Chapter One of the Book
“How dare [my son’s abuser] rob my son of the carefree innocence of childhood! How dare he rob me of my parental privilege and responsibility before my son was old enough to know about such things! … How dare he impose himself on my son as the first experience with sex! … How dare he express his most vile imaginings on my sweet child? How dare he carry on a relationship with my family for years, hiding this terrible secret? How dare he subject my son to the lifelong challenges of a molested child? How dare he pretend to be such a fine, upstanding, charming member of society?”
Let’s imagine a man who’s struggling with pedophilic tendencies joins your fellowship in order to conquer his urges. Let’s also suppose that he is open about his predicament to the elders of the fellowship. Informed of the situation, these elders can draw up a set of rules to help ensure this individual avoids temptation while getting the support he needs…
Of course, this assumes that the man will abide by these rules. And there is the risk that he will damage the reputation of the fellowship by abusing children within the local community instead of the church. We’ll return to these issues later, but it is already clear that reliance on procedures is unwise in this case.
That, then, is the situation where a person is known to be a pedophile. But what of attendees whose pedophilic tendencies aren’t known to us? Such has been the explosion in abuse over the last few decades that many fellowships have felt obliged to introduce background checks on everyone being considered for youth work. But reliance on this procedure doesn’t come close to solving the problem either, for three significant reasons:
(1) Offences Undetected
Even if the background checks being employed are of the highest quality, titanic numbers of people have abused children undetected. (In most, if not all, of the examples we’ve already looked at, the abuser was able to get away with molestation for a very long time. We'll see further such cases later, but a police officer experienced in this field confirms the unhappy truth that, “Detection usually takes years” ).
Most adults imagine that children will speak out as soon as they have been assaulted. But that is to ascribe adult ways of thinking to children—and it’s a lethal mistake. The depressing fact is that, unless the abuse is sudden and brutal, children often do not speak out. Formidable evidence for this comes courtesy of the almost thirty years of undetected abuse committed by Geoffrey Dobbs, who came to be known as ‘Australia’s worst paedophile’. Despite Dobbs being a “missionary”, a “Sunday school teacher, church youth leader and a ‘highly regarded’ church member”, he went to prison for life for the abuse of 62 young girls . The nature of the abuses committed was deeply grievous—and detectives believe he may actually have abused “more than 300 girls”—yet he was only caught by accident, not by any of his victims reporting him.
Why are children so reticent to blow the whistle? There are two dimensions to this problem:
Researchers Abel and Harlow tell us: “Studies reveal that in almost every incident of sexual assault, the victim--whether that victim is an adult woman, a little girl or a little boy--feels in some way responsible for his or her victimization”. This propensity to blame oneself is particularly strong with children, because youngsters are naturally trusting, especially of adults. Satan, being no gentleman, exploits this feature and encourages the child to assume that he or she must have been at least partly to blame for what the adult did to them (just as children usually assume they are at least partly at fault if their parents divorce). To illustrate the potency of this feature within youngsters, just consider this statement from a woman who was only 8 years of age when she was raped. She was 27 before she could say: “it was only recently that I stopped blaming myself” .
This tendency in children to assume that they “must have done something” to bring on the abuse (or else that they should at least have been able to prevent it), regularly keeps them from reporting what has happened . Their reticence multiplies when the shame they feel is combined with the horrendous details of the abuse. As one brokenhearted mother of an abused boy worded it in an email to me, “They don’t tell us, do they? They feel so ashamed, dirty and guilty”. (Tragically it was only many years later that this dear Christian mother learned of the molestation of her cherished son - and the misery he endured, alone, for the rest of his childhood.)
The child may also find it hard to speak out due to fear of what will happen to them if the report isn’t believed. A girl we shall call Becky was frequently raped, for a period of two years starting when she was 14, by a 40-year-old church elder called “Pastor Martin”. In the end, Martin was sentenced to 205 years in state prison for his crimes against her. But, “Becky said she never told anyone what was happening [during the 2 years she was having to suffer his abuse] because Martin was so popular with church members and such a powerful manipulator: No one would believe her”...
