Everyone is busy. Adding a half day of training, especially training that addresses challenging content such as sexual abuse, could feel a little daunting. However, this training is needed by Kentucky Baptists churches and their leaders.
I recently heard a man share about his daughter being sexually abused as a little girl, and another person talked about a sexual misconduct situation that was not handled well and the impact it had on her life.
Greg Love, founder of MinistrySafe, the organization that is partnering with the Kentucky Baptist Convention to conduct the training, is looking forward to being in our state. Those who are familiar with his training will anticipate the level of excellence Greg and his team will provide Kentucky Baptists. One person asked if this will be a live version of his online training. Greg answered with an emphatic, “no.” Those who attend the Kentucky training will learn:
- To recognize the traits and practices of sexual predators
- The latest developments related to sexual abuse risk post-Covid
- A deeper dive into the grooming process of an abuser in ministry contexts
- Peer sexual abuse
- How to develop an effective safety system
- Kentucky reporting requirements and best practices
- How to access new resources for prevention and response
- An introduction to a program for sexual abuse wellness and healing
- And much more
Why should Kentucky Baptist pastors, associational leaders, church staff, deacons, children’s ministry leaders and others attend the upcoming Church Prepared, Sexual Abuse Prevention, Response and Care training being held in Kentucky the first week of October? KBC consultant Sara Robinson shares five benefits to churches for attending the training under the name of Church Prepared.
1. To protect children from sexual predators: Most sexual abuse is not from a stranger but from someone the victim already knows. Those who abuse children, and adults for that matter, are called predators. Predators are hunters looking for the easiest prey, and sometimes that target leads them to a local church. Those who are aware of the traits of predators are more likely to recognize them and protect the vulnerable from their efforts.
2. To make the church more attractive: I have heard directly from parents of small children who said they are more likely to be interested in attending a church that takes these matters seriously by staying trained and informed on current best practices for protecting members and attendees.
3. To be prepared to respond when an instance or allegation of sexual abuse occurs: This response will not likely be if an allegation occurs, but when. Sexual abuse of some sort has already happened in many churches, and often those in leadership are unprepared as to what to say to the congregation, the victim, the local authorities, media and others.
4. To better understand the impact sexual abuse has on its victims: Victims of sexual abuse can find healing and recovery in Christ but, unfortunately, when their abuse happened in a church context, it makes their recovery much more difficult. We can aid the recovery of victims by better understanding their trauma.
5. To care for those who have been victimized by sexual abuse: Whenever this topic comes up, someone will have a story to tell about how they or someone close to them was abused.
The training will be held at four Kentucky Baptist churches in the eastern, central and western parts of our state. Register today by clicking this link https://www.kybaptist.org/ and make plans to bring your staff and volunteers so that sexual abuse may never happen again in a Kentucky Baptist church.