A shocking new report by the Houston Chronicle and the San Antonio Express-News found that over the last 20 years, there have been sexual misconduct claims levied against hundreds of Southern Baptist leaders and volunteers.
The report found that 220 people "had been convicted of sex crimes or received deferred prosecutions in plea deals." 90 of those individuals remain in prison while 100 are listed as registered sex offenders.
"Ultimately, we compiled information on 380 credibly accused officials in Southern Baptist churches, including pastors, deacons, Sunday school teachers and volunteers," the newspapers said.
According to the papers, there were over 700 victims, many of them young men and women. Some of the victims were impregnated by their abusers and were urged to get abortions. In many cases, church officials attempted to have the victims forgive those responsible.
The Southern Baptist Convention responded to the allegations and called on "all Southern Baptists to cooperate fully with law enforcement officials in exposing and bringing to justice all perpetrators, sexual or otherwise, who criminally harm children placed in our trust."
"We remind all Southern Baptists of their legal and moral responsibility to report any accusations of child abuse to authorities in addition to implementing any appropriate church discipline or internal restoration processes."
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