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Read the Table of Contents, Foreword, and Introduction
In the Christian community, one in every four women experiences family violence. As the awareness and incidence of domestic violence increase, however, pastors find themselves ill-equipped to deal with the crisis.
Violence Among Us offers readers:
• Practical help in identifying abusive situations• Strategic counseling tips• Case studies and models of effective ministry to both the victim and the perpetrator• Resource lists which include domestic violence hotlines and shelters, faith-based organizations, abuser treatment programs, and information on legal and safety issues
Visit our Webinar page to access recordings of our three part webinar series on domestic violence
"Reading this book is like taking an intensive course on addressing domestic violence; a great deal of substance is compacted into a relatively small volume. The authors do an outstanding job of taking a reader without firsthand experience of abuse into the mind, body, and spirit of the abused, as well as that of the abuser. The feature that makes this book a stand-out is the comprehensive ready-to-use resource section. This book qualifies as a must-read for every pastoral, counseling, social work, or education student." The Christian Librarian, 2008
"Your book is the best resource I've ever seen on the subject. Such helpful information, especially for the church as a whole..." Rosie Hughes, M.A., L.P.C.
"These two courageous, vulnerable, godly women are calling the church to speak into the world of abuse with the reality of Christ. And this book helps equip the church to speak well. The church has many callings. This is one that is too often neglected. Read this book, VIOLENCE AMONG US: MINISTRY to FAMILIES in CRISIS, and let it stir you to action." Rachel Crabb and Dr. Larry Crabb, author and Spiritual Director for AACC
"I have known Brenda Branson and Paula Silva for many years. They have a track record that is unexcelled when it comes to understanding the issue of domestic abuse. I always have found their work to be impeccable and their insights to be intelligent. Violence Among Us: Ministry to Families in Crisis is no exception. I highly recommend it to pastors, women's ministry directors, Sunday School teachers and any layperson who cares about the families around them who, often behind closed doors, are imploding with abuse. Someday, we all will give an account for what we have done in this life, so may we be educated and responsible in our response to the victims of abuse and their abusers." Jan Silvious, author, Foolproofing Your Life
"Are there warning signs of domestic violence in your church? This book will highlight these signs and help bring families together." Rev. Ronald L. Siegenthaler, Executive Minister, Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church
"It would be easy to think that the increasing level of domestic violence in America, and unfortunately in the Christian church, is a problem too big to solve and that we might as well call it quits, give up and wave the white flag of surrender to this deplorable and tragic reality. However, in this book, Brenda and Paula reduce the problem down to bite size pieces so that even regular people like you and me will discover that, 'Hey I can do this. I can make a difference. I can help save someone.' This is not a read and shelve kind of book; this is a 'read and do' kind of book." Steve Dresselhaus, Pastor of the La Paz de Cristo Church in La Paz, Mexico, Director of the La Paz Women's Shelter, TEAM Missionary
"Based on years of experience, both personal and professional, Brenda Branson and Paula Silva have written an honest, uncompromisingly truthful book on domestic violence that reaches a complex audience (abused, abusers, church, pastors, counselors, neighbors and friends of the abused, and Christians everywhere) in the most educational, comprehensible, and practical of ways. The value of this document cannot be overemphasized; besides being enlightening and convicting, it is inspiring and motivating. It is also a great resource in its basic education, its psychological insight, and its appendixes rich with titles, websites, and treatment programs." Dr. Rosalie de Rosset, Professor of Communications and Literature, Moody Bible Institute, Chicago, Illinois
"The pain of domestic violence cries in silent sobs in our homes, schools and colleges, social groups, and even churches and Bible studies. Violence among Us tunes us into the cry of the 'broken and hurting' and provides the 'action plan' we need to respond effectively. This book is a great resource for anyone who is involved with a group of people; e.g. teachers, pastors, small group leaders, and even parents. It is a must read for every authority figure that sets policy and the procedures for responding to crises; e.g. police, pastors, principals, social workers, and crisis intervention workers." Eileen Warren, CADC III, CCSI, MW2A Counseling, Inc.
"Here is a book that exposes the well hidden secret of abuse within the home - yes, even the Christian home! As a pastor I have long ago concluded that those of us in leadership must create an atmosphere where victims can safely tell their story and get the help they need. My prayer is that this book will be widely read and be used to give mothers and children the courage to go for help rather than suffer the long term consequences of abuse. And those who read this book will be ready to provide a helpful response when the need arises." Dr. Erwin W. Lutzer, Senior Pastor, The Moody Church, Chicago, IL
"In my estimation, the church has been silent for too long on this subject, and it's time we make a course correction. Violence among Us: Ministry to Families in Crisis shoves us in the right direction. Bold, brave, and clear in their resolve, Brenda and Paula offer hope, healing, and direction for those who hurt and those who help. You may or may not agree with everything they have written, but one thing is sureit is the best work to date available. I have no doubt that God will use their words to help save many individuals and families. Read and be blessed." Dr. Tim Clinton, LPC, LMFT, BCPCC, President, American Association of Christian Counselors
Paula Silva is co-founder and president of FOCUS Ministries, Inc. FOCUS Ministries is a nonprofit 501c3 Christian organization that reaches out to hurting women and families experiencing domestic violence, relationship issues, separation, and divorce. FOCUS provides free counseling, support groups, and educational literature. The ministry also trains support group leaders at the Train the Trainer Seminar and provides domestic violence educational training to churches and organizations.
As she contemplates her journey, she states, I stand in awe of my Lord that He would use my painful experiences and shattered dreams in life to make a difference in someone else. He has been so faithful to me showering me with His endless love and blessings. What a privilege it is to be in an intimate relationship with God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit knowing that a way will be made when there seems to be no way.
Paula is available to speak at churches, retreats, women's conferences, schools, and conferences for pastors and counselors with a personal testimony or seminars/workshops on domestic violence. Contact her at 630-595-7023, by email at email@example.com, or regular mail at FOCUS Ministries, Inc., P.O. Box 2014, Elmhurst, IL 60126.
Brenda Branson is founder of Broken People (a division of ITMH) and co-founder of FOCUS Ministries. Broken People provides a ministry of hope, love, and spiritual direction to broken and hurting people experiencing domestic violence, relationship issues, divorce, addictions, and other difficult life issues. They provide free training and consultation services to churches and small groups on the topic of family violence, as well as free counseling, literature and resources.
She is a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC), and regularly leads support groups, Bible studies, training events, women's retreats, conferences and workshops on the topic of family violence, relationship issues, and spiritual growth.
Brenda is also an author and public speaker. In addition to being the co-author of Violence Among Us, she has written over one-thousand inspirational articles, four training manuals and many educational materials on the topic of domestic violence.
When asked what her dreams are for the future, Brenda says "I am living my dream! Every day I am amazed at God's provision and faithfulnesshow He has taken my broken dreams and failures of the past and restored my life with many opportunities to share my resources, joy, and hope with others who are hurting. What a privilege it is to serve a God who truly knows me, a Redeemer (Jesus) who unconditionally loves me, and the Holy Spirit who guides and comforts me!"
Brenda is available to speak at churches, women's retreats, conferences, schools, and civic organizations on topics including "A Woman's Journey With God," "Love Stories—Real People Encountering a Real God," as well as seminars on relationship issues and domestic violence. Contact her at 270-871-7812, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or regular mail at P. O. Box 323, Hanson, KY 42413.
Visit her on Facebook at facebook.com/brendabranson and facebook.com/brokenpeople
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