The National Association of Evangelicals released a resolution advising churches to take greater measures to screen and vet staff and volunteers in light of numerous reports of sexual abuses committed by pastors and staff nationwide.
The NAE board of directors approved a resolution at its semiannual meeting on March 7 called “A Call to Sexual Purity and Child Protection.” The statement laments the “violation of trust” by pastors who have sexually abused church members, in particular children.
The resolution comes over a month after the Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express-News released a detailed report outlining how there have been about 700 victims of alleged sexual abuse by 380 Southern Baptist leaders and volunteers nationwide since 1998.
The resolution also comes as one of the largest megachurches in the nation is facing scrutiny over the fact that four former volunteers were charged with sex crimes against minors, including one daycare volunteer who assaulted at least 14 children in a church daycare bathroom.
NAE is an association of over 40 evangelical denominations, and 45,000 churches, schools and organizations worldwide.
“Jesus spoke in graphic terms about how God views such offenses: ‘If anyone causes one of these little ones — those who believe in me — to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea,’” the resolution states, quoting Matthew 18:6.
“Whistleblowers who bring these violations to light perform an important service to the church and to our society.”
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Samuel Smith