Women raising awareness for domestic violence, an issue which has been glossed over by religious leaders.

While the church is attempting to raise awareness of domestic violence, evidence shows that they have actually been contributing to the problem for years.


October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and organizations around the country are holding events to highlight the issue. Those showing support include many churches and religious groups. Although nobody doubts they have good intentions, their efforts are undermined by claims that religious organizations have actually been contributing to the problem for years. Mounting evidence points to a disturbing fact: the church has a history of silencing victims of domestic violence. Academics refer to this phenomenon as the “Holy Hush”. Below, we’ll try to get to the bottom of it.

A domestic violence victim with her hand to her lips.Holy Hush

The “Holy Hush” refers to a suppression of serious issues within the church – principal among them domestic violence. The crux of the problem this: parishioners rely on members of the clergy for guidance. They confide in them, and trust in the advice they receive. For some, this line of communication is the only viable outlet for voicing personal problems. However, most clergy members have zero training when it comes to handling domestic violence issues. This causes clergy to give advice that is superficial at best, and, in some cases, is downright dangerous. The end result is that victims are discouraged from coming forward to tell their stories for fear of ruffling feathers or making things worse.

Domestic violence victim Connie Nash

Connie Nash

Testimony

One of the many women who can attest to this problem is Dallas resident Connie Nash. She came to church one day literally “black and blue” from her husband’s beatings. Embarrassed, lost, and hurting, she sought counsel from her pastor – a person she deeply trusted. But instead of offering any tangible help, he advised Nash “to keep forgiving” and “keep asking God to make her a better wife”. Moreover, the pastor reminded her that divorce is a sin and that she would no longer be welcome if she chose that route. Taken aback with this response, Nash says that was the moment when “a light bulb went off” in her head. It was suddenly clear that the church could not offer any meaningful assistance. Nash divorced her husband, and left the church.

However, many victims never have that “light bulb” moment. The church is a deep part of their identity, and they don’t see divorce as an option. They listen to their pastors and seek to contain the abuse, but refuse to flee it. One woman aptly summed up the troubled mentality of many domestic violence victims, explaining, “I’d rather be dead than divorced”.

Traditional Attitudes

When told about an abusive relationship, religious leaders will often minimize the issue and treat it like a bad argument. Sometimes, they will recommend counseling as a solution. If that doesn’t work, victims are instructed to simply pray for their marriage and hope it gets better. Some “solutions” are downright dumbfounding – as Connie Nash’s case illustrates, women are frequently told that they must change their behavior in order stop the violence. By implying that the victim is at fault, not the abuser, the church displays a horribly antiquated view of morality.

Note: although some assume that only women suffer from domestic violence, in fact the problem affects both genders; roughly 10 percent of men in the U.S. report experiencing abuse at the hands of their partner.

A woman who has suffered domestic violence.Changing Ways

The inability of religious leaders to properly address this issue is underscored by the church’s traditional attitudes toward marriage. There is an expectation that a couple must stay together at all costs – no matter how miserable their lives become. Every relationship goes through a rough patch here or there, and the church is right to encourage couples to pursue counseling while working to improve their marriage. However, when it comes to cases of dangerous and violent behavior, the church shows itself to be stubborn, out-of-touch, and ineffective.

The tendency to brush off victims’ cries for help raise several questions. First, what is the advantage of counseling against divorce when the health and safety of parishioners is at stake? And if divorce is a sin, what does that make beating your spouse? A less-egregious sin? Finally, if a marriage turns into a one-way relationship between abuser and victim, can it really still be classified as a holy union in the eyes of God?

Leadership Problem

To be fair to individual clergy members, this is a top down problem. It starts with church leadership, who’ve been largely unwilling to address domestic violence issues or provide proper training to clergy. Without training, confessions of abuse will only continue to be met with bad advice. Startlingly, this abuse is taking place right under the noses of church officials – a study found that 74 percent of clergy members underestimated the rates of domestic violence within their own congregations.

A happy church congregation.Moving Forward

Ending the “Holy Hush” starts with creating an environment of trust in the church. If a victim believes their story will be dismissed or marginalized, they won’t come forward. Fortunately, some congregations have recognized this and are taking tangible steps to address it. Pastors are reading up on signs of domestic violence to more easily spot it, and have begun incorporating the topic into their sermons to spread awareness. This is a good start, but we still have a long way to go. We’d like to hear your thoughts:

Have you ever experienced the “Holy Hush? Why do you think some religious organizations are hesitant to acknowledge the issue of domestic violence?

