47, who now lives in Minn., served as the youth pastor for the Bethany Evangelical Free Church near La Crosse from 1979 to 1982, when the criminal complaint alleged he committed numerous sex acts with the girls.

The District Atty. said one of the girls made the allegations to church officials in the mid-1980s, but law enforcement authorities weren’t notified until last year. One of the alleged victims finally stepped forward after hearing that Ahlberg wanted to return to the La Crosse church as pastor.

Ahlberg was free on bond. Chicago Tribune 7/4/99

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LOS ANGELES – A synagogue official deported from Canada after mailing child pornography to an undercover FBI agent was sentenced here to 15 months in federal prison.

Stuart Friedman, 45, who served as the cantor of a synagogue in Canada, also must undergo three years of supervised release after finishing his prison term. Friedman pleaded guilty in Nov. to one count of distributing child pornography, which carries a maximum 15-year prison term. The judge ordered him to begin serving his sentence April 12.

Friedman, who is originally from Philadelphia, had been a synagogue cantor – the individual who leads a congregation in song – in Halifax, Nova Scotia. In Nov. 1996, he mailed two computer disks containing 13 images of boys having sex to an undercover FBI agent in Long Beach. He was convicted in 1997 at Nova Scotia Provincial Court of possessing child pornography and deported to the United States. Friedman moved to Baltimore, where he was arrested in Aug. on the federal charge of distributing child pornography. LA Times, 3/2/99

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TAMPA – A judge has placed a church on 5 years’ probation and fined it $5,000 as part of a plea agreement over allegations of trafficking in food stamps and dealing in stolen property.

As part of the deal with prosecutors, Deeper Life Christian Church was also ordered to pay $21,710 to cover the cost of a sheriff’s office investigation into the allegations of food stamp fraud.

In exchange for the church’s guilty plea, prosecutors dropped all charges against the church bishop, Melvin B. Jefferson Sr., and his second in command, Brenda Houston Lanier. “As far as we know, this is the first time in the state of Florida that a church has been convicted as a felon,” an assistant state attorney said.

Five other Deeper Life ministers, including the sons of Jefferson and Lanier, also entered guilty pleas and were sentenced to probation. Investigators claimed that the church laundered up to $20,000 a month in illegally obtained food stamps through two meat markets it owns.

Deeper Life ministers were accused of buying meat for the meat markets that an informant had told them was stolen and of accepting food stamps as tithes and payment for services from the church. Authorities said the food stamps came from church parishioners and probationers assigned to perform court-ordered community service at the church. AP 6/8/99

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LIHUE, HI. – A self-proclaimed Buddhist priest pleaded no contest to 20 counts of sexual assault involving a young girl.

Thich An Thanh, 53, had been charged with 551 counts of sexual assault against the girl. The extra counts were dropped under a plea agreement with prosecutors. An Thanh, a Cambodian national, faces a prison term of up to 400 years and a maximum fine of $1 million.

An indictment returned in March by a Kauai grand jury accused An Thanh of sexually assaulting the girl from 1996, when she was 12, until 1998. She says the attacks occurred after regularly-scheduled religious services An Than held in a Kilauea barn.

The girl was 6 years old when she and her mother met An Thanh when they began attending religious sessions he held in Los Angeles, police said, and they followed him when he moved to Kauai 6 years ago. AP 6/11/99, 5/1299

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CHICAGO – A former pastor from Bridgeview has been sentenced to 5 years in prison for having sex with a 16-year-old church member. Scott A. Shelby, 30, formerly of Calvary Tabernacle Church pleaded guilty to 3 counts of criminal sexual assault against a juvenile. Sun-Times 6/99/99

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FORT WAYNE, IN.- The second youth pastor from from Good Shepherd United Brethren Church in Huntington to stand trial for child molesting in just over two years has been convicted in circuit court.

A jury deliberated just under three hours before finding Bobbie Joe Parris, 35, formerly of Huntington, guilty of of child molesting. A teen-age girl testified that she was “uncomfortable” when her church youth pastor pulled up her shirt and kissed her stomach at his apartment last Aug. Journal Gazette 2/19/99

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NEW YORK CITY – A prominent Hasidic rabbi has been charged with making death threats against a 22-year-old woman to keep her from testifying that her father raped her as a child.

Rabbi Bernard Freilich, 47, allegedly went to the woman’s home earlier this year and told her he “would teach her a lesson and send her to the cemetery” if she took the stand, court papers said. A grand jury indicted Freilich on felony charges of witness-tampering, witness intimidation, and harassment. If convicted, he would face up to 4 years in prison.

Freilich had pleaded not guilty in May to misdemeanor charges in the same case. His lawyer said he will enter the same plea when he’s arraigned on the more serious charges next month. The attorney described his client as a community leader who prides himself on his connections to law enforcement. Before he was first charged, Freilich had been a special assistant to a superintendent in the New York State Police.

The lawyer said Freilich does not know his accuser, whose name was not released. But prosecutors have said the rabbi and the woman’s father are close friends. The father was charged in Feb. with first-degree rape, incest, sex abuse, and harassment in the pending criminal case. He was arrested again on April 22 after allegedly violating an order of protection by pounding on his daughter’s door and warning her it would be her last day unless she withdrew her accusations.

Prosecutors say that three days later – with the daughter about to testify before a grand jury – Freilich went to her home and threatened her; allegedly repeating the threats the next day. Another Borough Park man also has been charged with trying to get the woman to drop the charges AP 6/24/99

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HAMILTON, OH. – A Pentecostal minister convicted of repeatedly raping his daughter has been sentenced to 17-50 years in prison and fined $7,500. Yet the judge declined to classify Rev. Darrell Bell, 50, as a sexual predator, based on court-ordered psychological exams that concluded he has a low probability of repeating the offense. Bell has been ruled a sexually-oriented offender, which means he will have to notify local authorities where he is living and check in with them.

His daughter, Dawn Bell, asked to be publicly identified as she helped prosecute her father, including testifying against him at trail. She said her abuse began at age 10 and continued until she was 18 and moved away. She later confronted her father and went to prosecutors after he refused to get counseling. AP 6/12/99

Jury gets minister’s abuse case

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WASHINGTON COURT HOUSE, OH. – A former youth pastor who admitted to having sex with a 15-year-old member of his youth group has been sentenced to four years in prison. Matthew Eric Moore, 30, was sentenced after pleading guilty in Feb. to one count of sexual battery. Moore was originally charged with sexual battery and corruption of a minor for encounters with the girl in 1997, when he was 28 and she was a 15-year-old member of the youth group at Heritage Memorial Church.

He was sentenced to one year less than the maximum. Moore will be placed on probation after his release and must register as a sexual offender. AP 4/17/99

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MANASSAS, VA. – A former minister was convicted of suggesting to a parishioner that they kill each other’s wives.

James Elrod Ogle, 46, entered Alford pleas to charges of attempted capital murder and solicitation of a felony. In an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit guilt but acknowledges that prosecutors have enough evidence for a conviction.

Ogle, former pastor of the defunct Bull Run Bible Fellowship in Manassas, will remain jailed without bail until his sentencing. He could get up to life in prison.

Police said that during a Feb. 24 telephone conversation, Ogle suggested to Scott Jinks that they commit murders for each other. Ogle was counseling Jinks and his wife about their marriage at the time. Jinks told police, and testified against Ogle during a preliminary hearing.

Prosecutors say Ogle typed instructions on how Jinks should kill Ogle’s wife, suggesting a drive-by shooting at night while Ogle was driving and his wife was in the passenger seat.

The documents also instructed Jinks to wear gloves to avoid leaving fingerprints, prosecutors said, and asked how much it would cost to buy a silencer, adding that he would “be glad to pay for it.” AP 6/28/99

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TACOMA, WA. – Elders from the Bethel Christian Assembly have defended their handling of a complaint against a youth pastor now charged with eight counts of child molestation and rape, saying the allegations against Herman Glenn Jr., 34, amounted to “hearsay.”

The elders also said in a statement that Glenn was returned to his job only after they were assured he would not be a threat to children.

Prosecutors charged Glenn with 8 counts stemming from alleged assaults on two teen-age boys beginning last year. Possible cases involving as many as 16 other boys remained under investigation.

After his arrest, Glenn told authorities he’d had sexual contact with 3 youths in the Chicago area and 14 others in Tacoma. Another boy came forward recently to say he was sexually molested by the pastor, according to a police spokesman.

Glenn resigned his post at the 2,000-member Bethel Christian Assembly, citing “gross moral failures by engaging in sexual contact with minors.” He was being held on $75,000 bail in the county jail on 6 counts of third-degree rape, one count of second-degree rape and one count of child molestation. He has pleaded innocent.

The boys described a grooming process that involved passwords and progressive levels of contact between them and Glenn, prosecutors said. Glenn told authorities he would pretend to be sleepwalking or talking in his sleep to get the boys to engage in sex acts. “A lot of mind-control was involved in it,” the spokesman said. Detectives say Glenn would approach boys and tell them he needed help curing his alter personality.

None of the sexual contact involving the two boys occurred at the church but at Glenn’s home, charging papers said.

Glenn said church officials had no knowledge of what he’d done prior to his admission. In their statement, the church council of elders said Glenn came to the Tacoma church in 1991 with “glowing recommendations” from Homewood Full Gospel Church in Homewood, Ill., a Chicago suburb.

Rumors reached them that something had happened there. Although the elders did not describe the nature of the information they received, investigators said a pastor at Homewood had contacted Tacoma church officials after two boys in the Chicago area accused Glenn of touching them inappropriately when he was pastor there.

The elders asked a counselor to evaluate Glenn “We were given complete assurance that Herman was within normal sexual limits and posed no threat to children or society,” they said. The counselor told The Seattle Times that he was shocked by Glenn’s arrest. AP 6/5, Chicago Sun-Times, 6/4/99

Another teen says pastor molested him

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LOS ANGELES – A priest was arrested on allegations of sodomizing a 21-year-old Colombian man at knife-point, police said. Fr. Juan Correa, 27, of Los Angeles, was being held on $200,000 bail, a LAPD spokesman said.

The man, whose name was not released, had apparently recently arrived in Los Angeles from Colombia and Correa befriended him, offering a place to stay. The Archdiocese of Los Angeles said Correa wasn’t affiliated with the church. He is believed to belong to a small sect called the Old Catholic Church, which broke away from the Roman Catholic Church last century when it rejected the doctrine of papal infallibility. AP, 12/16/98

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WEST PALM BEACH – A former pastor who claimed he was testing a girl’s virginity was convicted of sexually molesting the teen-ager. Rev. Joseph Millien, 51, was found guilty of felony sexual activity with the 17-year-old member of the Full Gospel Assembly Church, but acquitted of a sexual battery charge. He denied having any other sexual contact with the girl. The judge revoked Millien’s bond and ordered him to jail until sentencing scheduled a few weeks later. Under sentencing guidelines, he could get 6 to 12 years in prison as a first-time offender. AP, 10/28/98

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Rev. Thomas W. Nissley on trial for molestation of a teenage girl. The girl, now 17, said in her testimony that Rev. Nissley rubbed her inner thigh just inches from her groin during the entire ride, which lasted about 10 minutes. (Feb. 24, 1999, Eagle Tribune)
Rev. Nissley on Trial for Molestation
Tribune Report

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CHICAGO – A former pastor, arrested on charges of sexual assault and abuse of a teenage girl in DuPage County, faces similar charges involving the same 16-year-old in Will County.

Bond was set at $250,000 in Circuit Court for Scott Shelby, 30, of Bridgeview. Shelby was charged with sexually assaulting and abusing a young female parishioner at a motel last winter.

Shelby had been a minister at the Calvary Tabernacle Church. He is charged with one count of criminal sexual assault and one count of aggravated criminal sexual abuse in DuPage County for allegedly taking the teen to motels over a six-month period in 1997 and 1998. Shelby, who left his post when church members and police began investigating his activities, is being held in county jail on $250,000 bond.

A Will County assistant state’s attorney will be assigned to help DuPage prosecutors in their prosecution of the case in DuPage County Circuit Court and vice versa. Tribune, 1/15/99

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BOSTON – The state Dept. of Social Services is seeking more than 50 foster children cared for by a Worcester pastor who now stands accused of raping an 11-year-old girl and sexually assaulting two of his foster children. Rev. Jose Castillo, 52, pleaded innocent to charges of rape and abuse of a child, indecent assault and battery of a child and threatening to commit a crime. He was ordered held on $500,000 bail. Police found him hiding in the basement of the Iglesia Abrigo del Altisimo church, where he serves as pastor, when they went to arrest him.

The sexual assault allegations surfaced during the investigation into the disappearance of 5-month-old Marlon Santos, according to the assistant district attorney. The baby still has not been found.

Castillo and his wife Yolanda were the baby’s foster parents. After the baby’s disappearance, the Dept. of Social Services took custody of 2 other foster children staying with the Castillos, a brother and sister ages 23 months and 3 years. The Castillos’ 3 children were also removed in response to an abuse complaint. Two boys, ages 12 and 13, were returned to their parents, but a 17-year-old girl has been placed in a foster home in the area. AP, 12/30/98

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VANCOUVER, WA. – A former pastor who pled guilty to having oral sex with one boy and trying to seduce his brother has been sentenced to 6 months in jail followed by therapy. The judge rejected a request by prosecutors thatRobert Dwayne Bennefield, 33, be sentenced to more than 12 years in prison but accepted a defense proposal that he be granted the special sex offender sentencing alternative and ordered him to pay $500 to each victim and a $250 fine, and have no contact with the victims or other youngsters.

Bennefield pled guilty in Aug. to one count of first-degree rape of a child and one count of attempted second-degree assault involving two brothers who attended Lighthouse Christian Center. He later admitted molesting 9 other youngsters. AP, 10/28/98

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HAMILTON — A Butler County jury will resume deliberations today, deciding the fate of a Middletown minister accused of sexually molesting his daughter. After Thursday’s final arguments, jurors began deliberations around 11 a.m. They continued their work until 7 p.m. They will decide whether the Rev. Darrell S. Bell, a longtime preacher and steelworker, is guilty of molesting his daughter repeatedly from the time she was 10 until she turned 18 and went away to Bowling Green State University. (Oct. 2, 1998, Cincinnatti Enquirer)
Jury deliberates on charge of molestation by paster
Cincinnatti Enquirer Report

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MILWAUKEE, WI. – A self-proclaimed pastor who held church services for children in his home was sentenced to 80 years in prison on charges of sexually molesting 4 girls. Kenneth Spaulding, 47, had been convicted in Dec. of four counts of first-degree sexual assault of a child.

Authorities said children were molested during services at his home where he sponsored “sleepovers” at night. AP, 2/6/99

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MILWAUKEE – A former pastor faces a felony theft charge accusing him of stealing money and equipment worth more than $6,000 from the congregation. Rev. Larry James Taylor Sr., 49, was charged in a criminal complaint that said the cash came from parishioners’ donations to a new building fund and the equipment, including musical instruments, came from general church funds. The complaint said the money and equipment belonged to the Word of Faith Victory Center, a nondenominational Christian church. If convicted, Taylor could be sentenced to a prison term of up to 10 years and a fine of up to $10,000. AP, 12/11/98

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MILWAUKEE – Rev. Gerald Saffold, 39, a minister accused of having a sexual relationship with a teenage boy waived his right to a preliminary hearing and has been ordered to stand trial on a charge of second-degree sexual assault of a child.

The complaint says the boy reported that he had a sexual relationship with Saffold from Jan. 1996-98, starting when he was 15. Saffold, pastor of the Foundation of Prayer Evangelistic Ministry and founder of a popular youth choir, remained free on $25,000 bond posted by supporters under orders that he remain under house arrest while his case is pending. AP, 10/29/98

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MILWAUKEE, WI. – Rev. Gerald Saffold, 39, a minister accused of having a sexual relationship with a teenage boy waived his right to a preliminary hearing and has been ordered to stand trial on a charge of second-degree sexual assault of a child.

The complaint says the boy reported that he had a sexual relationship with Saffold from Jan. 1996-98, starting when he was 15. Saffold, pastor of the Foundation of Prayer Evangelistic Ministry and founder of a popular youth choir, remained free on $25,000 bond posted by supporters under orders that he remain under house arrest while his case is pending. AP, 10/29/98

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BURLINGTON, VT. – A Greek Orthodox priest has reported to jail to begin serving a six-month sentence for fondling a 12-year-old girl, but is still claiming he’s innocent. “This is no way to treat a priest,” Fr. Emmanual Koveos, 62, said as he arrived at jail.

In lengthy statements Koveos, his wife, and his son, talked about mistakes and possible improper conduct by the judge, jury, defense attorney, police and the victim and her family. (6/18 Associated Press)

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SEATTLE – Rev. Jeff Smith, 59, better known to his PBS cooking show fans as “The Frugal Gourmet” has agreed to settle sexual abuse lawsuits with 7 men before the cases could go to trial.

The lawsuits accused the chef of using alcohol, intimidation, and force to obtain sex from the mid 1970s until 1992. All the men are former employees of a restaurant Smith once ran.

No new Frugal Gourmet shows have been broadcast since the accusations surfaced in 1996. (7/5 USA Today)

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Overlake Christian Church elders moved to debatable theological ground when they used the Bible to justify dismissing sexual-misconduct allegations against their pastor, other church leaders say…Many of the verses cited by the elders referred to needing more than one witness to support accusations of wrongdoing, particularly against church leaders. Others require “greater scrutiny” for allegations against leaders. Another “biblical principle” requires one who is violated to “cry out,” the elders said, though they cited no Bible reference for the principle. (Seattle Times, 5/29/98)

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PASADENA – 66-year-old John Gottuso, a Pasadena psychologist who runs a church and Christian school, be sentenced for demonstrating a sex act with a teenage girl. Yet he will still be able to operate a school.

It began nine years ago when Gottuso lost his license to practice because a state agency found that he was having sex with some of his patients. Two years later, another state agency forbade Gottuso from having any involvement with his church’s preschool, partly because agency investigators said he once played “sex tag” under a blanket with two girls. In March, Gottuso settled a sexual- and psychological-abuse lawsuit by 11 plaintiffs.

A Pasadena Municipal Court judge sentenced him to 30 days house arrest and five years probation after he pleaded no contest to demonstrating a sex act with a 15-year-old girl in late 1995 in front of a class at his Christ-Bridge Academy, now based in Altadena. But because of a loophole in a state law, those legal problems have done little to restrict Gottuso’s ability to counsel and teach children. Even after the state Department of Social Services took action against his church’s license to operate a private preschool in 1989, Gottuso continued to operate. (4/28/98)

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DENVER – A former minister of The Way International was sentenced to prison for 30 months and ordered to pay restitution of $528,000 to his former followers after he admitted he had bilked them out of their money, in some cases life savings and inheritances.

Richard Panyard, 45, in Jan. pleaded guilty to commit fraud. He and two followers, Jack Northart and Charles Mandrey, founded three companies in the late 1980s using money coerced out of The Way’s members. Around 1989, the struggling companies became a scheme to defraud, characterized by the judge as a classic “Ponzi scheme,” where one person’s investment is used to pay off another’s. Panyard has also been accused of sexual misconduct. One woman, who was married by him, claims she had to fight off his advances less than a year later.

The Way International, often described as a cult, was founded in New Knoxville, OH, in 1961 as a biblical research and teaching ministry. It claims that Christ is not God, there is no Trinity and the Jews are a tribe from Siberia. It has been known to arm its senior members and some wear bulletproof vests to meetings. From its height in 1985 with an estimated 100,000 members, it has dwindled to a current estimate of 20,000. A large number of followers live north of Colorado Springs where the church owns an encampment that has been the target of numerous investigations involving firearms and munitions. (3/18/98)

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DENVER – One of the city’s best known ministers has resigned from the church he founded due to financial troubles.Rev. Charles Blair announced his resignation from the pastorship of Calvary Temple, an independent church he founded in 1954. In 1976 Blair was convicted of securities fraud when more than 3,000 investors lost $18 million in one or more of the institutions he controlled. He was placed on 5 years probation and find $12,750 with promises to pay back the lost money. He was taken to court again in the early 1990’s by investors who claimed they had not received any money from a fund-raising campaign to pay them off. He then agreed to pay $700,000 in a settlement, but investors are still complaining that they have received no money and that all the funds raised went to Blair and his friends. (3/7/98)

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MIAMI – So sure are parishioners of Camino de Santidad church that their pastor, Rev. Daniel Garnicki, is innocent of charges of having sex with a 15-year-old girl that more than a dozen of them have declared a hunger strike. Camped out on mattresses under a large tent covering the parking lot of their church, 14 people have vowed not to eat until Garnicki is set free. Among the fasters are the minister’s wife, stepson, brother, and the accuser’s ex-boyfriend.

The church crisis stems from the September arrest of Garnicki, an evangelical minister who hosts a four-hour Christian radio program . A teenager who attended services at the church told police that, one night after service last year, Garnicki lured her to a motel in Miami Beach by saying he needed her assistance with a study on how Christian women and worldly women’s interest in pornography differed. Once there, she told police he ordered a pornographic movie and forced her to perform oral sex on him. He allegedly had intercourse with her, and then made her pray for forgiveness for having sinned.

Garnicki was charged with having sex with a minor in his custody. He is under house arrest in his West Dade home but continues to preach each night via satellite. His case is expected to go to trial in May.

Though prosecutors say they have witnesses and evidence that Garnicki signed in at the hotel and rented the movie, members of Garnicki’s church have taken their outrage to the radio waves.T hey claim the accusations are creations of a troubled and promiscuous girl who is only out for money. Parishioners believe the accusations are a conspiracy by homosexuals who resent Garnicki’s fight against gay-rights laws. (4/6/98)

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CASSOPOLIS, MI. – A United Church of Christ minister convicted of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl was to remain free on bond pending sentencing scheduled for March 27.

John Charles Yeager, 52, who was also an administrator at an Indiana center for abused children, was convicted by jury of first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct. He was found guilty of molesting the girl while he, the girl, and his own daughter of the same age, were under a blanket on a couch in his basement in August 1996. That daughter and at least two of his other 3 daughters, which he has been raising alone since his wife died in 1987, have publicly supported him.

As of publication time, it is not known what sentence was handed him. (3/4/98)

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DALLAS – An 18-year-old man and his parents sued the Assemblies of God and the church’s ranch for troubled youths, claiming the youth was molested by a counselor at the center two years ago. The alleged victim was 16 when he went to Dallas Teen Challenge Boys Ranch in January 1996. According to his lawsuit, a counselor and convicted drug trafficker sexually molested him on at least six different occasions. The lawsuit further alleges that the church ranch Executive Director Paul Ecker and the ranch’s board knowingly employed men with criminal histories as counselors despite being informed by state regulators that the practice was illegal.

According to the lawsuit, most of the residents were there as a condition of probation, and had psychological or substance abuse problems. During the day, they performed chores, including caring for livestock, and took part in religious education. At night, they were “locked down” and monitored by alarm systems to prevent unauthorized departures. Among the employees and volunteers working at the ranch were men in a program called “Life Challenge,” designed for adults. Many of them had substance abuse problems and were improperly admitted to the program as part of their probation, the lawsuit states. (5/13/98, AP)
Lawsuit claims church camp hired convict who molested boy

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DALLAS – A former rabbi accused by three women of improperly touching them decades ago apologized for “a very dark chapter in my life”.

Rabbi Max Zucker, the longtime head of a synagogue begged for forgiveness when confronted recently by one of the women he is accused of touching. The woman, her husband and parents said Zucker, 73, did not dispute her account that he touched her genitals.

In an interview, Zucker sometimes denied improper touching and sometimes said he couldn’t recall any. The three accusers – all middle-aged women – told the newspaper Zucker repeatedly molested them when they were between 11 and 13 years old. “I beg their forgiveness,” Zucker said. “I don’t recall any such thing ever happening. If they imagined it or if it was fact, I’m certainly sorry.”

Meanwhile the synagogue’s board has hired a lawyer to examine how its current rabbi responded to the allegations against his predecessor and longtime associate, officials said.

When the women went public they said that Rabbi Cohen seemed unwilling to investigate and offered them little help. He disputed that assertion but acknowledged that he never confronted Zucker and recently allowed him to perform a wedding at the synagogue. 5/20/98

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DALLAS – A pastor convicted of assaulting two teenaged girls in his congregation has been sentenced to life imprisonment. Wendell Jones, 44, who had been on probation as a convicted sex offender since 1992 in a similar case, will be eligible for parole in 30 years. (3/24/98)

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HOUSTON – A lawsuit has been filed accusing the national Jehovah’s Witnesses organization of refusing to alert authorities to the extended sexual abuse of a minor by her brother while they were both members of the church.

The plaintiff, a 19-year-old woman, said that she had been sexually abused by her brother, now 22, since the mid-1980s. In 1988, the family sought counseling by church elder Kerry “John” Landers. The suit claims that Landers was instructed by the national office to handle the matter in-house rather than to report the abuse to the authorities as required by Texas law.

Despite counseling, the brother continued to molest his sister. In 1992 the local church leadership appointed Landers and two other elders to investigate. The brother confessed to them and apologized and the elders put the matter to rest. He was convicted of sexual abuse and sentenced to prison. In that trial, Landers testified under a grant of immunity about his instructions to keep it quiet.

The attorney representing the church said it strongly believes it committed no wrongdoing and said they vowed to defend themselves vigorously. (3/24/98)

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BURLINGTON – A former priest of the Greek Orthodox Church will serve six months in jail for molesting a 12-year-old girl. Despite being convicted by a jury, Fr. Emmanuel Koveos, 62, continues to proclaim his innocence. He has been ordered to begin serving his sentence June eighth.

The church has gone to court trying to evict him from a parish rectory. Koveos has ignored repeated orders from his bishop to move out of the rectory, according to letters filed with court eviction papers. Koveos was asked to leave last spring, a few months after he was accused of fondling the girl he was tutoring at the church, said the lawyer for the church. Koveos was convicted of those charges earlier this year.

The parish and the Greek Orthodox Diocese of Boston are upset at Koveos’ refusal to follow the bishop’s instructions. They worry it might financially ruin the church, which is renting a home for the priest who has replaced Koveos.

