Pope Condemns Cover-ups • Rising Violence • TN Gun Ban: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Pope Condemns Cover-ups • Rising Violence • TN Gun Ban: News Roundup
  1. Pope Says Those Who Hide Abuse Are Guilty. “People who cover up clerical sexual abuse should be considered guilty, and God will judge priests who are unrepentant about committing such crimes, Pope Francis told journalists at the end of his US tour. Speaking aboard the papal plane from Philadelphia to Rome, where the pontiff arrived on Monday (September 28) morning, Francis said clerical abuse is ‘nearly a sacrilege’ and the Catholic Church must take a tough line. ‘For this reason the Church is strong on this and one must not cover these things up. Those who covered this up are guilty. Even some bishops who covered this up, it is a terrible thing,’ the pope said” (“Pope: Those who covered up sexual abuse ‘are guilty,’Religion News Service).

    The Church Board Guide to a Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Policy is an authoritative guide for church leaders to prevent sexual abuse in your ministry.
  2. Churches Likely to See Even More Violence in the Future? “[Carl] Gallups, the author of Be Thou Prepared: Equipping the Church for Persecution and Times of Trouble, reluctantly agreed churches are being targeted. ‘Sadly, many of us have a feeling we will see ever-increasing scenarios like [the Charleston shooting] in the years to come,’ he said. ‘Many of our churches are simply “too convenient” of a target for most people who intend to do harm to an individual, or even a large group of people, who are attending a certain church.’ Gallups alleges attacks in churches and other religious institutions are becoming increasingly common. In his book, he quotes Carl Chinn, a church security expert who has recorded more than 1,000 attacks in places of worship since 1999. … The recent attack on the pastor and parishioners of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, was the worst church attack in American history, according to Chinn” (“Are You No Longer Safe Going to Church?WND.com).

    Download Protect Your Church from Crime & Violence for help in keeping your ministry and members safe from those who wish them harm.
  3. Tennessee Bans Guns in Churches Hosting a School Event. “People can't bring guns to a church, religious entity or private school—even if it is private property—if that property is being used for a school event, according to a new opinion from Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery. ‘Under the [law], the statute pertains to property being operated or while in use by any school. The statute does not exclude property of religious institutions or any particular type of school, including parochial schools, from its scope,’ Slatery writes. The opinion is the latest in a series of questions about Tennessee gun laws in the wake of a legislative push for new firearms bills, including the new guns-in-parks measure” (“Tennessee: No Guns at School Events, Even Private Property,” Athletic Business).

    Richard Hammar talks about what church leaders need to know about guns in a free webinar recording available on ChurchLawAndTax.com.
  4. Church Sued for Breach of Construction Contract. “A construction company is suing a church for breach of contract, as well as a former sales representative, for allegedly violating an employment agreement in a dispute surrounding repairs for a storm-damaged roof. … According to the complaint, Ryan Construction and its employee Scott Underwood negotiated an insurance claim to repair Wayman African Methodist’s roof for $343,569.24 in September 2014. … The [lawsuit] states that Underwood, now working for competitor River City Roofing, approached [Charles] Orr, reverend of Wayman African Methodist, to complete the repairs for less money than originally agreed to by Church Mutual so the difference could be allegedly retained by the church. As a result, Orr cancelled the original contract between the church and Ryan Construction, the suit states” (“Breach of Contract Suit Filed over Storm-Damaged Church Roof,” MadisonRecord.com).

    Download Safeguard Your Building Projects for expert guidance on everything from hiring a contractor and acquiring permits to roadblocks and avoiding accidents.

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This content is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is published with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional service. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional person should be sought. "From a Declaration of Principles jointly adopted by a Committee of the American Bar Association and a Committee of Publishers and Associations."

Due to the nature of the U.S. legal system, laws and regulations constantly change. The editors encourage readers to carefully search the site for all content related to the topic of interest and consult qualified local counsel to verify the status of specific statutes, laws, regulations, and precedential court holdings.

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