 

53 comments

  1. Daniel says:

    You would think being a Christian country that these numbers wouldn’t be so high. Perhaps telling children the are born bad (original sin ) and commanded to be good isn’t such a good idea. Neither is abdication of personal responsibility. Telling God your sins and saying a few prayer changes nothing here on earth. Try apologies to the injured party and make reparations to that party .
    These are the root of causes of violence toward women.

    1. Dr. J Pace says:

      You just exactly described a luciferin response to this problem…god and prayers don’t make atrocities like committing violence against someone you have sworn to love and protect just magically go away… holding every man and woman completely accountable for the decisions they make is what will make this world a better place.

      1. Dreamsinger says:

        And I think that may be one of the reasons why atheists are so severely disliked in this country. The only difference between them and us Pagans/Wiccans is that they do what they do because of their conscience, not because they fear a god, goddess, or demon. They do what they do because they know what it’s like to be on the receiving end.

        You have to admit, to do something with absolutely zero expectation of a reward or retribution… pretty gutsy. Mad respect for those guys.

        1. Dr. J Pace says:

          But they do get a reward… The same reward every one gets by doing anything”good”… they get the warn fuzzy and the feeling of momentary superiority because you did something”altruistic”… don’t fool yourself.. no one does anything without getting something out of it…

          1. hsw says:

            Wow. So what are you getting out of being here and acting superior?

          2. Dr. J Pace says:

            Wow, what are you getting out of feeling superior thinking that somehow you’re “calling me on my sh*t”… I’m not saying anything that’s not true, I just have the courage to call it the way it is instead of trying to convince myself that somehow I’m better than this person or that person because I do good deeds all day… have the balls to admit it, if you didn’t get a feel good out of it you wouldn’t do it…

          3. hsw says:

            That’s not courage. It’s just a sad level of cynicism.

          4. Sir Lord Baron Von Reverendstein, D.D., M.D. says:

            cuz screw those people who did nice stuff. They probably are secretly selfish

          5. William Jay says:

            Dr. J Pace is super-posing personal values on us all – how nice for Dr. J while demeaning for us? Altruism is a concept much maligned and supposedly debunked by these invalid assertions and such-like from followers of the Ayn Rand school of what? One cannot really know the mind of an other with any certainty.

      2. Lisa Zepeda says:

        Accountability starts with being accountable with prayer to God. The importance of a personal relationship with God is that prayer changes the one praying and the one prayed for.

    2. Sylvia says:

      I would like to take exception to statement that this is a Christian country. It is a secular country by design. I don’t know where that idea came from but the founders, including Jefferson and Franklin, wrote tracts that specifically stated they wanted Jews and Muslims to enjoy the same rights and protections as Christians. I don’t recall that they specifically called out others but the design was both to prevent the state from keeping you from any given religion or lack thereof, and also to prohibit the state from forcing a certain worship. I realize this thread is about domestic violence but I feel strongly about ending the mistaken idea that the USA is a Christian nation. I am, if it matters, Christian myself.

      1. Grace Gooch says:

        Remember so many years ago when the USA was founded. We were given the right to choose whom we may serve, be it pagan or Christian. Might as well know the Catholic Church is a combination of pagan and Christianity. This is impossible, it is like oil and water. They don’t in and if you try, they will seperate when disturbed. Christianity is unique and follows the Bible. Righteousness by faith in the Christian, saviour, redeemer. Paganism embraces a host of things totally unrelated to works of faith but of self.
        By the way, domestic violence is totally opposite of Christianity.
        No one is entitled to abuse the other be they men or women!

      2. Scott Walker says:

        You are correct. It is refreshing to see such an accurate response to the historically false premise that the U.S. was ever intended to be a Christian country. For what it’s worth, I also am a Christian.

      3. William Jay says:

        Oh yeah? How many openly Athiest members in Office? How does an Oath of Office read? You might consider that old adage “one hand washes the other”. Combine it with “the left hand knows not what the right hand is going”. Now go look up plausible denialbility …

        1. hsw says:

          As there is no religious test to hold any elected office, there is no need to have an “openly” any faith (or lack thereof) in office.

          There are many oaths of office, but I expect you’re referring to the Presidential oath, which reads “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States”

          I’m not sure what your point is with any of this.

    3. Jim says:

      So what then are the root cause of the opposite; of Women’s violence against men? Though not as often reported and when it is, ridiculed and dismissed, it does occur and in extreme cases has also resulted in severe injury and even death…

    4. Leonard R Phillips says:

      In my opinion the whole issue of marriage needs a rethink in this modern age. Divorce and separation statistics globally both secular and ecclesiastical suggest that people do not wish to be legally joined to one person for the duration of their lives.

