Church Elders Let Confessed Abuser Attend Services; Now Judge Has Banned Him

Religion News Service’s Bobby Ross Jr. reports, “After a longtime youth minister’s recent conviction on corruption of minors and indecent exposure charges, a judge in this western Pennsylvania community did what the Uniontown Church of Christ’s elders refused to do. The judge told Clyde E. Brothers Jr. to stay away from church services.” The church elders’ refusal to ban Brothers from the church illustrates broader problems in how religious authorities address sexual abuse in their churches. Bob Coldren, one of the church’s three elders and Brothers’ brother-in-law, said, “Just like anybody else who comes forward at church, is it my place to judge him on his sins…or is it God’s to judge him of those?”

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