Music Minister Tim Mann Charged with Molestation

My thanks to Church Executive for this story.

~~~

 

By Robert Marus

BIRMINGHAM, AL– An Alabama music minister prominent in moderate Baptist life has been charged with sexual abuse of a minor while he was employed in an earlier position in Maryland.

Tim Mann, who has been minister of music at Shades Crest Baptist Church in Hoover, Ala., since 2001, was released on $10,000 bond March 14 by a Jefferson County, Ala., judge, according to the Birmingham News. He was ordered to report to officials in Montgomery County, Md., by March 21.

Mann was arrested March 13 on a warrant from Maryland and sent to the county jail. Hoover is a Birmingham suburb.

Dennis Foust, the Shades Crest pastor, did not respond to an Associated Baptist Press reporter’s request for comment by press time for this story. But he told the Birmingham paper that the charges “involve alleged abusive actions of sexual misconduct in the 1990s which may have occurred while he served a congregation in Maryland.”

Mann was music and worship pastor at First Baptist Church of Gaithersburg, Md., from 1991-1998. He directed the music program at First Baptist Church of St. Petersburg, Fla., after his Maryland stint and before accepting the job in Alabama.

Foust told the paper that Mann passed an extensive background check when Shades Crest hired him.

He was not aware of any allegations of abuse against Mann in his current position, Foust said, “yet we are offering open conversation and counseling as needed to those who have been adversely affected by this alleged breach of trust by one of our staff members.”

Mann reportedly informed Shades Crest members of the Maryland charges March 8 and resigned from his church position. He also resigned from an adjunct position on the music faculty at nearby Samford University, one of the largest Baptist institutions of higher learning in the world.

Mann was reportedly highly regarded by his peers in music ministry. In 2004, he served as worship leader for the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship general assembly, which was held in Birmingham. Shades Crest is one of the largest moderate Baptist congregations in Alabama.

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16 Responses

  1. Anonymous and Richard ~~

    I didn’t say anything at the time because of the lack of information.

    However, if someone has had sexual immorality in their life as a pastor, they are permanently unqualified for ministry. A pastor is to be blameless. That includes having a past history of sexual immorality in the ministry.

    God loves us. He forgives. But He does not absolve us of the consequences of our choices. That is a gross misunderstanding of grace.

    God’s law is emotionally neutral. It’s the principle that rain falls on the just and the unjust. The laws of nature and the laws of God are alike. This can be seen in the law of sowing and reaping – which is the same in the law of nature and the law of God.

    If I jump off the Empire State Building I will die when I hit the bottom. If I accidentally trip and fall off, I will still die when I hit the bottom. If I repent and ask God to save me, I will still die when I hit the bottom.

    If I drive drunk just once, and hit someone and kill them, I deserve to go to prison, have my license permanently revoked and have a lifetime felony record. It doesn’t matter if I repent and never touch another drop of alcohol the rest of my life, give talks to teens about drunk driving and live a model life.

    God loves me just the same. I can be a wonderful, worthwhile person. I can marry, raise a family, hold down a job that doesn’t require a security clearance, be a millionaire, be a Sunday School teacher, have a foundation that funds a hundred missionaries around the world.

    But I can’t vote, I can’t drive a car, I can’t hold political office. There are things I can’t do because of the consequences of my one-time action. Those limitations don’t make me less of a person. They just limit the things I can and cannot do.

    The same is true in this type of situation. If someone who is a pastor commits actions unfitting to the office – and sexual sin is only one of several – he is permanently unfit to hold that office. Period. It doesn’t matter if he is an eloquent preacher. It doesn’t matter if he’s a nice man. It doesn’t matter if he prays good prayers. He cannot be the pastor of a church according to what God has said in His Word.

    And a man who insists on doing so anyway is a deceiver and a thief – not a good and godly man. I don’t care what he looks like, there is something very, very wrong. At the very least, he needs a major theology adjustment. But if he were in tune with the Holy Spirit he would be hearing from the Spirit and this is not something the Holy Spirit would be directing him to do since it is clearly in violation of the Word.

    — Danni

  2. I am not seeing any current news stories. Since you guys are closer to the local news, if you see it in your print media, please send me a link. My e-mail is at the top of the left sidebar.

    Thanks!

    — Danni

  3. I know Tim as well (there was a time when I would have said that I knew him well, but I don’t feel like I can say that any longer)

    I agree that we should stand by him in the way that Christ would. That doesn’t mean that I agree with what he did, the way he has handled the resulting fall out, his failure to come forward before he got “caught” or any number of other things associated with this situation. It doesn’t mean that I think he should walk away with probation because “he’s so talented” or “it happened so long ago” Yes, he is amazingly talented and yes, it happened a long time ago but those things don’t matter at all. Wrong is wrong, and this was so very, very wrong.

    So many people have been hurt – first and most importantly the victim and her family – and countless others as well. My own congregation as well as others that Tim has worked with have been impacted in ways that we won’t even know for years to come (if ever) The faith of some youth who looked up to and respected Tim has been shaken (and in some cases damaged to a degree that it may never recover) and that makes me very angry.

    I appreciate the post from The Victim’s Father and want you to know that this isn’t old news to us. It remains at the front and center of the thoughts of so many. So many of us pray for your daughter – that she will find peace, healing and justice. There are so many victims in this situation, but your daughter is the one that matters most.

    I still love the Tim that I knew and I care a great deal about his family as well, but at some point it is important to learn the lesson that I try to teach my children every day – choices have consequences and sometimes sorry isn’t enough. I know about grace – but grace doesn’t erase consequences.

  4. I heard that Tim Mann was sentenced to prison today. Are there any updates that anyone has. I am so deeply sorry for the victim in this case and am happy that the court system did not let him go free without any jail time.

  5. 7 years in prison.

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