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Great Programs for Kids and Grownups
I had to make a decision between God and my kids, and I knew . . . that if I chose my kids, I didn’t have a prayer. But I didn’t care anymore. So we lost everything in one day.
—Sara Poisson, mother who left the Jehovah’s Witnesses as the only way to protect her children from her abusive husband
Some people lose their parents to cancer or car accidents or other things. I've lost my parents to a cult.
—Lauren Drain, daughter excommunicated from her family and her church
Abuse means, to me, using a person for whatever I want from her [or] him without asking for their agreement, without respecting their will and their interests. With children, it is very easy to do so, because they are loving. They trust their parents and most adults, and they don’t realize that they were abused, that their love had been exploited. Especially if they were forced to ignore their emotions from the beginning, they might have lost their sensibility for the warning signals.
This is not a pleasant subject, especially for those of us who have deep, personal attachments to the Christian faith. But we dare not avoid the subject, for the abuse of children in the name of religion may well be the most significant reason for why they leave the faith when they are old enough to do so. We must ask ourselves: Who can blame them? Why should they not abandon the scene of their silent torment?
—Donald Capps, The Child's Song
You are the people who permit your children and the children of your communities to go into these institutions of punishment. . . . .I wonder what God's judgment will be with reference to those who hold the deposit of faith and who fail in their God-given stewardship of little children."
—Father Edward Flanagan
The Child-Friendly Faith Project: Supporting faith communities in their efforts to protect and nurture children
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