First, I hate to read accusations against God that aren’t true. Of course, any accusation against God isn’t true because God is holy and blameless and righteous and just and good. There simply are no grounds for accusing God of anything.
In reality, Satan has to be behind accusations against God since he is a liar and the father of lies. Hard to believe that Job, in the midst of his suffering, joined in with the accuser to say that God was wronging him.
This is a sort of share of this really idiotic posting by Rebecca and seeing she hates the truths I post to her? Well I figure I will share this idiocy and speak my mind on it here. Christians hate when I do that lol
She hates to read accusations against her god that is not true? Really? She really has not read her Old Testament god huh? Of course? Like all good brain-washed and brain-dead Christians like Rebecca? She fits the typical qualifications for Stockholm Syndrome for God Believers. Let me explain.
Stockholm syndrome is commonly linked to high profile kidnappings and hostage situations. Aside from famous crime cases, regular people may also develop this psychological condition in response to various types of trauma.
Stockholm syndrome is a psychological response. It occurs when hostages or abuse victims bond with their captors or abusers. This psychological connection develops over the course of the days, weeks, months, or even years of captivity or abuse.
With this syndrome, hostages or abuse victims may come to sympathize with their captives. This is the opposite of the fear, terror, and disdain that might be expected from the victims in these situations.
Over the course of time, some victims do come to develop positive feelings toward their captors. They may even begin to feel as if they share common goals and causes. The victim may begin to develop negative feelings toward the police or authorities. They may resent anyone who may be trying to help them escape from the dangerous situation they’re in.
Christian Stockholm Syndrome
Now here is how we can prove that Christians? Have Stockholm Syndrome for their god. We could actually do an experiment to prove this and this is how I am going to do this posting so to prove my theory that Christians have Stockholm Syndrome for their god.
We take a group of people and without telling them where the stories are from? We give them the stories of the bible taken directly from the OT. Most people, including Christians? Pretty much have no clue as to what is really in the OT anyway. Sure they know about Moses, and about Noah and Adam and Eve but how many actually have read ALL the stories of the OT? Not many really. How many really know how the Tribe of Benjamin got their wives for example? Bet not many.
So, we will have stories of the god of the bible? Ordering his followers to rip the fetuses out of the wombs of pregnant Tipurah and Summerian women.
We have the stories of where the god of the bible? Ordered his followers to smash the bodies of infants and children against rocks.
We have the stories of where the god of the bible? Forced parents to cannibalize their children.
We have the story of where in response to the Prophet Elisha’s cries because some kids were picking on him making a joke about his bald head? The god of the bible sent two she bears and had all 42 kids killed by the bears.
Or the story of where the god of the bible ordered the Tribe of Benjamin to go invade Jabesh-Gilead, slaughter all living things except the virgins, rape them, force them into marrying the men of Benjamin and when they did not get enough virgins to do so? They did the same to the virgin dancing girls of Shiloh.
We have the levitical laws where a raped virgin is married off to her rapist for life.
Where a raped woman who does not scream loud enough to be heard and is found out is stoned to death for adultery.
Where a mouthy child is given a death penalty punishment.
If you were to sit a group of people down and tell them all of this? Without telling them these stories came from the bible or they had no knowledge that these stories came from the OT? More than likely when they were asked if this was a good being? A kind and loving being? A being worthy of worship and love? They would more than likely SAY NO. They would actually call this being? A demonic child abuser, murderer, butcher and pure evil.
No moral human being I know of, even good Christians who never knew these stories came from their bible? Would ever proclaim any human who did these things a kind, loving, just, moral human being now would they? Nor would they ever justify the actions of any being who did these actions or ordered these actions.
So let’s take this in another direction that proves? Christians have Stockholm Syndrome when it comes time to their god.
A Christian sure would never say that what Hitler, Pol Pot, Stalin, Mao and all the other brutal dictators have done in our history were holy people, they would not say they were loving or just. They certainly would not call them merciful either would Christians? No they would not. (Well those lovely Christian groups the Nazis, the Proud Boys, the Aryian Nation, etc would).
Yet? If Christians? Were to read these stories of their god and all he did and ordered in the OT to be done to whole groups of people? Or children? Or infants? Or fetuses? Or women? They would actually call someone like this? A Hitler, a Pol Pot, a Stalin, A Mao. But when it comes to their god doing all this? They literally put a blinder on when it comes to the purely evil actions their god did in the OT and proclaim him holy, loving, just, merciful. They excuse the very same things he ordered to be done, or even did in the bible while they condemn humans who do these same things. They even JUSTIFY what their god does in the bible.
And this? Is what really shows how Christians are trapped in their Stockholm Syndrome with their god. They actually state? They cannot judge their god for doing all these things. Funny how they got no problem being judged by him, but they feel? They cannot even judge their own judge to see if he is even worthy? Of judging them.
Cause if you apply the same morals that Christians speak of in what being a True Christian is? Love, non-judgment, forgiving your enemies and turning the other cheek, and even praying for your enemy? To hate no one? To do no murder? To not harm a single hair on the head of a a child or by your actions drive that child from loving god? Or against rape, pedophilia, etc? Or harming fetuses in their stance against abortion when their own god not only ordered abortions but apparently when he did his flood, committed abortions himself when he drowned pregnant women, killing their fetuses? Then their god? FAILS on all counts of what Christians describe as having good morals and being a good Christian even.
BUT? They again? Either ignore their gods actions, they justify their gods actions or they say? YOU cannot judge our gods actions. But of course? Their god can judge us and our actions though lmfao.
So Christians? Fit the exact definition of someone having Stockholm Syndrome when it comes time to their god. Again, as the very definition of Stockholm Syndrome shows with my editing it a little?
Stockholm syndrome is a psychological response. It occurs when a person who is a hostage to the theology of Christianity and the god of Christians, with their captors or abusers. This psychological connection develops over the course of the days, weeks, months, or even years of captivity or abuse of being brainwashed that you cannot question ANY judgement of gods actions, that you would even consider immoral and evil, if a human being was doing them, or if they had absolutely no knowledge the stories were about their god from the OT. They are brainwashed that to question this? Would be to doubt and question god and that is evil. So they are reinforced again and again? To literally ignore all the evil that their god did in the OT as TRUE EVIL, and proclaim it as good and loving when it comes time to their god, when again? Any other human or god doing these same things? They would declare pure evil.
If Christians were actually logical and honest with themselves? They would see this with their own eyes.
After a few discussions with some Christians? I have come to realize something. Atheists, LGBTS, Pagans, Native Americans and all others that Christians have either historically persecuted? Or still persecute to this day? Are actually? More Christian than those who DARE proclaim themselves Christians are.
The Basic Rules of being a follower of Jesus Christ and calling yourself a Christian
Generally? The basic rules of Christianity, even from those whom I debate and they say the Fake Christians are not the True Christians and a True Follower of Jesus acts this way, describe a True Christian this way.
Love above all else is the rule. If you do not love your neighbors which is all your fellow human being? Even those whom YOU consider your enemy? Then you cannot call yourself a True Christian. If Jesus loved all of us? And we say we are a True Christian? Then we must love everyone else no matter what, just as Jesus did for you.
You cannot spread hate, violence, anger in the name of Jesus. Jesus could have killed all the Romans and his enemies if he wanted to. He did not preach hate, but love. He did not preach war but peace. He did not practice punching his enemy in the face but he turned the other cheek. Even when he was dying on that cross for you? He forgave those who put him up on that cross. He got mad at the false teachers and even stated? Any true follower of his? Should do the same. There is nothing wrong with going after the money changers, the false prophets, the preachers and teachers of hate. If he went after them and even turned over their tables in the very Temple? Then so should all True Christians do this to all those they declare Fake Christians.
You cannot judge anyone. Jesus commanded that you were never to judge others, unless YOU were completely without sin and could cast the first stone. That you were to go correct your brothers and sisters in love when they were wrong, but you were never to judge them worthy of heaven or hell, because only your God and Jesus can judge you worthy of either heaven or hell. And even the bible says to never judge another, for as you judge another the same judgement shall be given to you. And the same measure you use to judge another? Shall be the same measure used to judge you. So take the massive mote out of your own eye Christians, before you attempt to take the tiny mote out of my eyes.
You must always TURN the other cheek and forgive your enemies or those who slap you in the face even. And not once, but as many times as you need to. Not only must you turn the other cheek? You must also pray for those who slap that cheek or those whom you consider your enemy. You must NEVER allow the sun to set with anger or hate in your heart against anyone. This is how all True Christians are always supposed to act for it is just like your own Lord and Savior acted. Even before you go to a church? If you are mad at any of your brothers and sisters? You must first go make your peace with them before you even go before the altar of the church.
How are Atheists, LGBTS, Native Americans, Pagans and others more Christian than most who DARE call themselves Christians?
Pagans have been turning the other cheek to Christians really since 335 AD when Christians made it a death penalty punishment to be a Pagan and started their Christian forced conversion persecution of Pagans.
I’ve met and known many Pagans of all different types through my years and I have read a whole lot of books from Pagan authors and at no time? Have I ever read in any Pagan literature where Pagans demand that Christians be put to death as witches and heretics lmfao.
Matter of fact? The biggest rule for most Pagans/Wiccans is? And it harm none? Do what thou will. That means harming not only other people? But even causing harm to yourself. And Christians can doubt this but? Even their “archenemy and scapegoat” the Satanists? Their rules are actually more moral and civil than the Christians. Their biggest rule above all else is also? Do what thou will but harm none.
