Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Well Organized Protection of Pedophiles isn't just a Catholic Thing

I have run across random references to the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist Church movement, but the word "independent" seems to give the stories of abuse in these churches some kind of pass for the other churches. But people who have been following them have revealed that there is indeed an organization of sorts underpinning their abusive practices, and that the abusive pastors, members and churches are not isolated incidences.

This story called A Christianity to Make Satan Proud at a Christian Patheos blog gives a chilling account of the power that men of this movement wield over women and children, and how they manage to avoid the long arm of the law.

In this post, a letter from a young woman who was sexually abused by her father for years, shows that denial and victim-blaming is endemic in this movement. Here's just one part of her story:

When I started to try to tell the pastor—my pastor—and his wife that my father had been molesting me since I was three or four years old, he stopped me. “Don’t tell me,” he said. “I don’t want to hear it! If you tell me, then I am required to call the police and report this. You don’t want your daddy going to prison over a misunderstanding, do you?”

Misunderstanding????   Children are indoctrinated into believing they can only trust insiders of their church, that all outsiders including others who claim to be Christians, are not to be trusted, and then what happens when they confide in their authority figures?

These horrible people make up about 2.5% of the American population.  There are probably some near you.

Notable points in her story:
  • Her pedophile father was moved to a different church in another state. Hmmm are they sure they're not Catholic?
  • Her grandparents were in collusion with her father and the church, sending her to a re-education camp (not the infamous Hepzibah House but it sounds similar) after she came forward with accusations of sex abuse.
  • She was instructed to visit her step-father in prison (there for other offenses) to tell him she forgives him.
  • She followed her family tradition of attending Bob Jones University, where denial and victim-blaming were just as institutionalized as in her local church.  BJU is the wellspring of the movement and the university that grants "degrees" to the Bible Church pastors perpetrating abuses around the country.
  • Her PTSD nightmares were so bad her dormmates' sleep was disturbed, and yet her accusations were dismissed. (How many people are dishonest in their dreams?)
    This isn't an isolated instance at all, just an incredibly well-coordinated suppression of the truth. The TV show "20/20" covered an equally egregious instance, in which a 15-year-old girl was sexually abused by her father and raped by a man in her church.  She was forced to confess in front of the entire congregation, then sent away to have the rapist's baby.... which the church forced her to give up for adoption to a "Christian" family.  They interviewed the pastor, who now works in Indianapolis, and he stuck to his guns.  Incredibly, after the 20/20 episode the creep kept his job! 

  • (God, however, was extremely pissed off and used a bus wreck to kill the pastor's son, daughter-in-law, and her fetus.  Note what they say on their site: "On Saturday, July 27, 2013 at around 4:30 p.m., the Lord allowed a bus accident to take Pastor Chad and Courtney Phelps and their unborn baby (see below) and Mrs. Tonya Weindorf (see below) home to enjoy Him in His presence forever")

    More sites:
    Baptist Deception: articles on the theological problems and abuses of the movement
    Bruce Gensner, a former IFB pastor, on the rise and (hopefully) decline of the IFB movement and on its cultish attributes.
    Sheldon, of the Ramblings of Sheldon blog, on the IFB as a guest blogger.  He also has a series on Exposing the IFB.


    L.Long said...

    But although the stress of the stories on on the religious Aholes getting away with this. It is still the secular law that is allowing this to happen as they are controlled by the religious bigotry that is behind the 'but she was dressed wrong and asking for it' mentality you hear about in regular cases of rape and related crimes where the males gets away with it and a signal female is not to be trusted to speak true, as in it takes three women to equal one man BS of related bigotry.

    LadyAtheist said...

    Coincidentally, today one of their ilk is trying to get his sentence reduced:


    Apparently they don't listen to judges, either:

    The response includes several excerpts from Schaap’s September 2012 plea hearing, at which U.S. District Court Judge Rudy Lozano quizzed him about whether he understood that the government was going to recommend a 10-year sentence but that the judge did not have to follow that recommendation. The judge also questioned Schaap as to whether anyone had made him promises about what his sentence would be.

    “At no time during the change of plea hearing did (Schaap) express confusion regarding the minimum sentence he faced or suggest (as he conveniently does now) that he believed 10 years to be the maximum,” the government says in its filing.

    Jack Vance said...

    The Baptists have their share of problems as well. Here's a resource I have found helpful: http://stopbaptistpredators.org/index.htm

    Christine Vyrnon said...

    Was going to pass on what I've passed on to others - Christa's work over at Stop Baptist Predators - but what I've passed on has been passed on above - and that is good to see.

