If the MeToo movement has shown us anything, it’s that the problem of sexual abuse is not just something for others to handle. It’s easy to pretend that the problem belongs to Hollywood or the Roman Catholic Church. But now, Evangelicals also admit to covering up and shuffling around predators in the name of forgiveness. What are the guidelines for redemptive handling of sexual abuse allegations and situations?
Mary DeMuth is an author and sexual abuse survivors advocate. Today, Mary shares her latest book, We Too: How the Church Can Respond Redemptively to the Sexual Abuse Crisis. We talk about the how far reaching the problem really is, why every Christian should consider themselves a mandatory reporter, and redemptive strategies for handling abuse for churches. Mary’s heart for justice comes from her own story of surviving abuse and working toward healing. She will not settle for cliched grace and forgiveness. Rather, with clarity and wisdom, calls us to discernment and to err on the side of justice and righteousness.
Listen to our conversation today!
Stories Mary shared:
- The problem of sexual abuse in the church
- The astounding amount of sexual abuse in the Bible
- Why abuse is more widespread in Protestant churches than others
- The trail of victims if we don’t take responsibility to report
- How churches should deal with sexual abuse situations
- What sexual abuse victims need
- The long-term love of her husband for her
- Why our definition of spiritual maturity shapes our responses
- The difference between legal guilt and spiritual discernment
- God’s heart for both grace and mercy throughout the Bible
- How to appropriately apply the Gospel to abusers
- What you can do for sexual abuse victims
- What warning signs you can be looking for
- A better plan than the Billy Graham Rule
- Why forgiveness isn’t always completely restored relationship
- Do certain theologies enable abusers?
Great quotes from Mary:
The Church is supposed to be a place for the wounded and the broken and we don’t heal in isolation.
Any Christ-follower is obligated to be a mandatory reporter.
We need to err on the side of the weak.
We have to remember that righteousness and justice are the foundation of God’s throne.
One of the greatest gifts you can give your loved ones is a healed heart.
Resources we mentioned: