November 03, 2006

Falwell: Clergy Sex-Abuse Case a "Bump In the Road"

Excerpted from an article on

Jerry Falwell called high-profile allegations that a former pastor of a prominent independent Baptist church molested and raped numerous children over the course of decades a "bump in the road."

"When you hit a bump in the road--the pastor has mentioned six months here of challenges--forget the bump in the road. That's all it is. You've got to move on," Falwell said in a keynote address of a three-day meeting of the Southwide Baptist Fellowship at Trinity Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla.

Robert Gray, the former 30-year pastor who led the church out of the Southern Baptist Convention in the 1960s, was arrested
in May. He is scheduled to stand trial Nov. 27 on two counts of capital sexual battery, because two of his accusers say he molested them when they were 6 years old.

Twenty-two people, including one man, have come forward since May to accuse Gray of abusing them. The other allegations involve children older than 12, meaning they cannot be prosecuted due to a statute of limitations.

Twenty two people accuse a church pastor of sexual battery and it's a bump in the freakin' road?!

I'm willing to bet the victims approach it a tad differently.

Of course, if your main purpose in visting a church is to keep them aligned with your political goals rather than ministering to their souls with the Holy Spirit, I suppose it's easier to look past these "bumps in the road."

In this follow-up piece, Ethics Today tells how leaders of the church covered up Gray's pattern of abuse out of fear that public knowledge would harm the effectiveness of the ministry.

If their leadership truly felt that way, I have to question how it could have possibly been effective in the first place.

1 comment:

  1. Uh huh. 22 cases of sexual molestation of kids, and it's a 'bump in a road'. But when Pastor Ted Haggard, the ex-leader who was accused of using the services of an adult gay male escort for 3 years, Jerry Falwell denies he ever met the pastor, and goes to some lengths to be critical of Ted. I've given up trying to figure Jerry out. He must live in a different dimension than the rest of us do.