Why Black Church Leaders Often Get Away With Sexual Misconduct, and the Woman Breaking the Silence
By Leonardo Blair , Christian Post Reporter | Nov 10, 2018 9:36 AM
…In recent months, Garrison said, she thought her relationship with the preacher [Couzens] was exclusive.
He even led her to believe that she could become his wife.
And Couzens kept her believing until one cold day in October, Garrison discovered he had proposed to another woman and didn’t bother to tell her.
…Now, after hearing from several other deceived women she says are too afraid to speak out publicly against Couzens [church pastor] , Garrison wants to use her voice as a wrecking ball against the culture of silence that has enabled rogue pastors like Couzens to exploit women in the black church without penalty.
She is also pushing to mobilize other women who have also been mistreated to force churches that have tolerated their behavior to start renouncing their sin.
…Prevalence of Misconduct
The Rev. Donald H. Matthews is an ordained minister who has taught at numerous universities and seminaries in the areas of black studies, religious ethics, sociology, and psychology. He has more than 40 years of experience in ministry.
In his 2012 book, Sexual Abuse of Power in the Black Church: Sexual Misconduct in the African American Churches, Matthews pointed to research suggesting that black females are likely to experience three times the amount of sexual abuse compared to their counterparts in white churches.
And the cultural secrecy with which the issue is treated, he explained, are among several reasons that have prevented black churches from properly addressing the issue.
“It is important to recognize the suffering of African Americans in this area and to try and remedy it as well. This cannot be done as long as the … taboo of discussing sexual matters continues in the African-American community and churches,” Matthews said.
“This kind of sexual abuse of power represents a deep betrayal and leaves a woundedness and pain that has long-lasting and lingering effects that may never be fully healed. The pastoral abuse of power does not only negatively affect the persons directly and intimately involved with the pastor in his misconduct, it also has a harmful effect on the entire church,” Matthews wrote.
Read the rest of that page (Link): here