SA child rape preacher in Australia 'disgusting'

2015-07-10 13:22

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Johannesburg - A South African-based church on Friday condemned one of its preachers who has pleaded guilty to child rape in Australia.

“We are shocked by the criminal charges against Pastor Dawid Volmer and cannot make any excuses for a minister of the gospel who should have known better,” said international director for Acts Christian Church, Rev Peter de Fin, in a statement.

“We offer no excuses for such disgraceful and disgusting behaviour.”

According to the Australian Sunday Times, last week, Volmer, 41, pleaded guilty to 12 charges in the Perth Magistrate’s Court.

The newspaper’s Perthnow website reported that Volmer was charged last month with three counts each, of sexually penetrating a child over 13 and under 16, indecently dealing with a child in the same age category, and indecently dealing with a child under 13.  The final three charges are of stupefying in order to commit an indictable offence.

Sincere expression of regret

“These allegations, to which Pastor Volmer has confessed, are a betrayal of the trust that people place in a minister of the church,” De Fin said.

He said the church also offered its sympathy to the “victim/s” of the abuse.

“We ask that the victim/s and loved ones concerned will accept our church’s sincere expression of regret and forgive us for failing you.”

De Fin said the law had to take its course in the case.

“This event has caused huge emotional trauma to many people and we can only throw ourselves in the loving arms of God, whose mercy we implore for Pastor Volmer and for the enduring love of Jesus to enfold the victims that include his wife and teenage children.”

According to the article, the charges against Volmer apparently deal with one victim, who is not related to Volmer.

The Sunday Times reported that Volmer was out on bail and would be back in the district court in August.  

Volmer set up a branch of the Acts Christian Church in Carramar, Perth. He was executive director for the Western Australia branch of Prison Fellowship - a religious outreach programme for prisoners – a position from which he has subsequently resigned.

Born and raised in SA

In a newsletter for the organisation, dated February 2013, Volmer is described as having been born and raised in South Africa. He has lived in the USA and Singapore, before, according to the newsletter, “God spoke clearly to David and told him to go to Australia”.

Volmer is the author of a book The God Standard, published in 2012.  A tagline for a related Google Plus account reads: “Building God's army, one Church at a time”.  

It contains a post from October 2012 in which Volmer states: “The problem with modern-day Christianity is that people like to be called Christians, they just don’t like to live as Christians”.

According to news website Adelaide Now, Volmer had also posted on a Facebook page, which has since been removed that women’s bodies were like diamonds and pearls, and “Let us all encourage our wives, friends and daughters to dress well and decently!”

Read more on:    australia  |  child abuse

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