Around the world, millions of women are experiencing violence and abuse on a daily basis. Is your church part of the solution, or could it actually be making matters worse?
It was one of the questions Tearfund’s Solange Mbonigaba asked when she recently spoke to the UN Commission on the Status of Women. Solange supports a global movement of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) survivors – a movement started by Tearfund. Too many times, the answer has tragically been ‘no’. However, as Solange says, there are some simple ways that can change…
Warning: this article mentions cases of sexual and gender-based violence.
Mahoro* lives in the Kwazulu Natal province of South Africa. I met her in April 2015 while attending a contextual Bible studies workshop in Durban. These Bible studies are used in a church setting to break the silence around SGBV. Her story is tragic, but sadly it isn’t unusual in any part of the world.
She was raped when she was a young woman. It’s never an easy thing to talk about, but when she opened up to her family, there was no comfort or concern: they told her that she had ‘brought a curse upon them’.
She tried to bring the perpetrator to justice, but without success.