Face it, some of the biggest persecutors of LGBTS are from the Abrahamic religions. In the areas where Christianity rules the roost? Their biggest persecutors are Christians. In Islamic regions? Guess what? It is the Muslims. Yes, it is a death penalty punishment in 14 Muslim countries to be an lgbt and they do put to brutal deaths lgbts. But guess what CHRISTIANS…YOU ARE ACTUALLY? NO BETTER.
There are many of those who call themselves Christians? Sitting in our prisons for brutally murdering lgbts all in the name of their Christianity. Many others who call themselves in prison calling themselves Christians who have beaten, tortured, raped, etc lgbts. Many for committing acts of arson and terrorism against lgbt establishments. And?
You got many Christian Pastors of Hate screaming like rabid dogs foaming at the mouth demanding brutal death penalty punishments against lgbts in the US and? Around the world. Hell, at least three of them? Are responsible for the persecutions of lgbts in Uganda, Nigeria, Russia and their satelite countries and many other places. In Uganda and Nigeria? Lgbts are put to brutal deaths by murder by those who are Christians who are riled up by the lies and evil they are told, all manufactured by these US Pastors of Hate.
We barely hear any Christians cry about these lgbts deaths or persecutions. But? We will hear a whole lot from Christians how lgbts should just shut the fuck up, go back in their closets and fucking die. Or how they are persecuting Christians by simply asking a baker to make them a wedding cake. These same hypocrite freaking bakers who have no problem making cakes for any adulterer who is equally and even more condemned in the bible? Than homosexuals are. Oh the fucking irony and hypocrisy huh?
But again? LGBTS keep turning their other cheek, as Christians try to rip that side off and demand that LGBTS keep turning their cheeks while Christians will cry if an LGBT tells them to just simply go fuck themselves. And what REALLY proves how LGBTS are more Christian than Christians are?
THEY DO NOT DEMAND THAT ANY CHRISTIAN BE PUT TO BRUTAL DEATHS, NOR HAVE ALL YOUR DAMN RIGHTS TAKEN AWAY AND PUT INTO NAZI STYLE CONCENTRATION CAMPS, OR DEMAND THE GOVERNMENT PUT YOU ALL TO DEATH NOW DO THEY?
But I hear Christian Pastors of Hate? Demanding this be done to them and all their psychotic, foaming at the mouth pew polishers shouting hearty amens and praise the lawds over this shit. And hey, you cannot tell them to stop their shit cause then? YOU ARE PERSECUTING CHRISTIANS!!!
And even funnier? LGBTS would just love? To be around you guys in your damn churches and gatherings not in hate? But in love.
And many of you? When you even find out your kid might be gay or lesbian? will throw those kids out onto the street and disown them. How the fuck do you call yourself a Christian over that when you do that to your own kid and hate them? Fuck you. Sure that might seems to be changing? But any fucking person who does this to a child? Has no fucking right to call themselves a parent in the first place, let alone be calling themselves a fucking human being.
But NOPE LGBTS are again? Proving by their turning the other cheek to Christians again and again? And even loving you guys? Whom they should in fact? Consider their enemies cause many of you really want to do them all manner of harm? And even wanting to join your damn churches? Well hey.
Again, Native Americans? Are more Christian than Christians. Christians did all they could to wipe us Native Americans off the face of the earth. They literally tried to commit what is known as extermination which is hugely different than just genocide. The Christians committed all kinds of warfare, from brutal slaughters to germ and other warfare. I could spend thousands of words describing all the things that Christians did to us Native Americans in North, Central and South America. But the plain and simple fact and truth is? Christians did in fact? Try to wipe us off the face of the earth.
And again? Do you see or hear Natives stating a complete and total rise up of ALL Red Nations and take it all back from you guys? Trust me, if we truly wanted to take it all back? WE COULD. One Native American Warrior? Is worth one hundred Christian warriors. And some? Are worth a thousand of them. But? WE just again? Want to be left in peace really. To be allowed to go back to our ways, to have you assholes leave what is left to us alone and stop trying to finish off polluting it, and destroying it, or destroying OUR Native cemetaries for your fucking golf courses, your fucking homes and your fucking football stadiums. I mean how the fuck would you guys like if if we Natives demanded all the graves at Arlington National Cemetary or the cemetaries where YOUR loved ones are buried and ripped up and a casino built upon them?
But nope, we Natives really wish you fucking Christians would actually leave us the hell alone. Yes, thank you to those Christians who are finally waking the fuck up and realizing what your Christians did to us, and thanks for the love. We do if you believe it? LOVE you all too.
Actually? I know MANY Red brothers and sisters? Who hold pow-wows and prayer sessions for you whites and Christians. Pretty freaking damn cool huh? So again? Native Americans? Turning the other cheek again, attempting to the best of our ability to love you Christians who consider us your enemies and want to continue to do us harm or insult, denigrate and defame us tell outrageous bullshit talking out of their asshole lies about us, or blame us for all the shit that was brought upon us by the “love, peace, non-judgment” of Christians on their fucking death camps Christians called reservations after their death marches to them
And here we go. Atheists. Yeah you Christians been forcing us to live in the fucking shadows for a very long time. You assholes been persecuting Atheists for so long? Well. But again? When I do say I want to see Christians reap what they have sown and see whole towns or whole churches of Christians brutally murdered or wiped out? NO, THAT IS IN FACT? MY PISSED OFF SATIRICAL SIDE THROWING THIS SHIT I HEAR FROM THESE SICK AND TWISTED OUTRAGEOUS CHRISTIAN PASTORS OF HATE AND DEATH BACK INTO ALL CHRISTIANS FACES CAUSE I AM FUCKING SICK AND TIRED OF HEARING IT FROM THOSE WHO CALL THEMSELVES CHRISTIANS, AND THEN WHEN I BITCH ABOUT IT? THOSE TRUE CHRISTIANS PLAY THEIR FUCKING GAMES OF NO TRUE SCOTSMAN LINE OF APOLOGETIC BULLSHIT AND OTHER BULLSHIT WHY THEY DO NOT HAVE THE FUCKING BALLS TO PUT A STOP TO THESE “FAKE CHRISTIANS” THEY KEEP CALLING THESE ASSHOLES THEMSELVES.
SO HOW THE FUCK IT IS AN ATHEIST IS PERSECUTING A CHRISTIAN? WHEN THEY THEMSELVES? DO NOT EVEN CALL THE PERSON A FUCKING CHRISTIAN THEMSELVES? OH THE HYPOCRISY AND IDIOCY OF CHRISTIANS LET ME FUCKING TELL YA LMFAO.
But honestly? This atheist? Would rather sit down with ya, smoke a big old bong, and either play cribbage or backgammon with ya, or watch some music videos or a movie, or go out and have some other fun. Not fucking fight with ya, not hate on ya, etc.
But honestly? We atheists? Could in fact? Be standing up to you guys in ways you would not believe. We are again? Turning the other cheek, trying to just live with you guys who actually? Do not even like us atheists in most polls and think we are lower than muslim terrorists and fucking pedophiles. I mean WTF.
So that makes us Atheists? Even more Christians than 99% of you who DARE call yourselves Christians. Just like Pagans, LGBTS, Native Americans and many others Christians love to persecute or have persecuted in their 1700 years of Christianity.
A Christo gets his ass handed to him in my response to his hypocritical bullshit against me.
What a troglodyte Christian hypocrite you are.So I am supposed to be more Christian than you Christians and love those who hate me? Love those who demand I be put to death simply because I am an atheist and do not believe in your foul, evil god? Even if your god was real? THERE IS NO WAY I WOULD EVER BOW DOWN TO IT.
YOUR god? Is a child rapist, a child murderer and an advocate of child butchery. He is an advocate for the rapes of virgins. He is an advocate for slaughter and mass murder. Of course? YOU Christians? Demand we have no right to judge your psychotic, brutal, foul and evil god but he has every right to judge us? Yeah right.
And? YOU Christians? Feel in your hypocrisy? YOU got a right to judge others? But no one has a right to judge any of you.
Well? Suck it up and deal with it you troglodyte Christian. Go crawl back into your deep, dark cave of ignorance and superstition of our Bronze Age ancestors.
Oh and this? Is taken from your bible.And? It applies to ALL you Christians.
Galatians 6:7: Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
Luke 6:31: And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them.
Matthew 7:12: “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.
This? Is against you Christians? Judging ANY other human being.
Matthew 7:1-5: “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.
Matthew 12:36-37: 36 But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”
Luke 6:37-42: 37 “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
James 4:11-12: 11 Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against a brother or sister[a] or judges them speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. 12 There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?
Romans 2:1-3: You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. 2 Now we know that God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. 3 So when you, a mere human being, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment?
So? All your Christian Pastors of Hate and all their pew polishers who shout heart amens and praise the lords over their spewing hate and death and judging others? Will also reap what they have sown and be judged as they judged others and receive the exact same penalty that they? Rendered unto those? They judged. All you Christians? Will in fact? Reap back all you have sown and done unto others. like? Us Native Americans, or Pagans, or lgbts, or atheists, or many others? Christians have persecuted and continue to persecute to this very day. And all you Christians? Are actually? Not Christians yourselves if YOU spew one ounce of hate? Towards ANYONE. 1 John 2:9-17: 9 Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness. 10 Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. 11 But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them. 1 John 3:14-15: 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love each other. Anyone who does not love remains in death. 15 Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him. 1 John 4:19-20: 19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen Leviticus 19:17-18 You must not hate your brother in your heart. You must surely reprove your fellow citizen so that you do not incur sin on account of him. You must not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the children of your people, but you must love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD. Proverbs 6:16-19 There are six things the Lord hates— no, seven things he detests: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that kill the innocent, a heart that plots evil, feet that race to do wrong, a false witness who pours out lies, a person who sows discord in a family. Proverbs 10:12 Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs.
