Imagine this, a person with a history of criminal sexual behavior is now out of prison and is in the new members class at your church. Most people don’t know. But some church members have found out about a record of criminal sexual behavior and they’re worried. They don't think church is the right place for this person; like a modern-day leper, shunning seems the right response. Others believe that the church must welcome all people. If Christ accepts people with a history of criminal sexual conduct, welcomes them into his kingdom, calls them his children, how can the church do less?
What to do? We’d rather not think about it – but that won’t stop those with a criminal sexual history from attending our church. To ignore, or not even consider the issue may be the most dangerous option of all.
Praise the Lord that He is working in the criminal justice system! He is drawing people to himself. Sometimes the life transformation is dramatic, more often it’s a long-term struggle to become “new”. And it doesn’t stop when they get out of prison. Don’t we want our churches to cooperate with this work of God? If so, then how can we become better prepared to enter into this growing ministry?
This week on Dec. 4 Safe Church is hosting a webinar – it won’t answer all the questions related to this topic, but it’s a place to start. Listen with a team from your church, get a discussion started, consider how your church can more effectively partner with the Lord in ministry that includes all of his children.