      Societies need to start experimenting with a whole new range of marriage contracts. Short medium or long term contracts can be drawn up between couples who wish to cohabit with each other. If the cohabitation is mutually beneficial then the contract can be renewed for a similar duration or longer.

      Toxic cohabitations are simply terminated at the end if the contract period. A man or woman in a toxic relationship can look forward to the termination of the relationship at the end of the contract period.

      This should strengthen rather than weaken unions since both parties go into the contract knowing that any bad behavior on their part will reduce the chances of renewal once the contract period is ended.

      It would also remove the need for couples having to pay lawyers to represent them in divorce preceding since failure to renew the contract would be an automatic divorce.

      1. hsw says:

        Pretty far off topic, but I have to say that I don’t agree with you about what the statistics “suggest.” I believe most people want to be with someone long-term, and the problem is more about what young men and women are being “sold” in terms of expectations in a mate. Both women and men tend to look for appearance – women also look for the “good provider” – and neither of those things guarantee happiness or compatibility. We are actually discouraged from marrying for love, and told “you can choose to love anyone – so choose to love someone [rich, handsome, etc]. If someone is with an overweight person, or someone disabled, or in any other way not “perfect,” they are asked “what are you doing with [him/her]?” as if those people could not be loving or lovable.

        I wish the rest was a simple as you perceive. There are reasons that a formal (rather than de facto) divorce is necessary to dissolve a marriage, including children and property, just to name a few.

  2. Dr. J Pace says:

    If anyone in any other profession gave advice to someone that put them in a potentially life threatening situation they would be held criminally liable…why should the church be any less accountable…

    1. Dreamsinger says:

      Because the church doesn’t have to pay taxes.

      1. Dr. J Pace says:

        Thanks that makes everything better…lol

    2. hsw says:

      What crime is it that they could be charged with?

      1. Dr. J Pace says:

        If a licensed therapist even suspects that they are sending someone into a situation where they may either hurt someone or be hurt by someone they are held criminally liable…is that not exactly the same position these clergy are putting themselves in? Why should they be held to a different standard?

        1. hsw says:

          Because they’re not licensed therapists and churches aren’t regulated in that way. Before you come back at me with an argument, first, I dont make the laws, and second, it’s a slippery slope when the government starts telling churches how to deal with parishioners.

  3. Dreamsinger says:

    “Have you ever experienced the ‘Holy Hush’?”

    Hi. My name is Rev. Nick Moore, and before I became an ordained minister I experienced the “Holy Hush” at the hands of the Christian Church. I am one of the “1 in 10 men in the U.S. who reported experiencing abuse at the hands of their partner.”

    Not only that, but the “relationship/marriage” was with a human trafficker and enabled by the pastors of La Fuente Ministerios in Tepic, Mexico.

    Things like being forced into a sham marriage to financially benefit an international criminal (who has already succeeded at least once before), and then left for dead when asking for help, is why I have very little respect for the Christian Church and its 20,000+ sects.

    So if I seem a bit angry it’s because joseph, the author of this article, is spot-on. When you’re in that kind of situation, you’re on your own.

    And the Church has no right to speak a word about those of us who realized that when one person breaks that covenant, that covenant is no longer binding in God’s eyes and it’s fine to get out.

    I have had to go through a lot in the past 3 years, just to get some semblance of normality that will never truly happen again.

    As for why I chose to become a Reverend?

    To enjoy the look in my trafficker’s face at her sentencing, when she realizes her God is weak before a Pagan… and that her god is not, in fact, God.

  4. Pastor B Stevens says:

    Any church that will not intervene in domestic violence is being controlled by the power of money it’s that simple . I see this often in Arkansas and I’ll not finger certain churches but there are Big evangelical churches that will not address this based on scued ideal of women’s are subservant to the husband . This is the reason I’ll never ever be part of these church’s . Leadership ignore teachings of Christ I’ve herd recently ramblings in these religious orginazations about the Republican bible ——- what’s that about ? Ask mr Pence yea that guy from Indiana 😔 Speak against big power brokers being church leadership will get you booted out ——–

  5. hsw says:

    I haven’t experienced it, but I know women who have. I believe the archaic “divorce is a sin” teaching renders churches unable to offer any meaningful assistance when divorce (or at least separation) is the only reasonable option. As a domestic violence survivor, it is my belief that the churches have blood on their hands when they send these women back home and things escalate to their inevitable conclusion. They need realistic options – referral to a shelter, referral to assistance with actually getting out (I had a police officer with me when I packed my things), whatever it takes to get them, and their children if they have them, to safety. Abusers don’t stop without help, and they won’t get help without a reason. As long as they stay, they are in danger.

