October’s Domestic Violence Awareness Month emphasis is just the beginning of learning about the issue that affects people across the spectrum of age, race, and economic status. An estimated 12 million people are hostage in toxic relationships. The dynamics are not logical and the complexities around abuse are not easily understood.
The authors of the 2019 General Assembly Resolution GA-1928: A Call to See and Respond to Domestic and Intimate Partner Violence, Courtney Armento and Rev. Yvonne McCoy, offer this advice:
- Become educated about abuse specific dynamics and educate your community, especially youth and young adults
- Take action to bring resources, workshops, and prayer events to your community
- Stay aware and engaged, become a safer space to those in your midst
The resolution also includes additional actions and links to educational material.
In the final paragraph as adopted by the assembly, all expressions of the Church are called to “increase their spiritual support and efforts to shatter shame, stigma, and silence by preaching and teaching responsibly on the topic of domestic and intimate partner violence; create safe and sanctuary spaces for abuse-specific pastoral care, compassionate conversation, and healing for vulnerable victims and survivors; and work together to dismantle a cultural landscape where domestic violence can thrive and hide.”