Update note Jan 11, 2005:  Mormon Church officials have been uncooperative with police.  See this news article below as well as the discussion here. 

Subject: Child Molesters Expose Fallacy of Church Callings - Parents Beware!
Date: Dec 27 10:34 2004 - Jan 2005
Author: Deconstructor

In response to news reports about the alleged child molester teaching primary, LDS Church spokesman Dale Bills said (Dec. 2004), "Allegations that a volunteer Primary teacher may have engaged in improper conduct involving children in his class are of the utmost concern."

Since when is anything in the Mormon Church "voluntary?" This guy was CALLED by the Lord, right Mormons?

The church tells members over and over again that their local leaders are guided by the spirit. That's what's supposed to make the Mormon Church the only true church, because the Lord is running the show.

My own wife, when she turned down a calling, was told by the Bishop that she was turning down the Lord. He testified that all of his calling were inspired by the spirit. There was no "volunteer" about it.

So is the church really run by the guiding influence of the spirit, or are church leaders just faking it? Do they know they are faking it, or are they really convinced that their ideas come from God?

Mormons, wake up!

How on earth, in the church with God's real priesthood power and guiding spirit, could a worthy local leader call a child molester as a primary teacher? And even after making the calling and setting this person apart to be in that classroom, how could the spirit never clue the bishop in to what was going on? What about the primary presidency in their weekly prayer meeting? Didn't the spirit warn anyone about this? (Of course not)

Mormons point to the molestations in the Catholic Church as a sign that it lacks the spirit of God. For Mormons, church sex scandals in other churches are a sign of their state of apostasy.

Yet when the same thing happens in God's "one-and-only-true-church," its members turn the other way. They say the child molester was a "volunteer" as if he just walked into the primary and started teaching. Some church leader picked this guy. Yet church leaders say they could not have known what was going on. It's no reflection on the church that it lets this kind of thing happen, even though all the leaders involved allegedly have the gift of the holy ghost.

What happened to the power of discernment?! You'd think the Stake President would release the Bishop for incompetence. But that never happens, not even in the "Lord's True Church." If anything, the Bishop will continue to move up the ranks in church leadership because he demonstrated loyalty to the church under fire.

What this shows is that the Mormon Church is no better than any other church. It has no special power from God to inspire church callings and protect the innocent. It has no special priesthood power of discernment to prevent child molesters from operating in "the Lord's house."

LDS children are no safer in primary than are altar boys in the Catholic Church. If Mormons just accepted this fact, they'd do a better job of preventing these things from happening in the future.

One could argue that children are less safe in the Mormon Church because parents are over-trusting. They really think the spirit is involved and will protect their children from harm. If the Bishop called some single man (with a questionable background) to teach a group of little girls, then who is anyone to question?

Subject: A similar incident was the final straw in deciding to re-investigate the church
Date: Dec 27 11:12
Author: Puli

Several years ago, a gunman walked into a Baptist youth group at a church in the area where I live and killed the youth leader along with a couple kids and injured several others. A TBM (the adviser of my local Evergreen group) commented on the story saying that such a thing would never happen at a Mormon youth gathering because the "Spirit" would warn them all of impending danger. I couldn't help but wonder just arrogant and callus could a church member be. Several people died and several others seriously injured and we as TBM's are patting ourselves on the back for our supposed superiority. It disgusted me.

There is another possibility that is even more disgusting than your explanation, Decon. It would be that "nothing happens without a reason." We've discussed this concept in the context of the movie Signs when it was released and it is also inferred (or perhaps stated directly) in the doctrine concerning blacks and the mark of Cain. To be consistent with the idea that callings are inspired by God, would we then also be required to believe that it was either necessary to have these children placed at risk or that they had some life lesson to learn by being molested? I believe that a case could be made from Biblical stories - the story of Job for example - that they were being tested in the future faithfulness.

Personally, I think your explanation is the truth - the alternative I mention is far too ghastly to consider reality and the ramifications undermine personal responsibility for one's actions.

Subject: Like when someone shot up people at the Family History Center
Date: Dec 27 12:14
Author: Sophia

This was about 5 or 6 years ago. A mentally ill person went into the FHC in Salt Lake and shot some people. I guess the Spirit was taking a coffee break that day.

One day I was there when the police and paramedics came in. Some guy was OD'd in the restroom.

Like nothing bad ever happens on LDS property!

Subject: Once again the church illustrates
Date: Dec 27 11:25
Author: Opie

that it is always without blame. It is the members, always the members and nothing but the members. The church is, has always, and always will be blameless.

