Forgiveness And Abuse: Jewish And Christian Reflections

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Explore what forgiveness means in the context of sexual and domestic abuse!

Using research, studies, stories, and prayer, Forgiveness and Abuse: Jewish and Christian Reflections focuses on the views and opinions of these two prominent religions as well as shares the wisdom of their traditional teachings. Forgiveness is an essential concept for many survivors of abuse as well as the perpetrators. Some believe that urging victims to simply “forgive and forget” in the face of such harsh realities may not be practical and could actually endanger the healing process.

Forgiveness and Abuse studies several aspects of the spiritual influence in forgiving and vindicating abusive crimes, including:

  • traditional views of forgiveness and repentance using excerpts from Jewish law
  • a clinical study examining the relationship between forgiveness and mental health as well as comparing Christian and Jewish responses to a questionnaire regarding forgiveness
  • abuse of children and adults by members of the clergy: the roles of the victims, the abuser, and the church
  • the differences between forgiveness and reconciliation and whether they are both necessary
  • so much more!
Several of the historical practices of Christianity and Judaism regarding abuse, its public acknowledgment, and its forgiveness have been harshly criticized. Forgiveness and Abuse offers you new insight on the spiritual connections between religion, abuse, and forgiveness, and brings you hope as religious leaders unite to better themselves and others. With the events of recent years weighing on society’s shoulders, this collection is profoundly significant for clergy, counselors, therapists, and survivors, as well as the perpetrators themselves.
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What People Are Saying

Patrick Parkinson
A POWERFUL EXPLORATION of the theological, psychological, and ethical aspects of forgiveness in the context of abuse and violence, incorporating both Jewish and Christian perspectives. This book is ESSENTIAL READING for all those who have been oppressed by the demand to forgive without justice being done, and for all those who believe that such forgiveness is what faith requires.
Professor of Law, University of Sydney, Australia
Kimberly Day Lewis
Provokes us to ponder the role of forgiveness in the healing process. . . . Challenges us to rethink our positions on forgiveness, especially regarding violations to the human dignity of victims of domestic violence, sexual violence and sexual abuse. Overall, THIS COLLECTION SPEAKS POWERFULLY to the complexities of forgiveness and the important roles that genuine acknowledgment of the harm and restorative justice play in moving the victim toward healing.
JD, MA, MTS, Clergy Ethics Consultant, Center for Prevention of Sexual & Domestic Violence, Seattle, Washington
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Product Details

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Forgiving the Unforgivable? Jewish Insights into Repentance and Forgiveness
  • Forgiveness and the Jewish High Holy Days
  • Forgiveness and Mental Health: An Exploration of Jewish and Christian Approaches
  • Forgiving Abuse—An Ethical Critique
  • Sexual Abuse, Forgiveness and Justice: A Journey in Faith
  • Three Spirits: One Parish—A Short Story in Four Parts
  • Forgiveness, Reconciliation, and Healing
  • When Forgiveness Is Not the Issue in Forgiveness: Religious Complicity in Abuse and Privatized Forgiveness
  • When Sisters Dream
  • The Practice of Forgiveness in Sue Miller’s Novel The World Below
  • Index
  • Reference Notes Included
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