- Associated Press - Saturday, March 8, 2014

CLINTON, Miss. (AP) - A church where a former music minister admitted sexual abuse will host a program for all denominations to learn how to keep their ministries free of child molestation.

The Baptist Children’s Village will hold the sexual abuse awareness and training program April 29 at Morrison Heights Baptist Church in Clinton, The Clarion-Ledger (https://on.thec-l.com/MWDSnx) reported.

That church’s former music minister, John Langworthy, admitted during a service in 2011 that he had molested boys in Texas and the Jackson area. He pleaded guilty last year to five counts of felony gratification of lust between April 1980 and December 1984.

“Reacting to abuse is not enough,” said Chrystelle Thames, director of public relations at the Baptist Children’s Village, which is sponsoring the program with the Christian Action Commission of the Mississippi Baptist Convention.

“The Baptist Children’s Village wants to be proactive in the prevention of all abuse which we know and understand can cause lifelong pain. We are offering this event to educate and provide pastors and church leaders with the facts and the tools necessary to prevent abuse.”

Speakers will include Fort Worth attorney Gregory Love, co-founder and director of MinistrySafe and Abuse Prevention Systems, and the Rev. Brad Eubank, pastor of First Baptist Church in Petal and a survivor of clergy sex abuse.

Love will identify commonly held misconceptions about sexual abuse and abusers and provide facts about abuser characteristics.

Eubank said, “My prayer is that by sharing about God’s grace in my experience, I will be able to help other victims and their families find help, healing and hope and that I will be able to save and protect children by empowering those around them.”

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Information from: The Clarion-Ledger, https://www.clarionledger.com

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