An eviction hearing in Superior Court was set for late May. A tribunal of the Greek Orthodox Church will consider Koveos’ future as a priest after the sentencing. The Spiritual Court for the diocese, consisting of three to five religious members, could take a range of actions, including stripping Koveos of his priestly duties. The court also can consider other allegations that surfaced since his arrest. A New Hampshire woman has given a sworn statement about sexual misconduct, according to records. (5/22/98)

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WENATCHEE – It has been more than two years since pastor Roby Roberson promised to get even. In December 1995, a jury cleared Roberson and his wife, Connie, of charges they’d raped five children in their home and small, run-down Pentecostal church. Since then, Roberson has turned his church’s food bank into a legal war room, becoming the most tenacious critic of the now infamous Wenatchee child-sex-abuse investigations. His weapons are copiers and fax machines, court hearings and media interviews. Roberson, 53, claims he is seeking justice for himself and advocating the liberty of more than a dozen people he says were targeted by a vindictive, manipulative police detective and a group of accomplices in the state’s child-welfare department.

He, his wife and six others are suing Wenatchee Police Detective Bob Perez, child caseworkers, and the city, county and state agencies where they work for allegedly violating their civil rights. The complicated case includes overlapping charges against 11 individuals. Together, the plaintiffs are asking for $70 million in damages.

The trial, after three years of media attention on Wenatchee, will take place in Seattle. The civil suit directly involves only a handful of those caught up in the investigations. But it promises answers to the lingering question: Did a routine sex investigation turn into a witch hunt against innocent adults?

It all began in 1995. The allegations of unthinkable child sex abuse, including sex parties in homes and at the Pentecostal church, first sprung up in 1995, while Perez was serving a two-year stint as Wenatchee’s only sex-crime investigator. It has since become all but impossible to tally the victims and the guilty.

The cases have touched 17 families, with nearly 40 children still separated from their biological parents, either placed in foster care, therapeutic care, adopted into new homes or living on their own.

All told, 29 adults were charged with child sex abuse in cases commonly linked by the children making the allegations. Some were accused of incest against their own children.

Others were linked to broader secrets – now widely discounted – in which adults were said to swap children in loosely organized sex rings, described by some as “The Circle.” Of those charged with various types of sex crimes, 15 pleaded guilty, five were convicted by juries and three, including the Robersons, were acquitted. Charges against six others, including Rodriguez, were dropped.

Police, caseworkers for the state’s Child Protective Services office and prosecutors say their investigations were solid. They argue that some children show medical signs of abuse, that some suspects have never recanted their confessions. Prosecutors contend that, despite wider sex-ring allegations, they limited the scope of criminal charges to gain case-by-case convictions. They argue, in other words, that something bad happened to children in Wenatchee. But the outraged protests that accompanied the arrests have only grown louder. Led by a rogue cop, critics say, authorities ran roughshod over people’s rights, then closed ranks to cover themselves. Now momentum is shifting.

There are increasing criticism that at least some of the accused, including many vulnerable by virtue of poverty and low intelligence, were victimized by an overzealous prosecutorial system. In February, an appeals court overturned the conviction of the only woman found guilty of charges that actually included allegations of the broader sex ring. A March investigative report by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer maintains that, at most, six or seven children likely were abused by parents, neighbors or school acquaintances. Otherwise, the newspaper maintains, adults were unfairly prosecuted. A judge specially appointed by the state appeals court sharply criticized techniques used by Perez and other investigators, recommending two convicted adults be retried. Perez led investigation.

Attorney General Janet Reno, whose office conducted a cursory review of the cases in 1996, has said the Justice Department will take a closer look. But critics of the investigation look to the Robersons’ upcoming civil trial as their best chance for rehabilitation. (4/6/98)

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LEADVILLE, CO. – A Las Vegas, New Mexico couple has sued the Community Evangelical Free Church of Leadville alleging that a church volunteer molested their three children. The claim Brian Manuel, recommended by Rev. Geoffrey Nelson, who is accused of negligence, molested the children, who were 3, 4 and 6 years old at the time, while babysitting on New Year’s Eve in 1995. (1/4/98)

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HARTFORD – A pastor who regularly sexually assaulted two teenage sisters, threatening them and their mother with deportation if they complained, has been sentenced to 12 years in prison and 20 years probation. Rev. Carlos Sunun, 41, entered an Alford plea which permitted him to deny the facts of the crimes but agree he would likely be convicted at a trial.

Yet he fathered a daughter on the younger sister, a 15-year-old. His abuse of his parishioners took place regularly during 1995-6. He first started molesting the older sister, a 16-year-old, and then the younger. The attacks occurred on numerous occasions at his home and in his vehicle. The police were tipped off a year before Sunun’s arrest, but the older girl denied the allegations and did not cooperate with the investigation. It was dropped until both sisters approached the police in Nov. 1996.

Both girls said he deserved a harsher penalty, and even his lown awyer characterized him as “a horrible person.”(11/21/98)

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TALLAHASSEE – Three sisters have accused their former pastor of seducing them when they were girls, including one who said she she went to him for counseling after losing their virginity. Fr. Donald McCreanor, 49 and a licensed therapist, resigned his post, was suspended, and entered a church-run treatment center after the women went public with their story. They claim they did so because they had informed the diocese of their charges 14 months previously and nothing had been done.

After the story was published, two other women told the local paper that McCreanor had made sexual overtures to them as well. One had a troubled marriage and claims he propositioned her during confession. She said he suggested that she have an affair “with someone safe, like me.”

She eventually did have a tumultuous affair with him that lasted about a year. After working out her marital problems, she complained to the state Dept. of Professional Regulation but her charges were dismissed because the affair happened before he was licensed as a therapist.

McCreanor allegedly bought the other woman, his housecleaner, risque lingerie and suggested that she wear it at his house.

The vice chancellor of the diocese said later that five women had called to accuse McCreanor since the articles ran. He would not confirm if the callers included the women who had contacted the newspapers.

The accusations were made public the same week that Fr. Rick Castillo, 43, who had enrolled himself in the same treatment center last spring, admitted sexually abusing four teenage boys several years ago. (11/21)

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TALLAHASSEE – Three sisters have accused their former pastor of seducing them when they were girls, including one who said she she went to him for counseling after losing their virginity. Fr. Donald McCreanor, 49 and a licensed therapist, resigned his post, was suspended, and entered a church-run treatment center after the women went public with their story. They claim they did so because they had informed the diocese of their charges 14 months previously and nothing had been done.

After the story was published, two other women told the local paper that McCreanor had made sexual overtures to them as well. One had a troubled marriage and claims he propositioned her during confession. She said he suggested that she have an affair “with someone safe, like me.”

She eventually did have a tumultuous affair with him that lasted about a year. After working out her marital problems, she complained to the state Dept. of Professional Regulation but her charges were dismissed because the affair happened before he was licensed as a therapist.

McCreanor allegedly bought the other woman, his housecleaner, risque lingerie and suggested that she wear it at his house.

The vice chancellor of the diocese said later that five women had called to accuse McCreanor since the articles ran. He would not confirm if the callers included the women who had contacted the newspapers.

The accusations were made public the same week that Fr. Rick Castillo, 43, who had enrolled himself in the same treatment center last spring, admitted sexually abusing four teenage boys several years ago. (11/21/98)

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ELGIN, IL. – A convicted child molester who became a self-styled psychic and spiritual healer has been convicted again of sexual abuse.

Jeffrey Knapp, 47, founder of the Inner Journey Institute for the Healing Arts in Elgin and a former schoolteacher appeared stunned when the judge read the verdict. He was convicted of second-degree criminal sexual conduct for making a 14-year-old boy touch him under the guise of an Oriental healing technique called reiki.

Knapp’s wife, three of their children, as well as the female state trooper who investigated the case all wept after the verdict was read, though for different reasons.

The key testimony was from the victim himself, who sobbed most of the way through his time on the witness stand. Later the boy said, “I don’t hate him. I just think he is really sick.” (1/17/98)

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TACOMA, WA. Another teen came forward yesterday to allege he was sexually molested by a Bethel Christian Assembly youth pastor, according to Pierce County sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer. Meanwhile, elders from the church defended their handling of a 1995 complaint against the youth pastor now charged with eight counts of child molestation and rape, saying the 4-year-old allegations against Herman Glenn Jr. amounted to “hearsay.” The elders also said in a statement that Glenn was returned to his job only after they were assured he would not be a threat to children. (Seattle Times, 1998)
Another teen says pastor molested him

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LIVERPOOL, England – A vicar who sexually assaulted boys during holidays with a church youth group has been convicted to three years in jail. Fr. David McIntosh, 52, pleaded guilty to seven indecent assault charges. (12/13/97)style=’font-style: normal’>http://www.objectivists.org.au/May09-1999/BM.htm

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A youth minister of the Church of Christ has been arrested after allegedly sending nude pictures of himself to a 14-year-old girl over the Internet. Matthew Washington, 23, was charged with distribution of harmful material to a minor. Police said Washington sent her four photos of him seated nude on an exercise bike at the church after talking to her in an Internet chat room. The girl showed them to her mother who alerted the police. Washington was released on bail but faces up to one year in jail and a $4,000 fine. (Dallas, 12/22/97)

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Cobb County , GA. A former Gwinnett church youth group worker accused of child molestation was sentenced to five years in prison Thursday after pleading guilty to Cobb County charges that he molested two young boys there between 1991 and 1993. Adam Lee Gilliam, who still faces charges in Gwinnett, was sentenced to serve five years in prison and 15 years’ probation and ordered to pay more than $4,000 in restitution to the boys’ families. Gilliam, 28, was out on bond awaiting trial in Cobb when Gwinnett police arrested him Dec. 8. Cobb Magistrate Judge Vic Reynolds also ordered Gilliam to undergo treatment for sexual deviancy and to avoid any contact with his victims or their families. Before he would accept Gilliam’s guilty plea, Reynolds required Gilliam to admit to prosecutors’ charges that while he was a youth minister at a Cobb church, he fondled the buttocks of one boy and the penis of the other. Gwinnett police say Gilliam, of Sugar Hill, persuaded a 12-year-old boy he met through a Cumming church to have oral sex by showing him pornographic pictures and citing biblical passages that supposedly proved “it was all right for them to be doing these acts.” Between September and December, Gilliam often took the boy to softball games with his parents’ permission, police say. He is charged with 16 counts of child molestation and aggravated child molestation and is being held without bond in the Gwinnett Detention Center. (The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, 12-19-1997)
Man gets 5 years in abuse case: Youth worker also to pay restitution

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SEX ABUSE CASE SPURS CHURCH INTO ACTION. Less than a week after one of its former youth group workers was charged with child molestation, a Cumming church held a closed meeting Sunday to reassure members. “We plan on addressing this head-on,” Drew Grubbs, the executive pastor of Calvary Chapel North, said in an interview. Grubbs said that when the church hired Adam Lee Gilliam, 28, of Sugar Hill, as a part-time administrative assistant, it did not know a Cobb County grand jury had indicted him on two counts of child molestation. “This guy had glowing references from church leaders in Atlanta,” Grubbs said. “We didn’t know what everybody knows now.” Gwinnett police say Gilliam, who also worked with youth groups, persuaded a 12-year-old boy he met at the church to have oral sex by showing him pornographic pictures and reading what he said was Biblical Scripture from his computer. The boy got permission from his parents to accompany Gilliam to softball games, police said, and Gilliam took the boy home with him afterward. The child told police that during the sleep-overs Gilliam crawled into bed with him and molested him, police said. the boy also told police that Gilliam “read Scripture off of the computer that said it was all right for them to be doing these acts,” according to a search warrant affidavit. Police said they did not know what passages Gilliam could have been citing. Gilliam was charged with 16 felony counts of child molestation and aggravated child molestation. He is scheduled to appear at a preliminary hearing Tuesday in the Gwinnett County Detention Center, where he is being held without bond. By Larry Hartstein, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution – 12/15/97

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A couple who coordinated youth activities at Mount Hermas Church of God in Sugar Hill, Marcus and Janice Bellew, allegedly seduced a 14-year-old girl from the church and had group sex with her, police said. Church officials did not return repeated phone messages. By Larry Hartstein, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution – 12/15/97

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Cumming, GA. A 28-year-old church youth group worker who spent nights alone with a 12-year-old boy persuaded the youngster to have oral sex by showing him pornographic pictures and reading what he said was Scripture stored in his computer, police said Tuesday. Adam Lee Gilliam of Sugar Hill was arrested Monday night and charged with 16 felony counts of child molestation and aggravated child molestation, police said. The arrest is the second Gwinnett case in two weeks where police claim a church youth group leader molested a child. Gilliam met the boy at Calvary Chapel North in Cumming, said Gwinnett police Sgt. Jeff Sligar. (The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, 12-10-1997)
Youth worker accused of molestation: 16 felony counts: Police say church’s ex-staffer spent numerous nights: alone with 12-year-old boy

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SWANSEA, England – An Anglican vicar who jumped bail and fled to the Czech Republic while awaiting sentencing after admitting taking indecent photographs of young girls in his Welsh vicarage has begun a 15-month prison term – a year for the seven counts of sexually explicit photos and another three months for fleeing. First arrested after taking film to a local photo shop to be developed, a search of the vicarage revealed thousands of photos and slides depicting nude girls and women.

Fr. Merlyn Roberts, a 62-year-old grandfather and former chaplain at two English top-security prisons, spent more than a year on the run. He was finally spotted by a Welshman working in Prague who recognized his picture in a newspaper. Roberts was arrested at an boys’ school where he worked and was extradited to Britain after being held for 18 weeks.

The sentencing judge also ordered the confiscation of Roberts’ photos and ordered him to register with the police as a sex offender upon his release.

Another Anglican priest was arrested in Romania on suspicion of having had sex with a local boy. Fr. Michael Taylor, 34, was found with a 14-year-old boy in an apartment near the Bucharest train station. Romania is said to have become a magnet for pedophiles because of the widespread poverty and the large number of runaway children who frequent the rail stations. (11/25/97)

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LONDON – The Church of England is facing a series of allegations by the wives of clergy who claim their husbands violently and sexually abused them. One spoke of violence when her husband’s parochial church council meetings had not gone well, involving “smashing everything in sight,” being dragged by her hair and kicked. Another spoke of being strangled during love-making, raped, and having her body marked “in a foul way.” They claimed that their appeals for help from the church were initially ignored.

The women decided to speak out after a decision by the Church of Scotland to open a care line for the battered wives of clergy, which followed a study by Edinburgh University which suggested that clerical wives are as likely to suffer assault as those in the general population, where it is thought 1 in 10 may be abused. The report cataloged abuse by ministers and included instances of wife beatings, damage to internal organs, kickings, and sexual advances made by clergy towards other women who sought counseling.

Lesley Macdonald, author of the study, said some of the women accused the church of “closing ranks” when faced with their complaints. “The status of clergy has dropped,” she said. “Often wives take the flak for the minister’s economic inadequacy and irresponsibility. The violence has been caused in some cases by the minister’s lack of self-esteem.”

Since the study of 25 women, she has been contacted by more than 40 abused wives of clergy from other parts of Britain. (10/5/97)

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Christian School Officials Face Hearing on Failing to Report Suspicions.The pair face charges in a case involving sex abuse of male students by a teacher. Prineville, Oregon — A pretrial bearing will be October 20 for two Christian school officials cited for failing to report their suspicions that a teacher was molesting male students. Sue Uptain, principal of the 180-student Crook County Christian School, and James Donohue, the school’s superintendent, pleaded not guilty to the charges, which carry maximum $1,000 fines. Donohue is also pastor of the First Assembly of God Church in Prineville, which opened the preschool through 12th grade school three years ago. Both claimed they didn’t know state law requires school employees to immediately report suspected sex abuse cases. School officials learned May 9 that Phillip Marland, French and physical education teacher, might have molested a boy. But it wasn’t reported to law enforcement officials until May 27, and that report was from the pastor of another church. One of Marland’s victims was reportedly molested after Crook County Christian School officials learned of the abuse but before it was reported to authorities.

Feared Attendance Would Drop: Marland had been indicted on 54 counts of sex abuse involving four boys. Last month, Marland, 42, pleaded guilty to four counts of sexual abuse and was sentenced to 7½ years in prison. As a French citizen, he likely will be deported when released from prison. Crook County undersheriff Clyde McLain said there is evidence Donohue and Uptain knew they were legally required to immediately report suspected cases of sex abuse. He said Donahue was informed about the reporting requirements at a meeting last February. The meeting with area clergy was arranged by the district attorney’s office to discuss the sex abuse reporting law. McLain said one pastor reported that Uptain admitted she understood the law but delayed action out of fear attendance at the school would drop. (The Oregonian, October 2, 1997)

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BAKERSFIELD, CA – A church school youth pastor will go to jail for two years for sexually molesting a 16-year-old girl. Jon Jon Jessee, 28, allegedly had sex with the girl while she was staying at the home he shared with his wife and young daughter.

The girl told police she was living with the Jessees because of family problems she was having. She said Jessee would touch her inappropriately and then pray and ask forgiveness, and that they had sex in March after he came into the bathroom while she was taking a shower. After the incident he packed her bags and asked her to move out. Jessee pled no contest to the charges. (8/8/97)

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PETALUMA – A former rabbi faces up to 8 years in prison after pleading no contest to a felony molestation charge involving a 12-year-old girl.

Two misdemeanor molestation charges were dropped against Rabbi Sidney Goldenberg, 58, after the he entered the plea.

The assistant District Attorney said no deals were made on Goldenberg’s sentencing, who said he would solicit statements from several adults in New York who say they were molested by Goldenberg as children. They would be considered during sentencing. (6/19/97

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Nunavik pastor charged with sex crimes against a minor The leader of Ivujivik’s evangelical congregation, the Full Gospel Church, faces trial next January in connection with incidents dating back ten years . (11/28/97, Nunatsiaq News, Iqaluit, NU, Greenland.) http://www.nunanet.com/~nunat/week/71128.html#1

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BAKERSFIELD – A Mormon missionary working as a reading volunteer at an elementary school was arrested on suspicion of molesting an 8-year-old girl at the school. Jason Chad Larsen, 20, is alleged to have fondled the child in the school cafeteria which was filled with other children and reading volunteers. The girl reported the incident to a teacher’s aide. The principal called the girl’s parents and then the police.

Larsen posted bond the next night. (5/24/97)

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CHICAGO – Rev. Casey January, 30, a pastor at God’s Tabernacle of Praise was charged with two counts of criminal sexual assault and one count of criminal sexual abuse. He allegedly assaulted a teenage girl after counseling her about a year ago in the church and her home. The alleged victim tried to commit suicide after the incidents. (8/7/97)

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KOKOMO, IN. – Former televangelist William E. Tully, Sr., 51 and 5 others are awaiting trial on charges of conspiracy to commit mail and securities fraud and money laundering. Tully and his Charter Financial Group, Inc., lost nearly $7 million, said by authorities to have floated a lavish lifestyle, including a 57-foot yatch, rather that the mortgages to build churches for poor congregations as claimed. His TV ministry collapsed in 1995 under the weight of a 61-count indictment. The trial, which is expected to start in Nov. and take several months, has already drawn battle lines over the use of videotaped statements from aged, frail investors and a defense fund in support of Tully. (8/22/97)

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JACKSON COUNTY, MI. – Jeffrey Knapp, 47, a registered nurse who presented himself as a master spiritual healer, has been charged with molesting an 11-year-old boy under the guise of spiritual healing. He allegedly coerced the boy into fondling him during a class in “reiki,” an Asian healing technique, at his home. It was revealed that in 1977 he was convicted of molesting an 11-year-old and sentenced to 5 years probation and in 1986 had lost a job as a principal after parents complained about sexual conversations he was having with students. (8/8/97)

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DECATUR, AL. – A minister on his way to County Jail proclaimed his innocence and said he was “set up” on sexual abuse charges.

Victor Young Pickett, 25, was charged after an indictment by a grand jury with first-degree sodomy, first-degree sexual abuse and second-degree sexual abuse, records showed. The charges stem from a June 19, 1999, offense involving two males, ages 10 and 14, police said.

According to police, the investigation of Pickett spanned six months and revealed that he allegedly had sexually molested other young males also but it is unknown if other charges will be filed.

A police investigator said Pickett ran a church out of his apartment. “He’d go around and pick them up and take them to his church. He’d take them to movies or out to eat and that’s when he would molest them.”

As he was being led to jail, where he was to be held in lieu of bonds totaling $150,000, Pickett said he was an ordained minister and ran the Pentecostal Church of Truth, an outreach ministry, which has about 15 members. He said he had been in the ministry since he was 12 and that he worked with adults and young adults.

Pickett said he thinks one of the families he’s been helping set him up. He alluded to discovering that some of the people he was helping were “drug users and criminals.” He said, “When you help people and you stop, this is what happens.”Daily 5/9/2000

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PRINCE GEORGE, British Columbia – A 5,000-member Anglican diocese may face bankruptcy if it is forced to pay major damages as a result of a series of court cases on sexual abuse.

The Supreme Court of British Columbia ruled that the Diocese of Cariboo, the Anglican Church of Canada and thefederal government were jointly liable for compensation in the case of Floyd Mowatt, who was sexually abused 30 years ago at a church residential school in British Columbia.

The amount of damages has not yet been made public, but the Anglican Journal, the church’s national publication, estimated the church’s portion of the award at about C$200,000 (US$135,000). Although the Diocese of Cariboo has sufficient resources to pay its share of damages, there are 4 more actions pending related to the same offender. It is expected that the award will be the same in each of the cases, which are likely to be dealt with quickly in the courts because they are based on the evidence already presented in the Mowatt case.

Derek Clarke, a residence supervisor at St George’s residential school in Lytton, was convicted in 1993 and jailed for sexually abusing the plaintiff and several other boys. The issue before Justice Dillon was to determine who the employer was and who should pay the damages. She found the church, which ran the institution and had hired Clarke, 60% responsible and the government, under whose mandate the school operated, 40% responsible. She found they both breached their duty, but that the church, in a position of trust, had greater liability for failing to protect the children in their charge.

The diocese might be faced with bankruptcy, Abp. David Crawley said. He said: “The Primate [Archbishop Michael Peers, head of the Canadian church] has publicly apologized for our involvement in the residential school business and what happened at them. The church will pay its obligations.”

This is the first decision involving residential schools and the Anglican Church. The church still faces more than 200 similar lawsuits involving hundreds of plaintiffs. ENI, 10/5/99

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OTTAWA. Ontario — A landmark court ruling that ordered the federal government and the United Church of Canadato compensate victims of sexual abuse at a church-run native school could be a devastating blow to Canadian churches and social agencies, observers said.

“This is a major threat to every church in the country,” said Gerry Kelly of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops. “The potential costs are exceedingly high. I don’t really know what’s going to happen. The number of cases has just grown and grown.”

In Ottawa, federal bureaucrats met with officials from several churches, trying to determine what should be done in the face of what appears to be a staggering number of claims. At the moment, churches and the federal government face at least 1,000 abuse cases from native Canadians who attended the schools, and lawyers connected with the issue say the number may escalate.

Prime Minister Jean Chretien said that Canada, which has been asked to defend its treatment of native children at the schools before a United Nations tribunal, is ready to accept its responsibility, although it will review each case separately.

“It looks like the court has attributed to the federal government some responsibility,” he said. “If we have responsibility, we have to meet our responsibilities.”

In a court ruling dealing with a residential school in Port Alberni on Vancouver Island, the B.C. Supreme Court found that both the federal government, which financed the school, and the United Church, which ran it, were jointly liable and must compensate those who were sexually assaulted at the school by Arthur Plint decades ago. The ruling is considered a landmark because it transfers accountability from Mr. Plint to his employers. Although it has been cheered by victims, others warn that the ruling could have far-reaching effects.

Observers say the crucial aspect of the decision is the way it extends the concept of vicarious liability, which determines where an employer’s accountability ends and an individual’s begins. Until now, the courts have generally ruled that an employer can’t be held liable for their employees’ actions if there was no way to anticipate them. One expert warned it could mean the end of girl’s soccer and the Boy Scouts.

More than 80 residential schools for native children were set up in the past century in almost every province. Officials estimate that up to 125,000 native children passed through the system before it was closed in the mid-1980s.

In June, the Prime Minister or a senior government representative has been asked to appear before an international human-rights tribunal to defend Ottawa’s record on caring for the children at the schools. An international court, convened by tribal leaders from across North America, was to hold three days of public hearings in Vancouver as a response to complaints of sexual abuse, assault and cultural genocide at the schools and pleas for justice.