“I was scared. If it came out, he would twist things and make it look like I was the one who did the wrong thing. I watched how people reacted to him. They really believed in him. I didn’t think anyone would believe me. They would say, ‘How can you say that?—He’s a man of God’” .
Ironically, children can also stay silent out of concern for what will happen if they are believed. If, let's say, the abuse is being committed by a close relative, the child may well fear the disintegration of its family--the very unit that the child views as its “source of survival”. A child can be so terrified of hurting their own family that they will courageously do everything they can to hide what's happening. They may not even exhibit reticence about spending time with the abuser, so as to avoid being asked any awkward questions).
Among the other features of a child’s mind which get in the way of speaking up, “Little children do not have the same frames of reference as adults. They do not process things the same way. They don’t have the life experiences necessary to know how things will play out” . Children frequently worry, for example, that their parents won't love them as much if they tell them they've been abused. Some youngsters even fear that their parents will stop loving them at all. “Will they blame me? Will they still love me? Will they send me away to a boarding school?” These are the sort of confused thoughts that molested children, both young and older, have .
All of the above makes it difficult to report the abuse when it first occurs. But when the child isn't able to tell anyone about the initial abuse, they start to feel like an accomplice. “It becomes even harder to tell someone [about the abuse, the longer it carries on], because (they) feel complicit” notes a District Attorney in North America. “Guilt prevents them from coming forward. No wonder these kids are screwed up...” .
Efforts of abuser
What's the other kind of reason children stay silent about their abuse? A good way to begin answering this question is by giving two statistics. The first one is that, “In 80 to 90 percent of the cases, the offender is well known to the victim” . The second confirms it: “89% of youngster sexual assault situations entail individuals the child knew” . These figures smash the old, “social myth … that a child molester is most apt to be of a low-class breed lurking in dark [places], interested in abduction of children he does not know. In fact, most sexual abusers of children are respectable, otherwise law-abiding people who cultivate friendly relationships with their chosen prey” . Abel concurs. He rightly observes that the typical molester “never assaults children he does not know; he only chooses children with whom he can first build a trusting relationship.” This is vital for us to realize, because it gives us a better understanding of how abusers are able to keep children silent.
Originally, I was planning to list some of the different techniques pedophiles have reportedly used to discourage their victims from divulging abuse. But I came to realize it would be both unnecessary and unbiblical to do so, and that it would help those interested in molesting children . (The solution given in this book will defeat all methods.) Suffice it to say that even a pedophile of very low intelligence can prove fiendishly clever in ensnaring children. To adequately convey the inventiveness, imaginativeness, and deviousness that these perverts can bring to bear when weaving their diabolical webs, the best analogy I have come up with is the advertising industry and its seemingly inexhaustible supply of ways to convince us to purchase things we don’t need and which may even be bad for our health. This craftiness is a major reason why pedophiles regularly get away with molesting children for years, under the noses of the child’s own guardians.
As well as being (literally) devilishly cunning, pedophiles are regularly prepared to spend months ‘grooming’ the child (as well as years earning the trust of the parents) in order to create the circumstances necessary to molest without being reported. Why is a pedophile willing to wait such a huge length of time before committing abuse? There are several reasons:
· The strength of his urges means permanent abstinence is an unacceptable idea, but the abuser risks losing an enormous amount—including reputation, friends, job, marriage, home, and liberty—if he is found out. Thus he feels it imperative for him to spend however long is required to prepare the ground. As one specialist police officer has phrased it, “There are no lengths to which a paedophile will not go to groom a child” .
· The molester wants to be able to abuse the child for as long as he feels like. The investment in ensuring he can do so undetected seems worthwhile to him.
· Just as an angler is content to spend months luring a desirable fish into his net, so pedophiles seem to enjoy the hunt—the thrill of the chase. They delight in pitting their wits against us and ‘pulling the wool’ over folks’ eyes.
