I have noted the statistics repeatedly, and have tried to point out that all Christian denominations suffer from similar issues of sexual abuse. It is arguable that in the Catholic Church due to the theology which defines the priesthood (likewise can be also be noted about the Oriental and Eastern Orthodox Churches), the prevalence of sodomite behavior in the ranks of the clergy is related to the ability to use religion as a cover to hide their behaviors while also imparting a veneer of social respectability. Truly, such actions are those of as Sacred Scripture wars, ‘whitewashed tombs’ that are ‘filled’ with death inside. The many Protestant churches also have similar issues, but because of the nature of the Churches (lacking a clear hierarchy in some cases, the prevalence of “independent” churches, the development of personality cults, etc.), it is likely easier to hide major scandals that if they cannot be disposed of, can be reasonably denied due to a lack of available evidence.
However, sometimes major cases do come out, and one of such examples was that of a former Protestant ‘bishop’ who has been arrested on charges of sexually assaulting at least three boys who were under the age of twelve.
A former bishop who founded the Westcoast Center for Human Development in Sarasota was arrested Thursday and charged with sexual assault on a child under 12 years of age.
Sarasota Police began investigating 72-year-old Henry Lee Porter, Sr. in October 2019 for abuse dating back to the 1990s.
At least three people have come forward and alleged Porter sexually abused them when they were boys. The alleged victims told detectives the abuse primarily happened at the Westcoast Center on North Washington Boulevard in Porter’s Inner Office and in Porter’s home on 47th Street.
Detectives say in addition to these victims, they spoke with eight others, all males, who say they were sexually assaulted by Porter.
In a probable cause affidavit filed in Porter’s arrest, Sarasota Police noted two prior investigations into Porter, once in 1990 and a second time in 2001-2002 after an anonymous letter identified 40 alleged victims.
Police say in the 2001-2002 investigation, 20 of the alleged victims provided statements to law enforcement outlining their alleged sexual abuse that occurred at the Westcoast Center, on mission trips across the country and on church-sponsored trips, but police say the statute of limitations prevented charges from being filed. (source)
It is terrible that such things happen, but it is necessary that they come out in order to heal and move on.
The Catholic Church has been hit very hard with this scandal, and as I have noted, if judgment begins with Christ’s Church, then it is natural that she must suffer first. However, this scandal is not limited to her, but will spread around the world to all Christian because it will be merely uncovering what was there.
There is much to be sad about, but also there is much to be hopeful for.
Instead of complaining, while there is still time even though the hour is late, it is a good time to start cleaning house.
Who knows? Even if it is still a mess, at least if the Master returns, as Sacred Scripture recounts, one can be found in the process of making progress and working as opposed to apathy.