Nashville Church Sued for Placing Minor Alone with Man

Cornerstone Nashville church is the subject of a lawsuit for negligence. The church reportedly placed a man, Brian L. Mitchell who had a criminal history, in charge of mentoring a 10-year-old boy. Davidson sexually abused the boy while at church. Davidson and the church are listed as defendants in the case.

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Why this story matters for church leaders:

Churches can be one of the most vulnerable places for young children if they do not have excellent policies and attentive staff who enforce them.

  • Never alone with minors: Adults should never have time alone with children, even for mentoring. This should be a policy for every children’s ministry.
  • Background checks are essential: Every adult serving in children’s ministry needs a background check that determines what they can and cannot do in the church.
  • Wider implications: While the safety of children is paramount, churches will be held accountable for failing to protect children and could be implicated in lawsuits.

Who creates and, most importantly, enforces your rules for children’s ministry?

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