Church Positions on Domestic Abuse
This page gives links to a number of denominational position statements, booklets or webpages on how to deal with domestic abuse. Bear in mind that even if a denomination has a stated policy or position statement, that does not necessarily ensure that every church and every pastor in that denomination will know and adhere to that policy. In addition, many of the denominational statements listed below are non-binding on individual churches; they are guidelines provided by the denomination but they are not compulsory.
We are not aware of any other denominations that have stated positions on domestic abuse, so an abuse victim is in uncharted waters if they try them out. If you know of any denominational statements other than those listed here, please advise Barbara. email@example.com
Some of the items in this list are not denominational statements but we have included them because they could be useful for a denomination which is seeking to develop its own policies and / or programs on domestic abuse.
This is a PDF titled Promoting a safer church: Safeguarding policy statement for children, young people and adults. House of Bishops
Allows divorce for proven physical abuse.
A survey by Sojourners and IMA World Health (on behalf of We WillSpeakOut.US) that asked 1000 Protestant pastors their views on sexual and domestic violence. Survey taken June 2014.
Excerpt from the article by Barbara Roberts, with the following Promoting Peace in Families link corrected: Promoting Peace in Families was a Australian award winning program for preventing family violence.
It began with a pastors’ network in the municipality of Casey, an outer suburb of Melbourne. Together with their local council and community health centre, they obtained a federal grant for a multi-congregation family violence education and prevention project. The pilot project then expanded to 16 congregations. This shows what churches can achieve when they join forces with secular agencies.
Produced by Lutheran Hour Ministries, this booklet is an excellent resource that accurately reflects the position of the Lutheran Church MO Synod.
The MCC site is in both English and Spanish and covers the following topics: Am I being abused?, Plan for safety, Covering your internet tracks, How to find a good therapist, Being an advocate, Faith teachings and abuse, Educational resources. The educational resources section includes a good booklet about pornography that can be downloaded for free.
This letter is a PDF. Readers are granted permission to reproduce this letter and use it to good ends. Please do not alter or change the wording.
We have serious concerns about this PCA Position Paper and will soon be publishing a post explaining our concerns. In a nutshell, the Paper suggests that only physical violence is grounds for divorce. And it assumes that marriage problems are mutually caused so both parties are partly at fault if the marriage is in difficulties.
What’s more, although the Position Paper says an abused spouse can divorce for physical abuse, the Paper’s guidance is not binding on PCA churches in America. Any PCA church can refuse to allow a physically abused victim to divorce her abuser and can even excommunicate her for divorcing her abuser … and no one in the PCA has the power hold that church accountable for its ‘lording it over’ cruelty to the victim.