The latest all-island ecumenical safeguarding seminar was held at St John’s Mill, St John’s on Friday 30 September. This seminar focused on spiritual abuse and was facilitated by the internationally renowned academic in this area of practice, Dr Lisa Oakley.
The seminar created the opportunity for delegates to take a look at the nature of spiritual abuse which in itself is a form of emotional and psychological abuse. It is often characterised by a systematic pattern of coercive and controlling behaviour in a religious context. Like any form of abuse, spiritual abuse can have a deeply damaging impact on those who experience, it and include the suggestion that the abuser has a ‘divine’ position and controls victims through the use of sacred texts or teaching.
Through formal inputs and discussion groups the seminar examined the leadership behaviours which can effectively prevent the emergence of spiritual abuse and the appropriate responses to those who feel they have been victims.
If you or anyone you know may have been impacted by spiritual abuse or any other form of abuse please find the details of the Ecumenical Safeguarding Adviser and other support information here: Weblink