As we continue with this reprise of the posts to keep the story fresh, waiting for the outcome of the personal injury case still in progress, I am reminded to thank those who diligently kept documents, audio files, news articles and interviews. I would not have been able to compile “A View from the Pews” without their exhaustive efforts to log everything that transpired.
The dart that burst my ignorance bubble was the document, “Is it Enough?” I wasn’t the only one pricked by its impact. I was a deacon at the time it was systematically distributed down the chain of church command. The case study and timeline of events forced me to take notice and begin to ask questions. I urge you to go to isitenough.org to read the PDF document. I was so moved by it that I felt it necessary to include it in the book as an appendix. Keep the elder’s response in mind that they had not taken the role of an investigator. Is it enough to expect your church leadership to be honest and forthright with the body? Is it enough to believe that knowledge of potential abuse should be reported? Why would church leadership expect that reporting should be directly to them first for leadership to take care of when reporting statutes say the report should be directly to the hotline by the concerned individual? I’m just asking.
From the book:
“The open letter on March 20, 2015, was the culmination of frustration due to the inaction by leadership. I discovered that Titus Benton and Douglas Lay had compiled a timeline of their information on Brandon Milburn because they felt they may have been called as witnesses during the trial. They titled the document ‘Is it Enough?’
Titus and Doug contacted the elders first and sent them copies of the document to ask for corrections, questions, and alterations. They also sent it to the prosecuting attorney’s office and to the sentencing judge, who asked for interested parties with information to present it. The elders’ response was a certified letter stating that the church had not taken the role of an investigator.” (Taylor, Joy S., A View from the Pews — The Inside Story of a Broken Church, 2022, Lily of the Valley Publishing, Santa Claus IN, p. 75.)
“A View from the Pews” is available on Amazon in print and ebook format, along with being available to read through the Kindle Unlimited program. Buy a book, read online, choose your preferred method and read the rest of the story. This project is for the victims. Every book sold and every page read helps support Safe Connections non-profit in St. Louis. Please join me in the cause for victims of abuse.
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on March 31, 2022
While this is a tough read, it is one that I believe is necessary for anyone serving in a leadership role in a church, for someone seeking a healthy church, and for individuals in ministry. This book should be added to curriculum at Bible colleges as a guide on how to properly handle abuse and as a guide on how not to handle abuse.
I’m grateful for this read, not just as an individual who lived through this situation, but as someone who serve full time in ministry now as an adult. I hope people will be open minded to learning from and listening to the victims and whistleblowers always.