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Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor John Schouten Impregnated Christian School Teen

pastor john schouten

The Black Collar Crime Series relies on public news stories and publicly available information for its content. If any incorrect information is found, please contact Bruce Gerencser. Nothing in this post should be construed as an accusation of guilt. Those accused of crimes are innocent until proven guilty.

In October 2018, I wrote a post detailing the resignation of John Schouten, pastor of Vineyard Grace Fellowship (VGF) in Newark (Heath), Ohio His congregation found out that he had a sex crime in his past. While neither Schouten or VGF is willing to name the crime, an email sent to congregants stated Schouten did something that was “wrong, evil, and illegal.” The use of the word “illegal” narrows the field to: rape, sex with a minor, sexual assault of a minor, and a handful of other underage sex crimes.  According to the Newark Advocate, since the incident occurred 30 years ago, the statute of limitations has passed.

Yesterday, the Newark Advocate published a story detailing exactly what it was that Schouten did:

The former pastor of VGF Church stepped down from the church he founded because about 30 years ago he had a relationship with a minor while he was a teacher.

John Schouten admitted to the relationship when confronted by church elders after the church received an email about the relationship during the summer, according to Advocate media partner 10TV.

Two people reached out to The Advocate corroborating the story.

While a teacher with Liberty Christian Academy in Pataskala during in the 1980s, Schouten had a relationship with a female teenage student. The two had a child together, according to 10TV.


You can read my original post here.

Previously, Schouten told congregants that he had committed “rebellious and sinful actions” in the past. He never admitted that what he actually did was commit a felony for which he should have went to prison. The good pastor waited until the statute of limitations expired before coming clean about his past criminal behavior.



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    It is very human to want to avoid prison. American prisons are overcrowded abuse centres used to profit on the punishment paradigm that has failed us so miserably. It is tragic that adult men are sometimes deranged enough to have sex with youngsters but the use of prisons has not gone well in our society. If once in awhile somebody is scared enough by the experience to live a life of fear rather than stealing cars, then one could term that success, I guess. I suspect that prison does far more harm to the people exposed to it than it ever did good. And it is not designed to do good. Llike evangelical Christianity, it sells its ‘services’ for profit, making big claims and mostly routinely maiming people. We might do more for people by looking at the systems being used overseas in Sweden, or Denmark, places where people are less deluded by religion and retribution.

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    “Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.”- Stephen Weinberg.

    Wow, this dude is just plain evil.

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    There were 2 girls from my fundamentalist Christian high school who married male teachers. I have always wondered when they started dating…..

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Bruce Gerencser