- Create a church climate of openness, acceptance, and safety that encourages victims to speak of their pain and seek relief and healing.
- Encourage clergy and lay leaders to work collaboratively with community agencies on prevention strategies and to provide for the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of victims, offenders, and other family members.
- Adopt procedures to keep abused children and vulnerable adults safe.
- Assess currently available prevention and response resources in the community and work with other community groups and churches to initiate new programs and services as needed.
- Recruit a professional counselor to establish peer-support groups for battered spouses, adults who were sexually abused as children, and rape victims.
- Encourage trained church members to serve in shelters and crisis centers.
- Re-examine, and change if necessary, scriptural and theological messages, cultures, and traditions that validate violence or abuse or support a view of women as subordinate to men or children as property of adults. Pay particular attention to church teachings on repentance and forgiveness.
- Maintain a library of printed and video resources on domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse and the role of the church. Develop a utilization plan.
- Participate in Domestic Violence Awareness Month each October and Child Abuse Prevention Month each April.
- Urge clergy to preach on domestic violence and sexual abuse topics; urge congregants to host or cooperate in community education events and to highlight opportunities for involvement in prevention activities.
These suggested actions are adapted from the 2012 Book of Resolutions pages 487-488
“I Believe You––Faiths response to intimate partner violence” (a video)
UMM/UMW discussion guide to the video
It’s On Us to stop sexual assault
Understanding safety issues:
Faith Trust Institute resources on domestic violence:
Teen dating violence:
Resources provided by the General Board of Church and Society:
A DVD – Domestic Violence: What Churches Can Do from UM Women e-store
If someone you love has been killed by domestic violence, include him or her in the “Remember My Name Project” to continue to raise awareness and help future victims: www.ncadv.org/programs/RememberMyNameProject.php