In 2015, the last year for which numbers are available, there were 683,000 incidents of child abuse and neglect reported to child protective services in the United States. “Protestants understand this isn’t just a Catholic issue,” said Tchividjian, referring to the massive clergy sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church. “This issue is sadly incredibly prevalent.”
It’s the bugaboo that scares pastors and parishioners alike: child sexual abuse in church.
Not only is such abuse terrifying on a human level, it can inflict devastating legal and financial costs on congregations.
Basyle “Boz” Tchividjian, a former child abuse prosecutor, has written a book intended to help churches implement policies and procedures to protect children and other vulnerable people under their care.
“The Child Safeguarding Policy Guide for Churches and Ministries,” co-written with Shira M. Berkovits, a psychologist and a lawyer, is aimed at a Christian audience, though it may be useful to any group that serves youth.