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FAITH: Children are an endangered species

Pastor Demetrius Moffett

When we speak of endangered species, we reference any creation that is very likely to become extinct in the near future, either worldwide or in a particular political jurisdiction.

April is child abuse awareness month and our greatest assets is on the endangered species list.

Our children are being abused or neglected at an increased rate. If we are not careful, we will kill off our very existence.

At least 678,000 children, or almost 9.2 in every 1,000 children in the United States, were abused in 2018, according to the Children’s Bureau. Neglect is the most common form of child abuse which affects about 60% of child abuse victims.

Neglect is defined as a parent or guardian who fails to provide for their child’s basic needs. Forms of neglect include medical, educational, physical, and emotional neglect.

The numbers are heart wrenching, 10.7% were physically abused; 7% were sexually abused; more than 15% were victims of two or more types of maltreatment. In 2018, roughly 1,770 children died as a result of child abuse or neglect.

No group of children is immune from being a victim of child abuse or neglect, although girls are more often the victims than boys. For all other types of abuse and neglect, statistics are about equal for boys and girls.

Although children of all ages experience abuse and neglect, it is the youngest children that are the most vulnerable; 26.7 per 1,000 children are victims of child abuse and neglect in their first year of life.

It’s time to advocate for our children. Are animals more valuable than children? How many commercials have we seen advocating for support of abused animals compared to those of abused children?

Our children are in need of a village that cares and shares. It’s not enough for us to talk about it, we need to do something about it.

Children who suffer child abuse and are in the system are low hanging fruit as it pertains to child trafficking or abductions. What are we doing to protect the very essence of humanity?

I respectfully request for you to take a deeper look into your spirit. Are you doing all you can do to support our community of children? Are you doing all you can to help eliminate abuse and neglect?

The days of a child being seen and not heard is over. They have voices and they need to be heard.

Are you willing to fight for our children or let them dwell on the endangered species list?

Our existence depends on it.

Rev. Demetrius Moffett is Senior Pastor of Orange Church of God-Embassy of Grace, 1911 North 16th Street in Orange.