Other voices on COGIC clergy sexual abuse

Whether the powers that rule the Church of God in Christ are listening or not, its people are speaking. Decades of hidden, willful sin is festering right under the surface of COGIC’s grandiose facade.  

Does COGIC have a moral problem or a criminally moral problem?  Both are outside the pale for a so-called Christian church unless of course apostasy is being revealed in a different form.

The Sherman Allen case which broke in 2007 has not yet come to trial, but the church’s sorry, passive response to it will serve as a noose once the legal challenges against it begin to move. The story was covered  fairly well by The Dallas Observer and provided probably one of the only outlets for people to seek out the truth. Certainly they had come to expect their own church was not going to inform them. The Sherman Allen case has come to represent all that has been unknown and perhaps all that will be revealed in time.

I read with much interest the comments of those who voiced their exasperation, frustration and anger at COGIC’s stone faced approach to sexual abuse in its midst. Reading the comments (with quite a few from COGIC members) answered  many questions raised here.

Here are examples of those who noted the issues. Keep in mind these comments were posted two years ago and here we are today asking the same questions but facing the same cold-hearted non-response.  Same situation, different faces.

How could any organization refuse to address such a rotten cancer in its midst? COGIC arrogantly calls itself “the greatest church in the world” but dont be fooled, this is a church in name only.

“To the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says this: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.  ‘Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God.  ‘So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you.  ‘But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy. Rev 3:1-4 NASB

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10 thoughts on “Other voices on COGIC clergy sexual abuse

  1. Bishop J.N. Hayes; who was the overseer in the Sherman Allen paddling case needs to be paddled right on out the door! He is more disgusting to me than the false prophet who did the initial abuse. What Haynes did was heap insult upon injury and disrespect a woman who was abused by one of his colleagues in “ministry” (yeah right). He forfeited his reight to be called a bishop or pastor. His lack of action and compassion disqualifies him to serve as such.

  2. I’m sooooooo glad I left the COGIC church at the age of 17 never to return. I cannot say I knew of any child abuse cases but it was apparent to me that men could do whatever they wanted to do with no consequence (other than if they stole any money). Women were the cow dung of the church. It did not take me long to know that I would NEVER be a part of that denomination when I got grown. I think I have been in a handful of services (other than taking an older relative to their church). I just refuse to. I am not surprised at the indifference shown against these men at all.

  3. GCM: See this story that happened in Oregon and they also filed a suite against the COGIC. You may be able to follow up on this….His wife as also a sheriff and he was also accused of molesting his stepdaughter…

    Lawsuits say Church of God in Christ ignored abuse claims [1989 and 1999, Tate]

    The Oregonian, “Lawsuits say church ignored abuse claims,” http://www.oregonlive.com/news/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/news/1082635655318782.xml , By MAXINE BERNSTEIN,

    Thursday, April 22, 2004

    PORTLAND (OR): Two women on Wednesday filed lawsuits against the jurisdiction that oversees Portland’s Christ Memorial Church of God in Christ, accusing the denomination of failing to respond to allegations that the Rev. Roy Tate sexually abused them as minors.
    The lawsuits, filed in Multnomah County Circuit Court, come as the North Portland church continues to try to remove Tate from preaching after a council of church elders found Tate guilty of conduct unbecoming a minister on Dec. 2.
    The elders held a trial that drew testimony from Tate’s church members and others who alleged that Tate had sex with troubled women he counseled and mismanaged church money. Despite the council’s order that he be suspended indefinitely, effective Jan. 4, Tate has continued to preach each weekend.
    “I have a right to do that while an appeal is pending,” Tate said, reached by phone Wednesday. “Allegations are allegations. These people are just trying to jump on the bandwagon and want to get some easy money. Fifteen years ago, I had some indiscretions, but it was never anything with minors.”
    In the lawsuits, a 21-year-old woman only identified as “S.S.” contends Tate abused his position of trust and confidence as church leader and began sexually abusing her in 1999 when she was 16. She alleges he molested her at least twice at the church and in other Portland locations.
    A second woman identified as “C.Y.” contends she was sexually abused by Tate as early as 1989 when she was 16 and continued to be molested by him for one to two years at the church and elsewhere.

    Part II

    July 2005

    newslink http://www.jlaforums.com/viewtopic.php?p=924503

    Church of God In Christ Settles Sex Abuse Lawsuit

    This week also saw the court proceedings of a $10 million lawsuit
    against the Tennessee-based Christ Inc., in Portland, Oregon. A woman
    claimed that her former pastor, Roy Tate, had repeatedly raped her
    when she was a teenager in 1989 and 1990. First, Tate failed to show
    up to court to testify, then lied about his whereabouts. When he
    finally testified, Tate used the “well, sure, I had sex with her, and
    I was her pastor and had the authority of God behind me and all, but,
    hey, I didn’t know how old she was” excuse:

    At his turn, defense lawyer Sean Hartfield asked Tate, “How can you be
    so sure that she was a senior [in high school]?”

    “I thought she and my daughter were about the same age,” Tate said.

    The woman had previously sued the church’s Oregon division, but it
    declared bankruptcy and was removed from the suit, so she filed
    against the national organization. Before the jury came back, the
    woman and the church settled out of court for an undisclosed amount.

