The Church of God has had a long history of covering up for abusive ministers, leaders and members who have raped, assaulted, stalked and molested adults and children. Many in the church stick their heads in the sand and say "well this happens everywhere in all churches so why should we be worried about." While t his is trues, the those abused int eh Church of God face a double whammy. The church in its outrageous arrogance claims to be the one true apostolic church practicing true Christianity. How can the "true church" ever have abuse in it? That is why it has been covered up for decades. Church leaders have raped and assaulted women. Others have stalked members to the point they drive countless miles so they can peer into bedroom windows. Others have molested children.
This people have been routinely moved to other church areas, left in leadership positions where they abuse again. Then moved elsewhere.
The abused usually never receive compassion or help. Most of the time they've been met with hostility, derision and contempt. How dare they bring negative publicity to the church! What did you do to cause the to happen?
The latest Journal of the Churches of God has an article from a woman who was sexually assaulted by a church leader and the shame she received from the church leadership.
COG leaders turned on me
The leadership in the Church of God turned on me. I was stonewalled and not spoken to. Except that I was spoken to, by the church leadership, to call me a troublemaker.
When I asked an evangelist who had intimate knowledge of the offender’s past, spanning more than 20 years of adultery and child molestation in the Churches of God, why the leader- ship of God’s church had recommended the offender to me in the first place, he cut me off and told me he was going to stop me right there because I was attacking the Church of God.
He reduced me to tears and I did not talk with him after that.
When I was at the Feast and tried to talk with another leading evangelist, he said no repeatedly.
I could not understand why he would not talk to me. He put his finger in my face and told me he would have deacons physically put me out of the hall and he would disfellowship me if I talked about the offender.
The offender stalks
The offender stalked me by calling and leaving recordings on my phone and via the Internet and E- mails, and calling me and letting me know it was he and then hanging up.
I had a crisis in faith because I was being punished by the evangelists and leaders in my church.
I developed extreme PTSD. I did not want to live. I repeatedly begged God to end my life because the shame and pain were so overwhelming.
The offender regularly moves his membership
My marriage, which I was trying to preserve through counseling with the man who turned out to be the sexual offender, ended. The offender went on to become a leader in another Church of God until it finally acknowledged the nature of the offender and put him out.
The offender to this day has a web- site trying to peddle his sermons to unsuspecting women and young girls.
Non-COG hope for survivors
Hope for survivors of pastoral sex- ual abuse can be found at The Hope of Survivors (thehopeofsurvivors.com). This group provides a support system for survivors of sexual abuse by min- isters that is grounded in biblical prin- ciples and not in protecting the abuser or the name of the church the abusing pastor is associated with.
I have found more hope and heal- ing here than in 20 years of ministers and other members stonewalling me and avoiding me like I was the chief whore in an ongoing whorehouse.
Women sexually abused by pastors are usually not wanton women, but women seeking help from their pastor and the pastor taking advantage of their vulnerability through their posi- tion as spiritual leader.
The woman is clearly not in the same position of power as the minister.