Minister Who Wanted to Criminalize Abortion Charged with Child Sexual Abuse
HOUSTON – A former Southern Baptist pastor who supported legislation in Texas that would have criminalized abortion has been arrested on charges of child sex abuse. Stephen Bratton (above) is accused of inappropriately touching a young relative that eventually led to “sexual intercourse multiple times a day or several times a week” from 2013 to 2015, according to Thomas Gilliland, a spokesman with the Harris County Sheriff's Office. Court records show Bratton, 43, is free on a $50,000 bond.
Bratton told his wife about the abuse in May and admitted to co-pastors at Grace Family Baptist Church that same day that he had “sinned in grievous ways,” according to court documents.
Southern Baptist church leaders have outlined a plan to address sexual abuse in the largest U.S. protestant denomination. Aaron Wright, another pastor at the Grace Family Baptist Church, said Bratton has been excommunicated. “This person’s life is in such a contradiction to the faith that we see no evidence that they are a Christian,” he added.
Bratton, a father of seven, was outspoken in his support of a bill that would have abolished abortions in Texas and threatened to charge women who undergo the procedure with murder. This level of offense could be punishable by the death penalty under Texas law. Bratton publicly testified in support of the bill in April, though the measure never got to a vote. “Whoever authorizes or commits murder is guilty,” Bratton said at the hearing. “They’re guilty already in a court that is far more weighty than what is here in Texas.”
I've always wondered why so many Baptist preachers are womanizers. It's even less understandable than Catholic priests, because priests can't marry, but most Baptist preachers are married. For some reason, they just can't keep their pants zipped.
Baptist preachers are well-known as notorious womanizers. There's even a joke about it:
One day a little boy ran to the field where his father was plowing, saying, "Daddy! Daddy! There's a preacher at the house."
The farmer said, "Son, go back to the house and find out what kind of preacher he is. If he's a Methodist, hide the food. If he's a Catholic, hide the liquor. And if he's a Baptist, sit on your momma's lap till I get there!"