So? As long as there is even one Christian out there? Preaching hate and death against others? Then? I will be all up in their faces and demand? As they sow? So shall they reap and as they want to do unto us atheists, or do to lgbts, or to Native Americans, or to Pagans? Shall be done right back unto them.
So? Suck it up and deal with it, cause I will stop hating on you Christians? WHEN ALL YOU CHRISTIANS? STOP HATING ON OTHERS.
So. Christians worship the Jewish god. They use the Jewish Old Testament to proclaim their knowledge of god. They use the New Testament to proclaim their own theology which? Is totally different than the Jewish mythology from which? Christians got their religion in the first place. They took the Jewish mythology and changed it to fit their own Christian mythology they were trying to pedal.
It connotes the place where those that had died were believed to be congregated. Jacob, refusing to be comforted at the supposed death of Joseph, exclaims: “I shall go down to my son a mourner unto Sheol” (Gen. xxxvii. 36, Hebr.; comp. ib. xlii. 38; xliv. 29, 31). Sheol is underneath the earth (Isa. vii. 11, lvii. 9; Ezek. xxxi. 14; Ps. lxxxvi. 13; Ecclus. [Sirach] li. 6; comp. Enoch, xvii. 6, “toward the setting of the sun”); hence it is designated as (Deut. xxxii. 22; Ps. lxxxvi. 13) or (Ps. lxxxviii. 7; Lam. iii. 55; Ezek. xxvi. 20, xxxii. 24). It is very deep (Prov. ix. 18; Isa. lvii. 9); and it marks the point at the greatest possible distance from heaven (Job xi. 8; Amos ix. 2; Ps. cxxxix. 8). The dead descend or are made to go down into it; the revived ascend or are brought and lifted up from it (I Sam. ii. 6; Job vii. 9; Ps. xxx. 4; Isa. xiv. 11, 15). Sometimes the living are hurled into Sheol before they would naturally have been claimed by it (Prov. i. 12; Num. xvi. 33; Ps. lv. 16, lxiii. 10), in which cases the earth is described as “opening her mouth” (Num. xvi. 30). Sheol is spoken of as a land (Job x. 21, 22); but ordinarily it is a place with gates (ib. xvii. 16, xxxviii. 17; Isa. xxxviii. 10; Ps. ix. 14), and seems to have been viewed as divided into compartments (Prov. vii. 27), with “farthest corners” (Isa. xiv. 15; Ezek. xxxii. 23, Hebr.; R. V. “uttermost parts of the pit”), one beneath the other (see Jew. Encyc. v. 217, s. v.Eschatology). Here the dead meet (Ezek. xxxii.; Isa. xiv.; Job xxx. 23) without distinction of rank or condition—the rich and the poor, the pious and the wicked, the old and the young, the master and the slave—if the description in Job iii. refers, as most likely it does, to Sheol. The dead continue after a fashion their earthly life. Jacob would mourn there (Gen. xxxvii. 35, xlii. 38); David abides there in peace (I Kings ii. 6); the warriors have their weapons with them (Ezek. xxxii. 27), yet they are mere shadows (“rephaim”; Isa. xiv. 9, xxvi. 14; Ps. lxxxviii. 5, A. V. “a man that hath no strength”). The dead merely exist without knowledge or feeling (Job xiv. 13; Eccl. ix. 5). Silence reigns supreme; and oblivion is the lot of them that enter therein (Ps. lxxxviii. 13, xciv. 17; Eccl. ix. 10). Hence it is known also as “Dumah,” the abode of silence (Ps. vi. 6, xxx. 10, xciv. 17, cxv. 17); and there God is not praised (ib. cxv. 17; Isa. xxxviii. 15). Still, on certain extraordinary occasions the dwellers in Sheol are credited with the gift of making knowntheir feelings of rejoicing at the downfall of the enemy (Isa. xiv. 9, 10). Sleep is their usual lot (Jer. li. 39; Isa. xxvi. 14; Job xiv. 12). Sheol is a horrible, dreary, dark, disorderly land (Job x. 21, 22); yet it is the appointed house for all the living (ib. xxx. 23). Return from Sheol is not expected (II Sam. xii. 23; Job vii. 9, 10; x. 21; xiv. 7 et seq.; xvi. 22; Ecclus. [Sirach] xxxviii. 21); it is described as man’s eternal house (Eccl. xii. 5). It is “dust” (Ps. xxx. 10; hence in the Shemoneh ‘Esreh, in benediction No. ii., the dead are described as “sleepers in the dust”).
God’s rulership over it is recognized (Amos ix. 2; Hos. xiii. 14; Deut. xxxii. 22; I Sam. ii. 6 [Isa. vii. 11?]; Prov. xv. 11). Hence He has the power to save the pious therefrom (Ps. xvi. 10, xlix. 16, the text of which latter passage, however, is recognized as corrupt). Yet Sheol is never satiated (Prov. xxx. 20); she “makes wide her soul,” i.e., increases her desire (Isa. v. 14) and capacity. In these passages Sheol is personified; it is described also as a pasture for sheep with death as the shepherd (Ps. xlix. 15). From Sheol Samuel is cited by the witch of En-dor (I Sam. xxviii. 3 et seq.). As a rule Sheol will not give up its own. They are held captive with ropes. This seems to be the original idea underlying the phrase (II Sam. xxii. 6; Ps. xviii. 6; R. V., verse 5, “the cords of Sheol”) and of the other expression, (Ps. cxvi. 3; R. V. “and the pains of Sheol”); for they certainly imply restraint or capture. Sheol is used as a simile for “jealousy” (Cant. viii. 7). For the post-Biblical development of the ideas involved see Eschatology.
The word “Sheol” was for some time regarded as an Assyro-Babylonian loan-word, “Shu’alu,” having the assumed meaning “the place whither the dead are cited or bidden,” or “the place where the dead are ingathered.” Delitzsch, who in his earlier works advanced this view, has now abandoned it; at least in his dictionary the word is not given. The non-existence of “Shu’alu” has been all along maintained by Jensen (“Kosmologie,” p. 223), and recently again by Zimmern (in Schrader,” K. A. T.” 3d ed., p. 636, note 4) even against Jastrow’s explanation (in “Am. Jour. Semit. Lang.” xiv. 165-170) that “sha’al” = “to consult an oracle,” or “to cite the dead” for this purpose, whence the name of the place where the dead are. The connection between the Hebrew “Sheol” and the Assyro – Babylonian “shillan” (west), which Jensen proposed instead (in “Zeitschrift für Assyriologie,” v. 131, xv. 243), does not appear to be acceptable. Zimmern (l.c.) suggests “shilu” (= “a sort of chamber”) as the proper Assyrian source of the Hebrew word. On the other hand, it is certain that most of the ideas covered by the Hebrew “Sheol” are expressed also in the Assyro-Babylonian descriptions of the state of the dead, found in the myths concerning Ishtar’s descent into Hades, concerning Nergal and Ereshkigal (see Jensen in Schrader, “K. B.” vi., part 1, pp. 74-79) and in the Gilgamesh epic (tablets ii. and xii.; comp. also Craig, “Religious Texts,” i. 79; King, Magic,” No. 53).
This realm of the dead is in the earth (“erẓitu” = ; comp. Job, x. 21, 22), the gateway being in the west. It is the “land without return.” It is a dark place filled with dust (see Sheol, Biblical Data); but it contains a palace for the divine ruler of this shadow-realm (comp. Job xviii. 13, 14). Seven gates guard successively the approach to this land, at the first of which is a watchman. A stream of water flows through Sheol (comp. Enoch, xvii. 6, xxii. 9; Luke xvi. 24; Ps. xviii. 5; II Sam. xxii. 5).
The question arises whether the Biblical concept is borrowed from the Assyrians or is an independent development from elements common to both and found in many primitive religions. Though most of the passages in which mention is made of Sheol or its synonyms are of exilic or post-exilic times, the latter view, according to which the Biblical concept of Sheol represents an independent evolution, is the more probable. It reverts to primitive animistic conceits. With the body in the grave remains connected the soul (as in dreams): the dead buried in family graves continue to have communion (comp. Jer. xxxi. 15). Sheol is practically a family grave on a large scale. Graves were protected by gates and bolts; therefore Sheol was likewise similarly guarded. The separate compartments are devised for the separate clans, septs, and families, national and blood distinctions continuing in effect after death. That Sheol is described as subterranean is but an application of the custom of hewing out of the rocks passages, leading downward, for burial purposes.
Stade, Ueber die A. T. Vorstellungen vom Zustande nach dem Tode, Leipsic, 1877;
idem, Gesch. des Volkes Israel, i. 418 et seq.;
idem, Biblische Theologie des A. T. pp. 183 et seq., Tübingen, 1905;
F. Schwally, Das Leben nach dem Tode, Giessen, 1892;
A. Bertholet, Die Israelitischen Vorstellungen vom Zustande nach dem Tode, Freiburg, 1899;
G. Beer, Der Biblische Hades, Tübingen, 1902;
idem, in Guthe, Kurzes Bibelwörterbuch, s.v. Hölle;
Zimmern, in K. A. T. 3d ed., ii. 641, 642, Berlin, 1903 (where the Assyrian literature is given).