"Volunteer" primary worker? LOL! The lengths that the church goes to try and keep its image clean is pitiful. For once it would be nice to see them step to the plate and actually STAND FOR SOMETHING.

Subject: Don't you know that God was testing this man????
Date: Dec 27 11:29
Author: Imlois

Don't you know that children to God are just "test fodder". Children mean absolutely nothing to the LDS cult and to whatever God these people and other Christians bring up. If there was a god, a child's prayer would be answered. Until, he starts answering, I don't know that I believe there is one. And to those who will reply to me that, "God answered, its just not what we want the answer to be," save it. No child is being watched by God if they are molested, tortured, or killed.

Subject: Yep...inspiration and discernment is apparently not alive and well
Date: Dec 27 11:34
Author: austinapostate

Callings are received through inspiration, and then are prayed about to receive a confirmation of the calling through the spirit.

So, following this logic, God inspired someone to call this predator to work with these children. The bishop or his counselors prayed for confirmation, and they received it. So, God confirmed this calling. Apparently, God wanted this man to teach the children.

As he was doing this, the powers of discernment were lacking as this wasn't discovered through the spirit, but rather through someone coming forward and speaking out.

TBMs need to be aware that the church is just a place where people meet. There is nothing magical about it. There are bad people out there, and the church is no different. People need to be alert and aware of who is with their children.

The responsibility for this lies squarely on the church's shoulders. Lack of background checks (routinely done for anyone working with youth in other capacities), and lack of training of leaders in how to handle these situations all contribute to this and other similar situations. There are easy solutions to this problem...none of them involve spiritual confirmation and inspiration.

Subject: So in this case, the spirit actually facilitated child sexual abuse!!!!!
Date: Dec 27 11:51
Author: knownot

So what we have here is "The Spirit" prompting the Bishop and specifically identifying this child molester to be grouped with these children.

Never mind that the spirit of discernment or whatever didn't prevent the sexual abuse from happening. The way I see it, THE SPIRIT made all of this possible! The spirit successfully linked a child molester with little children together in a small room creating the perfect conditions for child sexual abuse to take place!!!!

Subject: I here and now provide training for keeping kids safe:
Date: Dec 27 12:09
Author: Cheryl

This is necessary since the church hasn't done their duty.

These helpful hints are only a start, but something is better than nothing. Listen up, church priesthood guys.

1. Child safety should be the highest priority, above every other consideration, especially worry over adult embarrassment or church PR.

2. Do background checks before putting adults in charge of kids.

3. Sit down all childcare givers. Tell them to only touch children on their hands, arms, shoulders or backs and never to reach under their clothing. No full frontal hugging. Tell them to even avoid a pat on the back if a child is uncomfortable with it.

4. Enforce rules of at least two unrelated adults in every room with young children.

5. Never allow an adult to take a child into a closed room alone. This includes bishops.

6. Provide lessons to train children that they should tell their parents or other trusted adult if anyone touches them in ways that are embarrassing or hurtful.

7. Teach kids that they own their own bodies. They get to decide who they get close to or accept hugs from.

8. Do not investigate claims or complaints ever! Simply call and report to CPS and let the professionals take charge.

9. Tell anyone who works with children that they need watch for signs that children have been molested. Do a little reading if you're not able to identify those signs. Call civil authorities immediately and directly if you think there's a good chance that a child is in danger at home, church, anywhere.

Subject: Right on, Cheryl!
Date: Dec 27 12:18
Author: Sophia

Especially the part about do not investigate claims, ever! People have a duty to REPORT allegations of child abuse to the appropriate child protective services agencies, NOT to investigate, thereby tipping off the perpetrator.

If the Mormon church cared about children they would train people and do just what you say!

Subject: ***NEWSFLASH***Another LDS "volunteer" abuse case
Date: Jan 05 07:45 2005
Author: Beantown Belinda


I wish the volunteer prophet would get off his sorry ass and make a statement about this garbage! I wish he'd explain that this was a priesthood holder.

Subject: Not good...
Date: Jan 05 08:07
Author: darquestar

Makes you feel for those children and their families. It's been said before that this isn't specific to the church.

But (and I think this is the point you're making) the way the article is headlined makes it sound like they needed someone to look after the kids, and this predatory pedophile at the back jumped up and said "Me!! Pick me!!!"

However, as we all know, someone will have called him up and arranged to see him before church, sat down with him, said a short prayer, explained that his name had been put forward for a calling to serve in primary/youth, as a bishopric they had prayed for and received divine confirmation that he was the right pedophile (surely "person" - ed.) for the job, his name would then have been put before the membership and they would have been asked to 'join with the bishopric' in sustaining him, afterwards he would have hands laid on his head, and in the name of Jesus Christ and by virtue of their calling and priesthood he would have been set apart and given a special blessing.

