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What happens to the sense of community and faith of a church that finds itself wounded by pastoral sexual abuse? Counseling and other resources are available to victims and abusers, but what about the congregations, which are also left with feelings of disbelief, disillusionment, and anger? To fill this void, the Interfaith Sexual Trauma Institute commissioned this pastoral work. While the focus of this book is the healing of congregations, it first discusses the original problem of sexual misconduct and exploitation, as an understanding of this dynamic is essential to understanding its effect on the congregation. Once this understanding is established, the majority of the text focuses on those neglected "secondary" victims of abuse: the congregation, the wider community, other clergy, the wider Church, the offender's family, and the pastor who must take over for an offending pastor. An "intervention model" provides each of these six victim groups sound principles and suggestions that can be applied to most situations. Case studies and first-person testimonies appear throughout the work and serve to demonstrate the very sensitive nature of the problems faced and the practicality of the solutions offered.
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