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Safe Church Ministry  |  May 2018
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To Solve a Safe Church Situation

Safe Church has had a significant uptick in requests for assistance with situations of abuse, or allegations of abuse, that affect CRC churches.  The requests have come from pastors, elders, or those experiencing abuse. Though we are happy to be of assistance, this is less than ideal; we can only so much from an office in Grand Rapids. What is the answer for this situation of rising need in a time of reduced resources?

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A Weighty Opportunity

It’s a privilege, a calling, and also a weighty opportunity to listen to someone’s story of abuse. As the church takes on this opportunity, it will need to listen to its own #MeToo stories with the story of Jesus, the cross, and the resurrection as the bedrock. What does it look like to be a male ally? How can the church lead, through humility, vulnerability, and Jesus?

Churches Get Training about Domestic Abuse

Domestic abuse is very prevalent, but often hidden in our CRC congregations. Some churches have decided to take action, by participating in specialized training to learn more about domestic abuse, including how the church can respond. How can churches work in partnership with local domestic violence service providers to form a more complete network of healing and hope?

Understanding Grooming

How does it happen? Abuse is rarely a random act by a stranger. Most abuse happens between people who know one another, and often a process known as grooming sets the stage. How can understanding this process help us see warning signs so that we can prevent abuse? How can this understanding help us respond with greater compassion when abuse does occur?

Webinars from our Sisters and Brothers in the RCA

“We Are Speaking” is an initiative of the Reformed Church in America. Part of that initiative is hosting webinars; two are coming up in May and we, in the CRC, are welcome to participate and learn! The first, “Responding as Men to #MeToo”, is on May 10. The second is on May 14, and will explore, “Creating Healthy Ministry Environments for Women and Men.” Can listening to a webinar really make a difference in the way we think about these issues? Can it make a difference in our CRC congregations? Why not listen in and find out.

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