To describe him as a 'volunteer' is to totally minimize the church's culpability in this matter.

Discernment my arse.

Subject: Re: Not good...
Date: Jan 05 08:16
Author: Beantown Betty

Exactly my point. By remaining mum on this, TSCC leaders are LYING about the nature of their "volunteer" workers and the method by which they're "called." This glorious, majestic, wonderful power of discernment and priesthood mumbo-jumbo does NOTHING to save innocent kids from predatory creeps. And the church is complicit in this evil by brushing them off as "just volunteers." According to TSCC, there are millions of volunteers in its ranks, many of whom commit violent crimes, sometimes on church property. The church can just shrug its shoulders and say, "Not our fault. They're just volunteers."

Then they turn around and "marvel" at their "unpaid ministry" and brag about the millions it donates to relief funds (TSCC was on THE FRONT PAGE of the Boston Globe two days ago for asking its Massachusetts members to fast and donate the cost of two meals--well DUH--that's called fast Sunday and is not newsworthy).

Subject: They need to quit calling men to these callings
Date: Jan 05 08:19
Author: Wandering

It makes absolutely no sense to call men to primary positions. They are simply asking for problems. And often the men they call are the ones who they can't find any other positions for because the men are slightly weird to begin with. It sounds like they called this man to the nursery and that's not a good idea in any case.

Subject: Lol, now I'm offended...
Date: Jan 05 08:38
Author: darquestar

It just says under 14, nothing about nursery aged kids.

And as someone who serves as a primary worker (and I'm a man! *gasp*) I think it's a bit of a stretch to say I am "slightly weird".

Not all men in primary are perverts!

Of course, others may disagree... ;-)

Subject: Not all men in primary are perverts
Date: Jan 05 09:08
Author: Wandering

But I would be willing to bet that most of the perverts in the primary are men ...

Subject: The church doesn't need to stop calling men to these callings
Date: Jan 05 10:59
Author: austinapostate

They need to screen and monitor the people the call to these callings more closely, regardless of gender. Background checks and having two adults in each classroom and having windows on every door would do wonders. Easy solution to a growing problem within the church. I wonder when the inspiration will come to implement them.

Subject: Oh, please...
Date: Jan 05 11:12
Author: Grape Nephi

I worked in the primary a number of times and was even called to the nursery. However in our ward there were always at least two people in the nursery. I'm a male and like Darkstar(sp) am not a perv. And I know plenty of other men who would be offended for the blanket statement.

And there are female perverts as well who molest kids. Lets not leave them out.

I even have some gay friends that work with kids and they find the thought of molesting kids abhorrent.

Let's not go the route that most people do and make bogus blanket statements because it gets people all fired up.

Subject: But probably was nursery
Date: Jan 06 01:40
Author: D. P. Gumby

It just says under 14, nothing about nursery aged kids.

Technically true, but article does say:
Kevin F. Curlew's volunteer duties at the Mormon Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints on Hill Street included looking after children of parishioners who were attending meetings, said Lieutenant Kevin Waithe of the Methuen Police Department

"Looking after children of parishioners who were attending meetings" sure sounds like the nursery. (Ignoring for the moment that LD$, Inc. doesn't have "parishioners").

Subject: Re: Church Spokesman doesn't know if "volunteer" is ...
Date: Jan 05 16:31
Author: kg68

a member or not?

"We are unable to confirm at this point whether this individual is a member of the church or not, but should be able to do that tomorrow," Mike Otterson, director of media relations for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said Tuesday.

I was wondering if they are now asking "volunteers" off the street to watch over the little ones. According to Mr. Otterson's remark above, I would assume that is what he is trying to say!!!

Subject: One possibility we are overlooking
Date: Jan 06 08:00
Author: Wandering

We don't know all of the circumstances here. Often our EQ President will request volunteers for babysitting duties during Relief Society meetings or other meetings apart from the 3-hour-block. This sounds to me like the guy had been called to the Nursery, but we don't know that yet. If the guy was babysitting for Homemaking meetings it is possible he was a volunteer. They would be better off asking the young women to do it.

Subject: What's the difference, it's simply semantics
Date: Jan 06 08:14
Author: austinapostate

Either way he was under the church umbrella, whether it was a volunteer deal for RS on a week night or a volunteer calling in the nursery or primary.