The testimony is mainly for the benefit of the International Human Rights Association of American Minorities, which is formally affiliated with the UN. The association is expected to report to the UN Secretary-General. It is believed to be the first time that the non-governmental organization has investigated a situation in Canada. Although the tribunal does not have the force of law behind it, the association’s findings could embarrass Canada at the UN, where Canada often criticizes other countries over human rights. (6/9/98 Canadian Press)

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A teen-age girl testified in Provo, Utah, that her father, John Chaney, leader of a Mormon polygamy sect, repeatedly had sex with her and forced her to marry a middle-aged man when she was 13. (unknown, 6/27/97)

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Universal Church of God pastor Ellis Butler of Shirley, Arkansas, was sentenced to 60 years in prison for raping three church school girls. (unknown, 5/31/97)

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The Rev. Jeffrey Horton of Liberty Christian Center in Michigan was sentenced to jail for planting hidden video cameras in women’s restrooms. (unknown, 4/97)

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The Rev. Bryan Buckley of Christ Community Church in St. Charles, Ill., drew a seven-year prison term for sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl. (unknown, 2/97)

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Tulsa, OK. A Tulsa jury on Wednesday handed a 79-year-old Oakhurst preacher prison terms totaling 30 years upon convicting him of molesting and sodomizing a 5-year-old girl. William Euel Riley received 10 years on each of two counts of lewd molestation, and one count of forcible sodomy. Jurors acquitted him of another sodomy count. Riley, pastor of Mission of Love Pentecostal Church in Oakhurst, denied the allegations. Formal sentencing is set for Feb. 15, one day before his 80th birthday. (Tulsa World, 01/11/1996)
Preacher Sentenced in Molestation

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Lancaster. PA. A Lancaster man who helped teach Bible study for teenagers planning to join a church was arrested and charged with 2 counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse. The victim, 15, was in the process of becoming a member of the Conestoga Valley Church of Christ. John Mark Nadeau, 44, allegedly assaulted the boy during “one-on-one” study sessions. Nadeau turned himself in after a child abuse prosecution unit began investigating the alleged assaults. He waived a preliminary hearing and was freed on $10,000 cash bail. Nadeau faces a maximum penalty of 20-40 years in prison if convicted. Each charge of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse carries a maximum penalty of 10-20 years, said a detective from East Lampeter. (New Era, 8/9/95)

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Round Lake, MI. Bible Teacher Had Prior Sex Offenses Round Lake Community Church Sunday and vacation bible school teacher Joseph Escalera, 51, was sentenced to 7 years in prison for sexually molesting a boy, 10. In return for a guilty plea to aggravated criminal sexual abuse, other charges against Escalera were dismissed. The boy and Escalera’s mentally disabled roommate participated in the church’s youth group. In June and July of ’94 the boy befriended the roommate and slept over about once a week. Police say Escalera admitted he fondled the boy and masturbated while the boy undressed. At the time of his arrest, Escalera was on 4 years probation for a 1988 conviction of 3 counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault for incidents in Mount Prospect. (Waukegan News Sun 12/22/95)

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MINISTER PLAYING DOCTOR An assistant minister and youth choir director at First Church of God has been charged with practicing medicine without a license and criminal sexual conduct for the rectal exam of a male and pelvic exams on women involving penile catheters. Dean Willoughby, 29, was apparently practicing medicine from his apartment on homeless people, including children. HIV+ blood samples were found there, also apparently drawn from “patients”. Willoughby’s attorney says, “All he’s ever done is do community work … with street people, with the homeless, with AIDS patients. He has not a blemish in his background. He’s very highly respected in his church.” (Lexington Herald-Leader 4/8/94)

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DAVIS FACES MORE CHARGES. Rev. L.R. Davis, charged in Illinois with criminal sexual misconduct, child pornography, and perjury, was also charged with assaulting a teenage boy in San Diego. Davis, 57, is a prominent Waukegan minister with Christian Fellowship, Inc. Two fellow ministers, Michael Camer, 30, and David Annstrong, 33, are indicted on lesser charges. Young boys may have been brought from Tijuana, Mexico to Davis’ San Diego church for molestation.

L.R. DAVIS LOSES APPEAL. The Illinois Appellate Court upheld the conviction and 31-year prison term of Rev. L.R. Davis. His conviction for child pornography was reversed, but his 15-count conviction for child sexual abuse of 2 boys was upheld. The Illinois Supreme Court will review the dismissal of Davis’ perjury charges in a related civil suit. Source: _News-Sun_ 3/29/94, 4/9/94.

RELIGIONIST MOLESTS GIRL, 6, IN CHURCH NURSERY. A church member of the Christian Fellowship Church, founded by L.R. Davis (see above) has pleaded a stipulated guilty plea to the charges of sexually molesting a girl, 6, in the church nursery. Michael Larson, 27, awaits sentencing. Source: _News-Sun_ (no date).

DAVIS GETS 31 YEARS, CLEMENCY ASKED. The founder of the notorious First Christian Fellowship Church of Waukegan, Rev. Lloyd Davis, 57, flanked by many supporters, was sentenced to 31 years in prison for criminal sexual assault, child pornography & sexual abuse. He imported teenaged boys from Mexico for sex. Lake Co. Judge Christopher C. Starck said: “The burning question in this case is whether this man is a minister or a monster, a pastor or a pedophile.” Starck said he is all of those things. Davis is believed to have molested children since the 1960s. Former church members accuse him of running a cult, making sexual demands on supporters & locating all churches near Naval bases, where he is known for trying to lure young sailors into his churches for sexual purposes. About 374 persons wrote letters to the judge asking for mercy. “He is the greatest person there is,” insisted Martha Allsopp, a Kenosha church member. He faces more charges in California. Two other ministers from his Waukegan church, David Lee Armstrong & Michael Carner, go on trial in March. In January, 200 supporters led by Rev. Peter Paine of the Christian Fellowship Church presented a request for clemency for Davis to the Illinois Prisoner Review Board. “I believe L.R. Davis may be the most sexually dangerous man to have ever walked the streets of Lake Co.,” maintains Assistant State’s Attorney Jeff Pavletic. Sources: _Chicago Tribune_ 8/15/92, AP/ _Quad-City Times_ 8/15/92, _News-Sun_ (Lake Co.) 1/15/93.

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Militant Moralist is a Molestor; Gets Eight Years. Brisbane, Australia — Keith Wright, a former member of Parliament, born-again Christian, antiporn crusader, and militant moralist was handed an eight-year prison sentence for molesting and raping a teenage girl during the years 1983 through 1986. Wright faces additional charges of sexually abusing two other young girls between 1984 and 1990 — a period during which he actively campaigned to have the town of Rockhampton declared a “porn-free zone.” (January, 1994)

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Christian televangelist William Wasmus of Church of the Living Savior: convicted of having sex with children and video-taping it on church equipment. (Columbus, Ohio, 1994)

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Reverend Richard Jones of Family Life Church: molested boys and told them the Bible sanctioned the abuse (Park Hills, Missouri, 1994)

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MINISTER GETS 189 YEARS. For the sexual assault of 2 boys, both 15, the minister of the now-defunct Family Life Church in Park Hills has been sentenced to serve at least 28 years in prison before he is eligible for parole. Rev. Richard L. Jones, 30, was sentenced to 189 years for sexually assaulting the boys in his home and car in 1990- 91. He told them it was sanctioned in the _Bible_. In court Jones claimed the boys were trying to seek revenge when he confronted their drinking and sexual activities. Source: _News-Leader_ 3/16/94, AP 2/8/94.

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ST. LOUIS, MO. A judge’s decision to sentence Thomas Jolly to five years’ probation has outraged the victims and their parents, who argue that the 83-year-old defrocked minister should have gone to jail for molesting three girls. Jolly was accused of molesting three girls, ages 9, 13 and 16, between September 1987 and August 1988 at the Gospel Assembly Church, a nondenominational church at 13169 Tesson Ferry Road in southwest St. Louis County. Jolly was minister for the congregation of 600. . (St. Louis Post Dispatch, August 11, 1993 By William C. Lhotka )
Probation For Abuser Stirs Anger Minister Molested Girls Who Sought Counseling

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MAYER (FINALLY) GETS 3 YEARS. The Rev. Robert E. Mayer, 53, implicated in numerous cases of sexually abusing minors, was sentenced to 3 years in prison for molesting a girl, 13. Four men also testified during the trial about Mayer’s advances toward them 9 years ago, when they were 13 and 14. “The evidence indicates a long history of sexually inappropriate conduct with children and adults,” said prosecutor Mark Cavins. “This crime was not committed on impulse or spur of the moment.” Mayer is the first priest in Cook Co. to be sentenced to prison. He continued to maintain his innocence, pleading for mercy: “As God is my witness, I was never alone with the girl,” Mayer told the judge. Judge Thomas Durkin replied, “God is not your judge today.” Source: _Chicago Tribune_ 2/6/93.

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YOUTH MINISTER CHARGED. Garden City Church of Christ youth minister Rev. Cameron K. Huffman, 41, was charged with 21 counts of child molestation for molesting a young boy for a year. Huffman had admitted to being a pedophile during a counseling session. When the church in Columbus was notified of Huffman’s admission, it fired him and informed the congregation, also calling police. Police received complaints against Rev. Huffman from other Indiana cities and states, but the 5-year statute of limitations has hampered some investigations. Source: _Indianapolis Star_ 1/28/93.

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CULT LEADER GETS 16 YEARS. Fugitive religious leader James Randazzo, convicted in 1989 of sexual exploitation of children, was sentenced to 16 years in prison. Founder of Spiral of Friends cult, he videotaped sex sessions with teenaged children during “therapy”. His wife Colleen is serving an 8-year prison term. Randazzo had skipped the country, but was nabbed last fall in Hungary. Source: _Rocky Mountain News_ 1/30/93.

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POLL REVEALS WIDESPREAD ABUSE. 7% of Minnesotan protestants personally know someone who has been sexually abused by a member of the clergy, while 5% of Catholics did, and 2% say they have been touched by a clergyperson in a way that made them uncomfortable, according to a _Star Tribune_/WCCO-TV Minnesota Poll phone survey of 1,222 Minnesotans was taken from Jan. 26 to Feb. 5. 1991 survey of Minnesota clergy showed 15% of mainline Protestant clergy admitted to an affair outside of. Source: _Star Tribune_ 2/21/93

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CONGREGATIONAL MINISTER RENEGES CONFESSION. Facing 11 felony counts stemming from molestations of 2 young brothers since 1987, Rev. Boardman Kathan says a damaging statement he gave police in July was coerced. Former chair of the Region 16 Board of Education, Kathan retired last summer as associate minister of the First Congregational Church of Cheshire in Waterbury. Police say their investigation shows he molested a boy, 17, numerous times over the past 5 years, & once molested his brother, now 12. Source: (Waterbury) _Republican American_ 1/23/93.

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2,000 SUPPORT MINISTER MOLESTER. About 75 supporters from the Christ Universal Church picketed before the Criminal Courts Building in Chicago in support of Rev. Paul Hall, 47, convicted of sexually abusing a boy, 13, in 1989. He had been free on appeal since then. His 4-year sentence began in January. The Illinois Appellate Court, which denied him a rehearing, received more than 2,000 letters in his behalf. Source: _Chicago Sun-Times_ 9/3/92, 1/8/93.

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DEKALB CHURCH BLESSES COVER-UP. A sex scandal, now encompassing 4 ministers from one family, has been uncovered at the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit in DeKalb, Georgia, praised by former President Bush as one of his “1,000 Points of Light”. The $12 million, racially diverse 7,700-seat church with a TV program, social services, lost half of its 12,000 members following revelations that its minister, Bishop Earl Paulk, had an adulterous affair. Other church employees or members have stepped forward to say they had affairs with the bishop’s brother, Rev. Don Paulk, & his nephews Rev. Duane Swilley & Rev. Alan Mushegan. Women charge the ministers coerced them into having sex in order to “serve God.” The church filed, then dropped a slander/libel suit against several former members & staffers, resulting in a gag order by a DeKalb judge forbidding them to discuss their allegations of sexual misconduct. It promotes a doctrine of “covering”, blessing cover-ups of sexual misconduct & requiring submission to authority. Don Paulk accuses former church schoolteacher Rebecca Moses of seducing him, saying “I know now what it was like for Samson to place his head in the lap of Delilah.” Six victims have not filed suit, but are asking for legislation making it a felony in Georgia for clergy to have sex with members of their congregations. Sources: AP/_Atlanta Journal/Constitution_ 11/14/92; _USA Today_ 12/18/92; _Boston Globe_ 1/9/93.

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Pablo Geraldo Boas, 28, charged with sexual molestation. Assistant pastor at Jubilee Christian Center, San Jose, was charged with 2 felony counts of lewd & lascivious conduct with children, stemming from assaults on 4 boys, ages 10-15, at the church between September 1988 & February 1992. Sources: _L.A. Times_ 12/19/92, _San Francisco Examiner_ 1/10/93.
Brentwood Man Held in ’90 Molestation

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David Ernest Brimmer, 39. Charged with sexual molestation. Assistant pastor at Jubilee Christian Center, San Jose, was charged with 5 felony counts of lewd & lascivious conduct with children, stemming from assaults on 4 boys, ages 10-15, at the church between September 1988 & February 1992. Sources: _L.A. Times_ 12/19/92, _San Francisco Examiner_ 1/10/93.
Brentwood Man Held in ’90 Molestation

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PASTOR BOOKED FOR MOLESTING SCHOOLGIRL. A girl, 15, was molested at a church-run school in Birmingham by Rev. James E. Johnson, of Ensley, according to police. He was charged with 2nd degree sexual assault, a misdemeanor. Source: _Birmingham News_ 11/21/92.

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PROMINENT EVANGELICAL RESIGNS; NO CHARGES? Prominent Sunday-school teacher/leader James C. Truxton, 77, resigned his positions at the 5,000-member First Evangelical Free Church in Fullerton. The founding president of Mission Aviation Fellowship admitted he was stepping down because of “molestation perpetrated by me in the past upon young girls within & outside this congregation”. Both had been teaching second-graders; the wife was called “culpable”. At least 7 church members in their 20s & 30s said they were molested by Truxton as children. The statute of limitations has expired; no criminal charges were filed. When parents 20 years ago complained to Mission Aviation Fellowship officials about Truxton, they were told a psychologist at Fuller Seminary evaluated him, concluding he was in no need of help. Source: _National & International Religion Report_ 10/19/92.

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PASTOR OUSTED FROM 4,500-MEMBER CHURCH. Pastor David Hocking of Calvary Church in Santa Ana was forced to resign after confessing to an affair with a married woman. Hocking, 51, is married with grown children. Source: _National & International Religion Report_ 10/19/92.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ McALESTER, OK. A man who said he was former pastor was in the Pittsburg County Jail on Tuesday on charges of rape and sodomy of three boys. A preliminary hearing is scheduled Sept. 22 for Kenneth Raymond Dewoody, 50, of Crowder. He was charged with nine counts of rape and sodomy. The boys, ages 14 to 17, allege Dewoody raped and sodomized them, sometimes in front of other boys, sometimes while watching pornographic movies, authorities say. Two of the boys met Dewoody at Ask Creek Church, where Dewoody was a pastor, authorities say. (Tulsa World, 07/29/1992)
Pastor Accused of Raping Boys

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CANCER VICTIM ALLEGES MISCONDUCT. Carolyn Kruse, Aurora, filed suit against her minister and church, saying he coerced her into a sexual relationship when she went for counseling while ill with Hodgkin’s disease. Sued is John R. Leonard, pastor of Harvest Christian Center, who told the congregation Kruse was possessed by a demon. Source: _Rocky Mountain News_ 1/1/92.

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COUNSELING VICTIM GETS $300,000. The Bear Valley Church of Christ & its former minister Homer Wolfe agreed to pay $300,000 to a man whom Wolfe sexually assaulted during family counseling sessions. Earlier, a boy, now 17, was awarded $450,000 by a jury for similar charges. Wolfe, 59, has not been criminally charged. He told parishioners to undress & massage themselves, & masturbated during counseling sessions, also touching parishioners. The fundamentalist Church of Christ teaches that nonchurch members will go to hell. Wolfe now lives in Texas. Source: _Rocky Mountain News_ 8/2,29/92. Denver, CO. A Dever woman and her son were awarded $450,000 by a Denver District Court jury. The woman, who son was a minor at the time, claimed the Church of Christ minister, Homer Wolfe, inappropriately massaged and fondled him during counseling sessions for five years. That case is before the Colorado Court of Appeals. ( Denver Post 18-May-94)
CHURCHES SHIFT ABUSE DEFENSES

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FUGITIVE RELIGIOUS LEADER NABBED. Fugitive religious leader James Randazzo, convicted in 1989 of sex crimes, had skipped the country in 1990 & was nabbed in Hungary after a manhunt. He will now be sentenced on 10 counts of sexual exploitation of children & drug use. Randazzo founded Spiral of Friends Church in Molina. Source: _Pueblo Chieftain_ 10/29/92.

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Holy Way leader Clarence “Brother Will” Williams was arrested after a 19-year-old woman said he brainwashed her into having sex starting when she was 15. The member of the sect said he forced sex upon her and other women more than 40 times between 1987-1990. Williams, who pleaded guilty 5 years ago to “cleansing” underage members by ordering them to bare their breasts, was 2 months short of completing his 5-year probation. Terms of probation prohibited practicing aspects of his religion such as nudity, fondling children, and having non-related children spend the night. In 1986 prosecutors interviewed about a dozen girls and their mothers who described a religious ritual in which they would strip and fondle each other at Williams’ command. Williams claimed this was _Bible_-based: “Our belief is that biblically if you have a problem within yourself, it is because of sin or weakness, and about the only thing that’s going to cleanse you of that is if you expose it before the Lord.” Source: _Palm Beach Post_ 2/26/92.

Sex abuse and mind control in the name of Jesus was uncovered at the Holy Way religious commune in Florida. “Brother Bill” Clarence E. Williams, its leader, was convicted of sexually abusing two girls during church ceremonies; inducing the sexual performance of children and other indecent assaults. Williams’ commune was established on strict adherence to traditional sex roles and patriarchal rule. (Source: Palm Beach Post, 3/13/86; Tampa Tribune, 4/5/87)

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“WOUNDED SOLDIER” LEAVES CHURCH. Senior pastor of Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, with 12,000 members one of Atlanta’s largest churches Q stepped down, admitting an “improper” relationship with a female church employee. Charismatic Rev. Don Paulk, 53, sermonized, “I am not here today as a martyr or hero, but as a fallen, wounded soldier … My family’s forgiveness was second only to the forgiveness of God.” His brother, Bishop Earl Paulk, berated the media for exposing the “weaknesses” of others, and blamed “Satan”, promising Don would return. Source: _Atlanta Constitution_ 5/11/92.

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AIR FORCE CHAPLAIN COURT-MARTIALED. Capt. Perry W. Bell, 37, pleaded guilty to adultery with 6 women, conduct unbecoming an officer, and bringing discredit upon the armed forces. He was also convicted of attempted seduction of a 19-year-old Air Force cadet who fought off advances in his chapel office. The Scott Air Force Base chaplain was court-martialed and given 3 months in jail. He could have been sentenced for up to 12 years. In exchange for guilty pleas, the Air Force agreed to a brief sentence and dropped other charges of indecent advances, possession of a pornographic videotape while in the United Arab Emigrates during the war against Iran, ordering an enlisted man to obtain a pornographic tape, and dereliction of duty. Three of the victims were Air Force Officers, others were a sergeant, a sergeant’s wife seeking counseling, and an enlisted woman. The senior Protestant chaplain sought out vulnerable women seeking help for emotional upsets. Source: _Edwardsville Intelligencer_ 2/19/92.

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“SOUND DOCTRINE” PASTOR QUITS. After nearly 20 years as pastor, Rev. Wendell Beets, of Sound Doctrine Church, resigned following a claim of sexual impropriety with a female church member, 19. A married couple who were also ministers at the church expressed indignation that “he would attack a 19-year-old girl”, & concern that Beets will tart a new church & continue preying on the congregation. Louise & Clarence Ellis of Cedar Rapids say others have criticized them for speaking out against Beets. Source: _Cedar Rapids Gazette_ 8/29/92.

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UNITARIAN GUILTY ON 6 CHARGES. Northboro minister Mack W. Mitchell, 56, was convicted on 6 of 23 charges of sexual assault involving a Tibetan woman who testified he sexually abused her as a teenager after offering to sponsor her education in this country. “I came here with a lot of wonderful dreams, and my dreams were shattered,” said the victim, now 23. With the conviction, “I can dream again and become a whole person again.” Rape and assault-battery charges are still pending against him by another Tibetan woman. Source: _Worcester Telegram & Gazette_ 5/15/92.

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SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER IMPRISONED. Groton Sunday School teacher Leslie Richard Danielson, 63, was sentenced to 5-10 years after pleading guilty to sexually abusing 6 children under 14 years. He is already serving up to 10 years for a 1991 conviction involving 4 other children, but will be eligible for parole in 4 years. Source: _Boston Herald_ 5/22/92.

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BRONSON MINISTER ARRAIGNED. First Congregational Church minister David Covert Moore was charged with 5 counts of criminal sexual conduct of 4 children under the age of 15. In July he checked himself into Pine Rest Christian Counseling Services in Grand Rapids. Source: _Jackson Citizen Patriot_ 8/29/92.

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MINISTER & GIRLFRIEND INDICTED. Trenton pastor Franklin Tucker, 37, Final Call Ministry, was indicted for molesting his girlfriend’s daughters, 9 & 15. His girlfriend was indicted for forcing her daughters to recant the allegations to police. The abuse came to light when the 9-year-old told a school official, who contacted police. Source: _Trenton Times_ 9/15/92.

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SUPPORTERS GATHER FOR CONVICTED “FRIEND”. Pastor Roy McKinley, 45, who stepped down from Milan Friends Church after being charged with molesting a teenage girl, pleaded guilty to gross sexual imposition and related charges. Supporters, including a minister, crowded the courtroom where McKinley pleaded for mercy. Source: _Toledo Blade_ 5/25/92.

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SEXUAL HARASSMENT SUIT HITS CHURCH. A female employee at World Harvest Church in Columbus has filed a lawsuit saying the father of the pastor sexually harassed her, also naming the church & its pastor as defendants. Naomi Endicott, 48, said Rev. Rodney L. Parsley knew about the harassment but did nothing to stop it. James G. Parsley, his father, was her supervisor & made unwanted sexual advances, even offering money for sex, she said. Source: _Columbus Dispatch_ 10/17/92.

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MINISTER MOLESTER OF 400 SENTENCED. Eugene Church for the Deaf minister Joseph Bernard Ponder, 47, was sentenced to 2 years for violating probation in 2 felony convictions of 1st degree sexual abuse of boys. He had received a year in jail for 2nd degree sexual abuse of a boy, 14, in 1988. Officials believe an estimate that he molested 400 boys may be low. “This may be the most prolific abuser of young boys who has ever stood in this court,” said prosecutor Kent Mortimore. “His whole life has revolved around this his ministry, his choice of careers to put himself in contact with potential victims.” Ponder denies abusing the boy during a swimming incident, and failed to complete court-ordered sex offender treatment. Source: _Register-Guard_ 3/5/92.

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CONVICTED PASTOR “RIGHT WITH LORD”. Rev. Virgil Carpenter, 48, pastor of Bible Missionary Church in Ontario, was convicted of sodomy & sexual abuse of a girl, 9, over a 1-1/2 year period. A jury convicted Carpenter of 2 felony counts of sodomy & 4 felony counts of sexual abuse. He faces 5 additional felony charges in 2 upcoming trials. “I’m really not worried,” he told supporters who had gathered in the courtroom before the verdict. “I’m right with the Lord.” Source: _Corvallis Gazette-Times_ 10/11/92.

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LAY PREACHER WITH AIDS TRIED TO INFECT KIDS? Lay preacher Adam Brown, of Roseburg, Oregon, infected with HIV, was indicted Nov. 13 for sexually abusing children to infect them with AIDS, including 5 counts of attempted murder, 9 counts of sodomy, 4 counts of rape, 5 counts of reckless endangerment, & 3 counts of sexual penetration with a foreign object. Boys & girls told police he molested them repeatedly, threatening them with knives, scissors & matches. One boy said Brown rubbed semen into a scratch on his arm. Another said Brown burned a _Bible_, warning that Satan would come unless the child stopped resisting. Alleged victims include a 3-year-old girl, 7-year-old girl & 8-year-old boy. AIDS tests so far for the children have been negative. Source: AP/_Boston Globe_ 11/29/92.

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YOUTH PASTOR JAILED FOR ABUSING GIRL. Sentenced to 60 days in jail for molesting a young girl was Michael Wayne Cross, 32, youth pastor of Oregon City Evangelical Church. He must undergo a sex offender treatment & register with the state for life as a convicted sex offender. The girl, now 17, said he sodomized her numerous times over a year. An officer said the crimes occurred at the church or at church functions. Source: _Oregonian_ 10/29/92.

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CHURCH COUNSELING TURNED ABUSIVE. A Fairless Hills couple filed suit against a church counselor and Calvary Full Gospel Church, alleging the pastor referred them to abusive Aldo Maselli. The depressed woman said he told her he “had prayed about it and that God told him that it was OK for him to express his feelings of love”, initiating a 2-year sexual relationship. The suit by Rebecca and Steven Hicks charges negligent, reckless practices contrary to accepted counseling standards, and battery and sexual abuse. Source: _Bucks County Courier Times_ 5/20/92.

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CULT LEADER’S SON GETS YEAR. The son of Connecticut religious cult leader “Brother Julius” was sentenced to a year in prison for sexually abusing 4 children, ages 7, 9, 10, & 17. His father claims to be God & a “sinful messiah” & has also been accused of molesting children. His civil suits have been settled out of court, but he has never been criminally indicted. (Boston Globe 9/20/92)

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CULT PASTOR NOT PROSECUTED. Officials in Clearfield & Delaware counties won’t prosecute doomsday pastor Anthony Marcolongo of Johnstown, despite allegations by 6 women followers of sexual assault. “We thought this wasn’t the type of case that tax dollars should be spent on,” said Assistant DA Sheldon Kovach. The women said the minister broke them physically, making them work 18-hour days, & filled them with fear of doom in Hell if they did not have sex with him. Source: _Clearfield Progress_ 9/1/92.

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POLYGAMOUS HILLBILLY PREACHER CHARGED. The leader of the Evangelistic Tabernacle in Martinsville was charged with felonious seduction & taking indecent liberties with a minor when he “married” a 16-year-old high school junior. Although already married, he was not charged with polygamy since he did not legally marry the teenager. Rev. Elwood Gallimore, 42, was also charged with performing marriage ceremonies without a license. His favorite topic for sermons is polygamy, citing such polygamous biblical characters as David & Solomon. He said the _Bible_ will be his only defense during the trial. Gallimore, whose dutiful 42-year-old wife was hospitalized for “nerves” after the second “marriage” was proposed, says he is being prosecuted by “jealous” men. A magistrate ordered him to stay away from the teenager on Jan. 19. Source: _Washington Post_ 1/21,27,28/92.

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CONVICTED MOLESTER RECRUITING BOYS. A convicted child molester barred in Pennsylvania from recruiting choirboys to tour in Europe is now operating out of Morgantown, WV. John B. Shallenberger, 74, was convicted in 1985 of indecent assault, indecent exposure and corrupting the morals of a Dutch choirboy, 11. He was convicted in 1961 and 1975 on similar charges. In 1990, a judge ordered him to reveal his criminal record while recruiting boys and to pay a $5,000 fine for violating a 1978 agreement with the Bureau of Consumer Protection to reveal his background. He has not paid the fine or signed the petition. Shallenberger insists, “Every choirmaster and every music teacher in the country knows of my criminal record … You would be surprised at how many parents beg me to take a second brother on tour.” His July in Paris tour was handled through the Children’s Choir Federation. Source: _Pittsburgh Post-Gazette_ 2/15/92.

