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RELIGIOUS ABUSE POWER... MONEY... CONTROL What is Religious Abuse? Corrupted church leaders who use power, monetary greed, and demand for total control.

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Presentation on theme: "RELIGIOUS ABUSE POWER... MONEY... CONTROL What is Religious Abuse? Corrupted church leaders who use power, monetary greed, and demand for total control."— Presentation transcript:

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2 RELIGIOUS ABUSE POWER... MONEY... CONTROL

3 What is Religious Abuse? Corrupted church leaders who use power, monetary greed, and demand for total control of people’s lives to leverage for their own purposes (also called Spiritual Abuse) Escaping victims must learn to recognize the warning signs, be aware of their personal liberty, and take immediate action to leave the abusive situation

4 Warning Signs of Religious Abuse Out loud shaming, focus on performance, manipulation, coercion, extortion, unquestioning obedience, preoccupation with fault and blame, an obscured reality Power posturing, unspoken rules, lack of balance, paranoia, misplaced loyalty, secrecy, degradation of women

5 Examples of Religious Abuse Westborough Baptist Church Disowns Daughter Westborough Baptist Church Disowns Daughter Tina Anderson rape, forced confession Mega church pastor Jack Schaap’s sexual relationship with underage teen Mega church pastor Jack Schaap’s sexual relationship with underage teen Christian boarding school torture and abuse

6 What Causes Religious Abuse? The pursuit of absolute power and authority over people Monetary greed Total dominating control Mandatory loyalty to the leader Forced submission and conformity to religious “rules” Free, independent thinking is ridiculed

7 Effects of Religious Abuse A distorted view of God and spiritual ideas Abusing others (child abuse, relatives) Emotional abuse (conditional love/trust) Paranoia, fear of humiliation or punishment Sexual abuse (sexual assault, rape, or exploitation) Suicide (an escape)

8 Ways to Stop Religious Abuse Learn to recognize warning signs of abuse – Power posturing, manipulation, secrecy, etc… Understand true personal liberty – No church leader has infinite personal authority over anyone! Break free from the abusive church – Including everyone associated with it

9 How to Recover from Religious Abuse Seek professional counseling Help others escape Conduct independent religious study Take a break from church for a while Communicate with others who have escaped Avoid future religious abuse

10 Recovery Resources Highly Recommended Websites:

11 Questions?


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