All callings are volunteer callings in theory. By being baptized and accepting membership in the church, you are volunteering to serve...so there is no distinction between a someone with a calling and a volunteer, particularly in the press where the LDS church likes to tout that all are volunteers, even GBH.

It would appear that the numbers of sexual abuse cases among church members, while in the role of their church callings is snowballing. I wonder what the church will do about it...will GBH become inspired now?

Subject: The Difference
Date: Jan 06 08:19
Author: Wandering

Several people have said this shows a weakness in the LDS Church because a man was called by supposed inspiration to a Nursery position. Volunteers to baby sit on Relief Society night aren't part of that supposed inspiration.

Subject: Good point, but then again, should inspiration fail...
Date: Jan 06 08:42
Author: austinapostate

there is always discernment. It would appear that neither were present in this case.

Subject: That difference is valid only for Mormons or exmos.
Date: Jan 06 08:57
Author: Cheryl

The public, courts, and juries don't care about callings or discernment. They think that any institution that cares for children needs to keep them safe. And if their system doesn't work, the institution needs to fix it and pay damages.

Subject: "volunteer" abuse case
Date: Jan 06 09:02
Author: unregistered
Under the umbrella may be a good way of putting it.
The Church is frightening in it's methods to cover up abuse and other wrong doings.

It seems the more activity a member is involved in which is wrong and harmful, the more the church puts effort and money in to cover it up, and to destroy whoever know the truth and might reveal it.

There might me many revelations going on in Church membership and leadership, but telling the truth is not one of them.

I am still in shock the police did anything about the case in Boston, Mass, when that and worse has been cover-up, elsewhere where the same influence reins.

Subject: Man under investigation *WAS* baptized...
Date: Jan 06 09:15
Author: beantown boy

according to this story


more details - new to the area, never married, no kids

Yep, another inspired calling!!

Subject: huh?!?!
Date: Jan 06 09:21
Author: J.

Solomon said Curlew joined the Mormon church in July, and as a requirement had to volunteer.

a requirement to what?

he has to volunteer as a requirement of joining the organization? to get baptised? what?

Subject: You must be a nevermo...
Date: Jan 06 09:43
Author: darquestar

he has to volunteer as a requirement of joining the organization? to get baptised? what?

When you are baptised you covenant to serve in the church, or "volunteer" as it seems to be called now that he has abused someone... [The local Bishop calls you to a position such as a primary teacher by 'inspiration']

Subject: Typical Mormon convert I'm afraid
Date: Jan 06 09:23
Author: Wandering

43 year old man, unmarried, neighbor said he was weird. Mormon missionaries gotta get their numbers and he was it.

Subject: The neighbor saw him as weird. What's wrong with the bishop?
Date: Jan 06 11:15
Author: Cheryl

And the parents? They didn't notice that weirdness? Or they noticed it and still put him in a closed room with their children?

To me, that's weird!

Subject: They Could not tell the man's weirdness because Mormon's often are Weird!
Date: Jan 06 12:25
Author: not weird

The church covers up so much wrong doing, do you not realize the 'weirdness' could be normal.

There is a lot of bad things in the church. Look at how many in the church have been assaulted.

I found last year a RM [returned missionary] for Los Vegas arrested on charges of assaulting children in church (in 2004)

The Montana Stake President in 2004

This current kook case in Boston in 2004

Portland case of assault of two sisters in 2004

I could on, and on, and on.

There is a serious problem with Church leadership, both local, regional, and yes, in SLC.

But yes the church will say,,,,,,,,,well he was only a member for 6 months...........there are a lot more like him, and they are BIC! [born in the covenant]

Subject: Mass. sex abuse cases in LDS ward - here comes the damage control!
Date: Jan 12 09:34 2005
Author: temple name: Jonathan


Here is an excerpt from Tuesday, January 11, 2005:

"Until this weekend, church officials have been uncooperative with police regarding the case against Kevin F. Curlew, a church member and convicted child molester charged with repeatedly abusing a child inside the Methuen Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in recent months.

"We're going to tell them what we want," said Detective Lt. Michael Wnek.

What police want is more cooperation and better access to the church. In investigating Curlew, police found another convicted sex offender working at the church and arrested him Friday..."

Subject: This is going to cost the church plenty of money -- in Massachusetts of all places
Date: Jan 12 09:37
Author: Anon for this one

With the experience Massachusetts authorities have had with Catholic abuse, they are going to be tough on Mormon abuse. Get out your checkbook, LDS.

