What Pastors Can Do
AS A PASTOR YOU CAN . . .
• Recognize that abuse happens, even in your church.
• Work to ensure that your church is a safe place for all.
• Make your church a safe, comfortable place to talk about issues relating to abuse.
• Respect confidentiality.
• Be a good listener—in order to validate the pain and brokenness of victims.
• Withhold judgment while supporting the victims and the family.
• Know what community support is available in order to refer people as appropriate.
• Have information regarding abuse available to your congregations.
• When possible, and as appropriate, support local women's shelters.
• Address issues on abuse from the pulpit.
• Hold perpetrators accountable for their actions.
• Reaffirm the worth of all people.
• Be aware of the barriers victims face.
• Encourage members to talk about abuse.
• Know your limitations in dealing with abuse issues and cases.
• Assist/arrange for the safety and support of victims.
AS A PASTOR, YOU SHOULD NOT . . .
• Use religious teachings and sermons to support abuse.
• Forget that the safety of the victims is most important.
• Deny and minimize violence.
• Ignore, cover, deny or remain silent about abuse.
• Breach the confidentiality of the victim.
• Allow excuses for family violence.
• Assume a role for which you are not trained.