    GCMW: Thank you, I was really sickened to read this, but we need to uncover this so that people can make better decisions about who they associate with.

  4. Sorry Pamela, but I will be a COGIC girl for life! Despite the obvious flaws of this denomination; I wouldn’t be who I am without this church. It was a privilege to be trained by God through this church.

    I’m not saying what has happened in this church is right or whether I even agree with some of the leadership choices. But I don’t think COGIC is an isolated case. Sexual immorality has infiltrated all denominations and churches. We may not be hearing about AME, other baptist denominations…but it is happening everywhere. Ted Haggard stands as one of the many sobering examples. I always say: Wherever man is in the mix, all sin is possible.

    There is some kind of sexual insanity that has taken root in every base of this society; including the church, not just catholics like we think, even COGIC, are not exempt. These cases coming to fore are not so much a sign of a deficient church structure as it is the sign of it being the last hour.

  5. Rogers, of course I get your point but I dont agree at least not with the last two paragraphs. I mean I get the obvious flaws, no church is perfect, this is the end times thing. But Im wondering if your response is appropriate.

    Sidebar: This is about COGIC because that’s who we are focusing on. If you ask me why, I’ll tell you.

    However, knowing what you know:
    Have you talked to your pastor, written your bishop to express your outrage, asked your state supervisor why or if anything is being done about YOUR church? Have you done anything to bring awareness and help victims?

    I dont agree with the “everybody is doing it” “its happening everywhere” statement. Thats true, but why use it as a defense of the organization you are a part of?

    If every restaurant in your town was serving rotten food, would the “its happening everywhere” be applicable?Would you just keep going and eating the rotten food? Would you say its the servers fault and not hold the restaurant accountable? Would you even bring your complaint to the manager’s attention?

    Im not understanding that logic so please tell me you are not just being “resigned” because its happening everywhere.

  6. COGIC for LIFE or JESUS Follower for LIFE? The restaurant analaogy is perfect. Some people love their denoms (along with their flaws) more than they love righteousness and justice. Some folk are not really in love with Jesus but rather the culture of their denomination, the cult of personality there and the many distinctives associated with their particular reformation. Isn’t this the same sin of the Pharisees?
    Paul said; “Follow me as I follow Christ.” 1 Corinthians 11th chapter.
    There is a tendacy for people to see the thing the LORD used to being one to salvation as equal to the salvation itself. When that happens it becomes an idol, Nehushtan, a mere piece of brass like the Israelites worshipped the bronze serpent that GOD used to bring deliverance. They began to light insense to it and worship the thing (denomination, book, person, method, etc.,) that was used to save. I looks as if COGIC as well as many others need to clean house, break down idol groves, smash the faces of idols and retsore the true worship of the Most High GOD.

  7. I think Elder Jimmy’s comments are on target. COGIC showmanship can be seen throughout many denominations and in the secular world. No one can deny the charisma displayed in a COGIC service, but I see it as little more than bodily exercise which profits little and Samson shaking himself as in times before after his hair was shaved by Delilah and nothing happened. I would just tell Rogers to remember the old saying that one rotten apple spoils the bunch and since COGIC has a history of holding onto and harboring abusers of the flock, the rest of the organization is going to be affected. I think the only thing that will wake COGIC up is a class-action lawsuit by all its victims that will deplete millions of dollars and bring to light the widespread corruption.

  8. Elder Jimmy: My thoughts exactly…I have been a member of COGIC a different periods in my life in Germany and Alaska, and have decided to never join one again, because of the culture of “worshipping the creature (Bishops/Denomiation) more than the Creator is against God’s word…The song “this is the COGIC you cannot join in, you have to be born in and the worship of this denomination and Bishop Mason like they are Jesus has always really disturbed me. I believe this stuff has always happened in the past…It is just now being revealed…There are “too many” of these stories and not isolated events with these leaders. In the stories the women, children and young men violated tell, they allow a lot to happen because of the teaching and belief that these men of God are above reproach; you don’t question them and this “touch not my anointed” nonsense. These men abuse their power and status and the COGIC condones. I remember being in church when we were worshipping and praising God, but when the “Bishop” comes in, everything has to stop and everyone must stand, and put God on hold. I also have never liked how women are treated in general. My thoughts…As the bible says, in the flesh is no good thing; we need to crucify our flesh with the affections and lust and he that will be rich falls into many hurtful snares and lust. I believe a lot of this is driven by the love of money and power over others…These men are supposed to be servants of God and his people to lead us to Jesus. I am so glad that God is no respector of people and all oft this is coming out and to let the injured know that God cares and has not forgotten them and they matter…This mess is wicked….

  9. YES, YES, YES!!! Don’t you hate that the “service of the LORD” is interrupted to stand and recieve the Bishop?!? What are they thinking? This prideful reverence for a servant of the LORD is a symptom of the mess that is in the hearts of many leaders in the church today. I n my own denomination the processional on the last fay of the “Holy Convocation” is used to announce the leadership. “And next is the second vice president of the district….” My heart really cries out to GOD for change and correction. We have gone to worshipping men and traditions.
    The old addage one apple can spoil the whole bunch is akin to the Galations 5:9 “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.”

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