Church shocked at pastor's rape allegations
The Moravian Church in Jamaica has expressed shock and disappointment in light of reports that one of its leaders was recently caught engaging in sexual acts with a 15 year-old child.
The pastor is being further investigated for other sex crimes.
"It has cast a gloom across our congregations, our church, and our community. It is a sad day and we recognise what has happened. We expect the legal system will work," Reverend Dr Paul Gardener, president of the Moravian Church in Jamaica said yesterday.
He added that the religious leader has been suspended with immediate effect pending the outcome of the charges against him.
Reports are that on Wednesday at about 9 p.m, a police team on patrol in a community near Black River, St Elizabeth, observed a parked car that aroused their suspicion.
Upon further investigation, they found the pastor in a compromising position with the child.
He was taken into custody and is expected to be slapped with rape and carnal abuse charges soon.
He has been remanded, pending a court date. A parent of the child, as well as other family members were also questioned yesterday.
Reverend Gardner said they are awaiting the outcome of the charges against the pastor to determine how to proceed, and in the same breath, has expressed regret to the affected family.
"We want to express our own words of comfort to the family of the minor who has been involved in this. It is really a sad day for all of us," he said.