Southern Baptists quash expanded sex abuse probe, for now

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Southern Baptist governing panel has quashed for now a push to expand an investigation of its handling of sex abuse cases. But the issue is almost certain to surface again Tuesday when the nation’s largest Protestant denomination gathers for its annual meeting in Nashville. More than 17,000 voting delegates are pre-registered for what is shaping up to be the biggest and most contentious in decades. In addition to the dispute over sexual abuse cases, a group of ultraconservative pastors is pushing to wrest control of the denomination. They see some leaders as too liberal on issues of race and women’s role in ministry.