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CONVICTED MOLESTER STOPS TOUR. Following an investigation by the West Virginia attorney general’s office, convicted child molester John B. Shallenberger, 74, folded his Children’s Choir Federation, soliciting boys from grades 4-7 to take 2-week singing tours in Europe. He had been convicted in 1975 & 1961 for child molestation. In 1991, Pennsylvania authorities charged him with ignoring a court order to reveal his child molestation convictions to the parents of recruited children, so he moved to West Virginia. Shallenberger has moved back to Pennslyvania & is running an elevator repair company. Source: _Charleston Gazette_ 7/8/92.

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NEW BRUNSWICK PREACHER CONVICTED. Calling his crimes a “most sick, disturbing and tragic matter”, Justice Thomas Riordon convicted Pentecostal preacher Rev. Aubrey McCallister of touching, fondling and sodomizing a young girl for 10 years, beginning when she was 7. The assaults took place at his home and church Sunday school in Minto, New Brunswick. He was convicted of the same offense 2 years ago and sentenced to 5 years in jail but was granted a new trial. His loyal congregation packed the courtroom during both trials, and had to be warned not to repeat their angry outburst. Followers shook the convict’s hand and said they were sticking by him. The victim, now 20, was jeered by the minister’s congregation. McCallister called her “daddy’s little girl” and rewarded her with Oreo cookies or told her to pray for forgiveness after each encounter. “Aren’t we sneaky? If we ever get caught, mom would kick us both out,” he told her. Source: _Telegraph Journal_, Saint John, N.B., 3/6/92.

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“GOD HAS FORGIVEN ME FOR WHAT I’VE DONE.” Nova Scotia religious leader Harold Jollimore, 63, convicted in December of sexual and indecent assault of young girls, was sentenced to 2 years in prison. He preached biblical passages while sexually abusing neighbor girls. One 9-year-old who had a breakdown after 8 years of abuse has been in therapy since 1978. He attracted children by running a candy and soda pop store on his property. He told the judge, “God has forgiven me for what I’ve done,” saying he doesn’t understand why the victims haven’t been able to “put this behind them”. He was also ordered to take psychiatric counseling during a 3-year probation. Source: _The Spectator_ 2/11/92.

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RELIGIOUS BROADCASTER MOLESTED GIRLS. Well-known former broadcaster Tom Speed, 35, for Billings Christian radio pleaded guilty to sexually molesting 6 girls ranging in age from 4 to 14, who were at his home for day-care or piano lessons. (Missoulian 1/18/92)

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Christian Fundamentalist school operator Reverend Duane Smith: molesting children (Laporte, Indiana, 1992)

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PASTOR GETS 6 MONTHS. Pastor Ed Brennan, 45, of Whitehorse Christian Bible Fellowship Society, got 6 months in jail and 3 years’ probation for sexually assaulting a young married parishioner in the Yukon. Source: _Spectator_ 12/17/91.

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1991, England: Pentecostal Religious teacher who already had convictions for indecency against chldren was allowed to teach bible classes at a Cornwall church and used his position to sexually assault an 8 year old boy who attended his classes.

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1991, England: Minister Alfred Gatehouse 62, sentenced to 10 years for sodomy and soliciting paid sex with teenage girls.

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1991, England: Reverend S Pusateria 40, sentenced to 6 years for criminal sexual assault. He molested his victim repeatedly for over a year.

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1991, England: 51 yr old Minister’s Wife convicted of inducing a minor in her foster care to engage in sexual intercourse.

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1991, England: Evangelist preacher Alan Bradley of Skipton convicted of indecent behaviour. Caught by police after revealing himself to young girls wearing a rubber penis and false breasts.PAUL ROSS INGRAM, 43, who formerly ran the Four Square Gospel Church. (Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 4/4/89)

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Christian deacon Henry Meinholz: raping and suffocating to death a 13-year-old girl. (Kingston, Massachusetts, 1991)

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A 14-year-old girl in foster care is raped and impregnated by Deacon Stephen Andrews of the Advent Christian Church in Kennebunk, Maine, a trusted figure. She gives birth. Andrews gets 5 years in prison, 3 of them suspended, despite the protests of the prosecutor. (1990)

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Chaplain assistant Steven Ritchie: convicted of raping a six-year-old girl. (Fort Lewis, Wash-ington, 1990)

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Born-again Delaware preacher William J. Keichline, Sr. is commended by the legislature for running Mission of Care ministry for the homeless. As a landlord he assaults and rapes a girl for 3 years starting when she is 7, threatening to evict her family if she tells. He gets eight 20 year prison terms for rape, bondage and child pornography. (1990)

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Rev. Thomas Welsch 39, and his wife accomplice were sentenced to 30 years in prison for a string of abuses on twin sisters (13) and a 17 year old girl, both members of his congregation. (1989, England)

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Minister Bernard Ponder 46, already on probation for the sexual abuse of boys now accused of sexually abusing a deaf boy. (1989, England)

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Evangelist TONY LEYVA received a 20 year prison sentence on March 28 for child molestation and running a child prostitution ring. Federal Dist. Judge James Turk called him and his 2 partners ” bad to the core.” Leyva was previously sentenced to 2.5 years for sexually abusing 2 boys in Virginia. His religious accomplices RIAS EDWARD MORRIS, 27, got 15 years, and FREDDIE H. HERRING, 50, got 12 years. All were fined $5,000. Agents located at least 30 boys, some as young as 8, molested by Leyva in the past 20 years; some put the total at 800 victims. (New York Times, 3/29/89)
Leyva will reside in the Roanoke area; Convicted molester returning next week
book on BROTHER TONY’S BOYS
Parole for Leyva?
Tony’s Boys
5 more men say they were molested by ministers

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Evangelist Freddie M. Herring convicted for running a child prostitution ring. (New York Times, 3/29/89)

book on BROTHER TONY’S BOYS
Tony’s Boys
5 more men say they were molested by ministers

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Evangelist Edward Rias Morris convicted for running a child prostitution ring. (New York Times, 3/29/89)

book on BROTHER TONY’S BOYS
Tony’s Boys
5 more men say they were molested by ministers

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Indianapolis music minister REV. CLAYTON DUANE HEIL, 42, employed by Lighthouse Tabernacle, is being sued by a 14 year old choir girl for rape over a 3 month period in 1985. The suit also names REVS. WILLIAM W. and DAVID TOTMAN. Said a church official, ” they’re not just fighting us, they’re fighting God.” (Carmel News- Tribune, 4/5/89)

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” Popular, dedicated” youth pastor DOUGLAS BOUDINOT, 39, married with children, has been charged with 2 counts of rape while leading a Christian youth group in California. Santa Cruz authorities charged him with rape when a young woman reported that Boudinot had sexually assaulted her in 1983, when she was 17 and a member of Young Life. Professing medical expertise, he reportedly committed many of the assaults under the guise of conducting medical examinations. Washington police have also located victims reportedly abused while Boudinot worked as youth pastor at Kent Covenant Church, taking youth groups on overnight outings and trips to Germany and Mexico. (Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 2/23/89)

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Radio preacher REV. FRED KENTON BESHORE, 63, of Newport Beach, Calif., was charged with influencing the testimony of a witness, a felony. He is accused of phoning the father of a girl reportedly molested by neurosurgeon Dr. Francis Williams, offering him $1,500 a month for 2 years if he would stop his daughter’s testimony. Police taped offers. Charges against the neurosurgeon for molesting preteen and adult patients were dropped, but could be reopened. Beshore runs Bible Institute of the Air, buying bibles to smuggle into communist countries. (Orange Co. Register, 2/28/89; 3/1/89)

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PAUL SLATER, 64, a traveling evangelist, was charged with 4 counts of sexual battery after 8 and 12 year old sisters reported being molested and raped by him. Slater, a ” trusted neighbor,” befriended their family. An investigator said, ” We encourage people to listen to what their children have to say. Many of these cases go on for months and years. ” (Ocala Star-Banner, 2/18/89)

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REV. ROBERT G. HALVERSTADT, 61, of Victory Center Church, Pueblo, CO, was sentenced to a year in jail, after admitting he used games, coercion and drugs to sexually molest 3 girls in his congregation. Charges involving 4 other victims were dropped when he pleaded guilty to reduced counts. He was given credit for 135 days already spent in jail, plus 4 years’ probation. Halverstadt assaulted a girl, 9, who volunteered to help him clean his church. Another girl said he gave her something to drink that made her fall asleep. She woke up naked with pain in her groin area. (Chieftain, 12/15/89)

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STANLEY DENNIS CUMMINGS, 34, a bible school teacher, was sentenced to more than 2,000 years in prison after being convicted of 60 counts of child molesting and sexual exploitation of a minor. Cummings befriended 8 boys he met through church, friends and employment, molesting, sodomizing and photographing them in sexual acts. He beat one victim, tape-recording it for sexual gratification. ” Ten seconds of indiscretion is ruining my entire life,” he complained, referring to oral sex with a boy, 10. He told the judge: ” But I have an illness. You cannot make me a criminal.” (Arizona Daily Star, 9/19/89)

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REV. JOHN MICHAEL LIADIS, 56, of Largo, FL, was sentenced to 10 years’ probation after a no-contest plea to 1 count of committing a lewd and lascivious act on a child under 16. He was also fined $500, told to stay away from children, and ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation. He grabbed a girl, 15, the daughter of friends, at a church retreat. Liadis was relieved of his duties at the church camp. (NT Times, FL, 11/4/89)

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MARY LOU GALLUP, 61, was sentenced to 2 years in prison for child molestation, and must pay for counseling for her victim, a 4 and a half year old girl. Her husband, Edward Sr. and son, were convicted of molesting kids at the family’s two Christian preschools in Portland. (Register-Guard [Eugene, OR], 12/5/89)

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REV. WALTER N. STONE, pastor of Rollstone Congregational Church in Fitchburg, MA, was sentenced to 7-15 years in prison after being convicted by a jury of 8 counts of molesting 2 boys. Two victims, now 18 and 21, testified Stone befriended them during church counseling and activities. Stone, 56, is married with 4 children, an Air Force veteran, with a doctorate in theology from Boston University. Several friends and colleagues wrote letters of commendation for him. (Worcester Telegram, 11/10/89)

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REV. ROBERT DUANE SCHULTZ, 52, of Washington, Iowa, was sentenced to 30 years in prison after confessing to acts described as ” horribly perverse” on boys under age 12, involving 1 count of sexual abuse and 3 others of lascivious acts. Officials are giving him polygraph tests and blood tests in an effort to identify other victims. The married minister was a foster parent honored in 1989 by Gov. Terry Branstad for volunteer service. Victims included foster children; five were removed from his home upon his arrest. The prosecution said a law preventing prosecution for sex assaults occurring more than 4 years ago should be changed, and would have resulted in more charges against Schultz. Rev. John Bennett told Schultz’ congregation at First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), ” Bob has fallen…into a deep pit of despair. But Bob has not fallen from the grace of God.” Church policy requires that he be defrocked for committing a felony. (Des Moines Register, 10/30- 11/3/89; AP/Clinton Herald, 10/30/89)

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JOHNNIE VERNON WOODS JR., 36, a lay minister at a North Little Rock church, got 3 consecutive sentences for abducting and raping a girl, 9. A jury found him guilty of 2 counts of rape and 1 count of kidnapping. (Tulsa World, 10/29/89)

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BRUCE KRAHN, 37, pleaded guilty to molesting a student, 15, at Calvary Academy where he taught math. He got 1 year probation, a $500 fine, and a possible 60-day jail sentence. He asked her to stay after school, turned off the lights, shut the door, asked her questions about sex education she got in the public schools, hugged, fondled her and asked her to touch him. She reported it to her parents. He was fired and the state will revoke his teaching license. (Journal-Register [Springfield, IL], 10/25/89)

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GEORGE DEGOLYER, 42, pastor of Verona Christian Fellowship, WI, was sentenced to 30 days in jail, 5 years’ probation after pleading no contest to 1st degree sexual assault of an 8 year old girl visiting his home. He carried the girl upstairs, pulled down her pants and molested her. He was ordered to have no unsupervised conduct with minors except his children. The DA agreed to ask the court to amend the charge to 4th degree if he does not violate probation. (Wisconsin State Journal, 11/1/89)

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REV. L.G. GILSTRAP, 54, an Assemblies of God minister, was convicted by a jury on 3 counts of child molestation and sentenced to 33 years in prison for a string of fondling incidents in 1988 involving brothers aged 10 and 13. The older boy said Gilstrap once tried to have sex with him in the shower. Eight men testified during the trial that they too were molested by the minister when they were boys. Three said they were also abused by the Sunday school teacher, who was not tried. Gilstrap denied the charges but corroborated their accusations against the teacher. The prosecutor called Gilstrap the ” Pied Piper of pedophilia.” Gilstrap, defrocked, started a new church, New Hope Ministries. Married, he was a former clerk for the Georgia House of Representatives. (Atlanta Constitution, 9/22/89)
Ex-Minister Gets 33-Year Sentence In Child Sex Case: Gilstrap Guilty of 3 Molestation Counts

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REV. ROBERT A. KULZER, 65, was convicted of molesting 2 boys at Faith Temple Church, in Brighton. He was sentenced to 1 to 3 years in prison but it was stayed pending appeal, meaning if he can make $10,000 cash bail he will not serve time yet. The married grandfather was convicted of 3 counts of sodomy and 1 count each of promoting prostitution, sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child involving boys aged 12 to 16. Abuse included oral sex with a 16 year old boy, putting a condom on a 12 year old boy during a discussion about ” the facts of life,” and arranging for a boy to have sex with a 62 year old woman in the parsonage. Defense involved Kulzer’s ” good deeds,” including being a missionary in Africa. (Rochester Democrat & Chronicle, 12/13/89)

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It took a jury only 28 minutes to find ANTONIO S. MARTINEZ, 59, a Pentecostal evangelist from Mathis, FL, guilty of aggravated sexual assault of a girl, 12. He claimed they had a common-law marriage. He first assaulted her when she was 11 and in 5th grade. Her grandmother forced her into the arrangement. A doctor turned Martinez in after Martinez asked him why she didn’t become pregnant. (Corpus-Christi Caller Times, 9/27,28/89)

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REV. JIM ” PAPA” CATER, 50 founder and head of Living World Church in Dickson Co., TN was indicted on 6 new counts of child sexual abuse, for a total of 56 charges. The crimes reportedly occurred at the church compound during April, May and June 1989. The state raided the church in June, taking 11 children into protective custody, ordering him to close his illegally operating residential child-care facility. Cater became a minister after converting while serving time in Florida for strong-armed robbery and forgery. His ministry specialized in helping recovering alcoholics & addicts. Following the arrests, he was injured in the county jail after inmates attacked him, calling him ” baby raper.” (Huntsville Times, 11/9/89)

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WALTER HEROLDO SOLIS, 54, charged with molesting 3 girls at Glendale Spanish 7th-day Adventist Church in Glendale, was killed Nov. 29 after stepping into a traffic lane in what police believe was a suicide. (LA Times, 12/8/89)

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ROY YOUNG, 29, charged in Washington state in 3 molestation cases, is now suspected of molesting dozens of boys in Austin, TX, whom he befriended as a volunteer for youth programs at 2 churches. He lived in Austin for 8 years until moving to Washington 18 months ago, where he was busted for molesting boys in bible study groups he formed. Police seized a collection of photographs, some pornographic, involving as many as 65 Texas boys (ages 8 to 13). At least 4 Texas youths say they were molested. Police regard the photographed boys as suspected victims. Young, who is not married, is accused of performing sex acts in front of Austin children, showing them adult movies, giving them massages, photographing some in the nude and providing some with alcohol. For years he took young boys to movies, dinner, roller-skating, camping and on motorcycle rides, buying kids watches, boots, bracelets & gifts. He also invited youths to spend the night with him. “He gained the confidence of the parents by pretending [1] to be a devout Christian who wanted to enhance the spiritual life of the kids, ” said a detective. (Austin-American Statesman, 12/8/89)

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REV. ANGEL CANDALARIA, 70, was charged with sexual contact and endangering the welfare of a girl, 10, at his church in Vineland, NJ. (Daily Journal, 11/15/89)

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Todd S. Clark, 26, youth leader of the Royal Rangers boys’ program at First Assembly of God church, Albany Oregan, was INDICTED for sexual abuse and sodomy of young boys. (Hamiltin Spectator (Canada) 7/9/88)

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Ralph W. Gantt, 26, youth leader of the Royal Rangers boys’ program at First Assembly of God church, Albany Oregan, was INDICTED for sexual abuse and sodomy of young boys. (Hamiltin Spectator (Canada) 7/9/88)

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Rev. Russel Nicolle, 50, an Anglican minister from Elliot Lake, Ontario, received 8 months in jail for “repulsive, disgusting and degraded” sexual abuse of a 12 year old and 16 year old boy. Judge M.C. DiSalle said he “seriously breached” his position of trust as rector of St. Peter the Apostle Anglican Church. (Hamilton Spectator 6/30/88)

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Rev. Ronald Terry Litz, 50, of Riverside, Penn., sentenced to 2-5 years in jail for morals offences in Luzerne, Co., was sentenced in June to 6-23 months in the Northumberland Co. Prison on similar charges. He pleaded guilty Feb. 4 to 3 counts of corrupting the morals of minors. Litz, former pastor of the Danville Apostolic Church, molested 2 boys at a church camp. His sentences are concurrent. (Scrantonian Tribune 6/29/88)

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Richard J. Wagner, 26, a volunteer youth leader at the Warminister Hts. Community Church in Philadelphia, was charged with assaulting a 14 year old boy and 3 others between the ages of 7 and 15 years of age, all part of the church youth program. (Philadelphia Inquirer 6/27/88)

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Rev. Randall Wayne Brewer, a youth minister of Faith Community Church in West Covina, Calif., is charged with 3 counts of oral copulation with a Redlands teenager who said he was bribed and molested after being befriended at home Bible studies in 1985. The youth, now 17, testified that Brewer gave him $200 from a church checking account for running naked across an empty church hallway in a game called chicken. “I was told to tell everyone that I got the money for doing work at the church.” (San Gabriel Valley Tribune 6/18/88)

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George Degoyler, 42, pastor of Verona Christian Fellowship, WI, was sentenced to 30 days in jail, 5 years’ probation after pleading no contest to 1st degree sexual assault of an 8 year old girl visiting his home. He carried the girl upstairs, pulled down her pants and molested her. He was ordered to have no unsupervised conduct with minors except his children. The DA agreed to ask the court to amend the charge to 4th degree if he does not violate probation. (Wisconsin State Journal 11/1/89)

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Rev. Cleveland “Rapper” Mack, 24, of Tampa. Fla., was charged with sexually abusing 2 young boys during “Bible lessons”, including a charge of sexual battery which carries a possible death sentence. He struck a boy in the face when he tried to flee. (Tampa Tribune 5/31/88)

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Rev. Thomas Streitferdt, 59, a white Pastor in charge of the mostly black 700-member True Church of God in Harlem, was charged with rape and sodomy of two young sisters (ages 14 and 16) in his congregation. Law enforcement officials charge that Streitferdt told females worshippers that they could end up in hell if they refused his sexual advances, and raped at least one woman during premarital counseling…. Members were told that if they were not buried under church auspices at an additional fee in the church cemetery that “they would not go to heaven.” (New York Times 5/23/88)

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Rev. Joe Marino, host of Christian talkshow “Inner Visions” in Jacksonville, Fla., and youth minister/counselor at Beaches Chapel in Neptune Beach, plead no contest to custodial sexual battery and soliciting sex from a 16 year old member of his church. Other charges were dropped. The abuse was disclosed after a victim from the church had attempted suicide. (Florida Times-Union 5/13/88)

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The notorious Community Chapel & Bible Training Center, a sect based in Burien, Wash. near suburban Seattle, not only mentally abused children with doctrines of demonology and stunted education in their backward and repressive classrooms, but involved children in sexual abuse, according to reporter Mary Rothchild. The Center, besieged by civil suites by ex-members claiming abuse, including women charging sexual exploitation, recently deposed it founder Rev. Donald Lee Barnett on charges of promiscuous adultery. In 1986, after followers complained, Child Protective Services met with Burien officials, spelling out guidelines, for example, that the church policy condoning French kissing of children was unacceptable. Three counselors were convicted of failing to report child sexual abuse in 1987. (Seattle Post-Intelligencer 3/23/88)

Youth minister Richard Cole of Community Chapel and Bible Training Center in Burien, Washington, received prison time for molesting a 14 year old boy. A psychologist’s report said Cole’s religious beliefs allowed him to shirk responsibility for his own actions. (Source: Seattle Times, 7/29/87)

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Lawsuits were filed against REV. ALBERT C. MAGNUSON, pastor, Redeemer Covenant Church, Brooklyn Park, MN, for molesting 3 brothers, their sister, seminary student nearly 20 years ago when they went to him for counseling. Church, church’s Northwest Conference likewise sued for negligence. (Star Trib., 6/89)

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Born Again Christian Tate who works for a religous magazine, confesses to seducing ten year old girl. (1988, England)

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SAVANNAH, GA. Life was hard the year Larry and Betty Martin pressed charges against a minister of their church for sexually molesting their two sons. The wounds of the trauma itself were fresh and raw, the legal and psychiatric expenses were gutting their bank accounts and the cold shoulder from many former friends in Clayton County was almost unbearable. But after Jerry Sidell, the 26-year-old youth minister of the First Christian Church of Jonesboro, was convicted in the fall of 1983 after authorities said he confessed to molesting nine children, the Martins were confident the schism in their community would heal. (The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, 10-06-1985)
Family heals wounds over molesting case, reaches out to others

The Martin family of Savannah, Georgia was hounded when they charged their youth minister, Rev. Jerry Sidell, First Christian Church of Jonesboro, with molesting nine children, including their two sons. “They just wanted us to keep it quiet, to let the church elders deal with it in their own way. It made me sick to think that if they hadn’t gone to the police, that Jerry could go somewhere else and start raping more kids,” said Mrs. Martin. A “friend” visited them to suggest they consider “sacrificing a few [their sons] for the good of all [the church].” She told the press, “I don’t think it would be right for me to sacrifice my boys by clamming up, keeping quiet, moving out of the city, not doing anything in order to save the reputation of the church. I couldn’t sacrifice my two boys for the sake of that church or anybody else.” Sidell had molested their sons for two years. He pleaded guilty to four counts of child molestation and one count of enticing a minor for indecent purposes and was sentenced in September 1984 to 10 years. The Martins and another family sued the church and Sidell for $3 million to pay for psychiatric rehabilitation plus damages but settled with the church for less than $5,000, agreeing to seek no further legal action. On April 25, 1984 Sidell pleaded guilty to another count of abuse, stemming from an incident in which he had taken the older Martin boy to Stone Mountain Park and molested him in 1981. He received another 10 year sentence to run concurrently. Following the convictions, the Martins received abusive and threatening phone calls from church members. The family has since become active in the California-based Society’s League Against Molestation. (Source: Atlanta Constitution, 4/26/84)

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Decatur, GA. DeKalb County police arrested a man Thursday who allegedly kidnapped and raped an 11-year-old girl and held her prisoner in his attic. James Pearson, 45, of 2938 Dale Place in Decatur, was charged with aggravated child molestation kidnapping, possession of cocaine, aggravated assault and three counts of rape. (The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, 08-02-1985)
Suspect held in alleged rape of 11-year-old

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Griggin, GA. The leader of a fundamentalist church remained behind bars on child molestation charges Wednesday, the eve of a court hearing on allegations by church officials that law enforcement officers searched the “world headquarters” of the denomination without a warrant. The Rev. Norman LeGallienne, 47, general overseer of the Union Gospel Holiness Church of God, which claims 1,000 affiliate churches nationwide, was arrested at a revival meeting April 12 and charged with child molestation and aggravated sodomy. He has been unable thus far to post a $17,600 bond. (The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, 04-25-1985)
Griffin minister held on molestation charge
Church leader jailed on molestation charge

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“HORRIFIC” HARASSMENT IN CHURCH OF CANADA PROMPTS STUDY. The task force on sexual abuse, exploitation, and harassment urged the Church of Canada to develop a code of ethics for ministers because of ~horrific proportions” of sexual harassment in the church. The panel said women are more likely to be sexually harassed in the church than in the workplace. “A five-denominational study [in the U.S.] conducted in 1987 found 5.5% of therapists had sex involving intercourse with their clients, while 12.6% of clergy admitted to sexual involvement including intercourse with their parishioners,” reported Rev. Peter Lougheed of Evanville, Ontario. Many ministers are engaging in personal counseling without any training or codes of ethics, said Walter Faquharson, moderator of the United Church.

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Christian minister and evangelist Tony Alamo recently went to prison for tax evasion. During his trial it was discovered that he had “married” two fifteen-year-old children and was abusing them.

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Rev. Wilputte Alanson Sherwood admitted recently to having sex with 1,800 males since 1984, at least 22 of whom were under 18. He also kept records and videotapes of the sexual encounters. He was sentenced July 29 by Superior Court and was on PAID LEAVE until then.

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In Indiana, Rev. Raymond Weber is being sued. He allegedly used LSD and alcohol to seduce a teenage boy.

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In Iowa, the pastor of the Wesleyan Church is accused of placing an ad under the name “Diamond Dreams” and agreeing to sex for $150 with an undercover officer while DRESSED IN DRAG. Rev. Jennfrey Dean McKelvey quit his job after his arrest.

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In Kentucky, Rev. Earl Bierman attempted to seduce two boys by telling them all about other parishioners’ confessions of sexual aberrations. He pleaded guilty to sexual abuse of 6 boys and was sentenced to 20 years.

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Shawn Charles “Brother Dusty” Williams, 50, got 10 years in jail after pleading guilty to showing pornography and fondling 2 young boys. The preacher-plumber worked as a volunteer bus driver for the New Covenant Fellowship Church of San Antonio, picking up stray kids to take them to church. He blamed the ” devil” for his crimes. (San Antonio Light 4/6/89)

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In January in Palm Harbor, Fla., a 41-year-old ex-pastor pleaded guilty to persuading his daughter, then age 6, to touch him sexually while he videotaped her.

