10-11 a.m. Main Session
“Why Does Caring For the Vulnerable Matter?” (Mark Dooley)
Churches should be a safe haven for all, but too often they can be the very place where abuse occurs. Together, we not only can, but must, work together to ensure that the vulnerable are protected and that those who have suffered abuse can receive the compassion, protection, and care they deserve.
11-11:15 a.m. Break/Refreshments
11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Breakout Sessions
“Developing a Safety System for Children’s and Youth Ministry” (Kris Buckman)
More than 90% of sexual abusers have no record to find in a background check. And they know it. While background checks are a useful tool, they must not be the only thing we use to claim protection of those in our ministries. Creating a multi-layered protection system that includes not only background checks, but policies and procedures, reference checks, written applications, adequate training, screening and monitoring will best serve and care for the most vulnerable in your church. In this breakout session, BCM/D Children’s & Youth Ministry Consultant Kris Buckman will guide you through the process of creating and transitioning to a comprehensive safety system for your ministry.
“How Trauma Hides” (Eliza Huie)
Trauma is in the church, yet it is often hard to see and can look like other things. A man’s seemingly unforgiving or distant disposition could be a self-protective traumatic response. A woman’s chronic illness might be directly connected to living through an emotionally distressing situation. A church member’s resistance to being involved in the life of the church may be connected to a disturbing past betrayal. Trauma burrows deep and can be hard to identify.
A lack of understanding about the hidden realities of trauma can lead to further harm or re-traumatization. But what can you do if you don’t know what to look for? Pastors and ministry leaders often feel out of their league. Referral to professional counseling is not the only option for trauma-inflicted members of your church. Healing starts with an informed understanding of what traumatization looks like, how it can be misunderstood, and why the gospel is a relevant response.
In this breakout session, licensed clinical and biblical counselor Eliza Huie will help you learn how to recognize the often missed or hidden signs of traumatization and equip you with a compassionate response that is anchored in eternal hope.
“Creating Cultures of Concern” (Dr. Bergina Isbell)
Our world is dealing with a universal trauma right now in the wake of COVID-19. People who were already hurting with previous trauma, both in and out of the four walls of the physical church, are now joined by millions dealing with the impact of a global mental health crisis. The church is being asked to stand up in unity as the body of Christ.
In this session we start at the foot of the cross, the place synonymous with both unspeakable trauma and unprecedented healing. We learn from our Savior how to identify with those who are hurting and create a culture of care. As we take the lead from our Savior, we learn how to help not only the wounded but also those who do the wounding.
12:15-1:30 p.m. Lunch and Panel Discussion/Q&A
BCM/D Sexual Abuse Task Force (Kris Buckman, Dr. Bergina Isbell, Keith Myer, Brad O’Brien, Tom Stolle)
For event questions, contact Mark Dooley (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Kris. Buckman (email@example.com).
For registration questions, contact Demetra Bennett (firstname.lastname@example.org).