· Many pedophiles find their target children adorable. Hence they see it as no chore at all to spend time in the presence of ones so sweet, “cute” and easy to impress. Some abusers even think they ‘love’ the children they stalk. (But what sort of 'love' loses interest in a person just for growing up?) . Pedophiles are delighted to be near the object of their affections, especially if they are deepening the friendship or gaining useful intelligence on the child or its family. (The grooming process is so subtle that the child in question is consistently unaware of it. But even when the child is totally oblivious to the fact that they are being readied for something unclean, their perceived 'failure' to detect the truth is one more reason why they feel partially responsible for the abuse and are inclined to stay silent.)
· The pedophile knows the grooming process is likely to supply some opportunities for lascivious gazes. (Most parents are frustratingly ignorant of the profound effect evidently caused to pedophiles by outfits which show any of a child’s shape between the waist and knees .) The abuser also knows that, whenever the adults aren’t looking, there may be scope for inappropriate physical contact of a sort that the child will interpret innocently. (Please Note: An abuser may already have completed the grooming of children in other families. In this case his evil lusts are finding an outlet while he ‘softens up’ his next victim.)
There are ways to increase the willingness of a child to reveal abuse, and I will come to that issue later. But every good parent would vastly prefer that the abuse didn’t start in the first place--and that’s really what this book is designed to achieve. Since even a single molestation can cause a child to suffer for an entire lifetime, my focus is on ensuring abuse never begins. (For indicators that a child is being abused, see this endnote .)
It goes without saying that offences are normally going to remain undetected if the child stays silent. And, to repeat what we saw earlier, as few as 1% of molestation cases get disclosed. But even if an abuse survivor does feel able to speak up (which could easily take years or even decades), statutes of limitations may have expired, or witnesses may have moved away and be impossible to trace (or else their memories may have faded too much) and the perpetrator can escape again.
There are many further reasons why children can remain silent, beyond those we’ve discussed here. Some of the others are covered later, primarily in chapters 7 & 9. Others are listed here. I ought also to note that, even in the event that they are prepared to come forward, some molested children are ignored (e.g. by the teacher who, not knowing if the allegations are true or false, is “frightened of recriminations if they’re proven to be wrong” , or by the parent who believes the molester over their own child, generally because “for most people the possibility is just too horrible to seriously consider” . Some folks choose to “avoid the demands of becoming ‘involved’”, perhaps unaware that they can report the molestation anonymously).
In other cases where an abused child manages to speak up, the abuser eludes the attention of the authorities due to extreme naivety on the part of adults who assume that the abuse was a ‘one-off’ and won't recur. (Where a molester is taken to court, “Invariably, a long and disturbing history of abuse emerges during their trials, a history peppered with ‘second chances’ and ‘missed opportunities’ where [people] have fallen for a paedophile’s appeals for mercy, that it was a momentary lapse and will never happen again” .)
And in those cases where the child tells its mother about sexual abuse by another family member, the mother may not be able to face the prospect of her husband, or father (or son), in jail —and so the abuse may well be kept 'in-house' and never reach the ears of the authorities.
In other cases where children might be willing to speak out, they can be left in no position to do so:
“LOWE Robert Arthur Selby, 57, Melbourne Sunday school teacher and Presbyterian church elder. Receives life jail sentence … after being convicted of kidnapping and choking to death girl, aged 6, … Court hears [how] Lowe [molested the girl in the process]. … [R]eport lists Lowe as one of [the Australian state’s] top 4 sex fiends” ”
The front cover of this book features a picture of the girl before she was abducted.
In conclusion, it doesn’t matter how good the background checks deployed are. It's plain from what we’ve now seen that the majority of pedophiles will get through the net.
(2) Flaws in background check procedures
Even when the molestation of a child has been reported to the authorities, background checks are never guaranteed to flag this. Here are four disgraceful reasons why:
Limited scope of checks
A British survey found that only about 4% of child abuse cases reported to the authorities reach court . And, of course, there are some frustrating reasons why even these few precious cases may not lead to convictions . Unless a background check is thorough, it won’t pick up the bulk of those molesters who get reported .