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Church of Christ settles: The Rocky Mountain News reported that a Church of Christ church and & its former 59 year-old minister agreed to pay $300,000 to a man whom the former minister sexually assaulted during family counseling sessions. Earlier, a boy, now 17, was awarded $450,000 by a jury for similar charges. The minister has not been criminally charged.

there are thousands more Protestants and other religions committing crimes …

 

 

 

 

Evangelical Sex Abuse Record ‘Worse’ Than Catholic, Says Billy Graham’s Grandson Boz Tchividijian

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Religion News Service  | By Sarah Pulliam Bailey
Posted: 10/01/2013 10:11 am EDT Updated: 10/02/2013 11:48 am EDT

AUSTIN, Texas (RNS) The Christian mission field is a “magnet” for sexual abusers, Boz Tchividjian, a Liberty University law professor who investigates abuse said Thursday (Sept. 26) to a room of journalists.

While comparing evangelicals to Catholics on abuse response, ”I think we are worse,” he said at the Religion Newswriters Association conference, saying too many evangelicals had “sacrificed the souls” of young victims.

“Protestants can be very arrogant when pointing to Catholics,” said Tchividjian, a grandson of evangelist Billy Graham and executive director of Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (GRACE), which has investigated sex abuse allegations.

Earlier this summer, GRACE spearheaded an online petition decrying the “silence” and “inattention” of evangelical leaders to sexual abuse in their churches.

Mission agencies, “where abuse is most prevalent,” often don’t report abuse because they fear being barred from working in foreign countries, he said. Abusers will get sent home and might join another agency. Of known data from abuse cases, 25 percent are repeat cases, he said.

Still, he says, he sees some positive movements among some Protestants. Bob Jones University has hired GRACE to investigate abuse allegations, a move that encourages Tchividjian, a former Florida prosecutor. ”That’s like the mothership of fundamentalism,” he said. His grandfather split with Bob Jones in a fundamentalist and evangelical division.

“The Protestant culture is defined by independence,” Tchividjian said. Evangelicals often frown upon transparency and accountability, he said, as many Protestants rely on Scripture more than religious leaders, compared to Catholics.

Abusers discourage whistle-blowing by condemning gossip to try to keep people from reporting abuse, he said. Victims are also told to protect the reputation of Jesus.

Too many Protestant institutions have sacrificed souls in order to protect their institutions, he said. ”We’ve got the Gospels backwards,” he said.

Tchividjian said he is speaking with Pepperdine University, a Church of Christ-affiliated school in California, about creating a national GRACE center.

 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/01/protestant-sex-abuse-boz-tchividijian_n_4019347.html

 

The Nightmare World of Jack T. Chick

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Perhaps left in a phone booth, Laundromat, or other public place. Maybe a Fundamentalist coworker or a street evangelist gave one to you. Perhaps a child gave one to your child at school. They have titles such as Are Roman Catholics Christian?The Death Cookie, and Why Is Mary Crying? They are Chick tracts—tiny cartoon booklets produced by Jack T. Chick (“J.T.C.”) and his publishing house, Chick Publications.

You’ve seen them . . . but have you read one? Do so, and you step into the nightmarish world of Jack T. Chick.

In this world, few things are as they appear. It is a world of shadow and intrigue, a world of paranoia and conspiracy theories, a world where demons haunt people sincerely trying to follow God, and the Catholic faith is the devil’s greatest plot against mankind.

Here are just a few things you will “learn” if you start reading Chick tracts and comic books:

  • The Catholic Church keeps “the name of every Protestant church member in the world” in a “big computer” in the Vatican for use in future persecutions.[1]
  • But the conspiracy is much broader than this, and it has been going on for a very long time. In the sixth century, for instance, Catholic leaders manipulated the Arabian tribesman Mohammed into creating the religion of Islam to use as a weapon against the Jews and to conquer Jerusalem for the pope.[2]
  • The Jesuits instigated the American Civil War, supporting the Confederate cause and seeking to undermine the Union. When they failed, they arranged the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.[3] Later, they formed the Ku Klux Klan.[4]
  • “Jesuits worked closely with Marx, Engels, Trotsky, Lenin, and Stalin” to create Communism, and it was “believed that soon . . . Communism would rise up as the new strong daughter of the Vatican.”[5] It was Rome that instigated the Bolshevik Revolution and the murder of the czar’s family.[6] The Communist “liberation theology” movement also is a Vatican plot.[7]
  • The Nazi Holocaust of the 1940s was a Vatican-controlled attempt to exterminate Jews and heretics.[8] Further, “Hitler, Mussolini, and Franco were backed by the Vatican for the purpose of setting up a one-world government to usher in the ‘˜Millennial Kingdom’ under Pope Pius XII.”[9]
  • The Vatican conspiracy is so extensive that, through the Jesuits, Rome controls the Illuminati, the Council on Foreign Relations, international bankers, the Mafia, the Club of Rome, the Masons, and the New Age movement.[10]
  • The Jesuits created the Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormonism, Unity, Christian Science, and other religious groups.[11]
  • “Pope John Paul II has been a good Communist for many years”[12] and engineered a phony assassination attempt against himself in 1981 to shame Islam into warming relations with the Vatican, since the would-be killer was a Muslim.[13]

Tracts are only one of the ways Chick spreads his messages of hate and paranoia. His website (www.chick.com) lists large-size comic books, posters, booklets, books, videos, and DVDs for sale. Still, it is the tracts for which he is most famous. According to Chick Publications, more than 500 million of them have been distributed.

With shocking, sensationalist allegations such as these being distributed to hundreds of millions of people, you may be wondering . . .

Who Is Jack T. Chick?

Jack Thomas Chick is a recluse. Little is known about him. He does not give interviews. Only two out-of-date pictures of him are publicly known (one is a high school yearbook photo). Rumors about him abound, making it difficult to sort fact from fiction concerning his life. He was born April 13, 1924, in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles,[14] and he was not always a Fundamentalist. According to the biography posted on his web site:

While in high school, none of the Christians would have anything to do with him because of his bad language. They all agreed not to witness to him, convinced that he was the last guy on earth who would ever accept Jesus Christ.

After graduation from high school, Jack won a scholarship to the Pasadena Playhouse to study acting, but his studies were interrupted by the military. He spent the next three years in the Army, which took him to foreign countries like New Guinea, Australia, the Philippines and Japan.

After being discharged from the service, Jack returned to the Playhouse, where he met and married his wife, Lynn, who was instrumental in his salvation. While visiting Lynn’s parents in Canada on their honeymoon, Jack’s mother-in-law insisted that he sit and listen to Charles E. Fuller’s Old Fashioned Revival Hour radio program. Jack recalls, “God was already working on my heart, but when Fuller said the words, ‘˜Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow,’ I fell on my knees and my life was changed forever.”[15]

The scene of falling on one’s knees to accept Jesus is one repeated over and over again by characters in Chick tracts. But how did Jack Chick make the leap from being an ordinary Fundamentalist to the foremost Christian comic publisher in the world? For a time, he worked as a technical illustrator for an aerospace company in California, but he longed to be work for God:

He wanted to be a missionary himself, but his new wife wanted no part of missionary life. Her aunt had been a missionary in Africa. While pregnant, she was being carried across a river on a stretcher, when one of those carrying her lost a leg to an alligator.[16]

Eventually, Jack started combining his work as an illustrator with his passion for evangelization, producing his first published religious works, Why No Revival? and A Demon’s Nightmare. He became convinced of the effectiveness of this technique after using it with a group of prisoners:

[Chick] was invited to present the gospel to a group of inmates at a prison near his home. He drew several pieces of cartoon art and prepared a flip chart to illustrate what he was saying. At the conclusion of his message, nine of the eleven inmates present trusted Christ as their Saviour. Jack became convinced that God had given him a method of reaching people with the gospel that worked. That art was later put into booklet form and became the tract This Was Your Life![17]

Following this episode, Chick Publications became a full-time venture for Jack, and, in the more than forty years since it was started, his tracts, comic books, and other publications have reached hundreds of millions of people, spreading their message of simple Fundamentalist theology fused with elaborate conspiracy theories.

In time, the art in the tracts received an upgrade—not because Chick changed his own style of drawing but because he hired an artist with much better skills. Yet he did not announce this fact and did not put the new artist’s name on the works he produced. Instead, they continued to carry the credit “by Jack T. Chick” or simply “by J.T.C.” The difference between the two drawing styles was so dramatic that it was immediately noticed by readers, and rumors circulated about who the “good artist” might be. It would be some time before Chick disclosed that the man’s name was Fred Carter.

In 1972, he hired Fred Carter, an African-American painter and illustrator from Danville, Illinois, who had studied at Chicago’s American Academy of Art. Carter’s realistic illustrations and distinctive inking style made him a perfect fit for the [Crusaders comic book] series’ action sequences and exotic locales. Witch burnings and ritual murders are captured in gleefully visceral detail, while the books’ sexual overtones—as well as scantily clad biblical sirens like Eve, Delilah, and Semiramis—have led critics to describe Carter’s work as “spiritual porn.”

At once, the artwork improved tenfold. Chick, however, kept Carter’s name off all of the comics. Rumors and speculation about the identity of the so-called good artist at Chick Publications began to spread. For years fans theorized that Carter’s work was produced by a team of illustrators or an unknown Filipino man dubbed “Artist J.” Chick finally revealed Carter’s identity in 1980, claiming that the artist is “rather shy and declines to put his name on his art.”[18]

Jack Chick’s art in The Hit

Fred Carter’s art in The Deceived

Jack Chick's art in The Hit

Fred Carter's art in The Deceived

Through the years Chick also became associated with others who had an impact on his publications. The conspiracy angle in his works jumped significantly through his involvement with two men in particular.

One was John Todd, an evangelist who claimed to have been raised in a “witchcraft family” and supposedly was part of a gigantic conspiracy of witches called “the Illuminati.”[19] According to Todd, numerous political and religious figures were part of the conspiracy. He claimed that as a “Grand Druid High Priest” he was given a thirteen-state territory and that “over 90 percent of politicians in that thirteen-state area received financial support from him and took orders regarding political decisions from him.”[20] The religious figures allegedly part of the witch conspiracy included Jim Bakker, Billy Graham, Walter Martin, Oral Roberts, and Pat Robertson. Also involved were C. S. Lewis, Pat and Debbie Boone, and a number of Protestant denominations, “from Assemblies of God to the Southern Baptists.”[21]

One way the Illuminati spread their occult tendrils through society was through rock music. Songs in this genre often “contained coded spells or incantations that the listener wasn’t aware of.”[22] Based on Todd’s claims, Chick issued a number of publications, including the large-format comic book Spellbound? (against rock music) and the tract Dark Dungeons (against fantasy role-playing games).

Todd was exposed as a fraud in publications such as Christianity Today[23] and Cornerstone. He later was convicted and sent to prison for rape. Nevertheless, Chick is still publishing materials repeating his claims and thanking him openly for providing the information.[24]

The other major figure hyping Jack Chick’s conspiracy theories was the late Alberto Rivera, and he is important enough to Chick mythology to deserve his own section.

Who Was Alberto Rivera?

Alberto Rivera and His Comic Book Namesake Alberto Rivera and His Comic Book Namesake
Alberto Rivera and His Comic Book Namesake

Aside from Jack Chick’s own name, the name most familiar to readers of Chick comics is that of Alberto Rivera (1935—1997). He is mentioned in numerous tracts and serves as the central character in six issues of Chick’s The Crusaders full-size comic book. Chick even devotes space to him in the handful of books the house publishes.

Alberto Magno Romero Rivera was born in 1937 in the Canary Islands. He claimed to have been a priest who served as an undercover operative of the Jesuit order to infiltrate and destroy Protestant churches and institutions. He maintained that he was so successful that he secretly was made a bishop. Yet he turned his life over to Christ and became a Fundamentalist evangelist. He claimed to have rescued his sister—a nun—after she nearly died in a convent in London.

In the 1970s he met Jack Chick, who publicized his story with much fanfare. It added immense amounts of detail (and implausibility) to Chick’s global Catholic conspiracy theory. The Alberto series included some of the wildest claims found in Chick’s publications—that the Vatican started Islam, Communism, the Masons, and the Klan; that it controls the Illuminati, the Mafia, and the New Age movement; that it created the Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormonism, and is databasing the name of every Protestant church member for a future inquisition.

The Alberto series started a controversy that resulted in Chick being unable to sell the comic books in many Protestant bookstores. Following a complaint from the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, the Christian Booksellers Association began considering whether to expel Chick.[25] Soon afterward, Chick withdrew from the CBA.

The protest against the Chick Alberto series was waged by both Catholics and Evangelicals. Many Catholics, naturally, protested the lurid and inaccurate depiction of their faith, and many Protestant bookstore owners who saw their point removed the series from their stores.

In response, Chick published My Name? . . . In the Vatican? in which he repeated many of Rivera’s sensationalistic claims and gave grudging acknowledgement to the ability of Catholics to get his works taken out of Evangelical bookstores.

While it is natural to expect Catholics to be upset over Chick and Rivera’s outrageous claims, many Evangelicals were upset as well, and they began to investigate Rivera. Prominent Protestant publications, including Christianity TodayCornerstone, and even Forward—a publication of Walter Martin’s Christian Research Institute—did investigations leading to exposés of Rivera as a fraud.

From My Name? . . . In the Vatican?
From My Name? . . . In the Vatican?

From My Name? . . . In the Vatican?

Christianity Today’s story by researcher Gary Metz revealed that:

He is being sued in a Los Angeles court at the present time [1981] by a man who said that Rivera, on behalf of the Hispanic Baptist Church, which he started, borrowed $2,025 with which to invest in property, but never purchased the land. When the man asked for his money back, he received a receipt acknowledging his “contribution” of $2,025.[26]

The Christianity Today investigation further reported:

In October 1967, Rivera went to work at the Church of God of Prophecy headquarters in Tennessee and began collecting money for a college in Tarrassa, Spain. When the Church of God of Prophecy wrote the college to ask if Rivera was authorized to receive donations for the college, it received a reply stating the college had given him a letter to collect funds only during the month of July. The college later discovered that while “he claimed to be a Catholic priest . . . he had never been one.” The college reported that he left debts he had acquired in the name of the parish of San Lorenzo and that Spanish police were seeking him for “authentic swindles and cheats.” Finally, they said that no funds had ever reached the college from Rivera. In a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice, Charles Hawkins of the Church of God of Prophecy said Rivera’s bank had contacted them because he had written a check on a closed account.

In 1969 two arrest warrants were issued for him in Florida. One was for the theft of a BankAmericard: The criminal division of the Bank of America reports that he charged over two thousand dollars on the credit card. The second warrant was issued for unauthorized use of an automobile. Rivera abandoned the vehicle in Seattle and went from there to southern California, where he started a number of organizations.[27]

Concerning Rivera’s alleged liberation of his sister from a convent, Christianity Todayreported:

The sequel [to the Alberto comic], Double-Cross, devotes its first nine pages to a description of how Alberto flew to London and contacted an Anabaptist church, whose people helped him rescue his dying sister Maria from her convent. Actually, the person he contacted was not an Anabaptist but Delmar Spurling of the Church of God of Prophecy. Spurling said in an interview that Rivera did not rescue his sister, because she wasn’t a nun but rather a maid working in a private London home.[28]

Concerning Rivera’s claim that he had been a priest, Christianity Today noted:

The Catholic Church denies Rivera’s most important claim, that he was a priest. To substantiate the claim, the Alberto comic book carries a picture of an official-looking document from the Archbishopric of Madrid-Alcala in Spain, dated September 1967. It identifies Rivera as a priest and gives him permission to travel abroad in his ministry. There is no other church documentation, such as an ordination certificate, shown in the book. An individual in California, who grew suspicious of Rivera in 1973, wrote to the archdiocese office in Madrid-Alcala to ask if Rivera were really a priest. The response was that no diocese in Spain had any record of Rivera as a priest. The archbishop’s office concluded that he was not a priest, and that the travel document, which was little more than a form letter, was “acquired by deceit and subterfuge” to enable Rivera to get a passport.[29]

Christianity Today further discovered that “that not only was Rivera not a Jesuit priest, but also that he had two children during the time he claimed to be living a celibate life as a Jesuit.” It explained:

Although Rivera claims to have been raised and trained in a Spanish Jesuit seminary, his hometown friend, Bonilla, said Rivera was living at one point with a woman in Costa Rica named Carmen Lydia Torres. (Alberto says Rivera was sent to Costa Rica to destroy a [Protestant] seminary and that a woman named Carmen was with him, posing as his girlfriend. The seminary was not named.)

Rivera later stated on an employment form that he and Torres were married in 1963. Their son, Juan, was born in Hoboken, New Jersey, in 1964, while Rivera was forking for the Christian Reformed Church there. Juan died in El Paso in July 1965, after his parents had fled New Jersey leaving numerous debts and a warrant for their arrest on bad check charges. The couple had two other children, Alberto and Luis Marx. The first two children were born during the time Alberto claimed to be a Jesuit priest in Spain.[30]

Concerning Rivera’s claim to have been made a bishop, Metz reported in Cornerstone that:

Alberto now claims that he was once a Jesuit bishop. None of his former associates remember this being part of his testimony until early 1973. Former associate Rev. Wishart (once a pastor of the First Baptist Church of San Fernando), who questioned Alberto about this, reported that Alberto admitted that he had never been ordained a bishop but used the title for prestige. He continues to call himself the bishop of his own church, the Hispanic Baptist Church (Oxnard, California).[31]

In Alberto, Rivera claimed that his conversion to Protestantism happened while he was being detained in a sanitarium following a public break with the Church. YetChristianity Today‘s piece noted that:

His later accounts of his conversion are contradictory. While speaking at the Faith Baptist Church in Canoga Park, California, Rivera pinpointed his conversion as March 20, 1967, after three months in the sanitarium, and he said he immediately defected from the Catholic Church. Five months later, however, he gave a newspaper interview in his home town of Las Palmas [in the Canary Islands], in which he was still promoting Catholicism. He said in the interview that he was doing ecumenical work for the Catholic Church in Tarrassa, Spain, during the previous six months, from February to August 1967. According to Alberto, he was in the sanitarium at the time.

Rivera, who now [1981] lives in California, was asked for an interview to discuss the discrepancies in his tale, but he posed so many restrictions before he would agree that a legitimate interview was not possible. He did say that any wrongdoings prior to his conversion to Christ in 1967 were done under the orders of the Catholic Church and that any wrongdoings since his conversions are fabrications by conspirators.

Of course, if Rivera had been a secret Jesuit agent bent on conspiratorial acts, such deception and subterfuge might well have been part of his mission. Yet his fantastic tale lacks credibility. The numerous legal entanglements suggest that he was a simple con man. There are the contradictory accounts of his conversion, his admission that he was married, and the fact that he was the father of two children during his alleged time as a Jesuit priest. And then there is what was uncovered by the Christian Research Institute in its investigation of Alberto:

Bartholomew F. Brewer, a former Catholic priest who is now director of Mission to Catholics International in San Diego [a man long known to Catholic Answers supporters for his anti-Catholic activities and an authentic ex-priest] . . . related to us that several years ago Rivera wanted to work in conjunction with Mission to Catholics. Dr. Brewer did interview Rivera and decided not to use him in his ministry. Over a period of time, however, Dr. Brewer got to know Rivera better and he eventually concluded that Rivera was not only unfamiliar with Catholic theology, by obviously had never been a Catholic priest, let alone a bishop.

In examining the two Chick comics, one finds that statements are made that would seem to substantiate Dr. Brewer’s views. Rivera is apparently unfamiliar with Catholic doctrine, church history, and other factual information.

For example, in Alberto, Rivera seems to imply that celibacy is a sacrament. Also, he states that students studying for the priesthood were not allowed to read the Bible. He also claims that, in Catholic doctrine, Mary is co-equal with God the Father. These are all misrepresentations of the truth.

Rivera further calls his reliability into question by stating that the masterminds behind the Inquisition were Jesuits. This is an impossibility, since the Inquisition began around a.d. 1200, and the Jesuits were not established until the 1540s.[32]

CRI also discovered Rivera inaccurately quoting sources:

Rivera’s believability becomes still more questionable in Double-Cross, when he claims that [suicide cult leader] Jim Jones was secretly a Jesuit deacon and an agent for the Vatican. He says that the Jonestown massacre was part of the Roman Catholic Church’s “diabolical conspiracy.” For support of this contention, he refers to Dr. Peter Beter’s Audio Letter #40, November 1978 (Beter is a self-proclaimed “conspiracy” expert). But, on listening to the tape, one discovers that Dr. Beter believes that Jones was a manipulated dupe of the CIA! Thus, the authority Rivera cites for supportive evidence is opposed to his view.[33]

Rivera’s response to this investigation was to call CRI “a ‘˜tool’ of the Jesuits and its director [Walter Martin, at the time] an ‘˜agent’ of Rome.”[34] He subsequently claimed that Martin “was working with the Vatican and stated that his name was on a secret Jesuit list.”[35] CRI further reported:

After our initial research gave us reason to question the comic’s reliability, we attempted to contact both Alberto Rivera and Chick Publications’ founder Jack Chick. With no success in contacting Rivera by mail, two certified letters were sent to Chick Publications. In them, we conveyed our concern over some apparent discrepancies in Rivera’s story and asked for answers. When no reply was made to our letters, follow-up phone calls revealed that Jack Chick would make no reply whatsoever. He said that he was not answerable to any man and that the comic books could stand on their own.[36]

Alberto Rivera went on to found the “Antichrist Information Center” or AIC (which later explained its initials as meaning “Assurance in Christ”[37]). He died in 1997 of colon cancer, and his ministry was carried on by his widow, Nuzy Rivera.

The impact of Alberto Rivera on Jack Chick’s universe is difficult to underestimate. It was Rivera that provided Chick with his most sensationalistic, most anti-Catholic claims and allowed Chick’s conspiracy theories to grow increasingly complex and bizarre.

Jack T. Chick’s Gallery of Anti-Catholic Tracts[38]

It’s hard to judge a book—or a comic book—by its cover. You can tell that some of Chick’s tracts are clearly aimed at Catholicism just by looking at them. Others you have to read before you discover the anti-Catholicism buried within them. Here is a brief guide to Chick’s anti-Catholic tracts and what they contain.

Are Roman Catholics Christian?

Unlike most Chick tracts, this one is not primarily a story. It is an essay intended to prove that Catholics are not Christian. To show this, it tries to walk through the life of a typical Catholic woman—”Helen”—from the time of her baptism to the time of her death. At each stage, Chick takes swipes at Catholic doctrine and practice.

Themes[39]: Anathema, Anointing of the Sick, Baptism, Clergy & Religious, Confession, Divided Loyalties, Eucharist, Inquisition, Mary, Other Christs, Paganism/Idolatry, Pope, Purgatory, Whore of Babylon

The Attack

The Attack

Chick’s defense of the King James Version of the Bible. According to this tract, the devil and the Catholic Church vigorously opposed the KJV and even murdered some of its translators. In its place they have sought to provide modern translations based on corrupt manuscripts for their own evil ends. All modern translations except the KJV are evil and the product of a Catholic conspiracy. A key objective of the conspiracy is to insert “the Apocrypha” (i.e., the deuterocanonical books of Scripture) into the Bible.

Themes: Anathema, Bible Corruption, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics

The Beast

A look at the end times, á la Jack Chick. In the near future the Rapture will occur. Afterward, the pope will be revealed to be the Antichrist and will compel all to take the number 666 on their foreheads or right hands. The world will become a gigantic, occult “witches’ coven,” in which true Christians are persecuted. The battle of Armageddon will be fought, leading to a 1,000-year reign of Christ on earth. Then, God will condemn the wicked—including those who remained faithful Catholics—to hell and reward Protestant Fundamentalists with heaven.

Themes: Antichrist, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Millennium, Rapture

The Death Cookie

The Death Cookie

Jack Chick’s most prominent attack on the Eucharist. He tells the story of an unkempt man who wishes to control others. This man is counseled by a sinister (satanic-looking) advisor who encourages him to invent the doctrine of the Eucharist. Based on this advice, the man is soon controlling those around him as the Catholic pope.

Themes: Eucharist, Clerics & Religious, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Other Christs, Paganism/Idolatry, Whore of Babylon

The Deceived

The Deceived

Two Muslims start reading a Chick tract and are horrified to discover that Islam is a fraud. Worse, they discover that the pope manipulated Mohammed into starting Islam to conquer Jerusalem for him. Even Mohammed’s wife Khadijah was a Vatican operative on a secret mission to set up her new husband!

Themes: Conspiracy, Mary, Paganism/Idolatry

Fat Cats

A Latin American young man named Juan joins a Communist revolutionary movement, only to discover that the movement is tied in with liberation theology. This, Chick informs us, is a Vatican plot. Among other things, it allows Latin American Protestants to be killed as heretics and enemies of the state.

Themes: Conspiracy, Communism, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Repulsive Catholics

Here He Comes!

Here He Comes!

The priest who becomes a Fundamentalist is having nightmares about being left behind when the Rapture happens. A Fundamentalist tells him that he won’t be, but goes on to him about the horrors to come, including the revelation of the pope and “the Jesuit general” as the false prophet and the beast.

Themes: Antichrist, Millennium, Pope, Rapture

Holocaust

Holocaust

After a tense confrontation between a Jewish concentration camp survivor and a group of American Nazis, a Fundamentalist kindly explains that the German Holocaust was actually a Vatican plot to kill Jews. In fact, “the Gestapo was run by the Jesuits” and “Hitler was a faithful Roman Catholic simply following the laws set forth in the Council of Trent.” Worse, the Vatican plans a new inquisition in America to force Catholicism on the United States.

Themes: Anathema, Conspiracy, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Nazism, Pope, Repulsive Catholics, Whore of Babylon

Is There Another Christ?

Is There Another Christ?

An essay tract in which Chick attacks the pope as the vicar of Christ, the role of the priest as an alter Christus, and the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Each of these, Chick claims, is an infringement on the person and work of the true Christ.

Themes: Clerics & Religious, Eucharist, Other Christs, Pope, Tradition, Whore of Babylon

Kiss the Protestants Good-bye

An essay tract in which Chick details the Vatican conspiracy to wipe out Protestantism—and his own role in fighting it! Chick claims that Catholics have subverted Protestant Bibles, including the Scofield Reference Bible, which Chick himself learned from. The goal has been to first rid Protestantism of its anti-Catholicism and then impose Catholicism. Chick has worked to thwart this plot, the tract explains, by publishing the Alberto series of comic books, which infuriate the Vatican.

Themes: Bible Corruption, Conspiracy, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Rapture, Repulsive Catholics

The Last Generation?