The early Christians proclaimed that Christ had conquered death, opening the door to resurrection and heavenly immortality. The defeat of death does not necessarily mean the immediate abolition of hell, however. Gehenna appears in the New Testament 12 times, where its terrors for the wicked, as a place “where the worm never dies, and their fire is never quenched” (Mark 9:48)
In the great eschatological discourse of Matthew 25, Jesus announces that the Son of Man will come in glory to judge the nations, to separate the sheep from the goats, and to consign sinners to everlasting fire. This separation is stark, with no explicit provision made for fine gradations of merit or guilt. While the poor man Lazarus enjoys a blissful repose in the bosom of Abraham, the rich man who failed to help him in life is tormented in eternal fire without hope of respite, the two realms being separated by a great chasm (Luke 16:26). The standard of judgment is right relationship to Christ, as expressed by deeds of mercy. Jesus himself set this standard when he declares:
You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me. (Matthew 25:41–43)
The physical location of hell is similarly ambiguous. Some ancient and medieval Christian texts describe places of postmortem torment and demonic mischief in the upper atmosphere, while others locate hell in the centre of the earth, finding entrances in caves, moors, bogs, and volcanic fissures. Such entrances to hell appear frequently in folk traditions, along with lore about the fairy underworlds in which the unwary may be trapped. Virgil’sLake of Averno and the infernal rivers Styx, Acheron, Cocytus, Lethe, and Phlegethon, among other Classical features, recur in Christian literary treatments. Drawing on diverse biblical, Classical, and folkloric sources, a great variety of cautionary tracts and tales, often cast in the form of firsthand visions, further developed the imagery of hell, mapping its flaming lakes, perilous bridges, demon-infested pits, and stinking cesspools and enlarging its catalogue of torments while at the same time providing milder sufferings for penitents. In the 2nd-century Apocalypse of Peter, for example, blasphemers hang by their tongues over a lake of flaming mire, murderers are tortured in the sight of their victims, and slanderers have their eyes burned out by hot irons. Hope remains, however, that some sinners can be saved through the prayers of the righteous. Anticipating the doctrine of purgatory, the postbiblical apocalypses suggest that penitents may be purified by the same fires of hell in which the reprobate sink to their doom.
In his Dialogues, Pope Gregory I (590–604), writing in a time of pestilence and invasions, included return-from-the-dead accounts from a hermit, a merchant, and a soldier who witnessed the terrors of hell and the joys of the blessed before being sent back to warn the living of what lies in store.
Tales of this kind proliferated throughout the Middle Ages, receiving consummate literary expression in Dante’sThe Divine Comedy and providing matter for allegories such as Guillaume de Deguileville’s The Pilgrimage of the Soul (1358) and John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress (1678). Dante’s hell, with its nine levels leading to Satan frozen in a lake of ice, is a parodistic inversion of the sublime order of heaven; even here, justice prevails in the precise conformity of punishment to crime.
The older biblical conception of Hades-Sheol as the gathering place of the dead retained its importance for the Christian tradition, however, as Christians reflected on the redemptive significance of Holy Saturday, the day between Christ’s Crucifixion and his Resurrection. According to the apocryphalGospel of Nicodemus and patristic writings from as early as the 2nd century, Christ invaded Hades during the interval in which he lay dead in the tomb and “made a proclamation to the spirits in prison” (1 Peter 3:19), freeing the just who sat in exile awaiting their Redeemer. Hell, in this sense, is a waiting place for the righteous before the coming of Christ, and Christ’s descent into hell is understood to be a rescue mission. In support of this teaching, Eastern Christian icons of the Resurrection depict Christ breaking the jaws of hell, entering in triumph, and drawing Adam upwards by the wrist.
An article of the Apostles’ Creed, the statement of faith used by most Christian churches and a favourite subject of medieval mystery plays, the theme of Christ’s descent into hell has persisted in theological discussion as a focal point for debates on the scope of universal salvation. Among Christian theologians, Origen of Alexandria (c. 185–c. 254)is the preeminent advocate of a doctrine of universal salvation (apocatastasis). Origen believed that after passing through hell, as through a refining fire, all souls—including the fallen angels—would be restored. Although Origen’s influence on Christian biblical and spiritual theology remained profound, he was condemned for this teaching on universal salvation by the Council of Constantinople in 553. The major branches of Christianity have traditionally affirmed that the moral order of the universe and the justice of God require a certain symmetry between eternal reward for the blessed and eternal punishment for the damned, with the degree and kinds of suffering in hell being proportionate to the sins. Hell is the dwelling place of those who reject God irrevocably, whose alienation from God is a permanent expression of their own ill-used freedom, and whose suffering is at once physical (burning by fire) and spiritual (deprivation of God). While modern religious writers tend to interpret the pains of hell metaphorically, a great many artistic masterpieces derive their compelling power from their graphic and dramatic depictions of these torments.
The falseness of the Christian hell
Again, if you are going to take your own religion from another? Then why are you changing the theology of the religion in which you take yours from? Which is exactly what Christians did with the Jewish theology of Sheol and changed it to their version of their afterlife they call hell.
BUT? THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO BASIS FOR THIS THEOLOGY OF THE CHRISTIAN HELL IN THE OLD TESTAMENT AT ALL. NONE. ZIP, ZERO.
Again? The Old Testament is the first part of the Christian bible. That Old Testament? Is the historical records and theology of the Jewish people and their worship of their god and their theology of their afterlife. It is full of their rules and laws. These rules and laws? Were not applicable to ANYONE who was not a Jew.
And? The Jews? NEVER BELIEVED THAT JESUS WAS THEIR MESSIAH.
How insane that Christians? Can tell the Jews? Who their Messiah is. That they can literally change the theology of over 6,000 years of Jewish theology and create their own.
They changed the Jewish theology of their Messiah and then? Changed the Jewish mythology of their afterlife.
So? How can Christians proclaim all the things that the Jews rejected based on their own theology, was wrong? And then try to tell Jews what their mythology and theology is?
Christians are lying to you about hell
The concept of the Christian hell? Did not start showing up until the Christians created their New Testament portion of the bible. At no time in the Old Testament was the Jewish afterlife described as a hell like Christians describe it as. The Jewish afterlife Sheol? Was where EVERYONE went to and also? Their God ruled over it. There was no fire and brimestone punishment. It was basically a very dark place, full of silence, where you only saw shadows, but? You continued doing there what you did in your life on earth.
It was not until the Christians? Changing the Jewish mythology on their Messiah? And creating their own version in their New Testament? That they came up with the concept of hell. Why?
I believe? They did not find the afterlife of the Jews? Horrifying enough to scare their Christian believers in accepting their bullshit. I mean really? Who would be afraid if someone told you if you did not accept their god and Jesus? You would go to a place that was basically just dark, no real suffering, and you were going to continue doing there what you were doing in your life as the Jews theology descibed it.
Hell? Is a much more horrifying place to scare the living daylights out of you being used as a threat against you. And? Most of the Christian theology on hell? Is actually based upon Dante’s Inferno from his Divine Comedy series. And? Christians sure did not understand what Dante was doing when he wrote this series.
1. His Divine Comedy? Was actually a political and religious satire slam against all the leaders of the state and church. He created his levels of hell as punishment for all the disgusting, scumbag Christian leaders and politicians of his day. He slammed much of them in his writings. So basically? Christians took his satire and created much of their theology about hell from it.
So basically? Christian teachings and beliefs in hell? Were created inventions by the Church founders and leaders to scare the living daylights out of you? To believe their new bullshit Christianity, which has absolutely NO BASIS from the original source, the Jewish theology from which they took it from.
Stop me if you’ve heard this before: A deeply religious man, beloved by his church/community, targets and grooms a young child for sexual abuse. The child tells an adult and they report it to the elders of the church. The church investigates the abuse and then sweeps it all under the rug. The deeply religious man is never reported to the police, the victim is blamed for seducing the man, and the man goes on to molest many other children, leaving a trail of scarred families in his wake.
Your first reaction, naturally, is to assume that I’m talking about a Catholic priest because we all know the Church has a long and sordid history of covering for sexual predators. But, as the title of the article probably clued you in, this is far from a problem with just the Catholic Church.
This burgeoning crisis of abuse has received far less attention than the well-documented scandal that rocked the Catholic Church. That’s in part because the evangelical and fundamentalist world, unlike the Catholic hierarchy, is diverse and fractious, composed of thousands of far-flung denominations, ministries, parachurch groups, and missions like ABWE. Among Christian evangelicals, there is no central church authority to investigate, punish, or reform. Groups like ABWE answer only to themselves.
The scale of potential abuse is huge. Evangelical Protestants far outnumber Catholics in the United States, with more than 280,000 churches, religious schools, and affiliated organizations. In 2007, the three leading insurance companies that provide coverage for the majority of Protestant institutions said they received an average of 260 reports per year of child sexual abuse at the hands of church leaders and members. By contrast, the Catholic Church was reporting 228 “credible accusations” per year.
Why do the most pious always seem to be the most prone to this kind of problem? Two reasons come to mind. The first is that they tend to be incredibly authoritarian. Conservatives defer to those in power and conservative Christians even more so. Add to that mix the fundamentalist demand for blind obedience and you have all the ingredients for disaster:
Like Catholics, fundamentalists preach strict obedience to religious authority. Sex is not only prohibited outside of marriage, but rarely discussed. These overlapping dynamics of silence and submission make conservative Christians a ripe target for sexual predators. As one convicted child abuser tells clinical psychologist Anna Salter in her book Predators: Pedophiles, Rapists, and Other Sex Offenders, “Church people are easy to fool.”