  6. Ellis Keyes says:

    Religion is designed to focus on a single, unchanging, uncompromising and invisible supreme being who allegedly created an inferior human race just for some extra companionship and love for himself with rules on them, which if broken would be met with unimaginable punishment.
    This keeps the followers in a continuing state of fear and compliance.
    Religious followers believe that they are yielding their will over to a benevolent cosmic individual who has single-handedly created the whole universe and has their best interests at heart when in fact they are handing over their will and freedoms to hidden groups of religious elites. Unfortunately many people appear eager to give away their power to authority and seem to have a need and even a desire to be ruled and disciplined by it.
    The main method by which Christians in particular are hooked and deceived with the savior story linked to the ‘original sin’ story to impose guilt but who believes the story is indeed lost because to believe that a god would send his only son to help us, only to get tortured and murdered to absolve us from all crimes past and present, is pure madness

    1. Dr. J Pace says:

      Why would a divine being need unquestionable prayers and worship… what exactly does he get out of the transaction? If this god is a supreme being what could he possibly need from us lowly beings…or is he just another psychic vampire who feeds on our devotional energy to maintain his power…if you pay attention to how god acts throughout the Bible that makes a whole lot more sense to me…

      1. Pastor B Stevens says:

        Alwask keep in mind the King James Bible was all written by men not god . That book is to me another book of poems and fables . The teachings of the passifist Jesus Christ have good direction —- 2000 years ago . There are sooooo many sects of Christianity it’s mind boggling using scripture written by archaic minds today is a religious pattern of spiritual abuse . We have advanced in science and many other explanations of natural disasters that were once written by ignorant minds . Ignorant in terms of what we know now . It’s a simple formula of mutual respect to one another’s spouses . Loose sight of that bad things begin to happen . You don’t need a book or any words to know beating physically any one else other than self defense is flat wrong aggression out of control . To be this with your spouse is un speakable wrong . It’s a crime against all of us in society who prefer a world of simple respect . The creator of all these things is much bigger than all we see and more but that energy source does not hang around to help anyone . It’s up to each of us to live in harmony but don’t ever not in some way stop obvious abuse . There are ways without being identified because we all know to many end up dead which means the abuser is dangerous . If your church refuses to at least help you find help get out of there and fast . Their only concern is your checkbook —–

        1. Dreamsinger says:

          When the Son of God refers to you as “sheep”, that’s not a very endearing quality to aspire to.

      2. Dreamsinger says:

        “What does God need with a starship?” — Capt. James T. Kirk, ‘Star Trek V’

        1. Dr. J Pace says:

          Awesome reference…

    2. Brother John says:

      If this is the “cosmic individual” your mean, Ellis, he/she/it certainly isn’t benevolent, kind and forgiving.

      http://dwindlinginunbelief.blogspot.ca/2010/04/drunk-with-blood-gods-killings-in-bible.html

  7. maiane santos Santos says:

    The one line, “learn to be a better wife” is the whole problem in a nutshell, the onus is put on the abused, not the abuser, the clergy, police, counsel, have in the past said maybe she asked for it, what? No partner ever asks to be beaten, I always laugh when I hear of some abuser never having a problem acting out on someone who won’t or can’t fight back but put them in a situation where they are the punching bag and wow, what a gutless change in direction their demeanor takes, I used to see it before I retired and how Mr. Bravado suddenly changed when the circumstances changed.

    1. hsw says:

      On one occasion during my abusive relationship, I managed to get in a 911 call by running outside, but he grabbed the phone and hung up. As he dragged me back in the house, I managed to leave the front door ajar.

      The police around here don’t take well to 911 hangups (and there was a DV history at our address from previous calls). He was sitting on my chest choking me when the police came through the front door – they saw it – and he still managed to convince them that he was “defending himself by holding me down” because I had attacked him!

      The questioning became “what did you do?” He was playing Mr. Meak and Mild and I was borderline hysterical after being choked and “burked,” so he was seen as the calm rational one, and somehow I was the one under scrutiny and he was the victim. And they SAW IT!

      A lot more education is needed by those who should be protecting the abused.

