Across the world, across the nation, across our communities, we know that violence is being perpetrated. One of its quietest forms, dulled behind closed doors, is domestic and family violence.
In recent years, the Australian media has shone a spotlight on violence within the home. Communities have rallied to the cause. But many church members have not yet been able to wrestle with the idea that they are likely to have victims — and abusers — sitting next to them in Sunday services.
“Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” Proverbs 31:9
What would it mean for churches to invest in this call for safety and justice? What would it mean for congregations to open their eyes and their hearts to people struggling in abusive relationships? What could it mean for the church to collectively and loudly cry “no more”?
We believe that you care deeply about the people in your communities. SAFER is an online resource intended to help Christian leaders and congregations:
- Understand how domestic and family violence starts
- Recognise different kinds of abuse
- Get help for victims
- Appropriately support people affected by abuse
- Encourage perpetrators to change their behaviour.
SAFER involves descriptions and discussions of violence and abuse. Some survivors might find its content distressing.
While we want you to engage with this resource, we also want to safeguard your wellbeing in using this material. Please take care as you read.