A Chicago Southern Baptist pastor has resigned after disclosing his long-term sexual abuse of a minor in the 1960s, the Illinois Baptist reported Tuesday (Nov. 5).
Charles Lyons resigned as pastor of Armitage Baptist Church in Chicago following what church leaders called a “corrective leave of absence” that began in October 2018. As part of a process analyzing concerns over Lyons’s leadership, Lyons disclosed his long-term sexual abuse of a minor from the 1960s. No criminal charges were filed at that time.
Lyons, 68, who served as pastor of Armitage Baptist for 45 years beginning in 1974, announced his resignation May 19. It became effective July 31. Lyons did not return to the pulpit after the leave of absence.
The pastoral team told the Illinois Baptist State Association (IBSA) they consulted with experts on mandatory reporting regulations, and conducted further interviews seeking to confirm that there were no accusations of sexual abuse against Lyons during his pastoral tenure.
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Source: Baptist Press