MSCASA Faith based training is tailored to help faith based organizations and religious institutions know how to support survivors of sexual violence within their congregation and engage in prevention. Traditionally, people have turned to their pastor or faith leader for guidance and counsel regarding many issues in their lives. People seek support from their faith because it can be a powerful force for healing.
For this reason it is good to be prepared ahead of time to respond to any needs that may come up. Even if you do not plan on offering specialized services, it is likely that at some point a member of your community will disclose an instance of sexual assault during the course of confession, during the course of marriage counseling, in a youth ministry group, or in Sunday school—so it is wise to have your staff prepared. For many people who have been sexually abused, it is extremely difficult to disclose their past, and you may be the first person they are telling. It is important to consider some of the reasons someone may not wish to share about their experience.
- Fear based on threats made by the perpetrator;
- Fear of creating family turmoil, especially if the perpetrator is a member of the family;
- Guilt and the belief that it was their fault
- Perpetrator may be a church member or official or family member
- Children are taught to obey adults
Training topics are
- Advocacy and Mobilization of Religious Institutions
- Dismantling the Misconceptions of Sexual Violence
- Navigating Philosophical Differences and Engaging Dialogue Within Faith Communities
- How Sexual Violence Impacts Spirituality
- Understanding and Respecting Religious and Cultural Influences
- Common Reactions to Trauma
- Role of Faith in the Healing Process
To request a training click here.