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"But if all sex offenders glowed orange, people might be surprised to see who they are sitting next to."Schmidt said he has been labeled as a "predatory" child sex abuser.
But the insurance company overreached by requiring Set Free to assign an offender a constant escort and limiting his attendance at worship, Ellison added."As a man of faith, I have to say, wouldn't you rather have this person in church? Offenders must take responsibility and be accountable for their acts.
Church services, addiction recovery meetings and other cognitive and behavioral programs are vital to "rewiring brains," he said."We're better off as a society having him go to church with an agreement about what can and cannot happen," Ellison said. But we want them there as often as we can get them to go."As heinous as their crimes are, sex offenders are a part of the community's collective family.
"But I was open and I disclosed my history of molestation with minors."Schmidt doesn't believe in "self help," he said.
Prayer helps him stay focused on God and not on sin.
The church and the community at large have a responsibility to protect children, Ellison said.
Disclosure to the congregation and restricting offenders from being alone with a child are realistic and necessary provisions, he said."If there is a sex offender in my church with my children, I want to know about it," Ellison said.
Mc Comas is challenging the insurance company rules, which he said will have a chilling effect on disclosure, encourage abusers to go underground, and are the same for an 18-year-old boy who is convicted of sex abuse for having sex with his 17-year-old girlfriend."Where does that line go?
They're throwing everyone in the same boat," Mc Comas said.
Schmidt said he tendered his guilty plea in Jackson County Circuit Court to spare the child victim from having to testify.
He was sentenced to 90 days in jail and 10 years of probation and treatment, he said."I didn't put the blame on anyone but me," Schmidt said. But how often are we going to have to tell the congregation that someone is a sex offender?
"But that doesn't mean that we don't worship with him."There is no safety in numbers when it comes to these kinds of dangers, Mc Comas said.Tags: Adult Dating, affair dating, sex dating