Abigail's Veil: A Domestic Violence Handbook for Clergy and Church Leaders

Abigail's Veil: A Domestic Violence Handbook for Clergy and Church Leaders

by Carolyn J. Thompson

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Overview

Abigail's Veil is a resource for clergy and church leaders needing to address the issue of domestic violence. The author provides a combination of legal and biblical references to assist pastoral care ministries in combating abuse within their congregations. The importance of dispelling the myths, exposing the traditions and highlighting the stigmas of domestic violence are demonstrated by this former attorney's experience with clients suffering in abusive relationships.

Abigail's Veil was inspired by the marital relationship of Abigail and Nabal in the Bible (1 Samuel 25:1-42). In this passage, Abigail represents a victim living with an abusive and controlling husband. From "appearances," she had everything as the wife of a very rich and powerful man. But her husband was "brutal and evil in all his ways"(verse 3). As is the case for so many women living with an abusive partner, she wore a VEIL of secrecy and shame to hide the physical, financial and emotional abuse perpetrated against her.

The VEIL serves as a dual barrier for the victim attending our churches. Underneath it, the victim hides the truth about her home's private hell of fear and isolation. Alternately, she uses the veil as a shield of protection from those who would blame her instead of the abuser; from those who would re-victimize her with the misuse or selective use of scripture; and worse yet, - from those who would render enabling silence from the pulpit. Until the entire church body adopts the "Zero Tolerance" stance and commitment to "Safety First" in pastoral care ministry, the ABIGAILS attending our churches will remain under the VEIL.

Abigail's Veil is a resource for clergy and church leaders to use in challenging the religious traditions that hold victims captive in abusive relationships and aids them in securing their freedom and healing. Minister Carolyn J. Thompson is a former attorney who now presides as a judge and serves as an ordained minister. Her recollection of numerous cases and sessions of pastoral care involving domestic violence demonstrates the importance of the church's role in combating domestic violence.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780692632949
Publisher: Abigail's Veil Ministry
Publication date: 03/02/2016
Pages: 100
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.26(d)

About the Author

Minister Carolyn Jennings Thompson presides as a District Court Judge in the Ninth Judicial District. She presides over various types of cases including the abuse, neglect and dependency of children, juvenile delinquency, issues involving the breakdown of families and marriages, and those dealing with domestic violence. As a minister and judge, she is inspired to educate the church community regarding victims of domestic abuse - many of whom often attend our local churches seeking pastoral care and counseling because of abusive relationships, and who TRUST the advice of those holding positions of authority and leadership within the church. Her dual role offers a unique perspective of the church's decision to respond or its decision to remain silent about domestic violence behind church doors.

Prior to becoming a judge, she advocated on behalf of domestic violence victims for over 13 years as a domestic/family law attorney. She includes her childhood exposure to domestic violence and personal relationships as testimonials supporting the urgent call for educating the church community. Admittedly, she too wore the VEIL like so many women in the church.

On November 4, 2008, Judge Thompson was elected as the first female judge to preside in the 9th District in over 15 years. Her county seat is Oxford, North Carolina, however, she holds court in all four surrounding counties of Vance, Warren, Franklin and Granville. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from Hampton University and a Juris Doctor degree from North Carolina Central University School of Law. She is a licensed and ordained Minister of the Gospel. In May 2007, she completed the Duke University Divinity School's Pastoral Care curriculum, which enables her to volunteer as a hospital chaplain.
In 2008, she founded the ABIGAIL'S VEIL ministry to provide domestic violence training for clergy and church leaders. The need to inform clergy became obvious during many years of representing abused women and children. Many of whom stayed in their abusive homes and relationships based on pastoral counseling, church traditions and stigmas promoted within church doctrines. As an advocate for families living free of violence. It is Minister Thompson's prayer that God will grant her wisdom and resources to boldly educate the faith community in properly addressing and preventing domestic violence.

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