Subject: I don't think they care about the $$
Date: Jan 12 10:26
Author: Susan I/S

They have been quick to open the wallet in the past. Their main concern has been opening their books. There was a case in Washington and when push came to shove they were willing to paypaypay as long as the court didn't make them go public with how MUCH they really have. It was a punitive thing and so the court wanted to know how much would "hurt" as it were. LDSInc coughed up enough to stop the asking....
Anything so they don't have to open the books.

Subject: Re: I don't think they care about the $$
Date: Jan 12 13:41
Author: robertus

There is nothing that the LDS church dislikes more than bad publicity. It is one reason why church leaders in places of authority do not dialogue with dissenters and apostates. Other than Dr. Nibley, no Mormon leader even dared to take on the late Fawn Brodie. There is too much to loose in the Mass. case, so if they can buy the silence of the victims, they will be able to keep things quiet.

Subject: $$$3MILLION$$$
Date: Jan 12 18:43
Author: Susan I/S

Is what they paid the kid in Washington. I'm sure they considered it well spent/ drop in the bucket.
Hope this link works....

Subject: Unbelievable...
Date: Jan 12 10:17
Author: darquestar

I shake my head when i read stuff like this. These lawyers flying in are probably the same ones who said in the case mentioned last month "We have no idea what the facts are but we will strenuously deny them" or words to that effect.

And why does the church lawyers need to be there? What can they add to the investigation? What needs to happen is the bishop starts explaining what has, and more to the point hasn't been going on at his ward.

Subject: Re: Unbelievable...
Date: Jan 12 10:37
Author: Anon for this one

This ought to discourage anyone who is asked to be a Bishop. They already have a regular job -- why make themselves liable for some court action in an unpaid job? This should be a warning to anyone who has a church calling that they could be hounded off to court as well for the actions of those who answer to them. Not a good situation to be in unless you have lots of insurance.

Subject: Re: Mass. sex abuse cases in LDS ward - here comes the damage control!
Date: Jan 12 11:07
Author: anon for this one (swearing)

Not once have I seen the church issue a statement regarding the victim. I was abused by a scoutmaster in the church and it chaps my ass to see all of the concern and defense of the perpetrator just to protect their wonderful image. They should hang a fricken millstone around the 15 head asshole's necks and throw them into the ocean.

Subject: Re: Mass. sex abuse cases in LDS ward - here comes the damage control!
Date: Jan 12 11:28

You're not the only one who was molested by a Mormon scout master, the same thing happened to a friend of ours. And it caused never-ending problems in his later marriage.

Subject: It won't do much to discourage missionary work
Date: Jan 12 11:29
Author: Anon for this one

People in Massachusetts weren't likely to join the Church anyways. The missionary program can be blamed for this particular incident -- they brought in some wierdo off the street with problems and now we have the Church involved in a sexual abuse case. And unfortunately, these days the Church in the U.S. seems to only be able to attract wierdos with their missionary work. And we won't even discuss the strange position the church puts the missionaries in by making dating and normal interactions with the opposite sex off-limits when their hormones are peaking. There probably needs to be a wholesale change in the missionary program itself, but the LDS Church is to stuck in its ways to see it.

Subject: The Mormon Church sends in their Money men
Date: Jan 12 15:16
Author: they will whack ya out

Your right kkd. SLC sending in their attorneys means the big guns are going to start dealing now, and dealing in a cover up.

They have been involved in travesties and came out smelling like a rose before, just like kkd said. Between political behind the scene deals, and their ability to pay off most let them get off the hook.

In the Salamander Murders.... didn't the church try to bring out the old check book on that one too.

Heck, hate to say the Mormons have more clout in America than the Catholic Church does.

Well, lets hope the Mass. Police have more integrity than other law enforcement which fell by the wayside in other investigations.

I hope they also, protect the victims as well as potential witness, the harassment, if it has not already started on them it will. The odd phone calls, hang ups, threats, strange stuff being left, threats.

Remember what was happening to the S.C. lady who was being stocked by the LDS guy on the internet in the early 90's. There he was in Fresno, California, and she was in South Carolina, she was finding odd things like ladders up against her windows, ( wonder what LDS nut was doing that for him)

Yep, and the TBM in Fresno was also sexually assaulting kids.

Big guns are coming from SLC.

Hope the guys in Methuen hold up, hold out for the church opening their records and access to the church. There are too many victims crying out across the nation who have been harmed by the LDS Church, and it is time the abuses end.

The three piece suit Mormons care little about children or women, they have their own agenda.

But there is always hope, SLC got busted in the Olympic scandal too!

Subject: Re: The Mormon Church sends in their Money men
Date: Jan 12 18:16
Author: Odin

I just wonder how much phone traffic there's been between SLC and the Mass. governor's office.

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