Southern Baptists urge reporting of abuse claims

HOUSTON (AP) — The Southern Baptist Convention has passed a resolution calling on all Southern Baptists to report allegations of child abuse to authorities.

The nation’s largest Protestant denomination has resisted implementing some type of database of ministers accused of abuse, saying that all churches are independent and the denomination does not have the authority to order local churches to submit that information.

The denomination, meeting in Houston on Wednesday, voted to amend the resolution to urge denominational leaders to use caution affiliating with groups or individuals with questionable practices to protecting children.

It is unclear whether the amendment was aimed at any specific person or practice, but it comes after some Southern Baptist leaders expressed support for Sovereign Grace Ministries. That group faces accusations that church officials covered up child sexual abuse.

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