Bob Grey / Trinity Baptist official news

Discussion in '2006 Archive' started by thjplgvp, May 23, 2006.

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  1. thjplgvp

    thjplgvp
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  2. Forever settled in heaven

    Forever settled in heaven
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    is this the same Bob Gray who as someone earlier noted is "that faithful man of God who labored in Jacksonville Fla. and then moved on to the mission field in Germany?I had the pleasure and blessing of sitting under his ministry and preaching for two years back in the 80's."

    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/16/429/8.html
     
  3. Squire Robertsson

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    Considering it's only a week into this affair, the statements are about what one can expect.
     
  4. C. Smith

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    This is a sad situation and no one will be a winner. The victims have suffered in silence for many years. News reports show evidence that the current pastor has known of the criminal activity and chose to cover it up. There is no one in the church to rise up and demand accountability because all the leadership in involved. God will clean house when He choses too, and for many years they have had the opportunity to handle this in a way that brought justice for the victims and less shame on the church. Now it looks like a nighmare. I personally know some of the victims and spent several years at the church. Thank he Lord He allowed me to see through many of the smoke screens and leave. We need to pray for the members that are there now, that God will lead them and for the current Pastor, Tom Messer, that he will truly have spiritual integrity.
     
  5. C. Smith

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    A sad commentary is that none of his children - 6 girls and 1 boy have come to his defense saying it is untrue. Their silence is deafening!
     
  6. bapmom

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    David Gibbs is an attorney of good integrity. If he is involved then the truth will come out.

    I simply do NOT understand why, when one man in the church is being investigated, certain people come out of the woodwork and try to implicate every man on staff at that church for some kind of a cover-up.

    IF this happened than it happened 20 years ago, which means the staff at the church NOW is probably mostly not the same men. Bob Gray was on the mission field for quite a few years. He wasn't even a part of this church until recently.

    and no, C. Smith, their silence is attorney-ordered, since it is an ONGOING investigation. It is a very common practice to advise that no one speak to anyone about any part of the investigation at this stage.
     
  7. C. Smith

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    No, I know for a fact the same men are in place...for a reason. Remember, I was there and still have many contacts inside. I am also friends with several daughters and yes, believe me, their silence is deafening. They will "support" dad because he is their father, but they have encouraged him to face this for years- for their healing also. Mr. Messer is pastor, in part, because he agreed with the "head deacons" - that are still in place - to continue to handle this the way they had been handling it. I know he was young, and David Gibbs may have given him better advice if he would have sought it at the time, but the lust for power and the opportunity to take over a ministry the size of Trinity is a strong pull.
     
  8. Gina B

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    They tried to make him face this for years? You know this?

    Are you saying that you also knew about this, about him abusing these girls, you knew and never reported it to anyone?
     
  9. standingfirminChrist

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    Gina, could just be an attack on the church. From what I read the church itself has been cleared of any charges.
     
  10. C. Smith

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    On the local news the reporter showed a letter with a confirmed signature from the current pastor to a victim, acknowedging the abuse, but stating they would use "church discipline"(shipping off to Germany). He then hand wrote a note to the side of his signature emphasizing how sorry he was for her hearthache. Yes, I reported what I knew to an official, but the victims needed to come forward. At that time, in their counseling, they were not in a place to do it. Arrangements were made with some victims that he would never be allowed to preach in the pulpit from there again. To my knowledge he has never preached at Trinity since he left the pastorate. Arrangements made by head deacons, still in power, in the living room of victims' homes. The victims that I know, where not the ones who went to the police. These were previously unknown. Their strength has made it possible for the others to come forward. These allegations now date back 60 years to his first church in Hampton Florida. At this time there may be no criminal charges against the church, but God, and hopefully man, will hold them morally responsible. The courts will probably hold them responsible on a civil level. I know one of the husbands of one victim has went to the current pastor 3 times in the past couple of years and his reply has been the standard, "For the sake of the ministry, we need to keep handling it this way."
     
  11. standingfirminChrist

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    It is funny that channel 12 in Jacksonville ran a story on it last night and no paper was mentioned. Why would a paper be available to one station and not another? I have only found a sopposed member who they will not give a real name say the pastor and deacons knew about it.

    The pastor and deacons have not made statements according to channel 12.
     