In other words, the religion itself does not breed sexual predators but some variations of it create the most fertile ground for them to flourish. Like any other predator, they gravitate to bountiful and safe hunting grounds. Despite my own hostility towards religion as a militant atheist, I feel it’s important to make this distinction because all too often, people equate the religion with the crime which is not really fair. On the other hand, it’s perfectly reasonable, responsible even, to point out that it’s the “conservative” part of “conservative Christianity” that lends itself most to creating those hunting ground which is why you don’t see this kind of abuse proliferating in more liberal institutions:
Over the past five years, in fact, it has become increasingly clear—even to some conservative Christians—that fundamentalist churches face a widespread epidemic of sexual abuse and institutional denial that could ultimately involve more victims than the pedophilia scandal in the Catholic Church. In 2012, an investigation at Bob Jones University, known as the “fortress of fundamentalism,” revealed that the school had systematically covered up allegations of sexual assault and counseled victims to forgive their attackers. Sovereign Grace, a network of “neo-Calvinist” churches, has been facing multiple allegations of child molestation and sexual abuse. In 2014, a New Republic investigation found that school officials at Patrick Henry College, a popular destination for Christian homeschoolers, had routinely responded to rape and harassment claims by treating perpetrators with impunity, discouraging women from going to the police, and blaming them for dressing immodestly.
Despite the sexual abuse of women and the sexual abuse of children coming from very different kinds of darkness, the way these religious organizations respond is almost identical and that is not a coincidence. The reputation of the institution or group or even one man is considered far more important than the harm being inflicted on the victims. Justice is not even a consideration, especially when it’s a woman that was “asking for it.” At that point, it’s not really a crime. If you think that’s repulsive, these pious men can even convince themselves that little girls were asking for it, too.
In Joyce’s article, she recounts how Russel Ebersole and Russell Lloyd, two of the higher ups in the Association of Baptists for World Evangelicalism (ABWE), investigated claims by a 13-year-old girl named Kim that she had been molested by a respected member of the community. It did not go well for Kim:
As Kim struggled to answer their questions, the Russes became convinced that she was telling them the truth about Ketcham touching her. What they couldn’t believe, given fundamentalist precepts about the nature of sex and women, was that she was an innocent party. “It was lust in its most base form, uncontrolled in the body of a spiritually immature woman,” Lloyd wrote of the 13-year-old in his diary. Ketcham, he wrote, had become Kim’s “secret lover.”
The Russes “strongly encouraged” Kim to sign a statement, styled as a confession, in which she apologized for her role in a “relationship” that “transgressed God’s word.” She didn’t understand much of it, but she signed it anyway. “I did exactly what I was told,” she says.
Think about how warped and sick your worldview needs to be that you can consider a 13-year-old to be an equal partner in a sexual relationship with a 58-year-old man. Now think about how broken it would have to be to cover up the abuse and allow the man to continue molesting children for the next two decades. Now you have some tiny understanding of how twisted the mind of a Christian fundamentalist can be.
The worst part about all of this is that it doesn’t have to be this way. If religious leaders would go after sexual predators with both barrels blazing (metaphorically), they would be applauded for protecting their flock. Even I would go to the mat defending a church that exposed a predator as quickly as possible and helped bring the full weight of the law to bear. It’s nigh-impossible to weed them out before they hurt someone (unless they have a prior history, of course) but that’s true everywhere, not just for religious institutions. It’s not the crime that defines your institution but how you respond to it. So far, conservative Christians desperate to protect their reputations have succeeded only in covering themselves in shame and putting the lie to their claims of virtue.
Kim’s story doesn’t have a happy ending. Yet. Following 22 years of self harm and deep psychological damage, the full story came out in an extensive investigation. After years of being lied to by their church, Kim’s parents didn’t understand why their daughter was so damaged. Even Kim still blamed herself for the actions of a monster as well as her parents for not helping her. Now that it’s all out in the open and Kim finally understands that she was a victim like so many other women, there’s a chance for her and her family to heal. If only all of the victims of conservative Christianity were so lucky…
Weeks after she was fired from her job as administrator in Lucas County, Ohio, former “first lady” of Abundant Life Ministries in Toledo Laura Lloyd-Jenkins has now joined her husband, the Rev. Cordell Jenkins, behind bars for allegedly obstructing a sex trafficking investigation against him.
An ABC 13 report said Lloyd-Jenkins could now face a maximum prison sentence of up to 28 years if she is found guilty of one count of obstructing a sex trafficking investigation along with one count of making a false statement.
She pled not guilty to the charges against her when she appeared in court last Friday but was remanded in custody by Judge Jack Zouhary. Authorities allege that Lloyd-Jenkins, 43, notified a defendant of the pending investigation in March, then made false statements to law enforcement about her knowledge of the conduct alleged in the April indictment.
The former administrator and her husband were once partners in faith at Abundant Life Ministries until April 7 when Rev. Jenkins, 46, and Rev. Anthony Haynes, 38, were arrested by the FBI for sex trafficking of children.
Lloyd-Jenkins was placed on paid administrative leave from her county job in August after previously being placed on disciplinary suspension in July for “failure of good behavior,” ABC 13 reported. She had also resigned from the Lucas County Children Services board after federal agents revealed she was aware her husband had sex with a teenager and never reported it. In her position with the county, Lloyd-Jenkins managed a $500 million budget and more than 3,000 county employees.
“We think she is no longer the right person to serve in the capacity of county administrator, the highest non-elected position in Lucas County,” Pete Gerken, president of the board of commissioners, said when she was fired last month.
Court documents cited by ABC 13 said Butler, Rev. Jenkins and Haynes sexually assaulted a juvenile girl beginning in 2014 through 2017. The victim was allegedly 14 when the assaults began while in Haynes’ custody. Some of the assaults allegedly took placed at the Greater Life Christian Center in Toledo.
Haynes also routinely paid the girl money after the sex acts and warned her not to say anything about their activities as it would ruin his family and his church.
Haynes further shared the victim with other men, including Rev. Jenkins, court documents say. Jenkins allegedly sexually exploited the girl at his home on Barrington Drive repeatedly, as well as at his office at Abundant Life Ministries and at a motel in Toledo. He reportedly paid the girl and recorded some of their activities with his cellular phone. He allegedly also caused another underage girl to engage in commercial sexual activity in March 2017.
Family members and friends who reportedly packed the courtroom in support of the men last month became emotional when they learned that all three pastors could spend the rest of their lives in prison if they are found guilty.
Jenkins’ wife will have a detention hearing on Dec. 21.
Jude Dayton Hughes Church Position: Pastor Court of Conviction: Avery County, 2016 Outcome: Registered sex offender in North Carolina for 2016 conviction of taking indecent liberties with a student, aged 17. Sentenced to 12-months probation. A local pastor is accused of committing a sex crime against a teenager in Avery County Wednesday. Investigators said Jude Hughes, the pastor at Jonas Ridge Baptist Church, sent two naked photos of himself prior to his arrest. Outside the church Wednesday, Hughes’ name was still displayed as the pastor. Hughes was a full-time custodian at Avery County High School and deputies said he violated school district policy trying to become friends on Facebook with a female student. With the student’s and parents’ permission deputies took over her social media accounts, deputies said. “During the night, he sent two explicit photographs, pornographic in nature of himself, to who he thought was the girl,” Avery County Sheriff Kevin Frye said. What Hughes didn’t know was deputies had taken over the student’s Facebook account. The photos were never seen by the teenager, but ended up in the hands of deputies. Investigators said Hughes then set up a meeting with the teenager bringing beer with him only to find deputies waiting.
Timothy Lynn Brumit Church Position: Pastor Court of Conviction: Federal, 2008 Outcome: Pleaded guilty and was convicted of charges of coercion and enticement of a minor and transportation of child pornography. Contacted a police officer via the internet who was posing as a 13-year-old boy and then distributed child porn, mainly of boys 5 to 15 engaging in sex acts with adults – both photos and videos, court records show. He then offered to come to Virginia and pick up the child. Sentenced to 300 months in federal prison in 2008. Incarcerated. A 48-year-old former Aiken teacher was sentenced to 25 years in prison for attempting to entice a person he believed to be a 13-year-old boy to engage in illicit sexual conduct and for transporting child porn through the Internet. Upon completion of his prison sentence, Timothy Lynn Brumit will remain under court supervision for the rest of his life. He also will be required to register as a sex offender in any jurisdiction in which he lives, works, or goes to school. According to court documents and proceedings, between January 2 and January 23, Brumit used “Hello.com,” a website operated by Google, Inc., to communicate with a person whom he believed to be a 13-year-old boy located in Stafford, Virginia. Brumit, who used the screen name “charmingtim75” online, actually was communicating with an undercover detective from the Dumfries Police Department. The Google Hello online service enables users to trade and view digital pictures and videos while chatting in real time about the images. During the course of more than 15 online chats, Brumit distributed more than 600 files containing graphic images and movies of child pornography to the undercover detective. The images included depictions of boys under the age of 12 engaged in sexual acts with other minor boys or with adult males. Some of the images that Brumit distributed to the undercover detective depict violence and sadistic and masochistic abuse of young boys. Brumit instructed the undercover detective to engage in sexual acts and encouraged him to obtain a webcam. Brumit also discussed traveling from his South Carolina home to Stafford, where he would meet the fictitious boy, take him to a motel room and engage in sexual activity with him. Brumit also wanted the fictitious boy to leave his family and live with Brumit in his South Carolina home. In one of the last Google Hello chats prior to his January 24 arrest in South Carolina, Brumit instructed the fictitious boy to bring his original birth certificate and social security card when Brumit met him in Virginia. Brumit also instructed the fictitious boy to bring the laptop that he had been using to communicate with Brumit, which Brumit planned to destroy to conceal his connection to the fictitious child. A forensic examination of Brumit”s computer revealed that he had used the Google “Hello” program to trade over 44,000 images of extremely graphic child pornography with 110 different individuals located in 31 states and 7 foreign countries. At the time of his January 24, 2008 arrest, Brumit was employed as a high school English teacher at Batesburg-Leesville High School, in South Carolina. He also had served as a minister in various churches in South Carolina.
