Saturday, January 11, 2014

If you were a victim or have any information...

... please contact the authorities! Do not contact a pastor, a church, or anyone but the police in the applicable jurisdiction. If you need help finding the appropriate agency to notify, please contact a member of S.N.A.P. and they will help you.

Attention Bellevue members. You need to read this as it mentions one of your former fair-haired boys:

Southern Baptists, the ERLC and the "devil-haunted universe"

Here Amy Smith does a great job of illustrating the cognitive dissonance between the problem of clergy sex abuse in the SBC and the continuing policy of the SBC leadership ignoring it or at best giving passing lip-service to it while crowing about "apply(ing) the gospel of the kingdom to the major cultural issues of our day."

This is the stated purpose of the SBC's recently-formed "ERLC Leadership Network" in the words of Russell Moore. I still laugh every time I read this.

The ERLC Leadership Network is about ministering in the midst of a devil-haunted universe," ERLC President Russell D. Moore said. "As we come alongside one another, we'll talk about crucial ethical issues confronting churches and how we can engage the culture with a Gospel-focus. We'll think through issues that aren't yet confronting churches, but will, and how we can best go through the difficulties of life and local church ministry with a joyful warrior kingdom expectancy-marching toward Zion on the triumphant side of history.

Who talks like that?! Such flowery language to describe a do-nothing bunch of self-righteous, back-slapping good old boys! (No women are allowed on the council.)

As Amy Smith observed...

How about start with the crucial issues already confronting churches? What about the "devil-haunted universe" of child sex crimes committed by their own Baptist ministers? Or are we really looking at a case of the ERLC picking and choosing "crucial ethical issues" based on selective moral outrage? I can't think of any issue more pressing and damaging to churches and kids within churches today than the ravaging of souls by child sex offenders.

Why, yes. Yes, they are picking and choosing. Because we all know that the "crucial ethical issues" of gays and women in leadership positions and wives who refuse to "respect" and "submit to their husbands in all things" are at the root of all of the church's problems.

I'm reminded of quotes from Bill Gothard (whose seminars Bellevue bused members to during the '80s and whose books and "principles" Adrian Rogers endorsed), or more recently, members of The Fellowship, aka "The Family," as documented in Jeff Sharlet's The Family and C Street. While I don't always agree with Mr. Sharlet's political views, he exposes (with copious footnotes and personal accounts from living among them) the influence "fundamentalists" have had on the world. The "conservative resurgence" is but a microcosm of this much larger organization whose "face" is the National Prayer Breakfast, the purpose of which is not to focus on God and prayer (surprise!) but "to be a forum for the political, social, and business elite to assemble and build relationships."

"The ERLC helps me think biblically and in Gospel-responsible ways about the issues confronting our people every single day," said [J.D.] Greear. "To not speak and think about these issues would be doing our people a great disservice. Russell Moore has assembled an excellent team to both represent us well, and help us lead our people well. The ERLC is a gift to our church and to the larger body of Christ."

Well, J.D., you and your buddies are doing your people a great disservice! Y'all can form all the good-old-boy committees you want, but until you put actions behind your flowery language, you're only making noise while victims continue to suffer in silence. It's time to man up, boys!