I can’t even begin to imagine the abuse that went on in these homes. The stories are sordid, and quite frankly, sickening.
When I was an Independent Baptist pastor group homes operated by people like Lester Roloff and Mack Ford (Google search) were viewed as the answer for teens that were rebellious,who were out of control. Keep in mind rebellious and out of control could mean listening to rock music and smoking dope. They often specialized in teen pregnancies.
Roloff was considered a god at Midwestern Baptist College, the college I attended in the 1970’s. Whatever Roloff said was considered the gospel.
Roloff, and others like him would travel the country with special groups made up of teens that had been “fixed.” The purpose of traveling from Church to Church was to raise money and to troll for more teens to fix.
In the 1980’s I came in contact with the Williams family and Hephzibah Home in Indiana. They were typical, extreme Independent Baptists. At the time I thought they were doing a “good” work. I now know their “good” work was actually child abuse.
Here are some links for you to check out if you are more interested in finding out more about this.
New Bethany Survivors (link no longer active)
The sins of the Independent Baptist Church movement are many. The cover-ups are legion and continue until this day. Fortunately, the internet allows the light to expose these cockroaches. I feel great sorrow for those hurt and abused. To the degree that I was a part of this, I am indeed sorry. While I never was party to a child being sent to any of these homes I did recommend them to parents. I would like to claim ignorance but somehow that doesn’t make me feel any better. I am fucked up enough by my Independent Baptist past. I can only imagine how it is for these kids who were sent to these homes.