Church bans children from services for sex offender pastor


Christ Tabernacle Church in Jacksonville, FL has decided to ban children from Sunday services because their pastor is a sex offender. Yes, you read correctly. That wasn't a typo.

It appears that the church has chosen Pastor Darrell Gilyard over their children. They have been removed from services, so Pastor Gilyard can preach and serve as pastor.

It doesn't seem that the children are completely left out in the cold. A member of their church posted the following statement (typos and all) on the church's Facebook page:

"Children are not ban from going to the church, they go to church they are in another building being taught by a Children Pastor."

According to a report from Clutch Magazine, Pastor Gilyard plead guilty to lewd conduct and lewd molestation of two underage girls while he was the pastor of Shiloh Baptist Church. The conditions of his plea agreement state that he can't have "unsupervised contact with children under 18 years old.”

Anytime I see the words "children", "ban" and "church" together in the same sentence my heart starts to break. I don't know Pastor Gilyard. He may be a wonderful man and he is definitely entitled to all of the forgiveness that God offers all of us. However, I would feel extremely uncomfortable having a pastor that is not permitted to legally spend time around children.

When we break certain laws, we forfeit the opportunity to pursue certain careers. That includes being a pastor. Being able to serve in ministry is a priviledege, not a right. It is hard for me to completely understand how the members of Christ Tabernacle Church are dealing with this entire situation. They definitely need all of our prayers.

What do you think? Could you belong to a church where the pastor was a registered sex offender?

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