  8. J. K. Harrill says:

    The study not only found 1 in 3 Women, the study also found 1 in 4 Men are abused!
    We need to be aware of Both… Aware of the Needs For Compassion, Caring and Knowledge, For Both!

    1. maiane santos Santos says:

      I used the wife phrase in reference, in my comments I mean all abused. I apologize if misunderstood.

      1. Dreamsinger says:

        No problem. I understood where you were going with the comments. “1 in 4” here, all copacetic.

  9. Diane Baum says:

    I lived in an abusive marriage for 25 years. I asked for help from my priests in the Catholic church and was told that to get a divorce would put HIM in a “near occasion of sin.” I was told that I had to deal with it. I was told that a wife must be obedient to her husband. I was never told that it was NOT my fault! When my husband found out that I was talking to the priest, he accused me of “embarrassing him!” I finally divorced him after a beating that almost killed me and I pressed charges. He told me that I would burn in hell forever for my choice. I feel that God, who is all-loving, would not agree with that statement. My ex passed away from cancer three years after our divorce. My advice to all who read this is: if you feel that you are in danger, please…get out! Stay out! and don’t allow the priests/pastors to tell you that you will suffer for your consequences! Suffer? Oh please, it is because we suffered that we are making that difficult choice. For many, even a divorce isn’t enough as the abuser still needs to be in control and may stop at nothing to prove that. If you are the abused, you have done nothing to “make” yourself be abused. No one deserves that! I wrote a book about this: “50 to Life,” available in paperback or on e-readers through amazon and Barnes and Noble. My name is Diane…and I am a survivor of domestic abuse.

    1. Lisa Zepeda says:

      I hope to speak with you further.

  10. Brother John says:

    Just reposted a duplicate from Oct. 20 that didn’t appear. Neither went to moderation. Apologies in advance if they both appear at some point.

  11. Ricardo says:

    Give the priests a break, they don’t know any better. Why wouldn’t those women just go to the police?

    1. dkstevens327 says:

      I wasn’t “allowed” to leave the house without my ex. What would my excuse for going to a police station be?
      When we got together — after 2+ years of friendship — he made me stop going to services. Had I been allowed (to continure going), that would’ve been my only means of getting word to someone thst 0I needed help.

  12. Danna says:

    There are factors to consider when turning to the church for advice on matters of domestic violence. Most of the time, the abusive spouse is a member of the same church as the victim. There is a very real notion that any tangible assistance offered on the part of the church can result in retaliation from the abuser (death threats, vandalism, etc); or worse, could result in an escalation of the violence. I don’t see the church as being out-of-touch; I see them as not wanting to get directly involved in individual domestic abuse cases. That said, I think all clergy would benefit from some training. These pastors should be advising victims of violence first and foremost to get out of the violent situation, i.e., go to a women’s shelter where they can have at least some protection. And if the church truly supports measures to stop domestic violence, they should start stocking flyers and other material advising victims of what they can do to get out of the situation and improve their lives.

    1. Becky says:

      So you are saying you think that the church is just trying to keep their hands clean by telling women to “pray they can be a better wife” and go back to their abuser? If they wanted to stay out of it, shouldn’t they try to first of all protect both parties and any children involved? Especially in the case where they are advising these women to go back after seeing them bruised and injured first hand? Disgusting and misogynistic is what it is.

  13. Linda weeks says:

    Telling victims to stay quiet to preserve the appearance of the faith perpetuates the problem and disallows the opportunity for the perpetrators to get help. There is no excuse for abuse. If these issues were encouraged to be talked about openly, instead of hushed, we could stop the cycles of abuse and create a better world for everyone.

  14. Rev. D. Grabowski says:

    At the root of domestic violence is the belief in ownership. Chattel was prominent from the time of Christ up to and including today’s still practiced “arranged marriages”. Chattel is the same as slavery and has been at the root of patriarchal societies and organizations since the old testament. Men have been subjected to the belief that they are superior to women because many of the lessons we are taught tell us that specifically. IE; locker room talk, references to male God figures, “men fight, women wait”. The unwillingness on men’s part to take a hard look at their own belief systems and be willing to change them and not just stop battering women but stop battering each other only perpetuates the situation and it continually passes from generation to generation. All of the old religions fostered it and still many of them trying to change have been unable to because the leadership dictates the following of old dogmatic beliefs. Look around and listen to conversations among men that use the term “my”. My house, my wife, my son, my daughter, my dog, etc. Again it falls into the old patriarchal belief that I am who I am and what I am because of my possessions. Unfortunately our current national outlook with its’ propensity to be “quick to anger” is not helping any of this. I agree with everyone on this page that has said “get out”. If you are a victim, It is your life that is at stake and no one person, family or institution owns you. I wrote this as a male issue because that is what I am familiar with.

