Debate About Southern Baptist Abuse Report Erupts After Guidepost Solutions’ Support for the Abomination of Homosexuality – Is the Report Now Tainted by Homosexuals Who Want to Embarrass the Southern Baptist Convention?

A Twitter post by Guidepost Solutions in support of LGBTQ+ causes brought controversy among Southern Baptists as well as discussion on the merits of a working relationship between a secular company and faith-based institution.

On June 6 the Guidepost Global account tweeted its commitment “to strengthening diversity, equity and inclusion” as an organization that welcomes employees to “bring their authentic selves to work.” It further positioned the company as “an ally to our LGBTQ+ community” accompanied by the image of a rainbow flag.

Guidepost Solutions was contracted by the Sexual Abuse Task Force (SATF) last year to investigate allegations that Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) Executive Committee (EC) leadership mishandled sexual abuse claims during a 20-year span. The group delivered a 288-page report on May 22 that included correspondence among EC leadership disregarding or stonewalling sexual abuse advocates. The report also revealed new allegations of sexual abuse, such as in the case of longtime Southern Baptist pastor and leader Johnny Hunt.

Critics, including Southern Baptists, cited a disconnect between the positions held by Guidepost regarding LGBTQ+ causes and that of the SBC, which has historically adhered to a biblical account of sexuality and marriage as between one man and one woman. That criticism extended to the act of funding such a group.

The net payment to Guidepost has come to $1,948,121 through April, according to the EC’s Convention Finance office. That amount reflects a $1,157,032 professional courtesy discount.

In preparation for the SATF recommendations to be voted on by messengers to the 2022 SBC annual meeting next week in Anaheim, EC trustees voted June 2 to clear up to $5 million of any overage in the 2021-22 budget to go toward the initial funding of sexual abuse reforms. A second recommendation would allocate $4 million in the 2022-23 budget for the continuation of those reforms.

It’s important to note that Guidepost itself will not be presenting the recommendations before messengers in Anaheim, said SATF chair Bruce Frank.

“The recommendations put out last week are from the SATF,” Frank told Baptist Press (BP). “Guidepost provided a very valuable service, but the requests are from the Task Force.”

More information, including scripture, can be found on the Task Force’s FAQ page, he said. The SATF recommendations based on Guidepost’s report are scheduled to be presented at 1:45 on June 14.

“Slight revisions” are being made to the recommendations before they are brought before the SBC next week, Frank said.

Task Force vice-chair Marshall Blalock called the controversy “an excuse not to deal with sexual abuse and mistreatment of survivors within the SBC.”

“Guidepost is a multinational secular company that specializes in corporate investigations,” he said. “They are not a Christian company although they routinely work for Christian organizations. The SATF chose them for their expertise and capacity to complete the investigation in time.

“We would have preferred to choose a Christian company, but no other firm had the capacity to do this work. We published [a request for proposal] open to all, but other companies pulled their proposals when the scope and time constraints were presented.”

Blalock added that Guidepost assigned Christians, most of them Baptists, to lead the investigation.

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Source: Biblical Recorder