The Last Generation

In the near future, a global totalitarian state is proclaimed, with the pope as its head. The announcement is made by a Jesuit at the United Nations. True Christian believers are driven underground and betrayed to the sinister superstate at every turn, even by evil “Hitler Youth”-type children.

Themes: Antichrist, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Mary, Rapture

Last Rites

Last Rites

This tract tells the story of an unpleasant Catholic man named Henry who gets killed in a car crash. He receives the last rites, but after dying he is taken before God, who condemns him to hell for trusting in Catholic “works” to save him instead of Jesus Christ.

Themes: Anointing of the Sick, Assurance of Salvation, Baptism, Confession, Eucharist, Paganism/Idolatry, Purgatory, Repulsive Catholics, Whore of Babylon

Man in Black

Man In Black

A drunk, suicidal Catholic priest attempts to kill himself but is stopped by a passing Fundamentalist. After the suicide attempt the two discuss Catholic doctrine over coffee. The Fundamentalist convinces the priest that Catholicism is a revived form of paganism, and the priest gives his life to Christ.

Themes: Bible Corruption, Clerics & Religious, Conspiracy, Eucharist, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Mary, Paganism/Idolatry, Pope, Repulsive Catholics, Whore of Babylon

Murph

Murph

An obnoxious Catholic policeman—”Murph”—is mortally wounded in the line of duty. His ex-Catholic partner tells him that he must trust Jesus instead of the Church before he dies. When Murph’s priest comes up short on answers, the dying cop does so and goes to heaven.

Themes: Assurance of Salvation, Purgatory, Repulsive Catholics, Tradition

My Name? . . . In the Vatican?

My Name? . . . In the Vatican?

Chick explains—based on information from Alberto Rivera—that the Vatican keeps the name of every Protestant church member in a “big computer.” The purpose is to make future persecutions easier. Chick laments the resistance he’s met in getting his Alberto comic books carried and cites the effectiveness of Catholics in getting these comics pulled from Protestant bookstores.

Themes: Conspiracy, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Repulsive Catholics

The Only Hope

The Only Hope

A more-explicit-than-usual look at the future Chick envisions. It expressly tells us: “The last pope will be the antichrist, or the Beast. Satan will enter his body, and he will be worshipped worldwide.” In the course of re-treading events from the book of Revelation, it also tells us that “ten nations hate the ‘˜whore’ of Rev. 17 and destroy the Vatican by fire” while “the pope (Antichrist) escapes to Jerusalem.”

Themes: Antichrist, Millennium, Rapture, Whore of Babylon

The Poor Pope?

The Poor Pope?

Claims that “the pope controls more wealth than any other man on this planet” and gives a fanciful history of how this came about, with numerous unsourced allegations of wrongdoing on the part of the Vatican in a relentless drive to gain wealth. (For example, when the California Gold Rush started in the 1800s, the Vatican sent “liquor, gambling tables, and Roman Catholic prostitutes to take back the gold from the miners.”) The tract declares that “the average person would go into shock if he knew the extent of the Vatican’s wealth and political power.”

Themes: Conspiracy, Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics, Paganism/Idolatry, Pope, Purgatory, Vatican riches, Whore of Babylon

The Story Teller

The Story Teller

A Muslim returns home after many years abroad and tells his village the story of what he learned. During his travels he met Alberto Rivera and was informed not only that Catholicism is a false religion but that it created Islam as part of a Vatican plot. More recently, the Vatican staged an apparition at Fatima (named after Mohammed’s daughter) to cozy up to Muslims. It also staged the 1981 assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II using a Muslim as the marksman “to guilt-induce the Muslim world, bringing them still closer to the Catholic faith!”

Themes: Conspiracy, Mary, Paganism/Idolatry

Who’s Missing?

Who's Missing?

A Fundamentalist and the ex-priest from Man in Black try to scare the priest’s sister into accepting Fundamentalism by telling her that the pope is the Antichrist, that we are living in the end times, and that if she wants to escape the great tribulation she must become a Fundamentalist in order to be raptured and to escape to heaven.

Themes: Antichrist, Millennium, Pope, Rapture

Why Is Mary Crying?

Why Is Mary Crying?

Chick’s attack on Marian doctrine and practice. He tells us that these devotions deeply sadden the real Mary and make her cry. In this tract the Virgin Mary herself declares that she is a sinner and implores Catholics not to believe Catholic doctrine concerning her. She says that Catholic teaching and practice regarding her is an outgrowth of Babylonian paganism and that Catholics must repent and follow what God teaches in the Bible.

Themes: Mary, Paganism/Idolatry, Whore of Babylon

Answering Chick Tracts

It’s tempting to laugh off Jack Chick’s tracts and comic books. Their lurid tales and paranoid conspiracy theories make them hard to take seriously. But millions of people take them very seriously. That is why Chick has been able to distribute more than half a billion of his tracts. What is worse, many are aimed directly at Catholics, attempting to convert them to Fundamentalism. His most anti-Catholic tracts tend to conclude with a final panel like this one, urging Catholics to repudiate their faith:

With many Catholics weak in their faith today, there are a lot of people who are vulnerable to appeals such as this, especially when they have just been told untruths that they don’t know how to refute. Even Catholics who are strong in their faith can have a difficult time knowing how to answer specific anti-Catholic charges, because Chick makes so many and such bizarre ones.

This is part of the problem: With the sheer volume of errors, half-truths, and misrepresentations that Chick makes about the Church, there is simply no way to refute them all. Often even a single panel from one of his tracts contains multiple mistakes. Doing a thorough refutation of everything Chick says would require several book-length works.

The procedure this report recommends is to use critical thinking skills whenever one looks at a Chick tract—whether one is a Catholic seeking to answer the tract or a non-Catholic seeking to evaluate what it has to say. To that end, keep several principles of critical thinking in mind:

  1. Use common sense. If something seems to violate common sense, it probably does. Think about it: Is it really plausible that the Vatican is operating a multi-century conspiracy during which it created Islam and Communism, started the American Civil War, World War I, World War II, arranged the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the assassination attempt of John Paul II? That it keeps the name of all Protestant church members in a database so that they can be hunted down, interrogated, and if need be tortured or killed in a future persecution? That the Vatican created or runs the Masons, the Klan, the Mafia, the Mormons, the Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the host of other organizations and religious groups that Chick says it does?This is all a gross violation of common sense, and that ought to tell you that something is wrong with the picture Chick is painting. So if you encounter something in Chick’s works that is incredible, outrageous, or unbelievable—go with your instincts and assume that it’s false unless it can be backed up with solid evidence. This leads directly to the next point.
  2. Identify, evaluate, and check sources. Chick tracts make many assertions but cite few sources—and fewer reliable ones—yet he needs to provide solid sources in order to give evidence for the preposterous claims he makes. Therefore, when reading a Chick tract, you should evaluate the sources he is using. Ask yourself: Does he even provide a source to document this claim? Often he does not. If there is one, ask: Is this a reliable source? Some of his main sources are notoriously unreliable, including Alberto Rivera, John Todd, and Alexander Hislop (discussed below). Finally, check the source. It may not say what Chick would lead you to think it does. For example, above we saw an instance in which CRI found Alberto Rivera erroneously claiming that a source said something it didn’t say.
  3. Check for misrepresentations. Very often when Chick cites a source (including the Bible), he misrepresents what it says. Sometimes this is because he doesn’t understand how a word is being used. (We will see later that he is greatly mistaken about what the word anathema means.) Other times he will cite Bible verses that are on the general topic he wants but that don’t really say what he wants. In other words, they are not relevant to the claim he is making. So ask yourself: Is this passage really relevant? Does it say what he wants it to say? What else could it mean?
  4. Consult authentic sources. Don’t let matters stop at what Chick and his sources say. Consult other sources—the best ones that you can find. If Chick says that a doctrine is taught by the Catholic Church, look it up in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and find out. If you don’t know where to check out a claim he makes, call Catholic Answers.
  5. Note admissions of lack of evidence. Sometimes when Chick doesn’t have evidence for what he wants to claim he will try to conceal the fact by saying “this was all covered up” or that someone “secretly” was a Catholic. When this happens, take note of it and recognize it for what it is: an admission that he can’t back up the claim with evidence.

    From My Name? . . . In the Vatican?

    From My Name? . . . In the Vatican?

  6. Think through the implications. As part of using common sense to evaluate Chick’s claims, think through the implications of what he says. Ask yourself: What else would have to happen for this to be true?For example, take the claim that the Vatican has a database of “every Protestant church member in the world.” How would the Vatican get such a list? Many countries (the U.S. among them) do not require people to register their religious affiliation. In these countries, most Protestant churches don’t publicize their membership rolls. The Vatican would have to spies everywhere, gathering evidence about the members of every one-room, backwoods country church in the world. This violates common sense.
  7. Look for double standards. Chick often will portray a particular belief or practice as an abomination when it is done by Catholics, even though the same thing occurs in Protestant circles.For example, he points to the Catholic belief in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, belief in baptismal regeneration, and the practice of infant baptism as key points in his argument that Catholics are not Christian.[40] Yet each of these is paralleled among Protestants. Lutherans and many Anglicans believe in the Real Presence. The same also believe in baptismal regeneration. And infant baptism is practiced by the majority of Protestants in the world, including not only Lutherans and Anglicans but also Presbyterians, Dutch Reformed, Methodists, and others. Only the Baptist and Pentecostal traditions (and those movements stemming from them) oppose the practice.
  8. Watch for prejudicial presentations. A key technique that Chick uses is to make Catholics, their beliefs, and their practices “look” or “sound” bad by presenting them in a prejudicial light. This happens when he takes something innocent and uses language that makes it sound sinister. Or when he shows Catholics as angry, ugly, and foul-mouthed. Or when he uses exaggerated, hysterical language. Or when he tries to play upon one’s emotions by drawing demons lurking about. Be aware that this kind of subterfuge is a major part of what Chick does and be on the lookout for it. When you see it, ask yourself: How could this same thing be presented in a balanced, non-prejudicial manner?

These principles of critical thinking will go a long way toward helping you answer and evaluate Chick tracts. They will let you see through a large number of the errors, half-truths, and misrepresentations that fill their pages. But you also need specific facts to answer or evaluate many of the particular things he says. It is not possible in a special report to do a thorough refutation of all of Chick’s claims, but here are some things you should be aware of concerning the most common themes in his tracts, as well as pointers for where to go for more information.

Anathema

Like many, Chick does not understand what the term anathema means. He thinks that it means “damned as a heretic.”[41] Elsewhere he uses “damned as a heretic” in place of the word anathema.[42]

But this is not what the term means. In Catholic documents the term refers to a kind of excommunication. By the time of the Council of Trent (which Chick faults for using it), it referred to an excommunication done with a special ceremony. Thus when Trent says things like “If anyone says . . . let him be anathema,” it means that the person can be excommunicated with the ceremony. It also did not apply to Protestants since they were not part of the Catholic Church. Only someone who is part of the Catholic Church can be excommunicated from it.

The purpose of excommunication is not to damn a person but to bring him to repentance—the same principle Paul uses in 1 Corinthians 5 and 2 Corinthians 2:5—10.

Further, though ordinary excommunication still exists, the ceremonial form of excommunication (anathema) does not exist. The 1983 Code of Canon Law ended the penalty. Thus, while one can still be excommunicated for holding beliefs against the Catholic faith, one cannot be anathematized.

Anointing of the Sick

Chick doesn’t like the anointing of the sick,[43] but it has a firm biblical basis. The book of James tells us: “Is any among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith will save the sick man, and the Lord will raise him up; and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven” (Jas. 5:14—15).

Antichrist

From The Only Hope

From The Only Hope

Chick presents Alberto Rivera as saying that John’s prophecy (cf. 1 John 2:18—22) of many antichrists and a final Antichrist “are fulfilled in the dynasty of the papacy and that the Antichrist will be the pope who is in power when Jesus Christ returns.”[44] Chick himself agrees. He always shows the Antichrist wearing papal robes and says that “he rules from the Vatican.”[45] In The Only Hope we are told bluntly: “The last pope will be the antichrist, or the Beast.”[46]

This is not possible. John tells us: “Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son” (1 John 2:22; cf. 4:3; 2 John 7). The Antichrist will deny that Jesus is the Messiah. But the pope’s authority as the vicar (representative) of Christ depends on Jesus being the Christ. The pope is the one man least likely to deny that Jesus is the Messiah. His job depends on it! For this same reason one cannot refer the “many antichrists” (cf. 1 John 2:18) to “the dynasty of the papacy.”

Assurance of Salvation

Chick occasionally takes swipes at the Catholic Church for not teaching “assurance of salvation” and cites verses such as 1 John 5:13—”I write this to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life.” He’s taking this verse out of context. John has just been giving tests by which one can tell whether one is in a state of salvation (1 John 4:16—5:12). These tests include whether one believes in God and Jesus, whether one loves God and one’s neighbor, and whether one keeps God’s commandments. This means that one can have a reasoned assurance of salvation but not an absolute one. One cannot claim to “know” that one has eternal life without applying (and passing) the tests, and there is always the possibility that one could be self-deceived about whether one passes the tests. Thus assurance can be only relative, not absolute.

Baptism

Chick singles out two problems with baptism as understood and practiced by Catholics. The first is that one is born again in baptism and the second that Catholics baptize infants.

Scripture clearly indicates that we receive God’s grace in baptism. Peter says that in the ark “eight persons were saved through water. Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body [i.e., not by the physical effect of baptism] but as an appeal to God for a clear conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ [i.e., by the spiritual effect of baptism]” (1 Pet. 3:20—21). Paul tells us that when we were baptized we were united to Christ’s death so that “we might walk in newness of life” (Rom. 6:4), and when Paul himself was baptized, he was told: “Rise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on his name” (Acts 22:16). On the day of Pentecost, Peter preached: “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins” (Acts 2:38). The early Church Fathers were unanimous in understanding John 3:5 (“unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God”) as referring to baptism.

Regarding infant baptism, when Peter preached baptism for the forgiveness of sins, he added: “For the promise is to you and to your children” (Acts 2:39). Jesus himself said, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of God” (Luke 18:16), and he was speaking of infants (cf. Luke 18:15)! It is no surprise then when we see entire households being baptized at once (Acts 16:15, 33; 1 Cor. 1:16). This is natural when one recognizes that baptism is “the circumcision of Christ” (Col. 2:11) or the Christian equivalent of circumcision—which was applied to infants.

It also is worth noting that many Protestants believe in baptismal regeneration and practice infant baptism. The first Protestant of all—Martin Luther—did so, as does the Lutheran church to this day.

Bible Corruption

Chick is a supporter of the King James Version of the Bible. He denounces multiple other Protestant translations. His chief grievances are: (1) that the other translations are based on corrupt “Alexandrian” manuscripts rather than on the “Textus Receptus” manuscript tradition, (2) that even Protestant preachers “correct the Word of God” according to what the original languages say, (3) that some Bibles have footnotes, and (4) that some Bibles contain the deuterocanonical books of Scripture (“the Apocrypha”). All of this, Chick says, is a satanic and Catholic plot.[47]

  1. The issues regarding what manuscripts are the closest to the original is too complex to go into here, but suffice it to say that the differences between the different manuscript traditions are tiny. They do not, as Chick says, “downplay” the deity of Christ, the Virgin Birth, or salvation by grace through faith.[48] Westcott and Hort (the textual scholars Chick blames most) were not “closet Catholics.” They were Anglicans.
  2. It is good for Protestant preachers to correct Bible translations in light of the original languages because no translation is perfect—even the KJV. For example, in Acts 12:4 the KJV says “Easter” where the Jewish holiday of Passover is being referred to.
  3. While bad footnotes are a problem in many Bibles, footnotes also can help, given the complexity and obscurity of some passages. When Philip asked the Ethiopian eunuch if he understood the prophet Isaiah, he replied, “How can I, unless some one guides me?” (Acts 8:31).
  4. The deuterocanonical books were reckoned as Scripture by the early Christians. As Protestant church historian J. N. D. Kelly writes, “It should be observed that the Old Testament thus admitted as authoritative in the Church was somewhat bulkier and more comprehensive [than the Protestant Bible]. . . . It always included, though with varying degrees of recognition, the so-called apocrypha or deuterocanonical books.”[49] Further, some New Testament passages clearly allude to passages in the deuterocanonicals. (For instance, compare Hebrews 11:35 with 2 Maccabees 7.)

Clergy & Religious

Chick has a big problem with the pope, priests, and religious (e.g., monks and nuns). We will deal with the pope in another section, but as for priests, the word priestis actually taken from the Greek word presbuteros (“elder”).

From Are Roman Catholics Christians?

From Are Roman Catholics Christians?

Further, Paul tells us that God’s ministers in the New Testament age doperform “priestly service” (Rom. 15:16).

Regarding monks and nuns, the Old Testament records people who took special vows of consecration to God (Nazirites, cf. Num. 6), the Old Testament equivalent of monks and nuns. In the New Testament, Anna the prophetess seems to have lived like a cloistered nun, as “she did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day” (Luke 2:37). Paul tells us of an order of widows devoted to good works who had vowed to not marry again (cf. 1 Tim. 5:9—12).

Communism

Chick’s claim that Communism is a creation of the Vatican is one that does not pass the common sense test. Historically, Communism has been militantly atheistic, and the Church has condemned it in extremely forceful terms.

Neither is the claim that “liberation theology”—the misguided attempt of some third-world priests to fuse Catholicism and Marxism—credible as a Vatican plot. The Vatican cracked down on the movement and censured its theologians.

The claim that John Paul II is a Communist is especially preposterous. He suffered under Communist rule, has written against it forcefully, and is credited by many as one of the key players in the downfall of the Soviet Bloc.

Confession

Chick tells us that “no man has the power to forgive sins.” It’s true that God’s forgiveness is the one that counts, but this doesn’t mean that God doesn’t use men as the instruments by which he absolves people.

From Last Rites

From Last Rites

The Pharisees made the same charge against Jesus during his own public ministry (cf. Mark 2:7), but Jesus proved he had the power to forgive sins by healing the paralytic man. When the crowds saw it, “they glorified God, who had given such authority to men” (Matt. 9:8, emphasis added).

With the coming of Christ, God began to use men as instruments of his forgiveness, and after the Resurrection Jesus commissioned his disciples to do this, telling them: “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained” (John 20:22—23).

Conspiracy

One of the problems with Chick’s grand, Vatican-centered conspiracy theory is that so many of the groups the Vatican allegedly created or controls are anti-Catholic. Muslims, Communists, Nazis, Masons, the Klan, Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, etc.—all are anti-Catholic, some as much so as Jack Chick. Further, many of these movements are large enough that they have been specifically rejected by the Vatican. The idea that the Vatican started or runs them is simply absurd.

Demons

From The Death Cookie

From The Death Cookie

Demons lurk the pages of Chick tracts, sometimes guffawing at the misfortunes of humans, sometimes plotting devilry, sometimes just hovering sinisterly.

The extensive use of this theme is one of the ways Chick plays on the emotions of his readers. Instead of making a calm, rational appeal for why his readers should or should not believe certain things, Chick wants to engage the reader on a sub-rational level. He substitutes disturbing, even horrific imagery for reason and argument. He doesn’t want the reader to think. He wants to generate emotions of fear and revulsion toward certain doctrines and practices and so associates demonic imagery with them. No proof is necessary to show why a doctrine or practice is bad; Chick just wraps demons around it to make the reader want to reject it.

From Bewitched

From Bewitched

From Man In Black

From Man in Black

From The Death Cookie

From The Death Cookie

Chick attributes many things he doesn’t like directly to the devil. Again, no proof or argument is offered. He simply asserts that something was engineered by Satan. Sometimes he even shows the devil plotting the object of Chick’s contempt. Once again, he substitutes fear and revulsion for offering evidence.

From The Attack

From The Attack

Frankly, he gives the devil too much credit. While one may reasonably assume that the devil looks favorably on every moral evil that occurs in the world, this is not the same as saying he causes every individual evil. While he may have set the human race on a bad road in the beginning (Gen. 3), this does not mean that he directly engineered every individual sin since that time.

Divided Loyalties

Chick occasionally takes swipes at Catholics for having divided loyalties between the Church and the U.S. (insinuating or directly stating that their loyalty to the former is greater than to the latter). This kind of argument was common in many older American anti-Catholic works. At the time these works were written, many Catholics in the U.S. were immigrants, and their loyalty to their new country was suspect. Most anti-Catholics today have dropped this allegation—and with good reason—yet Chick hangs onto it. It’s essential to his Catholics-out-to-subvert-the-U.S. conspiracy theory.

From Are Roman Catholics Christians?

From Are Roman Catholics Christians?

The reason that most anti-Catholics no longer make the charge is that now most Catholics in the U.S. are native-born. They are as loyal to America as anyone. They have put their lives on the line for her whenever the nation has gone to war, and many are war heroes.

In addition, Chick’s facts are wrong. Catholics are not “citizen[s] of two countries.” The Vatican City State has a tiny number of citizens—fewer than a thousand.[50] They are mostly people who live and work at the Vatican. The vast majority of Catholics are citizens of only one state—their homeland—and they understand their civic duties as well as anyone. The Catechism of the Catholic Church stresses these duties,[51] and the Catholic Bible says just as much as the Protestant one, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Matt. 22:21).

Eucharist

Chick makes the usual charges against the Eucharist. He doesn’t like the Real Presence and the sacrifice of the Mass in particular. He even says that the Mass is not mentioned in Scripture, despite the fact that the very first Mass occurred during the Last Supper (cf. Luke 22:19—20). The charges he makes have been answered many times.

What is distinctive about his approach is the attempt he makes to link the Eucharist with paganism. He claims: “On the altars of Egypt were sun-shaped wafers made of unleavened bread. These wafers were consecrated by the Egyptian priests and supposedly they magically became the flesh of the sun god, Osiris.”[52]

Although Osiris was an Egyptian god, he wasn’t the sun god. That was Ra (in some cases identified with Horus). Osiris was the grain god and the god of the dead. There were grain cakes (little and not so little) connected with the worship of Osiris, but, since he wasn’t the sun god, they were not shaped like the sun. They were shaped like a man since Osiris was pictured as a man. The use of these grain men was connected with Osiris’s annual cycle as the god of grain. Every year, the Egyptians made cakes shaped like Osiris out of grain as an offering asking the grain god to reappear and make the land fruitful again. According to Egyptian wall art, priests even watered the cakes to get the grain in them to sprout and send up shoots. These Osiris cakes weren’t anything like communion wafers.[53]

From Man In Black

From Man in Black

Another of Chick’s attempts to link the Eucharist with paganism is found in his frequent depictions of the host imprinted with the lettersIHS. He tells the reader that this stands for a trio of Egyptian gods (who were not a trinity, incidentally). Chick’s claim is nonsense. The letters aren’t English at all, but Greek. In fact, they are the first three letters of Jesus’ name in Greek: iota-eta-sigma (capital etain Greek looks like the English H). This has been a common abbreviation for Jesus throughout Church history.

Though you wouldn’t know it from Chick, few Catholics have ever seen a host imprinted with these letters. Most hosts either have nothing on them or a cross design. What design, if any, is imprinted on a host is up to the maker. There is no Church regulation on this, and few makers have used the IHS design. Yet Chick would lead one to believe that it is omnipresent in Catholic churches.

Faith Alone

One would expect Chick to have problems with Catholic teaching on salvation, and he does. The verses he uses most often[54] to attack it are Ephesians 2:8—9—”For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God—not because of works, lest any man should boast.”

Catholics agree with what is being said in these verses. Even if one grants Chick’s understanding of “works” in this passage as “good works” rather than “works of the [Mosaic] Law,” it remains true. Good works do not contribute to our coming to God and being saved. In fact, Catholic theology holds that it is impossible for a person who is not in a state of justification to do good works, because he lacks the principle—charity—that makes them supernaturally good. It is when one is in a state of justification and has the virtue of charity that good works become possible.

Inquisition/Death to Non-Catholics

Chick’s lurid comics are filled with tales (and scenes) of Catholics killing non-Catholics. These images are often linked to one of the various historical inquisitions (though Chick does not seem to be aware that there was more than one of these). He sees the breaking out of a new inquisition as not only an ever-present danger but a certainty.

Regarding the historical inquisition, Chick credits it with killing 68 million victims from 1200 to 1800.[55] This is not accurate. The inquisitions that took place in Europe were localized—in France, Spain, and Italy—and there the total population never approached 68 million. Even spread out over six hundred years, that many executions is impossible. Chick is relying on sources using grossly inflated figures.[56]

Chick also is wrong about the identity of the people who were executed. He portrays them as “Bible-believing Christians”[57] (meaning those with Fundamentalist theology), many of whom were hiding the Textus Receptus to keep it safe,[58] and claims that English Bible translator William Tyndale was executed for translating the Bible.[59] These claims are false. Protestantism did not exist during much of the time in question, and there is an utter lack of evidence of anyone being put to death for hiding the Textus Receptus. Indeed, this Greek New Testament manuscript tradition springs from the work of the Catholic scholar Erasmus.

Chick does not seem to understand what a heretic is. Heretics are baptized individuals who obstinately reject an obligatory part of Christian dogma.[60] They do not include Jews, though Chick appears to think they do.[61] Further, the fact that someone may be a heretic does not give anyone the right to kill him. The penalties for heresy specified in the Code of Canon Law include things like not being able to receive the sacraments and not being able to exercise a Church office.[62] Death is not one of these penalties. Yet Chick assures his readers that Trent created the right to “slaughter Jews and non-Catholics alike.”[63] It didn’t, though Chick thinks it did based on his misunderstanding of anathemas.[64]

He further tells his readers: “Still in effect? Yes! All the popes during the Vatican II council and since have accepted the ratification of the entire council on this decree [of Trent].”[65] This isn’t the case, since Trent did not order the death of anyone and the penalty of anathema has since been abolished.

As for the prospect of a looming attempt of the Catholic Church to exterminate non-Catholics, apply the common sense test: Canon law contains no provisions calling for the death of anyone (read the entire Code of Canon Law from front to back; you won’t find any). The penalty of anathema (which did not mean death) has been abolished. Rome is very reluctant to see the death penalty used at all.[66]

Anti-Catholics of Chick’s ilk often wish to portray the Catholic Church as bent on bloodshed and their own religious forebears as opposed to religious violence. But this is erroneous. Both sides have things to apologize for. Religious violence tainted every stream within the Protestant Reformation. To cite a few cases: Henry VIII executed St. Thomas More, Elizabeth I executed St. Edmund Campion, John Calvin executed the heretic Michael Servetus, Martin Luther advocated the killing of Anabaptist leaders and the burning of Jewish synagogues, and Anabaptists seized the town of Münster in 1534 and killed many people before their attempt to establish a “New Jerusalem” in the town fell apart the next year. Protestants have the same fallen human nature as Catholics and are just as prone to violence.