  15. Rev. Linda says:

    You know maybe every minister could do some research on their own. Take some counseling classes at you Community Colleges. I took some and came in handy. I learned in these situations, police, restraining order and leave right that min. Don’t look back and get things later with another person like a lawyer. This is what I tell people. Something to think about.
    ,

  16. James A Swienty says:

    God has given us a great number of warnings that man must go back to the original reason of why were you born and why you are here ? The answer to those questions is to live your life so that you will become a part of the family of GOD. This is why GOD gave us a planet that we could live very comfortably on, while we study and excel to end up in that position of being with and belonging to, the family of GOD for the rest of eternity. This is the only thing that human beings should be thinking about day and night.
    How many individuals are of this mindset ? I want to be in the family of GOD so much I have changed my thinking to make this paramount in my life. WHAT COULD BE MORE IMPORTANT THAN THAT ? What kind of things does a person think about each day as one lives life, including Christians. For myself, I have many thoughts throughout the day in which many are instigated by the evil in this world called satan. Even though I am a Christian Minister satan still pry’s and poke’s away and tries to wear me down so I will sin.

    Everyone is going to sin. We are all born into this sinful life but it is how you go about asking to be forgiven, that is what really counts. Remember, just because you asked to be forgiven does not mean you can go and do the same sin over again. GOD will know what you have done, and I believe HE would be extremely upset if the same sin was committed over and over again by someone.

    We should all remember why “The Creator of This Universe GOD”, put you and I where we are right now, and HIS reason for doing it.

    Dr. James Swienty DD R.T.

    1. hsw says:

      I’m a bit lost – what does this have to do with the topic of this thread?

    2. Rev. Jo-An Josephine says:

      Ouch! Sounds way off base to me. In my experience the only one that blames Satan for his misdeeds is usually an abuser. You see, I was in an abusive marriage for 7 years. I was raped, beaten, battered and emotionally abused. The entire time my EX husband was abusing me, he kept professing his allegiance to his GOD. His Christian God. That was 22 years ago….just last year he was arrested and charged with a whole host of child porn offences including making child porn with his own 2 year old daughter…..all the while professing yet again his allegiance to his god….and being an active senior member of his church. The investigation uncovered a whole host of child victims in his wake, most of whom were his own children from various marriages/relationships. While in Police College in 06 I learned many things…including that “priest don’t become child molesters. Child molesters become priests…..so they can have un-tethered access to children. A physically abused person makes for a better emotionally abused victim.

      This is about the thread above because I too was a victim of domestic violence for too many years.

      As for “God has given us a great number of warnings “…..GOD is within….not in some book of fiction first written some 400 years AFTER Jesus’ supposed death.

      If all you think about day and night is your GOD, how do you sustain yourself? How do you make a living?, Cook, sleep or eat?

      What do others think about? For us in our home, we think about how we’re going to survive, how to effectively pay the bills, farm the land, raise the animals, etc. For if we did not do these things, we would parish…for GOD is not about to feed us, clothe us, put a roof over our heads. WE must do that. For in this house, we believe that GOD is truly within. I control myself, I make myself work, play, pay bills and farm. I do that! No anybody else. And by that token, I am responsible for that which I do, good or bad….me! I don’t get to blame some fantasy character named Satan. For I am in control of ME!!

      The Christian GOD and the Christian Satan are nothing more than man made deities meant to control the masses. Congrats….you are controlled!

      I have so much more I can write…..but if you haven’t figured it out by now….no amount of writing by others will make a difference.

      P.S. This is merely MY opinion. I do not profess to speak for others.

      1. hsw says:

        Please continue to speak – as another survivor of domestic abuse, in a relationship much like you describe where my abuser continually professed his love of Christ and his faith in Christianity, everything you said resonates with me.

        I have long believed in what you said – child abusers become priests – becoming a priest doesn’t predispose one to be a child molester. That path is set early in development. I do believe some people go into the priesthood in the hope that they will somehow overcome their urges, but when we’re talking about the chicken and the egg, the abuser becomes the priest, not the reverse.

        Again, please continue to speak. The world needs more voices of reason, and survivors need more articulate voices speaking from experience.

        As for the man-made deities, yes they exist to control, and sadly it’s very effective with a lot of people.

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