Mark Allen Green Church Position: Youth Pastor Court of Conviction: Navarro County, 2013 Outcome: Sentenced to 50 years for continuous sexual abuse of a child after a trial by jury. His victim was reported to be a 13-year-old girl. Texas prison record shows he’d been previously sentenced to prison at least four times for burglary or theft before his latest 2013 conviction. Incarcerated in Texas. A former Southern Baptist “cowboy church” pastor was sentenced to 50 years in prison without the possibility of parole after a Texas jury found him guilty April 5 of continuous sexual abuse of a child. Green was arrested May 31, 2012, on charges of sexual assault of a 13-year-old girl in Waxahachie, Texas. The news disrupted the Cowboy Church of Marshall County, Ala., which fired him after only a couple of months as pastor. n September, a grand jury in Ellis County, Texas, returned a “no bill,” or refusal to indict. Another grand jury in neighboring Navarro County, however, handed down an indictment in July. According to the local newspaper report, a Navarro County jury of six men and six women returned a guilty verdict after one hour and 15 minutes. Deliberations over the sentence took 30 minutes. In addition to time in prison, he was fined $10,000. The newspaper identified Green as the former youth minister of the JBarC Cowboy Church in Palmer, Texas, but said he currently works for a company that installs flooring. Green reportedly got the girl to retract her allegations, leading to the dropped charges in Ellis County, but after her parents and Green had a falling out, she renewed them, leading to his conviction in Navarro County.
Timothy Lee Reddin Church Position: Pastor Court of Conviction: Federal, 2018 Outcome: Convicted of attempted coercion and enticement of a minor. Sentenced in federal court to 120 months imprisonment and 25 years supervised release. In prison. A former Springdale pastor was sentenced to federal prison Wednesday for trying to entice a person he thought was a teenage boy into a sexual relationship. Timothy Lee Reddin, 68, of Fayetteville was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison without the possibility of parole followed by 25 years of supervised release on one count of attempted online enticement of a minor. An agent with Homeland Security Investigations in July was investigating online enticement of minors to engage in sexual activity in Northwest Arkansas, according to court records. The agent posed as a 14-year-old boy and logged into a social media account. An individual, later identified as Reddin, contacted him a short time later. Reddin began inquiring about the purported minor’s sexual experience, according to prosecutors. Reddin then expressed a willingness to engage in sexual activity with him. Reddin planned to meet the purported boy in Fayetteville in early August for sex. Police went the meeting location and arrested Reddin when he arrived. Reddin was listed as a pastor at Turner Street Baptist Church in Springdale at the time of his arrest. He also worked as a part-time history instructor at Ecclesia College in Springdale, according to a faculty directory. A federal grand jury indicted Reddin in September, and he pleaded guilty in October. During sentencing, prosecutors presented the judge with evidence Reddin was a convicted sex offender at the time of his arrest. Reddin faces a charge of failure to register as a sex offender in Washington County Circuit Court. U.S. District Judge Timothy L. Brooks presided over the sentencing hearing. Records show Reddin was arrested and convicted in federal court in 2000 for possession of child pornography. Reddin pleaded guilty Sept. 8, 2000, to having 10 or more items depicting child porn on his computer, including at least one that involved a child younger than 12, according to court records. In December of that year, he was sentenced to two years and three months in prison and required to register as a sex offender. Reddin spent 16 years as a pastor in Hot Springs Village and taught high school for three years in Heber Springs and McCrory, according to records. He resigned in 1998 as director of missions for the Central Baptist Association in Benton after being confronted about child pornography on a computer, according to court records.
Dan William Haby Jr. Church Position: Pastor Court of Conviction: Tarrant County, 2016 Outcome: Registered sex offender in Texas who pleaded guilty to indecency with a child by sexual contact in 2016 in exchange for seven years probation and deferred adjudication. Victims were teenage boys. Days into his trial on charges that he molested a teenage church member more than a decade ago, the former pastor of Cowboy Way Church in Alvarado pleaded guilty Monday to indecency with a child in exchange for seven years’ deferred adjudication probation. Under the sentence, if Dan William Haby Jr. abides by the terms of his probation, the case will be dismissed with no conviction on his record. If he violates probation, he can be sentenced to a maximum of 20 years in prison. Either way, Haby is now required to register as a sex offender for life.
Joseph Monroe Leal Church Position: Pastor Court of Conviction: Tulsa County, 2012 Outcome: Registered sex offender in Oklahoma. Court records show he pleaded guilty to two counts of using technology to engage in sexual communication with a minor, Oklahoma court records show. Sentenced to six years in prison with three years suspended. A 36-year-old Henryetta minister has been arrested on complaints of sexting a minor girl after the two attended a church camp. Joseph Monroe Leal, pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church of Henryetta, was booked into Tulsa County Jail on two complaints of using technology to engage in sexual communication with a minor. He has been released on bond. According to an affidavit filed in Tulsa County Court, Leal started texting the then 14-year-old girl after she attended the Summit Church Camp in 2009. Initially, the messages related to “spiritual subjects,” the affidavit states. In the summer of 2010, when the minor was 15, the texts became sexually explicit, according to the affidavit. The girl began saving the texts this spring. According to the church web site, Leal has served as pastor at Immanuel Baptist since 2006. He is originally from Moore and has also served at churches in Shawnee and Wellston.
Johnny McCullough Church Position: Pastor, Radio evangelist Court of Conviction: Union County, 2009 Outcome: Serving a 15-year sentence in Mississippi state prison after being convicted by a jury on two counts of gratification of lust/unlawful touching of a child. Sentenced on 9/22/2009. Acquitted of five other charges by the jury. One victim said he touched her while purporting to “pray for her,” according to appellate court record.
Joshua M. McCready Church Position: Youth pastor Court of Conviction: Howard County, 2000 Outcome: Pleaded guilty to nine counts of child abuse in 2000 for abusing John Doe, 12 at the time, and served 18 months in jail, according to the Baltimore Sun and Maryland court records. An unnamed youth and his mother are suing a Berlin church and its officials, as well as the Columbia-based Baptist Convention of Maryland/Del- aware, alleging that the congregation’s youth pastor repeatedly sexually abused the youth and that church officials failed to protect the boy. The boy, referred to in the lawsuit as “John Doe,” was 12 when the abuse by the First Baptist Church of Berlin youth pastor, Joshua M. McCready, began in 1997, according to the lawsuit, which was filed in Howard Circuit Court late last month. McCready was convicted of child abuse in June 2000 for the abuse against John Doe, who is now 17, and was sentenced in a Worcester County court to an 18-month jail term, according to papers filed with the lawsuit. The multimillion-dollar lawsuit names the church, its board of deacons, McCready, his parents – his father, The Rev. Francis McCready, is pastor of the church – and regional and national Baptist organizations. According to the lawsuit, the abuse took place at the Berlin church, at the home of Joshua McCready’s parents, and at a church-sponsored camp in North Carolina. The lawsuit, which alleges battery and negligence, says the abuse ended in January 2000 after a roommate of the youth pastor talked to the boy. A woman who answered the phone at Francis McCready’s home declined to comment this week, and a message left for the pastor at the church was not returned. The lawsuit alleges that he and his wife, Maxine, knew that their son slept in the same bed as the boy, and the lawsuit says the pastor tried to head off accusations against his son by assuring the youth’s mother that they were “rumors.” Bob Simpson, a spokesman for the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware, said this week, “We certainly oppose child abuse of any kind” and encourage individual churches to deal swiftly with abusers. Nevertheless, the official said, the convention is not part of a hierarchical structure and has no say in a church’s business – including its hiring of pastors. The convention, which acts as a “service” organization, has been dropped from lawsuits against churches because of the independent nature of the individual churches, Simpson said.
