Jews have just completed celebrating Hanukkah, the festival of lights. Christians prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus. And we all celebrate the passing of the winter solstice which assures us that, in the northern hemisphere, the days will surely get longer now.
Last week Carolyn Scott Brown, the Director of Educational Resources at FaithTrust Institute, and I went to see the new movie, Precious.
“The Bible says I can have sex with my 8-year-old child . . .” “The Bible says I can beat my wife because she is to be subject to me . . .” These and other biblical justifications haunt my consciousness.
This month is the 15th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in the U.S.
“. . . we believe that the justification of discrimination against women and girls on grounds of religion or tradition, as if it were prescribed by a higher authority, is unacceptable.”
Good news for women. Lavetta Elk, 26, is a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe from Wounded Knee, SD. Sgt. Joseph Kopf, an Army recruiter, raped Elk after she inquired about joining the Army. In April, Elk was awarded $600K in damages for the “pain and suffering” she endured. The basis of this verdict was the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868.
As I was presenting a workshop recently on how we should challenge the roadblocks which the church can present to battered women and affirm the resources, I noticed one participant was very quiet and reserved.
Since Rick Warren was invited to give the Invocation at the Presidential Inauguration next week, he has been attracting some attention and scrutiny. Warren is the Senior Pastor at Saddleback Church in California.
So Pastor Ed Young of the Fellowship Church in Grapevine, Texas, got the attention of the media. And his church members. He called for a week of “congregational copulation” to take people’s minds off the economy. Pastor Young has added his blessing to our already highly sexualized culture.
Let’s begin with the bottom line: lack of modesty in dress doesn’t cause rape. But this doesn’t stop Father Sergio Roman from condemning miniskirts.
In my last blog, I took the position that the Georgia law that criminalizes all volunteer activities in a faith community by registered sex offenders is problematic because it allows the state to determine how we do ministry. Several of you disagreed.
The state of Georgia is trying to protect its children from sex offenders. To that end it passed legislation in 2006 (updated in 2008) that is viewed as the toughest in the U.S. There is only one problem: the law criminalizes all volunteer activities by registered sex offenders in religious organizations.
International media recently carried the newstory about a Saudi Arabian woman who was gang raped and then sentenced to six months in prison and 200 lashes after she spoke out to protest the lenient sentences given her attackers.
Why is professional misconduct wrong? Because someone gets hurt. When any of us in a ministerial or teaching role betrays trust, exploits or abuses, we cause harm to another person.
As presidential politics play out, Republican candidate Mike Huckabee has been challenged to answer questions about his involvement in the release of convicted rapist Wayne DuMond after DuMond’s religious “conversion.”
This month, there was a celebration in Malicounda Bambara, Senegal, of the 10th anniversary of the village’s public declaration to abandon female genital cutting (FGC).
The Fathers’ Day Poll released by the Family Violence Prevention Fund that I discussed in last week’s blog suggests that the majority of men are aware and concerned about sexual and domestic violence.
A group of teenagers, when apprehended for home burglaries, were asked why they selected these particular homes. They replied, “Because we knew that Christians lived there and that they would forgive us and not prosecute.” What is wrong with this picture?
Twenty-seven incest offenders gave me this advice when I met with them during a session of their court-mandated treatment program. They were mostly Christians and they kept wanting to talk about their faith, so their therapist called me in.
“I’m a convicted sex offender and I would like to attend this church." At FaithTrust Institute, we are receiving weekly inquiries about this situation from anxious clergy and congregations. Some congregations are turning away offenders. This initial reaction may be understandable, but let’s be clear: The identified, self-acknowledged sex offender is the least of a congregation’s worries.