Equipping the Church to Respond to Domestic Violence
Welcome to the faith-based portion of the Ananias Foundation’s website. Here we share ideas and resources to help Christian pastors and leaders address domestic violence and domestic abuse. While there are many secular websites that focus on these issues, very few provide guidance for churches, church leaders, and people of faith. Thank you for joining us to stop domestic violence in our congregations and communities.
Equipping you for the mission
Domestic violence is a huge issue with profound consequences for all of the individuals involved. It is found everywhere, across all cultures and socio-economic classes. Unfortunately, our church communities are not immune.
Even so, one of the big reasons pastors and church leaders cite for not getting involved in this issue is that they feel ill-equipped. They wisely want to be prepared so that their guidance truly reflects God’s heart and does not harm the parties involved. Maybe that’s you—can you relate to any of the statements below?
As we look around our community, we see domestic violence as a huge need for us to serve. What can we do without over-taxing our already stretched resources?
We promise we haven’t been eavesdropping outside of your office. We’ve just talked to a number of Christian leaders, many who make similar statements. So we built this site to be a central resource for helping the church respond to domestic violence. Please let us know how else we can help.
What can the church do?
We know that Jesus cares about injustice, hurting people, and brokenness. We also know he commands us to do the same. Remaining silent and leaving the problem of domestic violence for someone else misses our call. Are you looking for suggestions for how to get your congregation involved in this issue or expand the efforts you already have underway? We’ve pulled together some of the best programing ideas being used by churches everywhere. You can find those ideas here.
A pastor’s guide to domestic violence
Domestic violence and abuse can be a particularly controversial faith issue because it also touches issues like divorce and roles of men and women. Get our Pastor’s Guide to Domestic Abuse to help you tie Scripture to this sensitive issue. Whether you are preparing for a counseling session or writing a sermon on the topic, we want you to have what you need in one easy-to-find place.
- Forms of domestic abuse
- How to identify which person is causing harm
- Headship, submission, and hyper-headship
- Separation and divorce in cases of abuse
What to do with the one causing harm
Addressing domestic violence as an issue is one thing, and helping victims makes sense. But dealing with the person who is causing harm feels like too much for the church to get involved in. After all, what can we do? Shouldn’t we leave that responsibility to the authorities or the professionals? No! Click the button below to learn why and what you can do that will make a huge difference.
The Biblical guide to transformation
God’s word never comes back empty. In fact, it is the most transformative power known. It can change the hearts and behaviors of those who have been violent with or abusive to their partner. In the process, it can restore families and people.
This ten week Bible study was written by our founder, Michael Clark, a domestic violent offender who was changed when he received the outpouring of God’s love and grace that the Father makes available for all of us. In it, he share verses that spoke to him on his journey of change as he discover the life-altering relationship with Jesus Christ.
The Scripture Michael shares, his relatable commentary, and soul-piercing reflection questions cover the four phases of change:
- Getting Started
- Finding Hope
- Allowing God to Change Us
- God’s Vision and Promises for Your Future
These sections align with our natural process of change:
- Realizing that we need to change,
- Seeing and believing that the solution we’re looking at is true, good, and can be trusted,
- Actually doing the work inside of us, and
- Finishing our transformation with new thoughts and behaviors that will make those changes permanent.
Only God can transform lives. But by putting His truth, said in love, in front of domestic violence offenders, and then allow it to marinate awhile, we’ve been faithful in sharing the gospel to some of His beloved children who are desperate to hear some good news.
Faith-based domestic violence resources
Domestic violence is a big, complex issue and it can consume a lot of time and resources. Here’s another area where we can help. You and your congregation don’t have to do this alone. We’ve put together a number of handouts, programming ideas, and links to other useful information related to churches addressing domestic violence on our Resources page. There are also some great links and references if you would like more information about domestic violence in general. Find all of that here:
About the Ananias Foundation
The Ananias Foundation is the only Christian-based organization that specializes in addressing those who cause harm with a transformation process that is grounded in developing a relationship with God. If you’d like to learn more or contact us, you can do that here. If you share our vision for addressing domestic violence, you can also discover how we can work together to fulfill our respective callings.