In January, 2016, FaithTrust Institute is launching the Meaningful Voices Book Club. Featuring books by significant voices in the field of violence against women, FaithTrust Institute will convene an online, bi-monthly webinar and chat with Rev. Dr. Marie Fortune, authors and colleagues. The Meaningful Voices Book Club is designed to foster conversations between advocates, clergy, divinity students, and lay leaders on the dynamics of domestic and sexual violence and the ramifications of violence on individuals, our faith communities, and the wider culture. The online book discussions, blogs and chats will also increase awareness of what individuals can do to support victims and respond effectively and sensitively to victims/survivors, their families, and abusers. By reading and talking about significant books, we can create an international discussion for those doing this important work.
Rita Gross, feminist theologian, scholar of women and religion, and Buddhist teacher, died on November 11, 2015 in her home in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. She will be missed. Those of us fortunate enough to know her will remember her great spirit and her pathbreaking work.
Diana Garland was a trusted colleague in ministry. We collaborated on efforts to address clergy misconduct and abuse. She did ground-breaking and much needed research with survivors that helped fill out the picture of this all too widespread problem. As is apparent in her obituary, she did not take “no” for an answer when it came to finding ways to serve the needs of people regardless of their faith. Her persistence in insisting that social work and religion had to work together has helped to change the field. This is good news for victims and survivors of abuse. Diana will be greatly missed by students, colleagues and the church. Thanks be to God for the legacy she leaves. - Rev. Dr. Marie M. Fortune
United Methodist Women, in collaboration with FaithTrust Institute, has sponsored Conference trainings across the country to assist lay leaders and churches in addressing domestic violence. The most recent training was with the Iowa Conference. It combined education about the theological issues that impact victims/survivors of abuse, as well as resources for individuals to make a difference in the lives of victims, and in creating positive change.
Rev. M.L. Daniel, Program Manager of FaithTrust Institute, was selected to participate in the prestigious Novo Foundation's Move to End Violence Program. This two-year cohort of Movement Makers is working to strengthen, innovate and transform the organizations that are already working to address the epidemic of violence against girls and women.
The United Church of Christ presented the Antoinette Brown Award to FaithTrust Institute trainer Rev. Dr. Sharon Ellis Davis, as well as Rev. Traci Blackmon,of Christ the King UCC in Florissant, Mo,. and RevGalBlogPals for their inspiring work.
On June 6, the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of the United Methodist Church hosted a training by FaithTrust Institute on ending domestic violence. Sharon Hachtman, a deaconess and nurse, spoke about her experience working with survivors and the role that faith communities can play in ending domestic violence.
FaithTrust Institute is delighted to announce that M.L. Daniel, our Program Manager, has been selected by NoVo Foundation as one of 20 new Movement Makers in the Move to End Violence Program, a 10-year program to strengthen leaders and organizations, and build a breakthrough movement to end violence against girls and women in the United States.
"Religion and Men's Violence Against Women," edited by Andy J. Johnson of Bethel University, addresses domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking in diverse religious communities including Christian, Jewish, Islamic, Eastern, and Indigenous traditions.
Opportunity to Participate: Baylor University, in collaboration with Hope of Survivors and the Grant Me the Wisdom Foundation, has launched a research study on the experiences of survivors of clergy abuse and misconduct.
Rev. Dr. Marie M. Fortune will participate in Luther Seminary's 2015 Sexual Violence Awareness Week activities, including a public lecture. The keynote lecture, entitled "What's Wrong with Rape?" will take place on April 14 at 7 pm in the Olson Campus Center, Chapel of the Incarnation (1490 Fulham St, St. Paul MN). The lecture is free and open to the public.
Rev. Dr. Sharon Ellis Davis spoke with Black Press USA about sexual assault, the Black community and the role of the church. Rev. Davis Ellis will present a webinar with FaithTrust Institute on March 25, 2015 called "Battered African American Women: An Examination of Gender Entrapment".
JUST RELEASED: 26th Edition of the Annotated Bibliography of Clergy Sexual Abuse and Sexual Boundary Violations in Religious CommunitiesFeb 18, 2015 — Categories: Current Events, Clergy Ethics, Clergy Ethics & Healthy Boundaries, Sexual Abuse by Clergy
This epic undertaking by James Evinger is an encompassing resource that includes non-fiction books, academic journals, law reviews, newspapers, websites, broadcast materials, etc. Over 1,300 pages in length, this is an invaluable resource for academics, as well as faith communities.
National Council of Catholic Women has developed a Catholic-oriented domestic abuse prevention resource guide, available online.
Allyson McKinney, former FaithTrust Institute intern, wrote an Op-Ed in USA Today entitled "Focus on How the Speech Affected Rape Victims, Not Sportsmanship" about the Oregon State University players chanting "No Means No" after their Rose Bowl victory.
The Mennonite Quarterly Review will devote its January 2015 issue to the topic of sexual abuse within the Mennonite Church, with a focus on the events surrounding John Howard Yoder. The Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary Board released this statement: "As an AMBS Board, we lament the terrible abuse many women suffered from John Howard Yoder. We also lament that there has not been transparency about how the seminary’s leadership responded at that time or any institutional public acknowledgement of regret for what went so horribly wrong...
FaithTrust Institute joins our friends around the country in mourning the passing of Patti Bland, who worked tirelessly on behalf of women and children impacted by domestic violence and chemical dependency.
One of FaithTrust Institute's favorite people has been featured in Charlotte Magazine for the work she's doing to protect domestic violence survivors and educate faith communities. Julie was featured in our video "Broken Vows," which remains an important cornerstone in our trainings and workshops. In October, Julie will lead FaithTrust Institute workshops for United Methodist Women as part of their Domestic Violence Awareness Campaign.
The blog post, "Want to End Homelessness? Then We Need to Address Domestic Violence," addresses the need to understand domestic violence as a root cause of homelessness, and therefore an essential issue to be confronted by faith communities working to end injustice.
Buddhist teacher Joshu Sasaki Roshi, a leading figure in Zen Buddhism in America whose legacy was later complicated by allegations of sexual abuse, has died. He was 107.