04 January 2007

For everyone who has experienced child abuse...hopefully together we can end the pain




According to Time magazine, Sharon Batts was an unlikely candidate for pop stardom. But at age nine the brown-eyed third-grader from the Fort Worth suburb of Bedford successfully bypassed the music-industry moguls with a hit single about a subject few would have picked for Top 40 playlists 2 decades ago. "Dear Mr. Jesus,/ I just had to write to you," Sharon's tinny voice sings plaintively. "Something really scared me/ when I saw it on the news./ A story about a little girl/ beaten black and blue." After imploring Jesus to come to the rescue of abused children, the song concludes, "Dear Mr. Jesus,/ please tell me what to do./ And please don't tell my daddy/ but my mommy hits me, too."

Recorded in September 1985 by the Bedford-based Gospel Workshop for Children, a nonprofit evangelical Christian "music ministry" organized by Sharon's mother Jan, Dear Mr. Jesus first aired in 1986 on a Port Arthur, Texas, radio station. Word of mouth and a 4 1/2-minute music video starring Sharon and her doll Bessie slowly spread the song on stations in Florida and Texas, where it attracted a response from hundreds of overwrought callers eager to discuss their own experiences with child abuse.

Being an adult child of an alcoholic, I hope we can continue the healing.



Dear Mr. Jesus,
I just had to write to you
Something really scared me
When I saw it on the new
A story about a little girl
Beaten black and blue
Jesus, thought I'd take this
Right to you

Dear Mr. Jesus,
I don't understand
Why they took her mom and dad away
I know that they mean to hit
The father's manly hands
Tell them just how big they are

I pray
Jesus, don't let them hurt your children
Bring me love and shelter from the storm
Please don't let them hurt your children
Won't you keep us safe and warm

Dear Mr. Jesus,
They say that she may die
I will hope the doctors stop the pain
I know that you could save her
And take her up to the sky
So she will never have to hurt again

Please don't let them hurt your children
Bring me love and shelter from the storm
Please don't let them hurt your children
Won't you keep us safe and warm

Dear Mr. Jesus,
Please tell me what to do
And please don't tell my daddy
That my mommy hits me too

Please don't let them hurt your children
Bring me love and shelter from the storm
Please don't let them hurt your children
Won't you keep us safe and warm

Please don't let them hurt your children
Bring me love and shelter from the storm
Please don't let them hurt your children
Won't you keep us safe and warm"

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