Under the guise of doing God’s work, a pastor gains access to young boys. He tells them God loves them. He tells them he loves them. He gives them gifts and invites them over to his place. Then, he moves in for the kill.
Finally, he’s caught. Another church pastor bites the dust. This time it’s 41-year-old Roshad Thomas, former youth pastor of Calvary Chapel in Tallahassee, Florida. Thomas is presently being held in Leon County jail on charges of six counts of sex offenses against a child age 12-16. No doubt there are more victims. He was a youth pastor for many years during which the sexual molestations took place.
Thomas voluntarily came to the Sheriff’s Office on Monday to speak with detectives. After an interview, Thomas was arrested and taken to the Leon County Jail.
Members of the congregation where Thomas served expressed shock at the news. However, his Facebook page revealed signs of trouble. There are more than a few posts where Thomas boasts that the young boys called him “daddy” and idolized him. In interviews with police, the victims told law enforcement that Thomas would come pick up the kids and bring them back to his apartment to “hang out”. What part of this sounds nThoormal to you? If my daughter called someone else “daddy” when she was younger, it would have caused me to raise more than an eyebrow. Why? Because it’s a clear violation of boundaries. Thomas is not their dad. He was their youth pastor. The roles shouldn’t be confused or blurred. And yet in sex abuse cases, boundaries are blurred and lines are crossed. If I heard a kid call someone other than their father “daddy” I would be on high alert. Something’s off.
Secondly, there is absolutely no reason why Thomas should have invited kids over to his residence. No reason whatsoever. Did the parents know about this? When he was interrogated by police, Thomas told them that he’d touched his ministry students’ genitals. The report says he told authorities it was in an attempt to connect intimately, but not sexually. What kind of twisted bullshit is this? Thomas thinks this wasn’t about sex and he’s right about that. It’s a crime and a felony at that.
What really outrages me about this case apart from children being sexually victimized is the shock and disbelief of those around Thomas. One media outlet reports, “The pastor, Kent Nottingham, says that he and everyone at the church is shocked. He says no one at the church had any reason to believe anything inappropriate was happening with Thomas.” Why not? Weren’t you his supervisor? What the hell were you doing while this guy was molesting children? The signs were there. The pastor and others chose to ignore them.
Police believe Rashod Thomas molested young boys for seven years at least. His props were God, games, and smooth talk. He trampled on the innocent trust of youth to satisfy his own lust. That’s sick and perverted and has nothing to do with God.