How do we rebuild the intergrity of Our beloved church of Allen : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread

Dear Friends, I was recently e-mailed an article that was printed on June 7, 200l, entitled "Devine Debauchery", which can be found at This article was most painful as it involved a Presiding Elder, Local Minister, and a Bishop of our great Church.

After reading this article, I was hurt that something of this nature could happen in our church during these days. Further I was disappointed that the leadership of our Church did not address the issue until it ended up in court. As a result, instead of restoration of the victim and a public apology(which was all that she originally requested), our church was socked with a multi-milllion dollar judgement. See the article for further details, but be prepared for some lurid facts that may not be for the faint hearted. I certainly know that we serve a forgiving and redemptive savior and I know there is nothing we can do for which we can not be forgiven. My prayers certainly go out for the young lady that suffered emotionally, and spiritually. I am also praying for each of the clergy and their family members. It is my hope that all involved will seek professional and spiritual help in order to put this embarassing situation behind them.

However, as a member of the laity, I am truly outraged that this type of sexual harassment has occurred right under our noses and yet nothing other than a transfer of the offending parties has occurred. But guess who gets hit with paying the tab, ultimately, you and I.

Unfortunately, this judgement is a slap in the face of the integrity of the church. Yet I wonder, how much of a pattern of similar conduct is occurring? Is this why our church seems to be losing its edge as we watch an exodus of our members to other churches? Fellow brothers and sisters, it is time that we demand more accountability of our connection. The day is past and gone when local members will be led like sheep to a slaughter, while our higher ups eat the good of the land. I am praying for divine intervention by Almighty God before the richness of our church is completely lost. Please join me in this effort. Your thoughts on this matter will be welcomed.

-- Anonymous, June 24, 2001


L read the article. It is very hard to beleive such things can happen in the church.


Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, June 25, 2001

I had to a little searching to find the article, to make it a bit easier, here's the direct link to the account.  I would hope a connection wide grass roots group will rise from apathy and indifference to demand accountability and righteousness ensuring Christ's name not be brought to further shame!

-- Anonymous, June 26, 2001

I read this article and was thoroughly disgusted. It's hard to be objective when all parties are offered a chance to rebut the accusations and they do not take the opportunity to do so. I keep this victim in my prayers. Moreover, I keep this denomination in my prayers, and I hope that this is the absolute worst case scenario of sexual harrassment in our church. But I am preparing otherwise. I hope others that read this story and follow this discussion will be motivated to see that such actions do not occur in your locale, and if they do, that they do not go unchecked.

God bless.

-- Anonymous, June 26, 2001

I read this story and could hardly believe this incident happened. But then too, it could be the tip of an iceberg. I have also received "ungodly" treatment at the hands of our ministers (and have talked with many sisters with similar experiences) was at a time in my life that I needed guidance and love. His arrogance caused me great pain, a pain that still sometimes haunts me. I applause her for coming forward.

-- Anonymous, June 26, 2001

Quite frankly, I don't know which is more incredulous the indifference expressed by the church officials regarding the woman's complaints or the lower court's decision to overturn the size of the punitive damages! This story tragically illustrates the breakdown of an alleged "chain of command". I understand and agree with the opinion that "church crises" should ideally be dealt with internally by potential litigants. The problem is that these very same checks and controls do not assure due process much less justice. The Judicial Council, as described in the Discipline, was never addressed in the article. Isn't this Council designed to act like an arbiter and dispense justice in a fair and efficient manner? Or, is the Judicial Council just another kangaroo court with the fascade of justice but no real committment to this noble principle? The erosion of confidence in these internal elements in addressing disputes will only naturally evolve to "external" measures, ergo, litigious strategies. This Zion is in grave danger of not fulfilling its godly expectations if we marginalize women. Sexual harrassment policies are pointless absent enforcement. Consider the tragic story described in Judges 19 for a gripping description about the dangers of callous indiferrence towards a woman's welfare. The Old Testament prophet Micah declared that the requirements for honorable service for God are: "To do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with our God" Somehow this basic principle was missing in this sordid and salacious story. QED

-- Anonymous, June 26, 2001

Preachers are promoted to better pulpits after they mess up whether it be sexual harrassment, or sleeping with another mans wife, or stealing the church funds or drinking and doing drugs. Bishops and the ministerail efficiency committees do not have the boldness to do the right thing which is to suspend them from the pulpit for a year or two. In the 5th District a pastor was just recently suspended and certain male preachers who were promoted from this kind of mess were very upset about it and tried to get the pastor to take action against the Bishop. However the main preacher who tried to do this was transferred into the 5th district to one of the top churches, because he was married and had a pregnant girlfriend. He and his wife has divorced since and he is married to the then pregnant girlfriend and has three more children. Another pastor received a promotion after the woman he had a relationship with in another state came and told him she was pregnant by him. His then wife who stayed with him through this embaarrassing situation then herself became pregnant and he had the nerve to kick her to the curb after the girlfrien with the child drove all the way from the other state to come and take him back. His wife who was his second wife got divorce from him and now he is married to the then pregnant girlfriend and not even supporting his child with wife #2. Preachers who are sincere and doing what God has called them to do they are not considered most of the time for promotion. the glory of the Lord I believe has left our church. Read Zachariah 11.

-- Anonymous, June 27, 2001

Brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus our Lord. This story can't be true. This could not have happened in our zion. I just don'y know how these guys gets away with all these things. I mean this sister tried everything in her power and even followed proper channels to have her problem addressed. I for one, I think it is high time that we as AME's get down to mother earth and face the hard realities, for these things are happening in our church, and this is just but a one example opf them. I pray the Lord that i won't be around when more and more of these "unfortunate" incidences happen. All I can say to my brothers is ,please refrain from these exercises, Remember, you can read the menu but you are not allowed to order. To all of my sisters going through similar experiences, speak up, speak up, for if you don't them stones wil speak. To the victum, i am very sorry for you to have gone through this. May the good Lord Give you the strength and serenity to overcome this nasty experience and to face tomorrow with the assurance that there is hope in Jesus Christ!

-- Anonymous, June 27, 2001

Moderation questions? read the FAQ