We are often asked what a healthy mission board/field for MKs would look like. While we don’t have all the answers, we definitely have some thoughts.
- In the initial hiring process of missionaries several things should happen:
- Thorough background checks of prospective missionaries
- Thorough sexual abuse prevention and response training
- Waivers signed stating that the mission knows of no allegations of abuse regarding any of the coworkers (nationals and missionaries) on the field where the missionary will serve and that they will be notified immediately in writing if any come to light at any point, even if no longer with the board. Continue reading
This article comes to us from ChurchLeaders.com and I believe it is really important reading for the pastors who come to this site wanting to understand what is happening and how abuse affects victims as adults. (A warning for abuse survivors that there are a few sentences in the article that describe what constitutes sexual abuse, and this may be disturbing to some.)
But there is great stuff here. Including …
These truths about childhood sexual abuse and its effects have enormous implications for pastors. They will keep a pastor from telling a victim, “That was such a long time ago. Why don’t you just get over it and move on?” These truths will remind a pastor that survivors are often sexually promiscuous or struggle with chemical addiction, so he can address the underlying issue and not just the obvious behavior problems. They will also prevent him from shaming the survivor for her sinful actions, and thus adding to her despair. Equally important, the informed pastor will realize he must always refer sexual abuse victims for additional help.
Please check it out and let us know what you thought: “Innocence Lost” Helping Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse by Marnie C. Ferree
This article is a re-print from this link at SNAP (The Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests). I found it especially interesting that they caution people in how they respond to abuse allegations, if they believe in the innocence of the minister. In summary, the problem is that little eyes are watching. And in these tense moments the little ones around us are getting a message loud and clear: This is how people treat you when you come forward. People won’t believe you. People will turn on you and attack your family. It’s not worth it. It’s too ugly. You’ll be hated.
Please take time to read and share your thoughts with us:
What to do when your minister is accused of abuse
1) Remain open-minded.
The natural human instinct is to recoil from alleged horror, and to immediately assume that the allegations are false. But the overwhelming majority of abuse disclosures prove to be true. In every case, the proper and Christian response is to remain open-minded.
We are so grateful popular missiologist Ed Stetzer broke his silence. Incredibly grateful, especially at this time.
I waited, not so patiently, I know. But I believe God’s timing was impeccable. Thank you, Ed.
Please read it. It’s great: The Price
Many people have asked us what they should be telling their churches. Maybe this can be a starting point for your missions council:
ASK ABWE …
1. To release the Simms Showers report without victim names. (This should include how many people were contacted and interviewed, so you can determine how thorough it actually was.) To inform current and sending churches only is not enough. All churches who supported these men, should know. Beyond that, we believe their former coworkers must know and any other affiliations they hold, such as GARBC.
2. Ask for proof of how each alleged pedophile has been handled: proof they have been let go, proof they have been reported to authorities.
Dear Blog Supporters:
I want to thank all of you who have supported me and the blog over the last couple of years. I have not actually moderated for over a year, and due to recent events on the blog, namely the allegations against Jay Walsh, I have decided that it is best if I step down from the blog. I personally believe that Jay Walsh is innocent of child abuse and therefore feel that this is the right step for me to take. Please support and pray for the moderators who are left, for ABWE and for G.R.A.C.E as they continue their investigation of Dr. Ketcham.
Susannah Beals Baker
If you believe that Jay Walsh is innocent of the allegations against him, the document from ABWE still deserves your attention. What does it indicate:
- The investigation had some holes. Simms Showers/ABWE didn’t even attempt to interview a key witness. That’s a problem, by any standard.
- ABWE clearly determined (their determination, yes, not a court of law) that he was guilty enough that they had to sever ties. And yet they tried to do it very quietly and secretly, once again hiding matters involving child sexual abuse. That’s a problem, by any standard. I believe that even if you think he is innocent you should still agree with the premise that secretly dismissing any man for breach of a child sexual abuse policy is a problem. Continue reading