VA- Youth minister charged with child sexual abuse, SNAP responds
For immediate release: Thursday, August 28, 2014
Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314-503-0003, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)
A Virginia youth minister has been charged with child sexual abuse. We are deeply saddened that there are likely more victims suffering in silence and self-blame.
Bradley Carter was the youth minister at Freedom of Worship Church in Norton, VA. Carter allegedly sexually abused a boy while the boy was at bible camp in Barbourville, KY. We are grateful to the victims and witnesses who worked to bring this case to the police.
It is always extremely worrisome when a man entrusted by the community to work with their children uses his position to sexually assault them. The church should publically explain how this abuse was allowed to occur and create better child protection policies.
We urge Freedom of Worship Church officials to reach out to anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered sexual abuse. We hope anyone who might be suffering in silence and self-blame will find the courage to speak up, help other survivors, and start healing.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 25 years and have more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)