Domestic Abuse


We had a very successful London Churches Social Action Network gathering last month on the topic of DOMESTIC ABUSE.

It was very good to meet at Harlesdon Methodist Church and to hold the event in partnership with the Brent Ecumenical Borough Deans.

Over fifty people attended the event from a wide range of denominations and parts of London.

The event was chaired by Michaela Youngson, a co-chair of the London Methodist District.

We had excellent input from Caritas Westminster, Relate, LIFT, Restored and others, as well as a very helpful reflection by Elizabeth Davies of the Catholic Bishops' Conference and a time of prayer led by the Brent Ecumenical Borough Deans.

Key messages and resources from the day were as follows:

- Domestic Abuse is part of the Church's safeguarding ministry. We have a duty to help protect the abused.
- There are church projects specifically aimed at supporting survivors/victims, eg. St Michael's in Harlesden.
- Churches can consider becoming Third Party Reporting centres, safe places for people to report abuse to the police.
- We should aim for a culture in which survivors/victims see churches as places where they can share with trusted people.
- Churches can do simple things like having stickers in the lavatories encouraging people to call an abuse helpline.
- Mention was made of a drama on domestic abuse by www.facefront.org
- Westminster Caritas are looking to create a resource for churches. Watch this space: http://rcdow.org.uk/caritas/
- Relate offer help and support in this area - www.relate.org.uk
- Other resources on domestic abuse are available from www.restoredrelationships.org & www.safelives.org.uk

Many speakers emphasised how domestic abuse is corrupting of who survivors and perpetrators are in Christ and that seperation from an abuser is essential until such a relationship can, if ever, be restored. In other words, our faith can affirm people leaving abusive relationships.

Another key message was that hope and solidarity belong to us all. As we continue to pray and act for all affected by domestic abuse, may we indeed do so in hope and solidarity.We had a very successful London Churches Social Action Network gathering last month on the topic of DOMESTIC ABUSE.

It was very good to meet at Harlesdon Methodist Church and to hold the event in partnership with the Brent Ecumenical Borough Deans.

Over fifty people attended the event from a wide range of denominations and parts of London.

The event was chaired by Michaela Youngson, a co-chair of the London Methodist District.

We had excellent input from Caritas Westminster, Relate, LIFT, Restored and others, as well as a very helpful reflection by Elizabeth Davies of the Catholic Bishops' Conference and a time of prayer led by the Brent Ecumenical Borough Deans.

Key messages and resources from the day were as follows:

- Domestic Abuse is part of the Church's safeguarding ministry. We have a duty to help protect the abused.
- There are church projects specifically aimed at supporting survivors/victims, eg. St Michael's in Harlesden.
- Churches can consider becoming Third Party Reporting centres, safe places for people to report abuse to the police.
- We should aim for a culture in which survivors/victims see churches as places where they can share with trusted people.
- Churches can do simple things like having stickers in the lavatories encouraging people to call an abuse helpline.
- Mention was made of a drama on domestic abuse by www.facefront.org
- Westminster Caritas are looking to create a resource for churches. Watch this space: http://rcdow.org.uk/caritas/
- Relate offer help and support in this area - www.relate.org.uk
- Other resources on domestic abuse are available from www.restoredrelationships.org & www.safelives.org.uk

Many speakers emphasised how domestic abuse is corrupting of who survivors and perpetrators are in Christ and that seperation from an abuser is essential until such a relationship can, if ever, be restored. In other words, our faith can affirm people leaving abusive relationships.

Another key message was that hope and solidarity belong to us all. As we continue to pray and act for all affected by domestic abuse, may we indeed do so in hope and solidarity.

Resources:

http://www.faithaction.net/portal/faith-and-health/our-projects/domestic-abuse/