If a background check is performed on an offender from another country, there is a substantial danger of their crime(s) being missed. Even if your police are willing and able to liaise with the police in the foreign country, more than a few of those countries do not perform any such checks . In some countries the policing of pedophile activity is absurdly limited. Indeed, in some countries the activity is legal. Thus, even a home-grown offender can cheat background checks if he confines his abuse to visits to such regions.
And if our background checks are restricted to the abuse of children then they will never detect some of the people who are a threat to children. One researcher notes that “many child sex offenders are not ‘pedophiles’. They are often ‘situational offenders’, [i.e.] someone who engages in sexual activity with children not as their primary sexual preference but only due to a particular situation they are faced with, and would not … engage in such activity except for that situation.” A guy called Matt would seem to be one example. He was a member of an evangelical fellowship and was “always into adult sex”, but he found himself in a position of trust with two emotionally needy girls and, “in both cases … it was a matter of convenience” . Another example could be Jeffrey Hannah. He abused minors as an evangelical youth minister. “I honestly believe”, he says, “that had I been a college pastor, I’d [have] slept with college girls … But I was a youth pastor. It was less about age and more about who I spent all my time with” .
Data Protection problems
It beggars belief, but police forces have been known to wipe the record of individuals against whom there was credible evidence of abuse, on the basis that data protection legislation required them to do so. British readers will recall that this was precisely the state of affairs for Ian Huntley. In spite of having allegations of four acts of underage sex and three rapes hanging over him, and despite full police checks being performed by his new employer, he was nevertheless able to get a job as a school caretaker because the police had deleted all of this information, believing it unlawful to hold data on allegations which did not lead to a conviction. Huntley subsequently murdered two girls at the school.
(When it comes to our churches, a specialist UK charity has even highlighted “a police refusal in some areas to disclose information about the presence of abusers in the congregation. Some [forces] do, but many refuse to, citing data protection or human rights legislation as their justification” .)
As we have now seen, background checks let the majority of pedophiles through. This would still be the situation even if police databases were always perfectly maintained. But police databases are very imperfectly maintained.
I have seen frightening statistics about the accuracy of entries in criminal databases, so it came as no surprise to learn that people have sometimes wrongly been given a clean bill of health due to database errors . Reflect too on this news item:
“In April 2003, the US Justice Department … discharged the FBI of its statutory duty to ensure the accuracy … of the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database [which holds the criminal records of individual citizens]. … The US Privacy Act … requires the FBI to make reasonable efforts to ensure … [its] accuracy. However, in April, the Justice Department exempted the system from the law’s accuracy requirements”.
Having spent a year working in database administration, I can confirm that the quality of police data is heavily dependent on the quality of the staff handling that data . Even in the best scenario, where the information is all complete and accurate, it still doesn’t mean the correct facts will be passed on to us:
“A convicted pedophile sentenced to do community service in a German [evangelical] kindergarten will return to court next week to face charges of abusing two children there ... The man was allowed to work as a janitor at the Evangelical Kindergarten St Petri in Melle, … because a court worker missed three prior pedophilia convictions on his record” .
If one person gets through the net, they may well go on to molest scores of children. And some children get abused up to 1,000 times by the same individual . All told, it is very unwise to place your trust in background checks when recruiting youth ministers. But even if background checks miraculously always managed to spot the danger, this still wouldn’t come anywhere near solving the problem, for the reason given next.
(3) Alternate access
By far the largest problem with reliance on background checks for those entering youth work is that access to children can be gained by avenues other than youth work. Contact with children can, for instance, take place informally at social events like church outings and holidays. With unspeakable wickedness, an 'evangelical minister' once raped three sisters during a trip “arranged by him so [that] the girls could help him distribute religious tracts”. Abuse of our youngsters has even occurred in church washrooms during services.
