28 January 2010
BY CHASE PURDY
The News Virginian

STAUNTON — Call almost any church in Staunton, and at least one person will recognize his name.

And they do for good reason. Steven Bruce Joplin, 59, of Middlebrook, dedicated much of his life to ministering to area youth and promoting the mission of Christ United Methodist Church.

But his own religious community sat dumbfounded in August, when they learned authorities charged Joplin, Christ United’s former director of Christian education, with seven counts of child molestation that allegedly occurred in the church. Now they brace themselves for his plea hearing today in Staunton Circuit Court.

The Rev. Robert Edwards started serving at Christ United in July 2008. He ministered for just over a year when he felt the tremor of charges against his co-worker.


Read the rest of the story at The News Virginian.

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