LACK OF PLAN MARKS CHURCH RESPONSE

By Bob Smietana
Lifeway Research

170404domesticviolence1NASHVILLE — When it comes to domestic violence, Protestant pastors want to be helpful but often don’t know where to start.

Most say their church would be a safe haven for victims of domestic violence.

But many don’t know if anyone in their church has been a victim of domestic violence. And only half say they have a plan in place to help if a victim comes forward.

Those are among the findings of a new report on churches and domestic abuse from Nashville-based LifeWay Research, based on a phone survey of 1,000 Protestant senior pastors. Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research, said churches want to help victims of domestic violence but aren’t always effective at doing so.

“Many pastors aren’t aware if domestic violence is happening in their congregation,” McConnell said. “And even if they are aware, they often don’t know how to help.” [Read more…]

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DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AFFECTS CHRISTIANS

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

dometic-abuse-woman-manELIZABETHTON — Christians and church members are not immune from domestic violence, says long-time Christian counselor Art Webb.

One in four women will experience some kind of abuse by the time they reach 18 years old said Webb, a Christian counselor who has served with Watauga Baptist Association, based in Elizabethton, for 30 years.

“I’ve seen domestic violence among Christians as well as church and non-church members,” Webb said.

In fact, it’s sometimes more difficult for Christian women, Webb said. It’s hard for a Christian woman married to a professing Christian man to acknowledge the problem. “It brings shame and disgrace on the family if they admit it,” he added. [Read more…]

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VICTIM: TREAT DOMESTIC ABUSE WITH CARE

LifeWay Research

depressed-woman-cryingNASHVILLE — Investigating claims of domestic violence can backfire for churches, said radio host and speaker Autumn Miles, who partnered with LifeWay Research on a study about churches and domestic violence.

Miles, a past victim of domestic abuse, said it’s difficult for victims to come forward and ask a church for help. And when they do, they often need immediate assistance. They can’t wait for a church to do an investigation before deciding to help. [Read more…]

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VIOLENCE CAN STOP ‘IF,’ SAYS PASTOR

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Ternae Jordan

Ternae Jordan

BRENTWOOD — Ternae Jordan Sr., senior pastor of Mount Canaan Baptist Church in Chattanooga, is not surprised at all by the violence he sees in America today.

He has been leading efforts to combat violence since the early 1990s while he was serving as a pastor in Fort Wayne, Ind. During his 10-year tenure there, he presided over the funerals of 105 young African-Americans.

Jordan’s passion for serving God and compassion for reaching people has impacted entire communities. In February, 1992, while in Fort Wayne, Jordan founded Stop the Madness National, Inc., an anti-violence program that provides cultural, spiritual, and recreational alternatives to at-risk youth. [Read more…]

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BATON ROUGE SHOOTING STIRS NEARBY CHURCHES

Baptist Message & Baptist Press

"There was an air of heaviness" Sunday at Istrouma Baptist Church in Baton Rouge, La., said pastor Jeff Ginn, following the fatal shootings of three law enforcement officers nearby.  -Photo: Baptist Message

“There was an air of heaviness” Sunday at Istrouma Baptist Church in Baton Rouge, La., said pastor Jeff Ginn, following the fatal shootings of three law enforcement officers nearby.
-Photo: Baptist Message

BATON ROUGE, La. (BP) — Though heartbroken from Sunday’s deadly attack on Baton Rouge law enforcement officers, the community has hope for the future through Christ, said the pastor of a church mere feet away from a police barricade of the incident, which left three law enforcement personnel dead and three others wounded.

“In the midst of our sorrow there is hope that God will redeem even this for His good purpose,” said Jeff Ginn, pastor of Istrouma Baptist Church. “What Satan intends to destroy and divide, God will use to unite.”

The Louisiana church was about to start its first morning service July 17 when Ginn learned a shooter had ambushed officers responding to a call nearby. They quickly changed the order of service, focusing on a time of prayer for the situation.

A shooter later identified as Gavin Long of Kansas City, Mo., killed two officers with the Baton Rouge Police Department and an East Baton Rouge Parish sheriff’s deputy before being shot by police, according to media reports. The murders occurred less than two weeks after two white police officers shot Alton Sterling, an African-American, in a Baton Rouge parking lot, inciting a wave of demonstrations that have led to more than 200 protestors being arrested, the Associated Press reported. [Read more…]

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