By Kendra Flory
The April offering from the “Ventures in Christian Discipleship” program at McPherson (Kan.) College will focus on “Healthy and Safe Congregations.” Almost all congregations aspire to welcome the stranger into our midst. Our tradition, sacred texts, doctrines, teachings, and cultural values can be a resource to visitors, members, and the community. But sometimes those very things we love become a roadblock to others. This course will look specifically at how congregations can be a safe place for those who are vulnerable.
Based on our Brethren values, what can we do to make sure that all, but especially survivors of child abuse, domestic violence, and sexual assault, feel safe and supported? This course will look at how we can create congregations where everyone’s physical, emotional, and mental safety are important values and embedded in our congregational structures. We will pay special attention to welcoming and supporting victims, survivors, and the vulnerable.
The class will be held online on Saturday, April 13, at 9 a.m. to 12 noon (central time), It is taught by Kathy Reid, executive director of the Family Abuse Center in Waco, Texas. Prior to her move to Waco, she was associate general secretary of the Church of the Brethren and executive director of the Association of Brethren Caregivers.
All Ventures classes are donation-based. Continuing education credit is available for $10 per course. To learn more about Ventures and to register for courses, visit www.mcpherson.edu/ventures .
— Kendra Flory is advancement assistant for McPherson College.