Bob Jones University, Sexual Abuse and Silence

Just because Bob Jones University is doing what it's doing doesn't mean it didn't do what it did.Last year BJU hired GRACE (Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment) to investigate allegations of sexual abuse on its campus. This week, just one month before its investigation was to be completed and the report was to be made public, BJU terminated GRACE.What is also sad about this is that universities are usually seen as leaders in thought and practice. This move will remain … [Read more...]

It’s Our Fault Millennials Are Leaving the Church

I know this cartoon will be a trigger for some of you, and I apologize that I couldn't warn you before you saw it if it was.Rachel Held Evans wrote a post, "Why Millennials Are Leaving the Church". More people are weighing in. So I drew this cartoon in response to David French's post, "Why Are Millennials Leaving the Church? The Narcissism Factor".French's concern for the church is apparent. His willingness to accept responsibility for the mess is admirable. Also, to examine other … [Read more...]

vows of silence aren’t always holy

I was very moved by the story about Elizabeth Smart ("like" her page), the young woman who was kidnapped as a 14 year old girl and held in captivity for 9 months. "She was forced into a polygamous marriage, tethered to a metal cable, and raped daily until she was rescued from her captors nine months later. Smart was recovered while she and her kidnappers were walking down a suburban street, leading many Americans who followed her story on the national news to wonder: Why didn't she just run … [Read more...]

everything has a positive spin

You can give practically anything a positive spin.I've used these spins. They've been used on me. This is why I am extra sensitive to abusive, manipulative and controlling behavior and speech. I've given it and received it. We have to be very, very aware at how pervasive the attitude of control and the language of power permeates our speech. Maybe not obviously, but if we read between the lines it can often be detected.Did you know that there are speech analysts who comb political … [Read more...]

abuse for pay

Someone wrote this note to me yesterday: Your keen awareness of the more subtle abuses of the church, delivered to me in snippets each day on my news feed, has been so validating for me - it has been healing my soul a little. This is exactly what I do! I thanked that person for articulating it back to me so clearly and simply.You see, most people inside the abuse don't see it... neither the abuser or the abused. It has become so normalized that to even raise questions about it provokes … [Read more...]

blind and deaf to spiritual abuse

(Those receiving this in your inbox, click on either title "Blind and Deaf" and it will take you to the nakedpastor site.)I frequently get really sweet emails from really sweet people who say they've been in a perfect church their whole lives and have never seen anything I talk about, nor have they experienced it. They usually believe that what I talk about is a very rare occurrence and that I'm blowing it way out of proportion. Once in a while I believe them. But that's rarely. Usually I … [Read more...]

an abusive apology

Let's deconstruct this "apology":He doesn't apologize as a human being, a man with a heart, but as a pastor, already positioning himself in a superior role over his victim. He plays the "authority" card, implying that he has the authority to do whatever he thinks is best for his people. This is his church. Not hers. She really doesn't have any rights or say. By the end of his apology he is only "sorry" that this is an unfortunate situation... for him! She "feels" this way, meaning that … [Read more...]

the most effective means of control

* IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: All my art, including my original Sophias, are 40% OFF this weekend only. Go to MY STORE and use the coupon code "remember".Ok, so let's deconstruct this cartoon. This is the most effective way many try to control people. It is subtle and often not recognized as control or even manipulation or abuse. They shower you with what feels like love and kindness. So much so that they would be absolutely alarmed that you would think, feel, say or do anything that might even … [Read more...]