Pedophilia Challenges the Church
[Note from BishopAccountability.org: This commentary is also posted (without
the photo) on the Web site of the Family Action Coalition, of which Rushfeldt
is the executive director, at http://www.familyaction.org/Articles/issues/child/pedophilia/pedo-challenges-church.htm.
There it is stated that the article first appeared in Calgary City Light
News (July 2006) at http://www.calgarychristian.com/.]
Some judges hand out grossly inadequate sentences for convicted pedophiles. Just last month in Montreal, an appeals court judge reduced the sentence of a pedophile convicted of raping his two-year old daughter and selling the pictures. The judge's reasoning was that "this was not a violent act because there was no gagging, threat, or hitting". How can any adult consider raping a two-year old child non-violent?
At the time of writing, legislation to raise the age of sexual consent from 14 to 16 was imminent (Family Action Coalition has been lobbying this for 6 years). The legislation is designed to prevent adults from seducing and sexually exploiting children. Yet Egale (a homosexual activist group) and Planned Parenthood have been aggressively opposing the legislation. Just weeks ago, a new political party was formed in the Netherlands. The "Love, Freedom and Diversity" party, informally called the pedophile party, has a platform intending to legalize pedophilia and bestiality.
In Canada sexual behavior has fewer societal norms, boundaries and legal deterrents than ever before. Some say we cannot legislate morality. The real truth is that with no legal restraint on sexual behaviors, abuse and exploitation of children will increase.
What can be done about this sin? If a seared or hardened conscience has allowed this to occur, then now, more than ever before, the church is presented with a great opportunity and sobering challenge. Through Christ's teachings, we have answers to these problems. The church must first address and deal with sexual sin in its own ranks if we are to have any credibility or authority in being a voice and moral compass in society.
Some research indicates porn use among Christians is almost as high as among others. Are churches taking leadership and teaching on sexual sin? Lack of teaching, lack of discipline and "head in sand" ignorance is harmful. When is the last time you heard a sermon on sexual sin?
We often want our legislators to act to protect children. Thankfully, the current government is taking some steps. We applaud that. However we cannot expect the government to solve this problem. We as citizens, parents, grandparents, teachers, preachers and most importantly, followers of Christ, must take action.
Family Action Coalition lobbies for stronger laws and will continue those efforts, but legislative changes alone will not solve this problem. The church must clean up within and then reach out with teaching and resources to help others.
It's time to stop ignoring the enemy's playground.
Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.