Mary

Chick makes a lot of the conventional anti-Marian arguments that are common in Fundamentalism: that Mary is not the Mother of God, that we are not to ask for her intercession, that statues of her should not be venerated, that she was not preserved by God’s grace from sin, etc.[67]

What is distinctive about Chick’s approach is his is claim that “the ‘˜Mother of God’ that Catholics worship is not the Mary of the Bible. Satan has tricked them into worshiping a counterfeit goddess.”[68] The basis for this claim is a story he borrowed from Alexander Hislop, according to which there was a queen in ancient Babylon named Semiramis. She married her son, Nimrod. After his death, she claimed to have had a virgin birth of another son, Tammuz, who was Nimrod reincarnated. This pair of Semiramis and Tammuz was often depicted in artwork as a mother and child. They form the basis of all of the mother-child statues in the different religions of the world, and when Catholics worship Mary and the Baby Jesus, they are actually worshiping Semiramis and Tammuz.

What is one to make of this? Setting aside the fact that Catholics do not worship Mary, it is still complete nonsense. Hislop’s wild ideas cannot be substantiated historically.[69] We have mother and child images from cultures that predate Babylon. Further, if you want to depict a famous mother, a good way of doing it is by picturing her holding her child. Thus before literacy became widespread Christians often would picture Mary holding the Baby Jesus, and it became an established image in Christian art.

Millennium

All Christians recognize the existence of the time period known as the Millennium, which is spoken of in Revelation 20:1—10. During this period Satan is bound so that he cannot deceive the nations (Rev. 20:3). The question is: When in history does this period refer to? Chick belongs to a school of thought known as pre-millennialism or millenarianism, which holds that the Millennium is a future time period during which Christ will reign on earth as its King. He further holds that the Millennium will be preceded by an event known as the Rapture. These views are common among Evangelical and Fundamentalist Protestants, though the idea of the Millennium being preceded by the Rapture goes back to only about 1830.

The Catholic position is similar to the position of traditional Protestants. In Protestant circles the position is called amillennialism, and it was held by Luther, Calvin, and the majority of traditional Protestants. It holds that the Millennium is a present reality—that the devil is bound now in such a way that he cannot deceive the nations by stopping the proclamation of the gospel. This is why the world is no longer swallowed in pagan darkness the way it was at the time of Christ. The devil has not been able to stop the spread of Christianity, and now a third of all men are Christians, and half are believers in one God. Today, the prophecy is fulfilled that “the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea” (Is. 11:9), and Christ reigns from heaven (1 Cor. 15:25—26) and through his Church on earth (Rev. 20:4). At the end of the Church age, there will be a period of bitter deception and persecution of the Church as the devil is again freed to deceive the nations (Rev. 20:7—8). Then Christ will return, as the Creed says, “to judge the living and the dead” (Rev. 20:11—15).

Nazism

Chick makes the bizarre claim that not only was Pius XII sympathetic to Nazism (as some in the popular press have claimed) but that Hitler and his cohorts were trying to conquer the world in order to bring about the “Millennial Kingdom” under Pius XII. This doesn’t pass the common sense test since Catholics view the Millennium as a present rather than a future reality.

Further, Pius XII was not sympathetic to Hitler at all. On April 28, 1935, four years before the war started, Eugenio Pacelli (the future Pius XII) caught the attention of the world press. Speaking to an audience of 250,000 pilgrims in Lourdes, France, Pacelli stated that the Nazis “are in reality only miserable plagiarists who dress up old errors with new tinsel. It does not make any difference whether they flock to the banners of social revolution, whether they are guided by a false concept of the world and of life, or whether they are possessed by the superstition of a race and blood cult.”[70] It was talks like this—in addition to his private remarks and numerous notes of protest that he sent to Berlin as Vatican secretary of state—that earned Pacelli a reputation as an enemy of the Nazi party.

Other Christs

Chick periodically rails against Catholics worshiping multiple Jesuses, as in this picture:

From Man In Black

From Man in Black

Let us see if Chick’s charge of idolatry holds up:

  • Images of the Baby Jesus: Catholics do not worship these. They worship Jesus by venerating images of him, just as one might kiss a photo of a departed loved one.
  • Crucifixes: First, who says that Jesus on the cross is dead? He is depicted being crucified, and there is no reason to suppose that crucifixes depict only the brief time between when he died and when he was taken down from the cross. Second, we worship the real Jesus in heaven by venerating his image on earth. The crucifix is an image of the most important thing he did for us on earth.
  • The Pope: The pope is not “Jesus on earth,” and Catholics don’t worship him. He is the vicar (representative) of Christ. What is wrong with treating one of Christ’s representatives with respect?
  • Priests: Priests aren’t worshiped, but they do represent Christ as his ministers. Don’t Protestants treat their own ministers with respect (1 Thess. 5:12)?
  • The Eucharist: The Eucharist is worshiped, but since it is Jesus himself it does not amount to worshiping “another” Jesus. Many other Christians, including Lutherans, believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist (although they do not in fact have the Real Presence in their churches) and recognize that Jesus is to be worshiped wherever he is.

From Last Rites

From Last Rites

  • The “Angry Jesus” in Heaven: Literal anger is not compatible with being in the beatitude of heaven. In keeping with the language of Scripture one can speak of God being “angry” with our sins (Eph. 5:6), but Catholics recognize this as a metaphor for divine justice.[71] It is far less clear that Chick understands the concept of divine wrath as a metaphor, and his Jesus sometimes seems very angry. In any event, the Jesus ruling in heaven is still the real Jesus, not another one.

Paganism/Idolatry

One of the major themes of Chick tracts is the attempt to portray Catholicism as a form of paganism. According to Chick’s mythology, ancient Babylonian paganism spread all over the world, with deities taking new names in different cultures but remaining fundamentally the same. He holds Catholicism to be one of its expressions and devotes many pages to showing that the Catholic Mary is actually the ancient Babylonian queen Semiramis and that the Eucharist is based on the worship of ancient sun gods.

Unfortunately, Chick gets his mythology all wrong. For example, he claims that “in ancient Babylon, they worshiped the sun god, ‘˜Baal.’ Then this religion moved into Egypt using different names.”[72] In reality, ancient Babylonians worshiped the sun god Shamash. Baal was neither a Babylonian deity nor the sun god. In fact, he was the Canaanite storm god. Chick could not have had his ideas more muddled.

The source Chick depends on for his mythological ideas is The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop, an eccentric nineteenth-century Anglican clergyman. Chick essentially recycles Hislop’s central thesis of Catholicism being a revival of Babylonian paganism. This allows him to identify the Catholic Church with the Whore of Babylon.

Yet the book lacks credibility. Hislop was writing when anthropology and archaeology were in their infancy, and the idea that all world religions spring from a common source (especially one in Babylon) has been completely disproven. We have knowledge of multiple mythologies from all over the world that are unrelated to Babylonian paganism. Fundamental differences between them are easy to illustrate. For example, Indo-European paganism (to which Babylonian mythology is related) typically has the sky deity being male and the earth deity as female. But in Egyptian mythology this is reversed: The sky deity is female and the earth deity is male.

The most thorough refutation of The Two Babylons was written by one of its chief twentieth-century popularizers. As a young man, Ralph Woodrow wrote a book called Babylon Mystery Religion, which introduced many to Hislop’s ideas. It was very popular in Fundamentalist circles. Yet with time Woodrow realized that Hislop’s claims and logic were deeply flawed, and he wrote a new book—The Babylon Connection?—to refute them.

Pope

Chick’s problems with the pope seem to be as follows: (1) The line of popes is a fulfillment of the biblical prophecy of there being many antichrists, and the final pope will be the Antichrist. (2) The popes have been engaged in a global conspiracy spanning centuries, with tendrils in almost every major world event. (3) There is no biblical basis for the office of the pope.

It is very clear in Scripture that Jesus told Peter, whose name means “rock,” that “you are Peter [rock], and on this rock I will build my church” (Matt. 16:18). To undermine this, Chick makes the familiar claim that two different words are used here in Greek—petros and petra—and that the first means a small stone or pebble while the latter means a huge rock or boulder.[73]

This simply is not true. The difference in meaning can be found only in Attic Greek, but the New Testament was written in Koine Greek—a different dialect. In Koine, both petros and petra simply meant “rock.” The argument shows a faulty knowledge of Greek.[74] Further, Jesus’ native language was Aramaic, not Greek, and in the Aramaic underlying this passage, the same word—kepha—would have been used in both instances.

Purgatory

Chick claims: “Purgatory is NOT in the Bible! It was created by the Vatican as one of the greatest sources for money ever invented. Billions have made ‘˜the Whore’ rich from poor Roman Catholic survivors who paid to get their loved ones out of purgatory.”[75]

What Chick is referring to (as he makes clear in context) is the paying of Mass stipends when a priest says Mass for a departed loved one. This does not make the Vatican rich. A typical Mass stipend is five dollars, and if a priest gets an occasional five dollars for saying Mass for someone’s loved one, it doesn’t make him or the Church rich. The priest himself keeps the stipend, and the practice is closely regulated to prevent abuse.[76] As a moneymaking scheme, purgatory leaves a lot to be desired.

But then that isn’t what it is. It has been part of the Judeo-Christian tradition since before the time of Christ. Judah Maccabee and his men prayed for and took up a collection for an offering (the Old Testament equivalent of a Mass) for men who, although they “fell asleep in godliness” (2 Macc. 12:45), nevertheless needed to be purified from the consequences of their sins. Similarly, Paul tells us: “The fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work which any man has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire” (1 Cor. 3:13—15). Even common sense tells one that, since we will be totally pure in heaven, we must be purified if we are still impure at our deaths. Purgatory is the name the Church gives to this purification.

Rapture

From The Only Hope

From The Only Hope

“The Rapture” is the name given in Evangelical circles to an event where living and dead Christians are caught up in the air to be with Christ. When this term is used, it usually is assumed that the event will occur shortly before the Millennium, conceived of as a period in which Christ reigns in person on earth, before the end of the world. This idea dates back to around 1830, when it was popularized by John Nelson Darby and by a school of thought called “Dispensationalism,” which stems from his work. Chick is a big believer in the Rapture, and it appears in his tracts.[77]

Though it does not use the term Rapture, the Catholic Church acknowledges that Christians will be gathered to Christ (likely not with exploding graves), but at a different time. The Church’s view is like that of traditional Protestants: The dead in Christ will be raised and caught up together with him and living Christians at the Second Coming, at the end of the world. Thus Paul speaks of the event happening in the time of those who “who are left until the coming of the Lord” (1 Thess. 4:15, cf. 4:16—17).

Repulsive Catholics

From Fat Cats

From Fat Cats

A typical tactic in Chick tracts is to portray Catholics as being unpleasant or revolting in various ways. They drink. They smoke. They cuss. They are mean-tempered. They may even be willing to kill non-Catholics. Some are eager to do so. Frequently, Catholics are drawn to be physically ugly as well. The only good Catholics in Chick tracts are ex-Catholics—those who have left the Church to become Fundamentalists. (Apparently becoming a Fundamentalist helps your appearance, too, because the ex-Catholics are better looking than their former co-religionists.)

When you see this in Chick tracts, recognize it for what it is: an attempt to avoid calm and rational discussion by substituting emotional manipulation, making Catholics “look bad”—literally and figuratively—so that you won’t like them and will transfer this dislike to their beliefs. This is a prejudicial way of presenting Catholics, and it illustrates the prejudice Chick harbors against Catholics.

From Last Rites

From Last Rites

From Man in Black

From Man in Black

From Murph

From Murph

Tradition

Chick makes the typical charges against tradition, for example, quoting Matthew 15:3—”Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?”[78] What Chick fails to note is that the Bible does not condemn all tradition, only traditions of men that are contrary to the Word of God. Traditions of men that are notcontrary to the word of God (e.g., having carpeting in churches) are not a problem.

Then there is a whole other class of tradition: apostolic ones, traditions coming from the apostles. These not only are not problematic, but the keeping of them is praised and commanded by Scripture. Thus Paul tells the Corinthians, “I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I have delivered them to you” (1 Cor. 11:2). He commands the Thessalonians: “So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter” (2 Thess. 2:15).

Vatican Riches

Like many, Chick faults the Catholic Church for having too much money.[79] It is true that the Church does have a lot of money invested in churches. You need a lot of churches for a billion Catholics to worship in. It also is true that many of these churches are beautiful and ornate, but it is the natural impulse of Christians to honor God by making the places where he is worshiped beautiful and ornate. This same impulse is reflected in the Old Testament, where God actually ordered his house to be made of costly materials, down to gold c.asps for its curtains (Ex. 26:6).

In terms of its liquid assets, the Vatican has a remarkably small budget and regularly runs deficits. For example, in 2002 it spent $260 million but only took in $245 million, with a deficit of $15 million.[80] This budget—much of which is devoted to human relief efforts—is quite modest on the scale of world affairs. Many individual dioceses have budgets this size, and it is dwarfed by numerous companies and by every state in the U.S.

Whore of Babylon

Chick identifies the Catholic Church as the Whore of Babylon described in Revelation. He frequently cites Revelation 18:4 as a biblical imperative to leave the Church—”Come out of her, my people, lest you take part in her sins, lest you share in her plagues.”[81] This would be a good proof text—if the Catholic Church were the Whore of Babylon. But it isn’t.

When the Whore falls we read, “Rejoice over her, O heaven, O saints and apostles and prophets, for God has given judgment for you against her! . . . And in her was found the blood of prophets and of saints, and of all who have been slain on earth” (Rev. 18:20, 24). This shows that the Whore persecuted not just Christians but apostles and prophets. Apostles existed only in the first century, since one of the requirements for being an apostle was seeing the risen Christ (1 Cor. 9:1). Prophets existed as a group only in the Old Testament and the first century (Acts 11:27—28, 13:1, 15:32, 21:10).

Since the Whore persecuted apostles and prophets, the Whore must have existed in the first century. This demolishes the claim that Christian Rome or Vatican City is the Whore. Rome was not a Christian city at that time, and Vatican City did not even exist, so neither of them could be the Whore. Furthermore, Chick (wrongly) claims that Catholicism itself did not exist in the first century but was created by the emperor Constantine.[82] This means that on his very own argument Catholicism could not be the Whore.

Who is the Whore? Most likely first-century Jerusalem, which was renowned for persecuting both apostles and prophets. The fall of the Whore is likely a depiction of the fall of Jerusalem in a.d. 70.

Conclusion

You have completed your journey through the nightmare world of Jack T. Chick. It is time to take a break, breathe a sigh of relief, and settle back into the real world, glad at last to see the light of day.

But you must not forget what you have learned.

Chick has still sold over half a billion tracts in the forty-year life of his company, and he is still selling tens of thousands of copies per day. Chick and his tracts are deceiving countless individuals—both Protestants and Catholics. That’s why he can continue to print and sell so many tracts. Someone is paying the printing and distribution costs for all these tracts. People really do respond to them.

If you care about the cause of truth—and Jesus is the Truth (John 14:6)—then you must do what you can to fight the errors found in these tracts.

  • If you are an ordinary church member—Protestant or Catholic—you can get more general information on Jack Chick from Catholicism and Fundamentalismand The Usual Suspects by Karl Keating. For added help, check out www.catholic.com.
  • If you are a Catholic, you now know answers to many of the anti-Catholic slurs Chick makes in his tracts—and you have seen the principles to use in answering them.
  • If you are a Protestant, you have seen something of the magnitude of Chick’s misrepresentation of the Catholic faith. Even though you may disagree with parts of the Catholic faith, you know enough now to recognize that Chick tracts fundamentally misrepresent it and are not good witnessing tools.
  • If you are an Evangelical bookstore owner, you have seen the gross distortions of Catholic teaching and the paranoid conspiracy theories that he weaves around the Catholic Church. You know that—regardless of your differences with the Catholic Church—distributing Chick tracts to your patrons will do a disservice to the body of Christ by spreading error, fear, and prejudice among your customers.
  • And if you are an employee of Chick Publications—or even Jack Chick himself—you have seen a more thorough answer to the material in your tracts than you may have seen before. Numerous errors and misrepresentations have been documented. You now know why, if you are to be a faithful servant of Christ, these tracts must be pulled from the market and the presentation of Catholics in your publications must be changed.

In the love of Jesus Christ,

—Catholic Answers


Footnotes:


  1. My Name . . . In the Vatican? Note: The small Chick tracts do not carry page numbers. Page numbers are given for large-format Chick comic books.
  2. The Deceived; The Story Teller.
  3. The Poor Pope?; The Big Betrayal, 53—59.
  4. The Godfathers, 31.
  5. Ibid., 12.
  6. Ibid., 13.
  7. Fat Cats.
  8. Holocaust.
  9. Ibid.
  10. Four Horsemen, 30.
  11. The Force, 25.
  12. The Prophet, 30.
  13. The Story Teller.
  14. Robert Ito, “Fear Factor,” L.A. Magazine, May 1, 2003, 56.
  15. www.chick.com/information/authors/chick.asp.
  16. Ibid.
  17. Ibid.
  18. Ito, “Fear Factor.”
  19. The Illuminati are a group often talked about among conspiracy theorists. They are not usually presented as a hidden group of witches.
  20. John Todd, Surviving Till the Trumpet, quoted in Gary Metz, “The John Todd Story,” Cornerstone (www.cornerstonemag.com/pages/show_page.asp?437).
  21. Ibid.
  22. Spellbound? 20.
  23. “The Legend(s) of John Todd,” Christianity Today, February 2, 1979.
  24. The first page of Spellbound? states: “My deepest appreciation to John Todd, ex-Grand Druid priest, for the authenticity of the occult information used in this story. Also to those others who came out of witchcraft and have verified this material.”
  25. “Booksellers’ Group May Expel Chick,” Christianity Today, October 23, 1981, 62.
  26. Gary Metz, “Jack Chick’s Anti-Catholic Alberto Comic Book Is Exposed as a Fraud,” Christianity Today, March 13, 1981.
  27. Ibid.
  28. Ibid.
  29. Ibid.
  30. Ibid.
  31. Gary Metz, “Alberto Rivera’s False Anti-Catholic Story,” Cornerstone (www.cornerstonemag.com/pages/show_page.asp?228).
  32. Brian Onken, “Alberto: The Truth about His Story,” Forward, February 25, 1983.
  33. Ibid.
  34. Ibid.
  35. Ibid.
  36. Ibid.
  37. AIC International Ministries catalogue, 1998—1999.
  38. This gallery includes only the more substantial anti-Catholic Chick tracts. Anti-Catholic themes (typically, brief depictions of repulsive Catholics) occur in other tracts, such as Gomez Is Coming, The Hit, The Thing, Tiny Shoes, and The Trial.
  39. The themes listed under each tract will be discussed in the “Answering Chick Tracts” section of this report. Two themes we will not list (because they are in almost every tract) are Demons and Faith Alone. These will be discussed in the “Answering Chick Tracts” section.
  40. Are Roman Catholics Christians?
  41. Ibid.
  42. The Attack.
  43. Are Roman Catholics Christians?; Last Rites.
  44. Four Horsemen, 22.
  45. The Beast.
  46. There is one tract where Chick seems to doubt this. In Here He Comes! Chick identifies the pope and the Jesuit general as the False Prophet and the Beast. From the art in the issue he appears to identify the pope as the “man of sin” and the False Prophet, while the Jesuit general is portrayed as the Beast or Antichrist. However, by the sequel to this tract—Who’s Missing?—Chick again is openly identifying the pope as the Antichrist.
  47. The Attack.
  48. Ibid.
  49. J. N. D. Kelly, Early Christian Doctrines (San Francisco: Harper, 1978), 53.
  50. www.countryreports.org/content/holysee.htm.
  51. CCC 2238—2243.
  52. Are Roman Catholics Christians?
  53. James Frazer, The Golden Bough (Carmichael, Calif.: Touchstone Books, 1996).
  54. Last Rites; Man in Black; Murph.
  55. The Attack. The figure of 68 million is repeated in other tracts as well.
  56. His source may be Alberto Rivera, since The Attack begins with a note thanking Rivera for the information used in the tract.
  57. Are Roman Catholics Christians?
  58. The Attack.
  59. Ibid.
  60. CIC 751.
  61. Holocaust.
  62. CIC 1331.
  63. Ibid.
  64. Are Roman Catholics Christians?
  65. Ibid.
  66. CCC 2267.
  67. Why Is Mary Crying?
  68. Ibid.
  69. Ralph Woodrow, The Babylon Connection? (Palm Springs, Calif.: Ralph Woodrow Evangelistic Association, 1997).
  70. Eugenio Pacelli, quoted in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, March 4, 1963, quoted in the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, Pius XII and the Holocaust (Milwaukee, Wisc.: The Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, 1988), 106—107.
  71. Ludwig Ott, Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma (Rockford, Ill.: TAN Books and Publishers, 1960), 45.
  72. Are Roman Catholics Christians?
  73. Four Horsemen, 19.
  74. For an Evangelical Protestant Greek scholar’s admission of this point, see D. A. Carson, The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, vol. 8 (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 1984), 368.
  75. Are Roman Catholics Christians?
  76. CIC 945—958.
  77. The Beast; The Last Generation.
  78. Murph.
  79. The Poor Pope?
  80. “Holy See, in ‘˜Lean Years,’ Posts a Financial Deficit,” Zenit News, July 10, 2003 (www.zenit.org/english/visualizza.phtml?sid=38645).
  81. Are Roman Catholics Christians?; The Death Cookie; Holocaust; Man in Black; Why Is Mary Crying?
  82. Man in Black.

For more information . . .


Tracts from: www.catholic.com

  • Anointing of the Sick
  • The Antichrist
  • Apostolic Tradition
  • Are Catholics Born Again?
  • Assurance of Salvation?
  • The Authority of the Pope
  • Baptism: Immersion Only?
  • Bible Translation Guide
  • Born Again in Baptism
  • Brethren of the Lord
  • Celibacy and the Priesthood
  • Christ in the Eucharist
  • Confession
  • Do Catholics Worship Statutes?
  • Early Teaching of Infant Baptism
  • Forgiveness of Sins
  • How Pius XII Protected Jews
  • Hunting the Whore of Babylon
  • Immaculate Conception and Assumption
  • Infant Baptism
  • The Inquisition
  • The Institution of the Mass
  • The Intercession of the Saints
  • Mary: Ever Virgin
  • Mary: Full of Grace
  • Mary: Mother of God
  • More Catholic “Inventions”
  • The Old Testament Canon
  • Origins of Peter as Pope
  • Papal Infallibility
  • Peter and the Papacy
  • Peter the Rock
  • Peter’s Primacy
  • Peter’s Roman Residency
  • Peter’s Successors
  • Praying to the Saints
  • Purgatory
  • The Rapture
  • The Real Presence
  • The Roots of Purgatory
  • The Rosary
  • Sacrifice of the Mass
  • Saint Worship?
  • Scripture and Tradition
  • Was Peter in Rome?
  • What’s Your Authority?
  • The Whore of Babylon

Books, Articles, and Church Documents


Akin, Jimmy, “Anathema,” This Rock, April 2000, 37—39.

——— False Profit: Money, Prejudice, and Bad Theology in Tim LaHaye’s Left Behind Series. A special report from Catholic Answers, 2003.

——— “The Pagan Influence Fallacy,” This Rock, March 2000, 39—41.

——— “Tracking the First Pagans,” This Rock, November-December 1999, 38—39.

——— The Salvation Controversy. San Diego, Calif.: Catholic Answers, 2001.

Bernstein, Carl, “The Holy Alliance,” Time, February 24, 1992 (www.time.com/time/archive/preview/from_search/0,10987,1101920224-159069,…).

Carson, D. A., The King James Version Debate: A Plea For Realism. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Book House, 1978.

Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction on Certain Aspects of “Theology of Liberation,” August 6, 1984.

Father Mateo, Refuting the Attack on Mary. San Diego, Calif.: Catholic Answers, 1993.

John Paul II, encyclical Centesimus Annus, May 1, 1991.

Leo XIII, encyclical Quod Apostolici Muneris, December 28, 1878.

Peters, Edward, Inquisition. Berkeley and Los Angeles, Calif.: University of California Press, 1988.

Pius XI, encyclical Divini Redemptoris, March 19, 1937.

Semiramis and Tammuz

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Paganism/Idolatry

One of the major themes of Chick tracts is the attempt to portray Catholicism as a form of paganism. According to Chick’s mythology, ancient Babylonian paganism spread all over the world, with deities taking new names in different cultures but remaining fundamentally the same. He holds Catholicism to be one of its expressions and devotes many pages to showing that the Catholic Mary is actually the ancient Babylonian queen Semiramis and that the Eucharist is based on the worship of ancient sun gods.

Unfortunately, Chick gets his mythology all wrong. For example, he claims that “in ancient Babylon, they worshiped the sun god, ‘˜Baal.’ Then this religion moved into Egypt using different names.”[72] In reality, ancient Babylonians worshiped the sun god Shamash. Baal was neither a Babylonian deity nor the sun god. In fact, he was the Canaanite storm god. Chick could not have had his ideas more muddled.

The source Chick depends on for his mythological ideas is The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop, an eccentric nineteenth-century Anglican clergyman. Chick essentially recycles Hislop’s central thesis of Catholicism being a revival of Babylonian paganism. This allows him to identify the Catholic Church with the Whore of Babylon.

Yet the book lacks credibility. Hislop was writing when anthropology and archaeology were in their infancy, and the idea that all world religions spring from a common source (especially one in Babylon) has been completely disproven. We have knowledge of multiple mythologies from all over the world that are unrelated to Babylonian paganism. Fundamental differences between them are easy to illustrate. For example, Indo-European paganism (to which Babylonian mythology is related) typically has the sky deity being male and the earth deity as female. But in Egyptian mythology this is reversed: The sky deity is female and the earth deity is male.