Daniel M Acker Jr. Church Position: Youth minister Court of Conviction: Shelby County, 2012 Outcome: Convicted of eight counts of sexual abuse involving children. Serving a 17-year sentence in Alabama. Within 90 days, retired fourth-grade teacher Daniel M. Acker Jr. will be in an Alabama state prison after pleading guilty Thursday to eight counts of child sexual abuse. Acker received 17-year sentences on each of six counts of sexual abuse first degree of a child less than 12 and 10-year sentences on each of two counts of sexual abuse first degree. The sentences will run concurrently and will include the time already spent in the Shelby County Jail. After serving the 17 years, Acker must wear an electronic monitor for 10 years. He also must register as an adult sex offender. “This is a very tough sentence,” said Richard Minor, the special prosecutor for the case. “In Alabama, anyone sentenced to a life sentence may be released after 12 years. We are striving to reach truth in sentencing; in this case 17 years means 17 years.” “You are not eligible for probation or parole,” Judge James Hill Jr. told Acker during the hearing. “You get no trial; you get no appeal. “This guilty plea means you admit to being a sexually violent predator,” Hill said. Six of Acker’s victims and their families sat in Courtroom 6 in the Shelby County Courthouse, watching as their former teacher shuffled to the table where his lawyers sat. Shackled and wearing a standard-issue orange jumpsuit and white canvas slippers, Acker looked down and avoided eye contact with anyone in the audience. His parents were his only relatives present. Acker marked his 50th birthday last month behind bars in the county jail. He will be released from jail on Jan. 4, 2029, at age 67. He will be 77 when the electronic monitoring part of his sentence is completed. During the hearing, Minor summarized the eight counts that included touching breasts, vaginas and buttocks of 10- and 11-year-old girls while in the classroom and on the school bus. Other counts related incidents of Acker placing a child’s hand on his penis and pushing his penis into the back of a student while she was working a problem on the board at the front of the class. In each case, Minor said Acker had told investigators that while he couldn’t name all of the students, he had committed such acts. Except one. “I never touched a vagina,” Acker told the judge. “Either you plead guilty because you’re guilty, or you are not going to plead at all,” Hill said. Acker chose to plead guilty. “Teachers are in a position of trust and authority over our children, and violation of that trust can have devastating effects on the student, their families and the community as a whole,” Minor said. “Parents and the community have a right to assume and demand that they will not be abused.” Among the victims in the courtroom was Kristin Lopez Hurt, who accused Acker of touching her inappropriately in 1991, when she was 11. Acker was not only her teacher but also a neighbor. She said he molested her several times in the classroom as well as in her home. Acker denied the charges then, but he was suspended with pay, and after a grand jury declined to indict him, the school board voted unanimously to reinstate him after a hearing that lasted eight hours. Norma Rogers, Shelby County school superintendent at the time, pushed for Acker’s dismissal. “I’m just sad really,” Rogers said regarding the guilty pleas. “He hurt so many for so long, and when I think that we had a chance to stop him, at least stop him in Shelby County schools all those years ago and the board did not, I’m sad. “I feel sorry for the young girls he hurt, and I feel sorry for Acker’s family, too,” Rogers said. “At least now, justice has been done.” Hurt expressed relief. “I finally feel vindicated, not just for myself but for all the girls,” Hurt said after the Thursday hearing. “They’re younger, and this is harder on them.” Hurt, the ’91 victim, is married and has a 6-year-old daughter and a 13-year-old stepson. “For more than one year, I waited on the day that justice would be served,” Hurt said in a statement issued shortly after Acker’s arrest in January. She refiled her charges, and this time, Acker told Alabaster police that he had touched her when she was a child. She said Acker had continued to follow her through the years, showing up at several Publix stores where she worked. The conditions of his agreement require that he have no contact with any of his victims. “I’m hoping I can relax some now,” she said.
James Robert Griffin Church Position: Associate Pastor Court of Conviction: St. Tammany Parish, 2009 Outcome: Convicted of aggravated incest and pornography involving juveniles in 2009. Registered sex offender in Louisiana but listed as non-complaint for moving without notification.
Jordan Lee Roseboom Church Position: Volunteer youth minister Court of Conviction: Montgomery County, 2013 Outcome: Registered sex offender in Indiana for six 2013 child molestation convictions (following guilty pleas). Sentenced to three years on four charges and three years probation on two charges; released from prison on probation in 2017. A former youth minister will spend 12 years in prison for molesting boys. Jordan Roseboom was also sentenced to six years of probation Wednesday. Roseboom volunteered at Rock Point Baptist Church in Crawfordsville. Last October, he pleaded guilty to fondling or touching 10 boys. None of the acts took place at the church or at church-sanctioned events.
Brian Kelly Burchfield Church Position: Youth pastor Court of Conviction: Pottawatomie County, 2016 Outcome: Sex offender registry indicates 2016 conviction of soliciting a minor by using technology. Sentenced to six months in jail and 10 years probation. Registered sex offender in Oklahoma. They trusted him completely A former youth pastor was arraigned in Pottawatomie County on Thursday morning after being accused of sex crimes. We’re told Burchfield was the youth pastor at Immanuel Baptist Church for several years and gained the trust of some teenage boys in the youth group. Police tell us they’ve talked to four of those boys in the past week who told them their text conversations with Burchfield were starting to make them uncomfortable. Police tell us Burchfield would ask the boys for pictures of themselves and talk to them about pornography. Burchfield was arraigned Thursday, accused of crimes that have shocked families from Shawnee to Edmond. Investigators say Burchfield had been inappropriately texting four former youth group members, all boys between the ages 14 and 17. “They looked at him almost like a second father figure. They trusted him completely in the status he was in, his role in their lives,” Detective Ethan Rieves said. Court documents show when the alleged victims were interviewed by police, they said Burchfield “invited the juveniles to attend a ‘Man Journey Retreat’ with him” where “he took the juveniles to his in-laws’ lake house in Eufaula, Oklahoma.” That was in July of last year. The teens told police, “Burchfield came up with the idea that he and the juveniles go skinny dipping on two separate occasions.” Police brought Burchfield in to talk on Wednesday, and we’re told he confessed. Court documents show Burchfield told police, he’d “just change into the mindset of a juvenile kid when he was around them and would do stupid stuff.” A concerned parent got the investigation going, police say, when they took extra precautions to look out for their son. “The parent did everything right. The parent set up their devices to when their child was receiving text messages or instant messages through their device, it would automatically go to the parent’s device as well,” Det. Rieves said. Burchfield has been fired from his latest college pastor position, and formal charges against him are pending. Immanuel Baptist Church released the following statement: “We are very saddened to hear of the allegations regarding Brian Burchfield, a former minister at our church. We have no indications whatsoever that any inappropriate conduct occurred while Brian was an employee at Immanuel. We are fully cooperating with law enforcement officials and have provided them all of the information we have. We are praying for any people affected and trusting God to provide His presence and peace at this difficult time.”
John Orin Langworthy Church Position: Music minister Court of Conviction: Hinds County, 2013 Outcome: Registered sex offender in Mississippi for 2013 convictions of two counts of sexually touching a disabled child. Was not previously charged but was fired in 1989 from his position as music minister at a megachurch in the Dallas metro area after the executive pastor confirmed the church “received an allegation that John Langworthy had acted inappropriately with a teenaged student. Based on this allegation, he was dismissed from that post.” Burleson’s comments stem from a recent controversy involving a ministry leader at Morrison Heights Baptist Church in Clinton, Miss. The Clarion Ledger newspaper in Jackson, Miss., reported Aug. 9 that Morrison Heights music minister John Langworthy had confessed to inappropriate behavior with young males at a church where he formerly worked, Prestonwood Baptist, a prominent church in Plano, Texas. “These decisions were ungodly,” Langworthy told the Morrison Heights congregation in a video of his confession that is posted on the Clarion Ledger’s website. Burleson said Langworthy kept his past a secret until a former staff member at Prestonwood, Amy Smith, recently contacted Morrison Heights about the man’s previous behavior, which she said started at Prestonwood with an allegation involving a teen. WFAA-TV in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, reported that Prestonwood’s executive pastor, Mike Buster, recently presented a brief statement about Langworthy: “In the summer of 1989, the church received an allegation that John Langworthy had acted inappropriately with a teenage student. Based on this allegation, he was dismissed immediately, removing him from all responsibilities with the church. In no way did officials of the church seek to cover up the actions of Mr. Langworthy or silence his accuser. The elected officers dealt with the matter firmly and forthrightly.” Burleson said he preached at the Mississippi church when he was president of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma and he considers the people there his friends. He said the turmoil resulting from the Langworthy confession could have been avoided with the implementation of a database listing sexually abusive clergy. “Unless you have a database for these types of issues, what happened at Prestonwood and Morrison (Heights) will happen again,” Burleson said.
Christopher Scott Decaire Church Position: Youth minister Court of Conviction: Pima County, 2009 Outcome: Convicted on molestation and sexual misconduct charges and sentenced to 79 years in 2009 in Pima County, Ariz. Incarcerated in Arizona. A 51-year-old former youth minister convicted of repeatedly molesting a 13-year-old girl told his sentencing judge Friday that the judge only heard the worst things about him during his trial. The truth is that he “loved and respected” every one of his church’s youths, taught them God’s word and preached that they should treat others as they would want to be treated, Christopher Scott Decaire said. Decaire was convicted last month on six of the eight molestation and sexual-conduct charges he originally faced. Decaire’s victim, now 15, testified Decaire molested her and forced her to perform oral sex between January 2007 and January 2008. During the trial, DNA tests proved semen found on the girl’s jacket was Decaire’s. They also listened to a damning telephone conversation between the girl and Decaire that had been secretly recorded by police. The two met through his position as youth minister at the East Tucson Baptist Church.
