Friday, November 4, 2011

My Abuser "Comes Clean"

The next part of my story will likely be the most difficult for me to put into writing. There are people at FBC that I still care for very much. I don't want to see them hurt. I do, however, want the truth to be told not only about what David did, but about how First Baptist grossly mishandled the information I brought to them. I know churches will continue to make mistakes when faced with these situations, but until open dialogue starts about the specific mistakes made, nothing is going to change.

On November 30, 2008 my wife went to FBC to meet with Rick first thing that morning. She repeated everything I had told her. He, of course, wanted to immediately talk to me. I left work early that day and met my wife back at the church. The two of us then met with Rick. I told him everything that happened to me. I didn't withhold any details, no matter how graphic. Rick was taken aback by the allegations. Not surprisingly, he asked for some time to think about and pray about the allegations. So began a long, drawn out process of meetings.

Initially there were a couple meetings with just Rick and I. Several weeks into it, Rick involved Dennis Byrd, the then chairman of the personnel committee. At the first meeting with Dennis, it was communicated to me that David would be confronted with my allegations. They (Dennis and Rick) were going to be meeting with David right after Christmas. After all, they wouldn't want to ruin HIS holidays, right?

So I waited. During that time, every worst case scenario possible went through my head. That David would deny it and no one would believe me. That word would get out about my allegations and we would be forced to move. Finally, Rick and Dennis met with David. To everyone's surprise, he didn't deny what happened with me. Nor did he admit the full scope of his actions. In true David fashion, he was apologetic and contrite. He easily sold Dennis and Rick that he had seen the error of his ways.

What happened next is a moment that sticks with me just as vividly as that first afternoon in David's truck. I received a phone call from Rick that he wanted to meet with Dennis, David, and myself. Why I agreed to it I'll never know. The abuse itself not withstanding, that meeting was quite possibly the worst hour of my life.


Anonymous said...

Hello Just Me,

I know this will be a difficult week, but I hope and pray you have some comfort and peace through it. Please know that many support and walk with you.


Anonymous said...

I just found your blog tonight. I echo the other comment: There are MANY who will be praying for you and all the victims this week. I don't know who you are but I know some of the "benton boys" and more that were potentially next. As an adult who follows Christ, values children, purity and FBC, I'm so sorry. The deception was intense and none of us will ever be the same, thank God. Peace.

Anonymous said...

You should have NEVER been brought in front of the offender again, that just makes me sick to think how that was handled. What did FBC expect to happen, David say he was sorry and it all be forgotten? I have the highest respect for you and I don't even know you, but what you did was heroic and the lives you have touched and saved. God bless you.

Anonymous said...

Has the church lost any members due to the 'mishandling' (a euphemism) of the situation? No loss of confidence in that pastor?

Just Me said...

@Anon 11/17: Not that I am aware of. The biggest reason for this is because the way it was handled has not been common knowledge up until this point. That is the biggest reason I am now telling my story.

Anonymous said...

Rest assured....there are a lot of people who have left the church because of the mishandling of it and a lot has changed in the way they handle youth functions. I am no l onger attending the choir and finding it very difficult to even go to church there. David Pierce should have been turned into the law enforcement immediately and let them be the judge of whether or not he was a redeemed man or not guilty and we all know how that would have turned out. Look how many more boys were probably abused because of the "look the other way" policy. Im sick of people hiding abuse under the door mat and hoping it will just "go away." You are a brave and heroic young man and may God continue to bless you for coming forward. I will be forever grateful to you!

Post a Comment