church abuse Tag

Kyle J. Howard discusses what it looks like to recover from spiritual abuse and trauma. Kyle J. Howard recently joined me for a live webinar discussing spiritual abuse and how to recover. We talked about everything from trauma to bitterness to whether or not Christians really must forgive their abuser no matter the context. It was an incredible conversation! I've selected some excerpts below for you to read (if you're a skimmer like me). But feel free to listen to the complete audio above. It's well worth your time!

In What Ways is Spiritual Abuse Overlooked in the Church?

Kyle: I think it's a profoundly neglected area. And I think there's a couple of reasons for that. One is that the very consumption of power is something that is often overlooked in churches.... I've gone through seminary up to an advanced M.Div and never heard once anything in any of my pastoral classes related to the power dynamics that come with the position of spiritual authority. It's just a non-category. So when we think about spiritual trauma or spiritual abuse, I think much of that hinges on the reality that many people in positions of authority, or who have power within the church, do not realize the impact. Or, if they do, other people—who should be assessing them—don't realize that they are wielding power in a way that actually is harmful.