What is it? Domestic – refers to relationship Blood, Marriage, Residence, Intimate Partners Violence – refers to harm Physical, sexual, emotional “Any attempt to impose my will on another human being is an act of violence” - Mahatma Ghandi
Listen to The Voices Video: When Love Hurts and/or Video: Battered Hearts And/or Dramatic Reading
Power & Control Domestic Violence is NOT (Myths we believe) An anger management issue A small problem that only affects a few people Caused by substance abuse Happening somewhere else, not in my church Domestic Violence IS Hidden, happening here, even in my church ALL ABOUT POWER & CONTROL
A Definition Domestic Violence: A pattern of behaviors used to establish control over another person through coercion, fear, intimidation, emotional abuse, social isolation, or other methods, which often (not always) includes the use of, or the threat of, physical or sexual violence
A hierarchical relationship in which one person seeks to dominate and impose his/her will on another; using various means to maintain control.
A mutual relationship expressing value, dignity and respect toward one another. Though not lived out perfectly, equality is the shared goal.
What About the Children? Behavior, Social and Emotional Problems – Aggressive/ antisocial – Depressed/anxious Cognitive and Developmental Problems – Lower assessments (verbal, motor, etc…) – Limited problem solving Long Term Impacts – As Adults – Higher DV involvement as adults – PTSD/risk factors/premature death
The Way of our Lord Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves… In your relationships with one another, have the same attitude of mind Christ Jesus had: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing … he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross! - Philippians 2: 3- 11
Two Kinds of Power The kingdoms of this world place their trust in whatever coercive power they can use over others … The “power of the sword” By CONTRAST, the Kingdom of God refuses to use coercive power over others, choosing instead to rely on a power shown in humble, self-sacrificing love … The “power of the cross” Transforming, Ultimate Power = The Cross
Why do Churches Care? We are a light to the world – We are not representing Christ well when abuse exists in our communities – Our marriages are a reflection of Christ and the Church We are one body – When one part hurts it hurts the whole body – We are called to love and to care for one another
Signs – Take Notice Unexplained bruises or injuries Absences from work or school Low self-esteem – lack of confidence Trouble identifying feelings and expressing needs Fear of conflict – gives in easily Self Blame Making excuses
How Can Churches Help? Be a Safe Place, a sanctuary from abuse – Understand Abuse Dynamics – Speak Out! It’s OK to talk about it here Listen, Listen, Listen! – Two ears; one mouth – You don’t need all the answers Point to resources – Provide “walk-alongside” support – Be available over time
Top 10 Checklist for Churches Do you offer a listening ear? Is there abuse information in the restroom? Do you partner with the local shelter? Is abuse discussed in youth group? Do you make appropriate referrals? Is abuse discussed in pre-marital counseling? Do you realize the importance of spiritual resources? Do you offer ministry opportunities for those who have received care to give back? Do you hold those who abuse accountable?
Resources for Churches Restored – Packet for Churches: RAVE – Religion and Violence E-learning: Faith Trust Institute: Safe Church Ministry: – SCM: A Church Leader’s Role – Wheels; Survivor Stories; Etc…
DV Continuum of Care Level of Danger Guarded – General RiskElevated – Significant RiskExtreme – Severe Risk Symptoms Occasional incidents of belittling, name calling, and truth twisting. May believe partner is caring but feels like “walking on eggshells”. Frequent incidents involving yelling, screaming, hitting, stalking, making threats. There is isolation from friends and family and fear of partner. Frequent incidents of being beaten physically and verbally, threats with a knife, gun or some other weapon, strangulation, or destroying property. Fear of death from partner. Level of Care MinimumModerateMaximum Goal of Care Offer the one victimized education and counseling resources so that she or he can learn about DV and be proactive in thinking about safety Safety is a priority. Education about DV and counseling resources are needed, as well as a safety plan so the one victimized is empowered, knowing how to get to safety. Safety is the top priority. This is a dangerous situation. Offer resources to help the one victimized get to a safe place like a shelter. Help from police is recommended to gather belongings.
What can WE do? From what we’ve heard today: What would we like to see in our churches? What are possible next steps for action? What are we willing to do?