Friday, February 4, 2011

In which some people try to set my friend up with a child molester

My friend Liz is lovely. She is smart, pretty, athletic and nice. She was a Peace Corps volunteer in Zaire, where she set up a pharmacy inventory system for her region. Speaks French. She has led an interesting life.

She is also a serious Christian of the Protestant sort and is quite involved in her church. Not interested in casual dating with someone who does not share her faith. Which narrows her options but should not mean she should settle.

Some fellow churchmembers approached her after services one day.

We have a man for you, they said.

Really? Liz asked cautiously.

He's really great - we've been friends for years. Nice guy. Never married. He's studying for the ministry right now, they told her.

Well, maybe, Liz said.

There's just one thing...

Oh I KNEW it! Liz thought.

He's a convicted pedophile.

Liz, stunned, said nothing. What would you say?

But he prays about it really, really hard! the friends continued.

No, Liz said. No. No thanks.

She later asked me if she looked so desperate that someone thought she would date a child molester.

No, she did not. Her fellow congregants were trying to upgrade the guy.

And yes, I, too, hope that his conviction will keep him away from any job involving contact with children.


  1. That is just horrifying. I wouldn't even want to be in the same room as one, much less date one.

  2. How does someone like that get accepted into the ministry in the first place? I would think that would be an immediate disqualification. Let's hope they don't make him the youth pastor...

  3. I've been reading your archives - funny stuff. Incidentally, from reading your archives, I am 99% sure that we live in the same cold, cold protesty state. ;)

  4. I know! I can't believe it, either. I don't know what denomination this was or if he had actually been accepted to a legitimate seminary. I would think that any legit place would at least run a criminal check on applicants.

    Praxidike, thank you and yes, you are probably correct!

  5. I'm an Episcopalian, which is a mainline Protestant sect. Each church hires its own rector and does its own background checks. I think the diocese does too, but the seminaries are completely independent and some prepare students for ordination in more than one Protestant church. It's messier than the Catholic model, but allows for more local control and autonomy.

    We also have a simple policy if someone is suspected of child molestation. We call the police.

  6. Richard, I don't know why the police option isn't at the top of everyone's list.