Skip to comments.Survey Reveals Prevalence of (Protestant) Clergy Sexual Misconduct
Posted on 09/12/2009 6:44:04 AM PDT by NYer
Findings from a nationwide study reveal that clergy sexual misconduct is more prevalent than many people believe.
According to research by Baylor University, 3.1 percent of adult women who attend religious services at least once a month have been victims of clergy sexual misconduct since turning 18. In other words, seven women in every congregation of 400 adults have been victimized.
Ninety-two percent of the sexual advances were made in secret and 67 percent of the offenders were married to someone else at the time of the advance.
"Because many people are familiar with some of the high-profile cases of sexual misconduct, most people assume that it is just a matter of a few charismatic leaders preying on vulnerable followers," said Dr. Diana Garland, dean of the School of Social Work at Baylor University and lead researcher in the study, in a statement Wednesday. "What this research tells us, however, is that Clergy Sexual Misconduct with adults is a widespread problem in congregations of all sizes and occurs across denominations. Now that we have a better understanding of the problem, we can start looking at prevention strategies."
The study, which was conducted on more than 3,500 American adults, is the largest scientific study into clergy sexual misconduct and is being published later this year in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion.
It is part of an effort by Baylor to identify and prevent clergy sexual misconduct. With virtually no research or information available to inform prevention strategies, Baylor University's School of Social Work sought to provide data for that purpose. Along with spreading awareness and educating the public, the team at Baylor hopes the findings will be used to draft model legislation to make it illegal for clergy to make sexual advances just as it is with patients and doctors.
Sexual misconduct by clergy is only illegal in Texas and Minnesota.
Garland hopes the study will prompt congregations to consider adopting policies and procedures designed to protect their members from leaders who abuse their power.
"Many people – including the victims themselves – often label incidences of Clergy Sexual Misconduct with adults as 'affairs,'" said Garland. "In reality, they are an abuse of spiritual power by the religious leader."
The research study also includes a paper co-authored by Garland on first-hand accounts from men and women who are victims of clergy sexual misconduct, family members or spouses of victims, religious leaders who have committed CSM, and helping professionals who have provided care for offenders and survivors.
Data from the 2008 General Social Survey – an in-person survey conducted by National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago – was used to estimate the prevalence of clergy sexual misconduct. Questions developed specifically for this project were administered by the Baylor team.
Clergy sexual misconduct was defined as minister, priests, rabbis, or other clergypersons or religious leaders who make sexual advances or propositions to persons in the congregations they serve who are not their spouses or significant others.
How do these figures compare to the population at large?
I wouldn’t know but we can presume they are fairly close. Keep in mind that sex abuse is prevalent in public schools, camps, youth organizations, etc. Then there is the abuse that goes on in families where children are threatened if they speak out.
“3.1 percent of adult women who attend religious services at least once a month have been victims of clergy sexual misconduct”
Wow - as opposed to 100% of women who go to college or work?
It looks like its time for Christians to get back on the cross.
In my home town we had a pastor of a prominent Presbyterian church who was a serial adulterer, usually with married women who were in his congregation. He wasn’t dismissed until his second transgression was discovered. Several others came to light after that. It was very traumatic for the members.
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“”What this research tells us, however, is that Clergy Sexual Misconduct with adults is a widespread problem in congregations of all sizes and occurs across denominations.”
Seems to say “across denominations”.
When you insert “Protestant” into the headline,
it is disingenuous. Even our own RC church has
had terrible problems with sexually immoral priests -
and the extended cover-up of the same. I’m not
sure what would motivate you to post “protestants”...
LifeWay: 1 in 7 Church Background Checks Uncover Criminal History
Not surprised, when you consider the church is a place where the spiritually sick come to get healed.
Next thing you know, they’ll come out will a study showing the majority of patients in hospitals are sick.
People that feel they can condemn Christians if they don’t live a perfect life are living in la-la land (and doing the work of the Devil.) One of the purposes of any church is to help people that have strayed to get the life back on track.
It’s not the “Usual Suspects” that concern me at this point.
They know the truth and have hundreds of excuses to bash the Catholic Church.
It’s the average Joe, fed by the MSM that think that ONLY the Catholic Church has a problem. You see it on FR all the time. Priests are fair game.
sure what would motivate you to post protestants...<<
Because “sexual misconduct” is cliche to Catholic Priests, haven’t you noticed?
The MSM like the Priest on Altar Boy scenario. So they push it. Yet, non-Catholic clergy have problems too. As do Public School teachers. But it’s the Catholics that have the problem in many people’s minds.
Some people are appauled at Catholics yet have no problem sending a kid to their own church for Youth Group campouts, summer camp or Public School. This is showing there is a problem everywhere, not just with us.
Main Entry: dis·in·gen·u·ous
Pronunciation: \ˌdis-in-ˈjen-yə-wəs, -yü-əs-\
: lacking in candor; also : giving a false appearance of simple frankness : calculating
Ummmm, no, you are incorrect.
The title of the original article, (which one is required to use when posting, by the way) was "Survey Reveals Prevalence of Clergy Sexual Misconduct."
Like the title, the content of of the article makes no distinction between Protestant or Roman denominations...and even seems to include Jewish and other faiths.
In light of the notorious homosexual pederasty scandals involving Roman Catholic priests--which cost Roman Catholic dioceses HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS of dollars (still being paid out)--I can certainly see why the title was skewed however.
I'm not. Are there any data about Baptist preachers using little boys for playthings, then being moved from church to church, and having the whole thing covered up by the SBC?
No? You can get back to me later, then. Go say a prayer to a dead woman.
Would these be the same Baptists that rejected collecting the data in the first place?
No? You can get back to me later, then. Go say a prayer to a dead woman.
Looks like you will have to get back to us instead, since your church is afraid to gather the data in the first place. Cowards.
The actual title is.
"Survey Reveals Prevalence of Clergy Sexual Misconduct "
"Clergy sexual misconduct was defined as minister, priests, rabbis, or other clergypersons or religious leaders who make sexual advances or propositions to persons in the congregations they serve who are not their spouses or significant others."
Neither the article nor the headline make any reference to protestants. What made you think they are talking about non-catholics, the fact that they said “women”?
Uh, just kidding.
Actually, this kind of thing is a problem, and its a two-way street. Ministers find themselves being regularly hit on. Smart ones make sure they are never alone with anyone while they are counseling someone, that the office door is open and someone in the next room. Or if they go to call, they don’t go alone.
Most of the time the guy might be immune to such advances but you only have to let your hair down once to ruin your ministry and do real damage to the cause you’ve devoted your life to.
Thats anyone including serious people, ministers or priests.
Now, if you’ve been around the church world at all you know there is another level of problem, and that is that there are some real freakazoids out there who go into the ministry. And they are capable of all kinds of abuses. Most people will never fall for that kind of guy but there are always enough who do to keep these guys in business. And there are people who go into the ministry who are trying to work out personal problems perhaps like some others go into psychology in the same way, trying to work out their own demons. They are a train wreck waiting to happen.
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