What Churches Can Do to Stop Domestic Violence

What Churches Can Do To Stop Domestic Violence

  • First, churches can make the goal of ending domestic abuse a prominent part of their ministry. Become proactive. Talk about it from the pulpit and in church bulletins. Call it what it is, an "intolerable sin." Make Domestic Violence Awareness Month every October a call to action for your congregation with specific actions they can take. 
  • Make sure that domestic abuse victims in your church know where to turn for help. Display brochures and posters with contact numbers for the National Domestic Violence Hotline number, 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or 1-800-787-3224, and any local programs, such as Eagle's Wings Ministries (909 592-3373) prominently throughout your church.

  • Make it an integral part of premarital counseling 
  • Invite experts on domestic violence to talk to your congregation 
  • Incorporate Eagles Wings to assist your church in partnering with other faith communities to actively work to prevent the spread of domestic violence and to aid its victims 
  • Provide space for domestic violence support groups to meet regularly at your church. The Love Does No Harm curriculum was designed for this purpose. 
  • Make sure at least one member of the leadership team specializes in working with abuse victims (if 1 in 4 members were dealing with any other problem, you'd dedicate at least one member to address it; this deserves the same priority) 
  • Get your leadership trained in domestic violence crisis prevention and intervention (this sends a strong message to your congregation that you believe this is important) Have an advocate available. Eagles Wings is willing to assist
  • Train youth ministers to teach young people what healthy dating relationships look like. 
  • Start early by teaching young children in the church what it means to treat girls, women, and one another with respect.

Standing together, churches can become powerful first-responder networks that help create zero tolerance for intimate partner abuse and dating violence throughout the communities they serve. First, pastors and their teams must learn to recognize the signs and, then, how to address domestic abuse without jeopardizing the abused person's safety. Because virtually every church body has abused members within it, each should receive formal training for the pastoral and lay teams to fight domestic violence. Every church body needs to identify the resources in their community that serve the needs of abused persons and become an active part of that support network.

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