Abusers can perhaps most easily access church children by cultivating relationships with families, especially one-parent families, who are not aware of the abuser’s true nature. When a molester has deceived his way into the bosom of such a family, the opportunities for accessing children are sadly manifold. Just one such way is through babysitting. With the lack of extended families these days, many parents need babysitters. A member of your own church, and one whose services are free, is clearly a temptation. The risk of inadvertently putting our children into the hands of a pervert is very real, because child molesters can be amazingly charming, resourceful, devious and patient .
And even if we succeed in keeping our own homes free of pedophiles, who are our children mixing with when visiting the homes of their friends? (Sleepovers are a particular menace in this regard. Sleepovers carry other dangers too, hence respected Christian writers on family issues oppose them adamantly.)
But the opportunities for access don’t stop there. Even if a church were somehow to successfully keep children physically separate from pedophiles, the Internet allows electronic access to them. A pedophile can infiltrate a fellowship, decide which children are of interest to him, obtain their names, and start to groom them online—by posing as a Christian child and getting in contact with them via the relevant social networking site. For any reader who reckons this idea far-fetched, below is one way a church’s youngsters can be at risk even if no pedophile is ever able to darken its doorstep:
“A postman who used Facebook and Bebo to groom up to 1,000 children for sex has been jailed. ... [This atrocious man] created at least eight fake online identities and targeted youngsters he met on his post round, ... [and also as a taxi driver] and [even] in his role as a football club secretary. ... [The guy] worked as a postman in his home town, where locals regarded him as cheerful and helpful. But [he] was secretly pursuing youngsters on social networking sites—[usually by] using false names and posing as a teenager. Many of his victims were tricked into performing sex acts on a webcam and he convinced some [of his victims] to meet him in parks, on beaches and at his home, where he abused them” . (There are any number of severe risks with social networking websites. I urge folks not to use any such sites. Please see this endnote .)
It’s surely evident that pedophiles can readily gain access to a church’s children outside of formal childcare scenarios. It is thus nonsensical to believe that screening for youth work is going to keep our children safe from this scourge.
FINAL POINTS FOR CHAPTER
Those folks with pedophilic tendencies who have not yet actually committed abuse would also pass background checks. But they could easily go on to commit abuse. The temptation is especially great where the person gains a role in youth work, or indeed gains any trusted access to children. (We shall return to this category of person shortly.)
Here is one closing thought on background checks. If a person fails such a check it will usually be because, somewhere along the line, abuse has been committed. This means one or more souls have already had to suffer. God would surely never require anyone to actually suffer abuse in order for His People to be able to identify a risk. If a church cannot discern whether or not a given person is a threat to children without resorting to police checks, then that church has got a problem. And if elders don’t have the spiritual maturity to discern whom God would—and wouldn’t—want in a given role, then I reckon those elders need to pull their socks up . (Please Note: Whenever I use the term 'elder' in this book, I am including those individuals who have been given a title such as 'pastor', 'presbyter', 'bishop', 'senior pastor' or similar by their fellowship.)
Of course, a church can always introduce procedures that apply to all attendees, whether or not those attendees are going to be involved in any youth work. But this solution still leaves children at dreadful risk. For a start, no set of rules could ever be well-crafted enough to stop an experienced abuser. But there is another, much greater, problem.
Regardless of the quality of the rules a church lays down, such rules are not going to be applied rigorously, 24/7, within a home setting. Members of a child’s own family are not going to be expected to live by the rules, and neither are members of the extended family. At first glance this may not seem a significant problem (although the rate of incest today is astonishing; one in every ten families in the UK is known to have experienced it), but in truth it’s a nightmare because Christians routinely allow trusted souls from outside the family into their homes and into their family circles. This means an abuser can wheedle himself into being made an honorary member of a congregant’s family, with the many and varied privileges this affords him . (It also allows other potentially dangerous folks to access our children. We may permit our teenage son to have one or two of his nicer friends around. Or we may allow a seemingly decent person to rent a room in our house. What church rules would protect our children from such people?) It is precisely the sort of scenarios outlined in this paragraph which comprise the majority of child abuse cases .