    Having attended IB/IFB - and a zillion other Baptist denominations - I'm not sure if their 'independence' per se keeps them less accountable. Imo pretty much every church out there, every community & town, has special ways of covering up, shuffling about abusers and denying abuse - the patriarchal bs that has allowed this for generations in every single town in the US is very much to blame... regardless of baptist denomination.

    I'm not disagreeing - I'm just ever More aware of how our entire culture has turned a blind-eye to abuse. I'm very glad that Protestants are finally getting owned on the abuse that has taken place in their churches. For too long I would hear how Catholics (who were all hell-bound anyway) harboured pedophiles but they (Baptist, Evangelicals, etc) couldn't see the log in their own eye.

    The other thing I always found difficult among Born-Again churches was that you KNEW Jesus had forgiven the abusers in your midst and that they were going to be hanging out in heaven with you for eternity. The very idea of Heaven - forgiveness of sins for eternal life - is enough to cause PTSD among survivors. One reason I quit wanting to go there.

    Thanks for shining a light on abuse among Protestants. They don't deserve the pass they've gotten for way too long.

    LadyAtheist said...

    At least the Catholics believe that their baptism only cured them of original sin, and not their own actions. I don't know if pedophilia is a mortal sin, but having to confess, or feeing like you're supposed to be confessing, is some kind of punishment for sin. The protestants just get off scot-free for whatever. It's sickening!

    Anonymous said...

    It is so funny to read all your articles! You have written as though God is going to lose everything !

    Why are you trying to defend yourself something that you believe doesn't exist?

    Why cant you live and die as an atheist all by yourself? Why do you want a crowd to support you in your atheism? Isn't it because you are scared of God and want some moral support?

    What if the cellphone and all the gadgets which you have created for your convenience started to turn against you and mind control you and hand twist you? Wont you simply destroy them! Isnt that why you create all these gadgets with limited capabilities? YET PEOPLE WHO ARE CREATED BY GOD (WITH LIMITED MIND MAY BE FOR THE RESONS STATED ABOVE) TRY TO MIND CONTROL AND HAND TWIST GOD AND THINK THEY CAN DEBUNK HIM!! WHO WINS OR LOSSES WE WILL KNOW IN FEW YEARS TIME :-)

    Why do you think people should trust in your reasoning when you are just another human being like myself. Today your brain is functioning tomorrow we don't know. The things that seemed mindboggling years ago have become inconspicuous now! Two scientists cannot agree on even simple things starting from a simple diet to a medical diagnosis. How do you think they will be able to decipher anything about the universe? How do you know that they are saying the truth when you yourself are illiterate on those matters? (because most of them confess their fraud only in their death beds)

    Atleast Bible and Christianity have survived against all odds for well over two thousand years.

    Why do you want to mislead the people by misquoting the Bible?

    Why do you want to question God why he allowed pain and suffering on this earth when the Bible clearly says that even thorns and thistles were not created by him?

    If God had not created man with a freewill and created men like robots and if men still lived in the Eden Garden. Even there there will be people like you who would question why man was not given a free will and blah blah?

    I think the problem with western Christianity is that most of them are Christians because of hear say from their parents or the Church, and never got to experience God for themselves. When they look at spiritual things through their eyes of disbelief everything looks so dazed just like seeing the world through a pink or green tinted glass!

    What will you say about the real tangible life saving, healing encounters people had of God! Most of them never heard about Christianity or hated Christianity when they heard it! But GOD REACHED OUT TO THEM WHEN SCIENCE AND REASONS FAILED!

    You may try to debunk Christianity from hearsay believers like you but never be able to take away Jesus from these people! I have not included Westerners' experiences because usually people try to explain it away saying that because they heard about Jesus for long it got osmosed through their dreams. These are people who never knew about Jesus or those like yourself who hated Jesus!

    The true story of Gulshan Esther, a Pakistani muslim who was crippled from birth and healed by Jesus!

    Paravasthu Surya Narayana Rao is a descendant of the well-known and famous 17th century Paravasthu koormaya swamigal of Andhra Pradesh, India. He was ordained in 1965 as the chief archakar (Priest) of a famous temple. Do you think he was a fool to come out of a royal life of being worshipped as a god to follow Jesus for nothing? Please read about his life through the following link!

    Life story of Sadhu Sundar Singh

    The following is the link of a very compelling book written by Rabindranath Maharaj, son of Chandrabhan Ragbir Sharma Mahabir Maharaj who attained Samadhi doing rigorous yogic practices!

    Life story of Mohan C. Lazarus