Having spent nearly a decade working for a mission college in Africa, I have a keen interest in African leadership. When I spoke with Praise (not his real name), he shared his own experience with leadership abuse in the African nation in which he grew up.
Those who are honored to hear an abuse victim's story need to hear Job's story. They need to hear his words . . . and they need to hear his friends' words.
Michael and Kate realized the abuse of power by bullying, control, using the scriptures to condemn, shunning, and slander had been going on for a long time.
Part 2: It has been two years since the Williams left Peace Community Church. Blame-shifting and isolating, Kate's pastor has deeply hurt many in leadership.
It has been two years since the Williams left Peace Community Church. You either confront the abuse, or you enable and embolden it. Silence only serves the abuser. Sin grows in the dark.
Mia suffered under a leadership that was more concerned about following their church rules than the love of Christ. Their spiritual abuse was worse than her experiences of sexual abuses.
Mia's change in behavior at home and struggle with the church had its roots in her experience of sexual abuse. It was not too late for Mia, but the church and her parents were going to need to respond to her struggles in light of these horrible experiences as a child.
When do you give up on a toxic leader? More often than not, leadership abuse survivors struggle with "Accountability Guilt."
Generally, positive stories about how the church responds to abuse are far and few between. But, Janice's is different.
When your pastor says, "If you don't trust me, you don't trust God," run.