And if our children are involved in activities unconnected with the church, and if we are not able to keep them under our watchful eye during such activities, even the finest church rules aren’t going to safeguard them . Even in a church setting there are multiple ways we haven’t touched on yet in which children are severely imperilled through reliance on procedures. These will be covered later, mainly in chapters 4, 7 and 8 .
I suspect reliance on procedures is often the result of church elders attaching insufficient gravity to the issue of child sexual abuse. We should be in no doubt at all that molestation of children is utterly repugnant to God. In Matthew 18:5-6 the Lord said, “whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in Me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea”. (If God automatically protects every child who believes in Him, as some folks suppose, why did He choose to give this warning about the abuse of exactly this category of child?) Since the abuse of children is extraordinarily serious to God, it should be similarly so among His People too.
If procedures can’t be relied upon, what can we rely on to protect our children? The next chapter explains the overarching key.
 Quoted in Diane Roblin-Lee, Who is the Predator? (byDesignMedia, 2010).
 Rebecca Andrews, Policing Innocence, (Authentic Media, 2008), p. 185.
 Details are given at ‘MAKO/File Online - # Geoffrey Robert Dodds”, www.mako.org.au/tempdobbs.html.
 Harry Keeble, Baby X (Pocket Books, 2010), p. 63.
 Jason Schreiber, ‘Victim’s emotional scars often last a lifetime’, The Union Leader, Jan. 27th 2002.
 Diane Roblin-Lee, Why All the Fuss? (byDesignMedia, 2009). The Apostle Paul wrote, "When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child" (1 Cor. 13:11a). This confirms that children don't process things the same way adults do.
 For further examples of abused children not thinking the same way as adults, see lighthousetrails.com/Laughtermarch2003.pdf (e.g. pages 104-6) or see on this website, preying.org, here.
 William Finn Bennett, ‘Child sex abuse reaches far beyond Catholic Church, experts say’, The Californian (an edition of the North County Times). (This article is available online.)
 Annie Laurie Gaylor, Betrayal of Trust: The Scandal of Pedophilia in the Church (1992). (Note: By including some excerpts from this document, please do not construe that I support it or its author.)
 Diana Russell Survey, 1978, as cited at www.yellodyno.com/html/child_molester_stats.html.
 God's word tells us to be "wise unto that which is good" but "simple concerning evil" (Rom. 16:19), so I don't believe He wants His People to study in detail the methods used to commit evil acts - unless it's an unavoidable part of one's job - presumably because it can cause temptation. (This website, preying.org, cites indicators here that grooming is taking place.)
 Keeble, Baby, p. 175.
 Since pedophilic ‘love’ isn’t biblical, it can’t have been God-given. Hence it isn’t true love, but merely a subtle satanic counterfeit.
 Such clothing tempts a pedophile to lust; but it is also interpreted by him as the child wanting, and deliberately inviting, such attention.
 Signs of possible sexual abuse include: · Sudden reluctance to go someplace or be with someone; · Inappropriate displays of affection; · Sexual acting out; · Sudden use of sexual terms or new names for body parts; · Discomfort with, or rejection of, typical family affection; · Sleep problems: insomnia, nightmares, refusal to sleep alone, bed-wetting, infantile behaviors; · Extreme clinging or other signs of fearfulness; · A sudden change in personality [Source: Coalition for Children Inc., as cited in Bennett, op. cit.]. To this summary of indicators, I would add: eating disorders, reduced coordination, reduced confidence, reduced self-worth, and a general diminution of focus on life and goal-setting. A more complete set is given on this website, preying.org, here.
 Keeble, Baby, p. 66.
 Ibid, p. 33.
 Ibid, p. 219.
 If a father, uncle, brother, cousin or grandfather is prepared to abuse a biological relative, they will have even fewer qualms about abusing unrelated children (as endnote 39 below explains).
 www.ccpas.co.uk/Documents/Help!%20sex%20offender.pdf, p. 6. There are a number of reasons why genuine abuse cases reported to the authorities may not reach court. For example, over-stressed social workers can ignore a child’s testimony in order to avoid an excessive workload [Keeble, Baby, p. 39]. Where a report does reach the police, but is old, it can end up being ‘lost’ due to confusion about the jurisdiction responsible [Ibid, p. 161]. Flaws in inter-agency communications can also have this effect. And if the crimes were committed when the perpetrator was a juvenile, but he reached adulthood before the abuse was reported, some areas of the world do not make provision for this.
