PLEASANT VIEW, Tenn. (WKRN) — A church in Pleasant View is done with the Southern Baptist Convention. The leaders of 24 Church decided to cut ties after an investigation found the SBC mishandled sex abuse cases.
Ben Adkison, one of the pastors at 24 Church says they plan to cut ties next January. He says the allegations against the SBC are gross and disturbing.
“That report was more devastating than any of us could imagine,” Adkison said.
Adkison is one of five pastors at 24 Church, and one thing they all agree on, it is time to part ways with the SBC.
“Like, as a body how could this happen?” Adkison asked.
The SBC voted this week to apologize for “the harm our actions and inactions have caused to survivors of sexual abuse.”
The group’s new president also promised to fast-track sex abuse reforms.
Adkison says the harm has already been done.
“I think anger for all of us was the first initial gut reaction, like oh my gosh, 700 names,” Adkison said.
One of the victims is a close friend of Adkison’s.
“A former roommate from seminary school and we lived together one year,’” Adkison said. “He’s a victim, so he’s a survivor and it was in an SBC church that he was abused when he was younger.”
Moving forward, 24 Church in Pleasant View plans to continue what they’ve been doing for all of these years, protecting their people, especially their children.
The church has a security team in place every Sunday.
They run background checks on all volunteers, as well as involve law enforcement if they become aware of any accusations of abuse or violence.
“We think that is the way you’re supposed to handle it not by trying to handle it internally. If the law has been broken. The law needs to be involved,” Adkison said.