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Some beliefs are like walled gardens. They encourage exclusiveness and the feeling of being especially privileged. Other beliefs are expansive and lead the way into wider and deeper sympathies. Some beliefs are like shadows, clouding children’s days with fears of unknown calamities. Other beliefs are like sunshine blessing children with the warmth of happiness. Some beliefs are divisive, separating the saved from the unsaved, friends from enemies. Other beliefs are bonds in a world community, where sincere differences beautify the pattern. Some beliefs are like blinders, shutting off the power to choose one’s own direction. Some beliefs are like gateways opening wide vistas for exploration. Some beliefs weaken a person’s selfhood. They blight the growth of resourcefulness. Other beliefs nurture self-confidence and enrich the feeling of personal worth. Some beliefs are rigid, like the body of death, impotent in a changing world. Other beliefs are pliable, like the young sapling, ever growing with the upward thrust of life.
—Sophia Lyon Fahs
Forgiveness does not come from a position of powerlessness but from a place of empowerment and a degree of safety. . . . Justice, imperfect though it may be, makes forgiveness possible. The wound may heal even if the scar remains. In this healing, the body survives and may thrive, in spite of the scars and memories. Whether for a nation, a neighborhood, or an individual who has suffered trauma at the hands of an aggressor, justice is the key to healing and to a future.
—Rev. Dr. Marie M. Fortune
He told me that, because he was a man of God and he represented Christ in the flesh, it would be spiritual and natural for him to take care of me sexually. . . . But even though I felt that it was wrong, afterwards I thought, because [he] said he was a man of God and he brought up those things from the Bible, somehow, it was okay, or holy.
—Lindsay Tornambe, child sexual abuse survivor
There were so many sick children in there and my daughter was very, very ill . . . and I couldn’t bare it. I just went, “Nope, I’m done.” I mean, I just knew I could make these choices for me . . . but I couldn’t make these choices for my children. I just had to get her out.
—Spanky Taylor, 17-year former member of Scientology
Children are a blessing, and that enrages the horrifying nature of those who seek only to kill and to destroy. . . . Let’s grieve for the innocent. Let’s demand justice for the guilty. And let’s rage against the Reptile behind it all.
—Russell D. Moore
The Child-Friendly Faith Project: Supporting faith communities in their efforts to protect and nurture children
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