 An offender can escape conviction as a result of: technicalities, or clever defense lawyers, or naive jurors. More malevolently, if the offender is part of the ‘Establishment’ (e.g. he's a politician), the authorities will usually work to extricate him. This would appear to be true of the clients of Mark Dutroux, and also of the abusers of Paul Bonacci et al. The case of Paul Bernardo also stinks to high heaven in this regard (see freemasonrywatch.org/paulbernardo.html).
 The UK has a ‘Sex Offenders Register’ to simplify checks. But if a convicted pedophile manages to keep his subsequent acts of abuse undetected for long enough, his name will be taken off the Register—unless a previous conviction was so serious that his name was put on it for life. And if his crime was the possession of indecent images of children, a loophole in the law means he may well avoid being added to the Register at all.
 There is also non-negligible scope for a dangerous miscommunication when dealing with foreign police.
 Roblin-Lee, Who is the Predator?
 Susan Hogan-Albach, ‘Sex offender back in pulpit’, Chicago Sun Times, Aug. 20th 2007, as at stopbaptistpredators.org. (I regret Hannah’s extremely weak euphemism, “slept with”.) Chapter 5 of this book discusses 'situational offenders'.
 CCPAS Press Release, March 20th 2008.
 Bruce Schneier, ‘Guilty Until Proven Innocent?’, IEEE Security & Privacy, Vol. 1., No. 3, May/June 2003. Available online.
 The scope for error is increased still further by mistakes at the church’s end. In the UK, the forms used by the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) are “so complicated that 240,000 applications are wrongly filled in by organisations confused by them” [Daily Telegraph (London), July 5th 2008, p. 1]. Even if this were not the case, the CRB is far from being a “slick and omniscient fact-checking machine”. Rather, it consists of workers who are both underpaid and overwhelmed [Keeble, Baby, p. 191].
 Reuters, ‘Pedophile allowed to work in kindergarten’, Nov. 15th 2007, www.reuters.com/article/idUSEIC55459120071115.
 Gaylor, Betrayal.
 I would strongly suggest never allowing a male to babysit your children alone these days, especially if he was the one to propose the idea, unless the Lord makes it abundantly clear to the parents that it is His will.
 Sky News, ‘Postman Who Groomed Kids Online Is Jailed’, Sep. 24th 2010. Online.
 Many risks with social networking sites result from giving out too much personal data which evildoers could catch sight of. One further risk is sexualization. Facebook is problematic here, and permits users to join at 13. Facebook also requires no proof of age, thus younger children can also join.) See preying.org's Q&A page for more.
 When elders want to know God’s will on such a matter, they simply need to seek Him in prayer until they receive a confirmed witness one way or the other. A ‘yes’ is established by two God-given indicators, as per Judges 6:36ff, and a ‘no’ by three such witnesses, a la Matthew 26:39-44 and 2 Corinthians 12:8-9.
 Where a member of an extended family is not biologically related to the child, the risk of incest is magnified because the God-given disinclination resulting from genetic similarity is not present.
 “In L. Halliday’s research on over 1,000 subjects, ... fifty-seven percent [of the abuse] was committed by family members and 28 percent involved friends” [Roblin-Lee, Who is the Predator?].
 If children are ever in a position to stumble across porn of even a mild kind, whether the images are on a poster in a shop window, in a magazine left in a hotel room or park, or on a DVD at the house of a friend, it can cause real scars. No set of church rules can protect against this. (Porn is sometimes deliberately left for children to find, e.g. by perverts in playgrounds or in toy factories.)
 On top of the major issues raised in those chapters, fixed rules also restrict the Holy Spirit--which is not going to bless our children. (As we've already seen, no rules would be able to stop an attendee from molesting children in the local community either.)