  12. C. Smith

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    I believe the channel was channel 4, but it was clear as day. You could clearly see the handwritten note to the side of his typed message. I may be wrong about the channel, there have been so many stories. Of course the deacons cannot say anything, because if they deny it, and are called as witnesses in court, then there is the proof that they knew, what is left of their name and character will be shot. I will not give their names on this public forum, but I would email it privately. It will be public soon enough. There are have staff members that have left in the past that always made comments like, "one day the truth will come out about this place"...as a young person, that always sounded odd to me and I never thought much about it...Now I know what they knew. It upsets me that they left knowing, but what can you do. All the cover-up just caused there to be more victims. It is so very sad.
     
  13. Pipedude

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    Sad all around.

    Remember that the Catholic church scandal wasn't so much that the homosexual priests were fornicating with young teens, but that, when caught, the bishops transferred them to a different set of boys elsewhere.

    I hope we all know by now: go straight to the police if a molestation is discovered.
     
  14. C. Smith

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    Amen and Amen
     
  15. SpiritualMadMan

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    I would add that it would be wise to wait until reasonable confirmation is actively sought and obtained before risking a slander or libel suit from a suddenly ostracized 'former' member...

    But, yes, if you are sure beyond a reasonable doubt by all means get the law enforcement types involved and have the party removed...

    SMM
     
  16. rbell

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    I disagree, SMM, and I think the law does too.

    Many states REQUIRE reporting of sexual abuse cases in which a minor is involved. It is not our place to evaluate truthfulness. The stakes are too high if we're wrong.

    And slanderous behavior would not be on our shoulders for reporting it...but instead would be on the shoulders of the "victim" if theirs was a false report. (we WOULD be guilty if we publicized the accusations beyond the scope of the authorities).

    Ultimately, it's not our job to investigate.
     
  17. Pipedude

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    I agree with rbell: call the law, THEN sort out the facts. Some situations call for such radical response, and this is, I believe, (based on some experience with molestation and some legal advice), one of them.

    May God help me never to be falsely accused; but if I were, I'd expect exactly that kind of treatment from my peers.

    Note: it isn't necessary to ostracize a suspect, or to publicize the situation. But it is advisable to involve the law immediately.

    Anybody reading this with some legal insights?
     
  18. C. Smith

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    Remember..none of the victims are suddenly ostracized former members. Also, I am not an "ostracized" former member by any means. Just an informed former member. This news has brought many people back together to discuss our experiences through the years. One common theme is that by waiting and letting God handle it, and not us, and by that I mean, not going to the media ourselves but allowing the victims and law enforcement community to handle it, may be the lesson will be learned. God is a very patient God, but he is also a God of justice and His time table is not always our time table. That is hard for us mere humans to understand some times. It is hard to sit back and feel like you are watching unfairness happen in any situation, but God never sleeps and His way is the best way. We may never understand on this side of heaven how things like this happen to people, other than knowing that satan is always looking for even a small area to get in and cause havoc. Although he may be smiling now, his victory is not eternal. God is good, all the time, all the time God is good!
     
  19. C. Smith

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    David Gibbs and his ministry offer such good advice. They make so much information available to churches, it is really almost a sin not to take advantage of it. I have someone very dear to me that is a pastor and he has been to several seminars etc., that they offer. Churches really need to be informed and make sure they know the law.
     
  20. TheRev

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    In Florida, pastors, teachers, school administrators, etc. are in a class who, by law, are mandated to report the suspected abuse to the authorities. I should think before making that call one should have a reasonable expectation that they aren't reporting a false accusation. No, we are not the investigators, but if the person(s) who make the accusation have proven themselves prior to the event to be unreliable then I personally would want something more than an accusation from someone who may have reason to lie.

    I know a man who was accused of sexual abuse. He maintains his innocence to this day. Keep in mind if you are accused of this crime, it is not a presumption of your innocence until proven guilty, but the other way around. This man didn't have money to defend himself and the state attorney put high pressure on him to sign a plea bargain. He finally signed it bacause he said his attorney told him that it was his word against her word and he would be found guilty because "in sexual abuse cases... that's the way it is." Now, four years later he is out of prison, but continues to carry the label "sex offender" for the rest of his life. In this case the girl was an out of control teen who had lied on many other occasions. She was not a trustworthy witness, but nevertheless I am convinced an innocent man went to prison, served the sentence and will continue to live under this cloud and "label" for the rest of his days.

    In no way do I condone child abuse or sexual mis-conduct, but our society needs to re-assess how we handle these cases. Making a report of this nature is serious business and will ruin a persons reputation. Even if Bob Gray is somehow found not guilty (which seems unlikely - see how we judge these things before a jury hears it) he is ruined as a Gospel minister from now on.
     
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