David Wayne Farren Church Position: Youth pastor Court of Conviction: Bowie County, 2017 Outcome: Pleaded guilty to 10 counts of sexual assault; sentenced to 180 months in 2017 in negotiated plea agreement. In Arkansas state prison. A Texarkana pastor was sentenced to 15 years in prison Tuesday morning for sexually abusing two teen girls who were members of youth ministry groups he led at several local churches. David Wayne Farren, 42, appeared with Texarkana attorney Jason Horton for a plea and sentencing hearing before Miller County Circuit Judge Carlton Jones. Farren pleaded guilty to seven counts of first-degree sexual assault, one count of second-degree sexual abuse and a misdemeanor count of violating mandatory reporting requirements. Farren pleaded no-contest to one count of second-degree sexual assault as well. As part of a plea bargain, Jones sentenced Farren to 15 years for each of the nine felony counts of sexual abuse, to run concurrently, and to four days in the county jail with credit for four days served on the misdemeanor. At the end of the hearing, Farren was led from the courtroom to the jail. Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Connie Mitchell said Farren confessed to eight of the nine felonies during an interview with Texarkana, Ark., Police Dept. investigators last year. According to a probable cause affidavit, the victim listed in eight of the felony counts first met with TAPD detectives in July 2016 when she was 20. That victim told investigators she was motivated to come forward because she worried Farren was grooming another girl. At the time of his arrest, Farren was serving as lead pastor of Anchor Church in Texarkana. The victim told investigators she first met Farren while in middle school at Trinity Christian School and while Farren was youth minister at Trinity Church and later youth minister at Heritage Baptist Church in Texarkana. The girl said she confided in Farren in 2013 that she had been sexually abused by someone else in her past. Members of the clergy, teachers and medical personnel are required by law to report allegations of child physical or sexual abuse to a national child abuse hotline, but Farren did not. The girl said she was babysitting Farren’s children the first time he touched her sexually as she was lying on a couch under a blanket, and that he had intercourse with her on her 17th birthday in 2013. She said she and Farren had sex in his home in Texarkana, Ark., more than 20 times and that he would have sex with her in his garage if his wife was at home. She said Farren claimed he did not divorce his wife because it would be a sin. The victim reported that the abuse stopped in August 2013. The victim mentioned that when Farren began taking an intense interest in her, another girl with whom he had been “close” had left for college. The other girl was interviewed by TAPD detectives in August 2016 after Farren’s first arrest. She told detectives Farren began touching her sexually after her father died when she was about 15 and Farren was her youth minister at Faith Baptist Church in Texarkana. The second victim to be interviewed by police is named in one of the second-degree sexual assault counts. She said she cut off contact with Farren after he made a phone call to her while she was in her college dorm room. The girl said Farren’s sexual conversation with her led her to “realize how he had control over her.” Farren will be required to register as a sex offender upon his release from prison and will be required to pay a fee for the registration as well as a fee for having his DNA included in state and national databases.
Jason Roy Bolton Church Position: Youth Pastor Court of Conviction: Prince William County, 2010 Outcome: Convicted of taking indecent liberties with a child as a person in a custodial or supervisory relationship. Sentenced to three years; released. Registered sex offender in Ohio. Prince William County police have arrested a former youth pastor on charges that he carried on a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl in his church group. Jason Bolton, 32, of Dumfries, began a close friendship with the girl in September 2007, police said. By early 2010, the relationship had become romantic. Bolton, a married man with two sons and a daughter, began as a youth pastor at Potomac Crest Baptist Church in 2007. He resigned in May after the sexual allegations came to light. In a first person profile on the church’s Web site, Bolton says he was called by Jesus Christ to serve at the church after ministering to students at the University of Delaware, where he studied art in the late 1990s. “I am not perfect and I make mistakes every day,” Bolton says in the profile that has since been removed. “My hope is that through my life I can help show youth that Jesus Loves them and that He wants them so much that He died for them.”
Jeffery Dale Eddie Church Position: Children’s minister Court of Conviction: Colbert County, 2014 Outcome: Pleaded guilty to 20 charges, including sodomy, sexual abuse of a child under 12 and possession of child pornography, according to federal civil court documents. Serving a 30-year sentence in Alabama state prison. Children’s Minister Facing Sex Abuse Charges, Multiple Victims Confirmed Muscle Shoals Police have released new details in the investigation of a children’s minister accused of multiple sexual abuse crimes. Late Tuesday afternoon, Jeffery Dale Eddie, Highland Park Baptist Church children’s minister, was arrested and charged with two counts of child pornography, 31 counts of second-degree sodomy and three counts of sexual abuse of a child under the age of 12. Court documents, released Wednesday morning, state that while being questioned on Sunday afternoon, Eddie “confessed to performing oral sex and other acts on several of the minor members of his church, numerous times.” On Monday, investigators spoke with a minor and his family about acts Eddie told police he performed on the child over a three-year period. Documents indicate these incidents happened between the summer of 2010 and this past fall at the church. During Wednesday morning’s news conference at the Muscle Shoals Police Department, Chief Robert Evans told WHNT News 19 the whole investigation started on Saturday after a parent contacted police and church officials about possible inappropriate behavior between Eddie and a child at church. After finding child pornography on Eddie’s computer at the church, Evans said the investigation ballooned to include the sexual abuse charges that have now been handed down. Investigators are still interviewing possible victims in this case. Evans confirmed there are multiple victims and is asking the public for prayers for those involved. As of Monday, Eddie was listed as a children’s minister on the Highland Park Baptist Church website. His picture and information have since been removed from the site. The church posted this statement on its website Wednesday, saying Eddie is no longer affiliated with the church. Highland Park Baptist’s Lead Pastor, Brett Pitman, also came to the police department’s news conference on Wednesday morning and read the statement aloud. It says: “As a church, we are outraged, shocked and deeply saddened by the events that have unfolded over the last few days. First and foremost, we are striving to assist any children and families that have been affected by these events. The health and well being of these children is our number one priority at this time. For years, Highland Park Baptist Church has invested in the Shoals community and we are committed to helping our entire community cope with this situation. Anyone with any information about this case should immediately contact the Muscle Shoals Police Department. Any children or families in search of counseling may contact our church office for assistance. In closing, we want to personally thank every person that has come forward. They are heroes and should be treated as such.”
Joel Mark Waltz Church Position: Youth Pastor Court of Conviction: Story County, 2017 Outcome: Convicted of sexual exploitation by a counselor or therapist. Sentenced to a 10-year special sentence in 2017. Incarcerated in Iowa. A former Boone youth pastor who pleaded guilty to having inappropriate contact with a now 20-year-old woman off-and-on since she was 16 was sentenced to four years in prison Wednesday, according to Story County Attorney Jessica Reynolds. Joel Mark Waltz, 47, pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual exploitation of a minor in October, a week before he was set to go to trial. Waltz was arrested in late March and originally charged with sexual exploitation by a counselor or therapist, a Class D felony. According to Ames Police Cmdr. Geoff Huff, the woman met Waltz when she was 11 years old, and met with him on a regular basis until she was 18. Huff said the woman described Waltz as a father figure before he confessed his love for her when she turned 16. Huff said the two began a sexual relationship that occurred in several locations around Boone and Ames, where the woman lived. Waltz resigned from his position at Grace Community Church in March 2016, shortly after the allegations were brought against him. Reynolds said that in addition to the prison sentence, Waltz will also be forced to pay fines and court costs, as well as complete a psychosexual evaluation, be on the sex offender registry for no longer than 10 years and have no contact with the victim or her family for five years.
Walter Harrison Yocum Church Position: Youth minister Court of Conviction: Harford County and Cecil County, 2013 Outcome: A registered sex offender in Maryland with a 2013 conviction for sexual abuse of a minor. Received a five-year suspended sentence, according to Maryland court records. A former youth minister at a Southern Baptist church in Maryland pleaded guilty March 20 to sexually abusing a 15-year-old girl attending the congregation’s vacation Bible school. Walter Harrison Yocum, 35, pleaded guilty to a single count of sexual offense in the third degree, according to the Baltimore Sun. At the time of his arrest last August, he was youth minister and contemporary worship musician at Calvary Baptist Church in Bel Air, Md. He will be sentenced May 30 and faces up to 10 years in prison. Yocum was charged Aug. 23 with third- and fourth-degree sexual offense, sexual abuse of a minor and second-degree assault. According to a letter on the Calvary Baptist Church website, Yocum was suspended with pay when he confessed to his pastor about “having an inappropriate relationship with someone other than his wife.” After evidence pointed to “ongoing misconduct with a minor beyond what was initially confessed,” he was fired. Founded in 1949, Calvary Baptist Church reports an average weekly attendance of 370 in its entry in the Southern Baptist Convention’s church search database. The congregation has long been active in the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware.
Gregory Stanley Dempsey Church Position: Music minister Court of Conviction: Hamilton County, 2007 Outcome: Convicted of a Sept. 1, 2003, sexual battery by an authority figure, according to his Tennessee sex offender registry. The former pastor of Middle Valley Methodist Church was taken into custody on Monday to begin serving an 11 month and 29 day sentence at the county workhouse for statutory rape. After a lengthy and emotional sentencing hearing, Criminal Court Judge Rebecca Stern gave Gregory Stanley Dempsey three years for statutory rape and a consecutive year for sexual battery by an authority figure. He will be on intensive probation after he is released and must continue in a treatment program. He also cannot be around young children except for his 12-year-old daughter, the judge said. Dempsey told the jury he “accepts full responsiblity” for a two-year homosexual relationship with a young church member, but he asked for “mercy” and for “probation.” He said he wanted to apologize to the victim, to the victim’s family, as well as his own wife and daughter and former church members. He said the incident has cost him to lose his home and life savings and he is having difficulty finding anyone who will hire him. Police said the incidents started when Dempsey was minister of music at the Oak Street Baptist Church. He had taken that position in early 2002. The youth testified at the sentencing hearing, saying he has gone away to college in another state and is trying to put the incidents behind him. He told the defendant, “I won’t let you stop my life anymore. I’m ready to do something good with my life.” The victim’s father said his son had been a musical prodigy, but the incidents had taken away much of his love for music.He said while the abuse was going on, the minister on Sundays “would come up and hug my neck and thank me for letting (the son) be a part of his life.” Dempsey said he is attending weekly therapy sessions with other sex offenders. He said he got a job selling insurance out of town, but could not make a living at it. He said he became a team leader at Convergys, but was fired when news of his arrest came out. He said he and his wife and daughter attended one church for three months, then were told they needed to leave the church. But he said the First Baptist Church of Soddy-Daisy has welcomed them with open arms. He said he and his wife and daughter have had to move in with his mother-in-law, Jane Cook. Dempsey’s wife, Julia, testified in his behalf, calling him a good father and husband. She acknowledged she was shocked when she found out about the incidents, but she said she is standing with her husband of 13 years.