The clergy sexual abuse epidemic continues with the arrest of youth pastor Russell Dion Lewis of Church by the Glades in Coral Springs. Lewis stands accused of engaging in a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old girl.
Lewis is charged with one count of custodial sexual battery and ten counts of lewd and lascivious molestation. Lewis was taken to Broward County Jail.
Meanwhile, church officials are in disbelief.
"This is the hardest time in our ministry. It's a tragedy in the life of our church," said Pastor David Hughes of Church by the Glades. "I am broken by this. I am devastated by this. I can't wrap my brain around something this
My theory is that ugly youth pastors are more inclined to commit these crimes. I’m just saying…
I'm 17 years old as well. Pastor Russell was a great man that loved his Lord and praised him with all of his heart. I agree that for all those that knew him should pray for him and his wife as well as the victim and her family, but for the ones that were not fortunate enough to meet this man please do not judge or criticize. This is a very tragic incident in our eyes and the Lord's, but Satan is out there and he just happened to grab the attention of a righteous God believer. I'm sorry for the act that he committed and empathetic towards the family and their daughter. I will have both of them in my prayers. God Bless the victim, the victim's family, Russell Lewis and his wife, and all those who follow and do not follow Christ alike.
My problem with this line of reasoning is that it is not reasoning. Instead it inserts an excuse for poor impulse control. The devil made him do it. It’s just nonsense, but I hear it all the time.
Church by the Glades seems like a nice place and they have their head in the right place. Church should be a safe place. Pastor David Hughes address his congregation in a special service Sunday. It was the right thing to do.
Hughes told parishioners he decided to abandon the scheduled topic of his sermon to directly address the news that has rocked the church, which ministers to about 5,000 people each weekend through seven services.
"We are having a little family talk," said Hughes, 47. "It has been a weird 72 hours. As your pastor, I'm sorry. This should be a safe place."
The church formally apologies to its members and is offering counseling services to those in need. I rarely see this in the aftermath of a child molestation case, it gives me some hope.