The most thorough refutation of The Two Babylons was written by one of its chief twentieth-century popularizers. As a young man, Ralph Woodrow wrote a book called Babylon Mystery Religion, which introduced many to Hislop’s ideas. It was very popular in Fundamentalist circles. Yet with time Woodrow realized that Hislop’s claims and logic were deeply flawed, and he wrote a new book—The Babylon Connection?—to refute them.

Mary

Chick makes a lot of the conventional anti-Marian arguments that are common in Fundamentalism: that Mary is not the Mother of God, that we are not to ask for her intercession, that statues of her should not be venerated, that she was not preserved by God’s grace from sin, etc.[67]

What is distinctive about Chick’s approach is his is claim that “the ‘˜Mother of God’ that Catholics worship is not the Mary of the Bible. Satan has tricked them into worshiping a counterfeit goddess.”[68] The basis for this claim is a story he borrowed from Alexander Hislop, according to which there was a queen in ancient Babylon named Semiramis. She married her son, Nimrod. After his death, she claimed to have had a virgin birth of another son, Tammuz, who was Nimrod reincarnated. This pair of Semiramis and Tammuz was often depicted in artwork as a mother and child. They form the basis of all of the mother-child statues in the different religions of the world, and when Catholics worship Mary and the Baby Jesus, they are actually worshiping Semiramis and Tammuz.

What is one to make of this? Setting aside the fact that Catholics do not worship Mary, it is still complete nonsense. Hislop’s wild ideas cannot be substantiated historically.[69] We have mother and child images from cultures that predate Babylon. Further, if you want to depict a famous mother, a good way of doing it is by picturing her holding her child. Thus before literacy became widespread Christians often would picture Mary holding the Baby Jesus, and it became an established image in Christian art.

http://www.catholic.com/documents/the-nightmare-world-of-jack-t-chick

WOODROW’S BOOK IS GARBAGE AND  FULL OF ERRORS

In a series of EMBRASSING RETRACTIONS, Woodrow abandoned his original views.
He CONFESSED that his previous studies had been SHALLOW and UNPROFESSIONAL:

HE  SAID:

As time went on, however, I began to hear rumblings that Hislop was NOT A RELIABLE HISTORIAN, I heard this from a history teacher and in letters from people who heard this perspective expressed on the Bible Answer Man radio program.  Even the Worldwide Church of God began to take a second look at the subject.  As a result, I realized I needed to go back through Hislop’s work, my basic source, and prayerfully check it out.

As I did this, it became clear: Hislop’s “history” was often only an arbitrary PIECING TOGETHER OF ANCIENT MYTHS.  He claimed Nimrod was a big, ugly, deformed black man.  His wife, Semiramis, was a beautiful white woman with blond hair and blue eyes.  But she was a backslider known for her immoral lifestyle, the inventor of soprano singing and the originator of priestly celibacy.

He said that the Babylonians baptized in water, believing it had virtue because Nimrod and Semiramis suffered for them in water; that Noah’s son Shem killed Nimrod; that Semiramis was killed when one of her sons cut off her head, and so on. I CANNOT FIND A RECOGNIZED HISTORY BOOK THAT CAN SUBSTANTIATE THESE AND MANY OTHER CLAIMS.

The subtitle for Hislop’s book is “The Papal Worship Proved to Be the Worship of Nimrod and His Wife.”  Yet when I went to reference works such as the Encyclopædia Britannica, The Americana, The Jewish Encyclopædia, The Catholic Encyclopædia, The Worldbook Encyclopædia – carefully reading their articles on “Nimrod” and “Semiramis” – NOT ONE SAID ANYTHING ABOUT NIMROD AND SEMIRAMIS BEING HUSBAND AND WIFE. THEY DID NOT EVEN LIVE THE SAME CENTURY. Nor is there any basis for Semiramis being the mother of Tammuz.

I realized these IDEAS WHERE ALL HISLOP’S INVENTIONS.

After considerable work in finding old reference books to which Hislop referred, it was not uncommon to find things taken out of context.  He sought to link the round communion wafers of the Roman Catholic Church with paganism, for example, by citing Wilkinson’s ANCIENT EGYPTIANS.

But Wilkinson also said the Egyptians used oval and triangular cakes, folded cakes, cakes shaped like leaves, animals, a crocodile’s head, etc.  But
HISLOP  DID NOT MENTION THIS. HIS CLAIMS ABOUT THE CROSS SYMBOL, THE LETTERS I.H.S.  CANDLES, AND HALOS WERE ALSON IN ERROR.

Because many of these teachings were interwoven in my book, it could not simply be a case of producing a revised edition.  Honesty, despite the financial loss to our ministry, demanded a correction of this teaching. For this reason, we now publish a 128-page book “THE BABYLON CONNECTION?” which explains all that is involved in this, and includes 60 illustrations and 400 footnote references.

We believe the best way to combat errors in the Roman Catholic Church (or any other group) is by the Scriptures themselves – not by trying to find pagan parallels in ancient mythology.  Things that are indeed pagan should be rejected, of course; but we should not brand things as being pagan when this is really not the case.

=============================================================================================

On September 17, 1859, The Saturday Review openly castigated Hislop in a stinging rebuttal of his arbitrary hypothesis:

In the first place, his whole superstructure is raised upon nothing.

Our earliest authority for the history of Semiramis wrote about the commencement of the Christian era, and the historian from whom he drew his information lived from fifteen hundred to two thousand years after the date which Mr. Hislop assigns to the great Assyrian Queen.

The most lying legend which the Vatican has ever endorsed stands on better authority than the history which is now made the ground of a charge against it.

Secondly, the whole argument proceeds upon the assumption that all heathenism has a common origin.  Accidental resemblance in mythological details are taken as evidence of this, and nothing is allowed for the natural working of the human mind.

Thirdly, Mr. Hislop’s reasoning would make anything of anything. By the aid of obscure passages in third-rate historians, groundless assumptions of identity, and etymological torturing of roots, all that we know, and all that we believe, may be converted … into something totally different.

Fourthly, Mr. Hislop’s argument proves too much. He finds not only the corruptions of Popery, but the fundamental articles of the Christian Faith, in his hypothetical Babylonian system…

We take leave of Mr. Hislop and his work with the remark that we never before quite knew the folly of which ignorant or half-learned bigotry is capable.

If more Christadelphians had been aware of this review, Hislop’s book might not have succeeded in gaining the (entirely undeserved) support that it now enjoys within our community.

Hislop’s FAILED to meet these conditions.
– the similarities between the Catholic distinctive and the alleged pagan source must be material, significant, and pervasive enough to suspect derivation;
– the similarities must be of such a nature as to either require borrowing, or be best explained by borrowing;
– there must be a historically plausible explanation of how the borrowing occurred;
– the borrowing hypothesis must more persuasive than the alternative Catholic explanation;
– there must be a historically plausible explanation for the origin of any significant differences between the Catholic distinctive and the alleged pagan source;
– there must be demonstrable means, motive and opportunity for the Catholic Church to foist the pagan baggage upon an unsuspecting public.

Besides, what a lot of people don’t realise is that Christians believed December 25th was the date of the birth of Christ before the Roman emperor Aurelian instituted the pagan feast of Sol Invictus (see William H. Tighe, Calculating Christmas: The Story Behind December 25).

Replacing a pagan feast with a Christian one that supersedes would be is a way to defeat paganism, not surreptitiously embrace it.  And it seems to have worked, as overtly sun-worshipping pagans seem rather scarce these days.

Hislop criticises the “skilful adjustment of the calendar” that allowed Easter to take the place of solemnities.  However in fact, the date of Easter has nothing to do with paganism, but instead is based on Christ’s resurrection in its Jewish-Passover context. Since Passover was always on or after the first full moon after the Spring equinox, and since the Resurrection was the first Sunday after Passover, Easter is always the first Sunday after the first full moon after March 21 (historically, the Spring equinox).

 

 

Explaining the Trinity

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Explaining the Trinity

by Tim Staples

 

Recently, I had an extensive discussion with a Muslim about the Trinity. His problem with the Trinity was not so much with biblical texts, and obviously so, because he did not accept the Bible in the form it is in today as the word of God. Though I must say that he was remarkably interested in looking at what the New Testament had to say about the topic.

His main problem was conceptual. And I find this to be generally the case with folks who reject the Trinity. They either think Christians are claiming there are three Gods (which is what my Muslim friend actually believed to be so), or that we are teaching something that is a logical contradiction, e.g., 3=1, and 1=3.

Neither is true, of course. But if we are going to help these people to understand, I find, a little background information is essential in order to establish a conceptual foundation for discussion.

Processions and Relations in God

In Catholic theology, we understand the persons of the Blessed Trinity subsisting within the inner life of God to be truly distinct relationally, but not as a matter of essence, or nature. Each of the three persons in the godhead possesses the same eternal and infinite divine nature; thus, they are the one, true God in essence or nature, not “three Gods.” Yet, they are truly distinct in their relations to each other.

In order to understand the concept of person in God, we have to understand its foundation in the processions and relations within the inner life of God. And the Council of Florence, AD 1338-1445, can help us in this regard.

The Council’s definitions concerning the Trinity are really as easy as one, two, three… four. It taught there is one nature in God, and that there are two processions, three persons, and four relations that constitute the Blessed Trinity. The Son “proceeds” from the Father, and the Holy Spirit “proceeds from the Father and the Son.” These are the two processions in God. And these are foundational to the four relations that constitute the three persons in God. These are those four eternal relations in God:

1. The Father actively and eternally generates the Son, constituting the person of God, the Father.

2. The Son is passively generated of the Father, which constitutes the person of the Son.

3. The Father and the Son actively spirate the Holy Spirit in the one relation within the inner life of God that does not constitute a person. It does not do so because the Father and Son are already constituted as persons in relation to each other in the first two relations. This is why CCC 240 teaches, “[The Second Person of the Blessed Trinity] is Son only in relation to his Father.”

4. The Holy Spirit is passively spirated of the Father and the Son, constituting the person of the Holy Spirit.

We should take note of the distinction between the “generative” procession that consititutes the Son, and the “spirative” procession that constitutes the Holy Spirit. As St. Thomas Aquinas explains, and Scripture reveals, the Son is uniquely “begotten” of the Father (cf. John 3:16; 1:18). He is also said to proceed from the Father as “the Word” in John 1:1. This “generative” procession is one of “begetting,” but not in the same way a dog “begets” a dog, or a human being “begets” a human being. This is an intellectual “begetting,” and fittingly so, as a “word” proceeds from the knower while, at the same time remaining in the knower. Thus, this procession or begetting of the Son occurs within the inner life of God. There are not “two beings” involved; rather, two persons relationally distinct, while ever-remaining one in being.

The Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, but not in a generative sense; rather, in a spiration. “Spiration” comes from the Latin word for “spirit” or “breath.” Jesus “breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit…” (John 20:22). Scripture reveals the Holy Spirit as pertaining to “God’s love [that] has been poured into our hearts” in Romans 5:5, and as flowing out of and identified with the reciprocating love of the Father for the Son and the Son for the Father (John 15:26; Rev. 22:1-2). Thus, the Holy Spirit’s procession is not intellecual and generative, but has its origin in God’s will and in the ultimate act of the will, which is love.

As an infinite act of love between the Father and Son, this “act” is so perfect and infinite that “it” becomes (not in time, of course, but eternally) a “He” in the third person of the Blessed Trinity. This revelation of God’s love personified is the foundation from which Scripture could reveal to us that “God is love” (I John 4:8).

God is not revealed to “be” love in any other religion in the world other than Christianity because in order for there to be love, there must be a beloved. From all eternity, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit have poured themselves out into each other in an infinite act of love, which we, as Christians, are called to experience through faith and the sacraments by which we are lifted up into that very love of God itself (Romans 5:1-5).

It is the love of God that binds us, heals us, and makes us children of God (I John 4:7; Matt. 5:44-45). Thus, how fitting it is that the Holy Spirit is depicted in Revelation 22:1-2, as a river of life flowing out from the Father and the Son and bringing life to all by way of bringing life to the very “tree of life” that is the source of eternal life in the the Book of Revelation (Rev. 22:19).

Back to the Relations in God

Biblically speaking, we see each of the persons in God revealed as relationally distinct and yet absolutely one in nature in manifold texts. For example, consider John 17:5, where our Lord prays on Holy Thursday:

… and now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory which I had with you before the world was made.

Notice, before the creation, the Son was “with” the Father. Also, the Son addressing the Father and himself in an “I/thou” relationship is unmistakable. We have distinct persons here. “Father” and “Son” reveal a generative relationship as well. Yet, this relationship between two persons clearly has no beginning in time because it existed before the creation, from all eternity. Thus, the relational distinction is real, and personal, but as far as nature is concerned, Jesus’ words from John 10:30 come to mind: “I and the Father are one,” in that they each possess the same infinite nature.

The Holy Spirit is also seen to be relationally distinct from both the Father and the Son in Scripture inasmuch as both the Father and the Son are seen as “sending” “him.”

But when the Counselor comes (the Holy Spirit), whom I shall send to you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness of me… (John 15:26).

… he will guide you into all truth (John 16:13).

Thus, the relational distinction is real, and personal, but the Holy Spirit, like the eternal Son, is revealed to be God inasmuch as he is revealed to be omniscient. “He will guide you into all truth.” In fact, I Cor. 2:10 also reveals the Holy Spirit to be omnicient when it says, “… no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.” He speaks as God in texts of Scripture like Hebrews 3:7-11: 10:15-18. Thus, the Holy Spirit is revealed in Scripture to possess the same infinite and divine nature as does the Father and the Son.

The Anthropological Analogy

Analogy is the theologian’s best friend in explaining the mysteries of the Faith. And when it comes to the Trinity, there are many analogies to choose from. We will explore just two of them here that I have found helpful. In fact, it was these very two analogies that helped my Muslim friend to say the idea of the Trinity “made sense” to him, even though he wasn’t ready to leave his Muslim faith… at least, not yet.

From his famous and classic Confessions, Bk. 13, Ch. 11, St. Augustine writes:

I speak of these three: to be, to know, and to will. For I am, and I know, and I will: I am a knowing and a willing being, and I know that I am and that I will, and I will to be and to know. Therefore, in these three, let him who can do so perceive how inseparable a life there is, one life and one mind and one essence, and finally how inseparable a distinction there is, and yet there is a distinction. Surely a man stands face to face with himself. Let him take heed of himself, and look there, and tell me. But when he has discovered any of these and is ready to speak, let him not think that he has found that immutable being which is above all these, which is immutably, and knows immutably, and wills immutably.

In order to appreciate Augustine’s words, we must begin with three essential and foundational truths that undergird them. Without these, his words will fall on deaf ears.

1. We believe in one, true God, YAHWEH, who is absolute being, absolute perfection, and absolutely simple. Our belief in the Trinity does not mean God is three, or any other number of Gods.

2. Humankind is created “in [God’s] image and likeness” (cf. Gen. 1:26). From the context of Genesis 1, we know this “image and likeness” does not pertain to the body of man because God has no body. Indeed the divine nature cannot be bodily or material because there can be no potency in God as there is inherent in bodies, so this “image and likeness” must be referring to our higher faculties or operations of intellect and will.

3. It follows, then, that God is rational. He too is both intellectual and volitional.

These simple truths serve as the foundation for what I call St. Augustine’s anthropological analogy that can help us to understand better the great mystery of the Trinity:

In God we see the Father—the “being one” and first principal of life in the Godhead—the Son—the “knowing one”—the Word who proceeds from the Father—and the Holy Spirit—the “willing one”—the bond of love between the Father and Son who proceeds as love from the Father and Son. These “three” do not “equal” one if we are trying to say 3=1 mathematically. These three are distinct realities, relationally speaking, just as my own being, knowing, and willing are three distinct realities in me. Yet, in both God and man these three relationally distinct realities subsist in one being.

As St. Augustine points out, we can never know God or understand God completely through this or any analogy, but it can help us to understand how you can have relational distinctions within one being. And we can see this is reasonable.

The weakness inherent here—there are weaknesses in all analogies with reference to God—is that our knowing, being, and willing are not each infinite and co-extensive as the persons of God are. They subsist in one being in us, but they are not persons.

The Analogy of the Family

The Catechism of the Catholic Church gives us another analogy wherein we can see the reasonableness of the Trinity by helping us to see the possibility of distinct persons who possess the same nature. CCC 2205 provides:

The Christian family is a communion of persons, a sign and image of the communion of the Father and the Son in the Holy Spirit.

When we think of a family, we can see how a father, mother, and child can be distinct persons and yet possess the same nature (human), just as the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three distinct persons who each possess the same nature (divine).

The weakness, of course, is that in God each person possesses the one infinite and immutable divine nature, and is therefore, one being. Our analogous family consists of three beings. Again, no analogy is perfect.

But in the end, if we combine our two analogies, we can at least see both how there can be three relationally distinct realities subsisting within one being in the anthropological analogy, and how there can be three relationally distinct persons who share the same nature in the analogy of the family.

If you enjoyed this snippet, let me recommend to you that you read the unedited version of my article on “Defending the Trinity” at my personal blog here at TimStaples.com.

Once Saved Always Saved?

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“Are You Saved?” If Only!
By: Tim Staples

“Do you know you’re saved so that if you were to die right now, heaven would be absolutely certain for you?” This “all-important” question is designed to bait Catholics into an ambush. When I speak at conferences around the country, I often ask the attendees how many have been asked that question by a Fundamentalist or Evangelical: Usually, over half of my Catholic audience raises a hand.

If the Catholic responds as any good Catholic would by declaring he cannot—apart from a special revelation from God—have metaphysical (or absolute) certainty concerning his salvation, the Protestant then springs his biblical trap, 1 John 5:13: “I write this to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life.” Next he tells the Catholic that if he will but “confess with [his] lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in [his] heart that God raised him from the dead, [he] will be saved” (Rom 10:9-10). All we need do is confess Jesus as Lord, and salvation is assured. We can know it with certainty. Salvation is guaranteed regardless of anything we may do or not do in the future. What a deal!
The Catholic Two-Step Response

Step One: The Greek word for knowledge (Gk. eideitei) in 1 John 5:13 does not necessarily equate to absolute certainty. We use the verb know the same way in English. For example, I may say I know I am going to get an A on my Greek exam tomorrow. Does that mean I have metaphysical certainty of this? Not at all. What I mean and what the verb know can be used to indicate is that I have confidence that I will get an A on my test tomorrow because I have studied the material thoroughly and I know it well.

The context of 1 John makes it abundantly clear that this is how “knowledge” is being used in 1 John 5:13. In the next two verses, John draws a parallel between the certainty we have concerning our salvation and the certainty we have when we petition God in prayer: “And this is the confidence which we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of him.”

Does this mean we have absolute certainty we will receive what we ask for when we make requests of God in prayer? Obviously not! John says we can have “confidence,” but not absolute certainty. We cannot always know with strict certainty that our request is truly “according to his will.” Moreover, Psalm 66:18 informs us: “If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.” And 1 John 3:22 says, “. . . we receive from him whatever we ask, because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him.” Can we always be certain we have not “cherished iniquity” in our hearts, or that we have not done anything that may have displeased the Lord?

Step Two: Our salvation is contingent upon many things according to the Bible. This indicates the certainty of our salvation is not absolute. Just a few examples include 1 John 1:8-9: “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” The text says we will be forgiven if. Thus, the sobering truth is: Unconfessed sin will not be forgiven. And the Bible is very clear that no sin can enter into heaven (see Hb 1:13; Rv 21:8-9, 27).

I have heard it said that if is “the biggest little word” in the English dictionary. Well, Scripture has lots of ifs. John, for example, also says: “Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is what he has promised us, eternal life” (1 Jn 2:24-25).

This passage is plain. Our eternal life is contingent upon our choosing to abide in God. Can we choose the opposite? Absolutely! John goes on to explain: “No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. He who does right is righteous, as he is righteous. He who commits sin is of the devil . . . No one born of God commits sin . . .” (1 Jn 3:6-9).

On the surface, this text seems odd. We have already heard John say that everyone who is born of God does sin. Indeed, “all” sin. Yet, here he says those who are born of God do not sin. Is John contradicting himself? No: John makes a distinction between mortal and venial sins in this same epistle. In 1 John 5:16-17, John gives us remarkably plain definitions of both mortal and venial sins. “If any one sees his brother committing what is not a mortal sin, he will ask, and God will give him life for those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin which is mortal . . . All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin which is not mortal.”

In this context, we can reasonably conclude the one who is born of God does not commit mortal sin. If he were to do so, he would be “cut off” from the body of Christ and would need to be restored via confession to a state of grace (Cf. Gal 5:4, Eph 3:3-6, Jn 20:21-23). Three more texts about the contingency of salvation bolster the argument:

1 Corinthians 15:1-2: Now I would remind you, brethren, in what terms I preached to you the gospel, which you received, in which you stand, by which you are saved, if you hold it fast—unless you believed in vain. (See also Matthew 24:44-51; Luke 12:41-46; Romans 11:22; Hebrews 3:6;14; Revelation 2:10; 25-26; 3:1-5; 22:18-19, for many more “ifs” and contingency clauses.)
Colossians 1:21-23: And you, who once were estranged and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and irreproachable before him, provided that you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel which you heard . . .
2 Peter 2:20-22: For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overpowered, the last state has become worse for them than the first . . . It has happened to them according to the true proverb, the dog turns back to his own vomit, and the sow is washed only to wallow in the mire.

The Evangelical Counter

In response, the Protestant apologist will sometimes say these texts do not indicate one who was truly saved could actually lose his salvation. The one who, in the end, did not continue with the Lord, never really knew the Lord in the first place. He only knew about the Lord. But this line of reasoning does not hold up under scrutiny. In 2 Peter 2, the Greek word used for knowledge is epignosei. This word means “knowledge,” but it denotes an experiential knowledge. This text is very clear that the persons referred to have “escaped the pollutions of the world” through this “experiential knowledge” of Jesus. Only a personal relationship with Jesus can have this effect. Merely knowing about Jesus cannot do that. Moreover, the image Peter uses in verse 22 is of the sow having been washed in water. Water is the symbol Peter uses for baptism in 1 Peter 3:20-21. The connection seems obvious. The sow—female pig—which had been cleansed represents a person cleansed from sin; the sow returning to the mud represents the Christian returning to sin.

When seen in the fuller context of 2 Peter, this point becomes unmistakable. In 2 Peter 1:2-4, Peter begins with a description of Christians:

May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge [epignosei, experiential knowledge once again] of God and of Jesus our Lord. His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge [epignosei] of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, that through these you may escape from the corruption that is in the world because of passion, and become partakers of the divine nature.

One cannot help but see the parallels between these two texts. The same Greek words, epignosei, apophugentes, “having escaped from,” and a form of kosmos or “world,” are used to describe what Christians have been freed from, as well as to describe the one who then goes back to his old ways and ends up worse than he was before he ever knew Jesus.

These are just a few texts among the scores we could examine, but the bottom line is Scripture is crystal-clear on this point: Once saved does not mean always saved. In Matthew 6:15, Jesus tells us that “if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” It does not matter how “born again” one may be or how many experiences one has had, if he does not forgive others, he will not be forgiven, according to the text. And remember—as we have seen—no sin can enter into heaven (cf. Hb 1:13, Rv 21:27). Further, the Bible says we can “fall from grace” (Gal 5:1-5, Heb 12:14-16), be “cut off” from the vine from which we receive divine life (Jn 15:1-6, Rom 11:18-22), have our names removed from the Lamb’s book of life (Rv 22:19), and it assures us over and over again that if we commit certain sins and we do not repent of them, we will not go to heaven (cf. 1 Cor 6:9-11, Gal 5:19, Eph 5:3-5, Rv 21:6-8).
Not Once, But Many Times

But what about Romans 10:9-10? Doesn’t the Bible say if you believe in your heart and confess Jesus with your mouth you shall be saved? Yes it does, but that doesn’t mean we need only confess faith in Christ one time. The Bible uses the same Greek word for confess, homologeitai, in multiple places and emphasizes we must continue to confess Christ if we are going to be finally saved. For example, in Matthew 10:22, 32 Jesus says, “You will be hated by all because of my name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved.. . . Therefore everyone who confesses me before men, I will also confess him before my father who is in heaven. . . .” (NAB). The context here is one of holding fast to our confession until death (see also 2 Tm 2:12 and Heb 4:14; 10:23-26).

Finally, confessing Christ is done not only in word, but also in deed: “If any one does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his own family, he has disowned the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” (1 Tm 5:8).

Notice, the man who neglects his family for selfish pursuits denies Christ in his actions. And as we have seen, the Bible records in many places extensive lists of sins whereby we can deny Christ, such as 1 Corinthians 6:9-10: “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor sexual perverts, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God.” Scripture never says the saved can do these things and still go to heaven.

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There are so many verses in the Bible stating that entrance into Heaven is not as simple as saying “I accept Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.” Let us see what the Bible has to say about salvation:

(Phil 2:12) -…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

(Rom 2:5-6) – …the righteous judgment of God; Who will render to every man according to his deeds:

(James 2:14) – What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? Can faith save him?

(Mt 16:27) – For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.

(2 Cor. 5:10) – For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

(Mt. 25:31 46) – (the verse is too long to quote, here is a summary) Jesus states that He will separate His sheep from the goats. Jesus goes on to say; when I was hungry did you feed me? When I was thirsty did you give me drink? When I was naked did you clothe me? When I was sick did you visit me? When I was in prison did you visit me? When I was stranger did you take me in and clothe me?

Jesus then states that anyone who has done these things for his brother did so for Himself and He invites the righteous into life eternal. Those who did not help his brother in need, were sent into everlasting punishment.

In the verses above, it is quite clear to see that salvation is not as simple as stating that one proclaim Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. It is a nice thing to say and should be said every day, but there is more to salvation then accepting Christ as one’s personal Lord and Savior.

 

One cannot be saved, unless they are born again (John 3:3) and accept Christ as their personal Lord and Savior.

This is partially true but the meaning is distorted. The verse non-Catholics like to quote, John 3:3, is not completed by Jesus, or let us say interpreted until verse 3:5.

Let us look two verses ahead at John 3:5. In John 3:5, Nicodemus is confused about being born again.

Jesus clarifies what He states to Nicodemus stating:

John 3:5 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”

Here we see that born again means the sacrament of baptism!

If the non-Catholic would only read a little further he would find the true meaning of being “born