Pastor, Faith Boards Online, and Church Community says NO HELP to Victim of Domestic Violence
I read quite a bit of articles regarding domestic violence in regards to the faith prospective. At times I realize that I get naïve thinking maybe things would get a little better once people decide to share their experiences.
I read advice and they will point to getting in touch with your church, counseling with your pastor and have their resources help you. The next warning? For goodness SAKES don’t go secular! I think in some circumstances that advice about secular help is just not wise!
I have been watching a story unfold recently about a family involved in domestic violence. It started – for me anyway – on two very popular faith boards. It was a story of a married young woman with 2 small children.
As in most stories of domestic violence the church I don’t think she saw it for what it was at first. We all have to have our own realizations, or what some call crowning moments. In the past the family did have a church that insisted her husband needed help, and that he could be in danger of hurting himself or others.
Steps were taken for the reconciliation after a domestic violence happened in their home. The family had to move shortly afterward, and the whole process needed to be started at their next place of worship. Counseling ended with him having to leave the home after he attacked one of the children.
Pictures were documents, and emails filled with venom with his justifications. Threats of cutting off personal communication with his children and all financial aid, because he needed some respect. The emails would make anyone’s hair curl.
It sounds like she was basically isolated, and she reached out to faith boards.
The first faith board she went to posters threatened her with calling CPS or Child Protective Services. She was chewed up and spit out on this faith board, and moderators sat back and watched. They never got involved.
The husband had already been removed from the home, and that would be the first step that CPS would have taken anyway. I never quite understood why the threats. The poster did the responsible thing, and reported the incident herself so I don’t understand why that wasn’t good enough.
The second faith board basically shut her up. Her thread went on for 10 pages as she recorded threat after threat that he was sending, and she was receiving replies of support from the posters on that board at first.
She talked also about conversations between the pastor and meetings with him as her husband basically attacked her in front of him, and at that point there was no more questions as to what the church was dealing with. A call for a meeting with the Elders was next.
Meanwhile, the man broke into the home and started to threaten her while she was on the phone with with a friend. I guess that person called the police, and the police told her she must get a restraining order. He also had to leave. The restraining order was granted.
You can imagine it was scary for her and her family. The church had very little contact with her, and she was now living a new area with no one around that she knew. It seemed like the internet was helping her keep a bit of sanity over this.
On the second faith board thread was removed – disappeared – because they felt it was getting too personal. The admin stated they would possibility ‘revisit’ it if she could get a note from her pastor stating she needed this, and they would have to have a phone conference to discuss this as well.
She is no longer allowed to discuss her personal situation, or mention any parts of her family on the board. She is welcome to reply to others if she wishes. Isn’t that nice?
The church has offered ‘spiritual’ support for this family. They would no place to live soon, and needed the locks changed. She had no resources to money being a stay at home mother, and he removed what access she did have.
She requested a letter in regards to her order of protection from the church stating they are helping with accountability, moral support, etc. The church basically told her they were not qualified to do that. Qualified? Hmm. I guess that is true. They had already informed her that they could offer no financial assistant, housing or anything else of substance either.
I think people need to see this so they can understand WHY these women go secular, and WHY they also get killed! It’s too ugly for people to deal with. It doesn’t happen within the church - is what they say. I’m not going to say all churches; organizations are like this, because they aren’t all like this. There are enough of them, and article after article is thrown into the mix about how women need to learn to submit more. It just burns me up.
If a Christian Counselor, Pastors, Christian Mentors and others from the fellowship don’t do much in ways of help in the real world, and if online faith boards continue to shut this issue down. Where are these people supposed to go?
I’m so disgusted. YES there is way more to the story, but it was as plain as the nose on anyone’s face what is happening. Don’t go secular – keep it within the Christian fold - she say to victims. Okay. We are waiting……..now what? Does anyone else see what other options this family has? I’m at a lost myself.
I can’t recommend you go to Crosswalk or Family Life for support in these types of circumstances. If your church can’t help please find one that will! Don’t turn down secular help in the meanwhile it maybe the only source of support you will get in real time!
Please pray for this family.
Please digg, stumble, etc if you feel this type of story needs to get out! We need to break the silence within the church about domestic violence!
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