Our Children’s Ministry exists to provide a godly, safe, and secure environment for children to learn. We uphold the highest ethical standards to show children the love of Christ, to protect our children from harm, and to allow parents to attend services with peace of mind. Please read our Child Protection Policy and our Nursery Policy and Procedures for helpful information about the policies we have in place to maintain a safe and healthy environment for our children. All church officers, staff, official ministry leaders, whether they work directly with children or not, and children’s ministry volunteers of any kind must complete GRBC-provided childcare training, required background checks, complete a questionnaire, and read and officially acknowledge adherence to this policy.
A Word to All Victims of Abuse
If you have ever been victimized by anyone and suffered as a result of sexual or domestic abuse, please hear us: we are profoundly grieved. The abuse that was done to you is not your fault. The Lord cares about what happened to you. You are made in the image of God and you are valuable to Him. You do not have to feel embarrassed, ashamed or afraid to come forward. There is hope in the gospel of Jesus Christ and the power of Christ can redeem the damage caused by abuse, even in this earthly life. We, as a church, want to support you in your healing.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
— Hebrews 12:1-2
Please seek care and counsel
To that end, here are some thoughts that we hope you will find helpful:
1. Abuse is not your fault
Abuse was committed against you and you do not need to bear the blame or shame for another’s sin. The appropriate response of anyone who is representing Jesus to you should be care and compassion.
2. It is understandable to be afraid
Some of the people closest to you may have violated your trust. This can make a traumatic event even more confusing.
3. Speak with someone who can help you process the abuse and resulting trauma
Whether you are still a child, an adult who was abused as a child, or an adult presently experiencing abuse, please speak with someone who can provide help and guidance.
- For immediate guidance, here are four numbers where you can reach trained professionals who are available 24/7:
- CrossRoads, located at 1206 Vaughn Rd Burlington, NC 27217, provides ongoing support to victims, their families and friends. The 24-hour helpline is (336) 228-0360.
- The National Hotline for Domestic Violence number is 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).
- The National Child Abuse Hotline number is 1-800-422-4453.
- The Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network number is 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).
- For ongoing care, find an experienced counselor near you who works with abuse and trauma:
- CrossRoads. The 24-hour helpline is (336) 228-0360.
- Christian Care Connect
- If you are not ready to speak with someone yet, consider reading Rid of My DisGrace by Justin and Lindsey Holcomb. This book helpfully describes the healing process after abuse.
4. If you are an adult who was abused as a child, the offense against you is no less wrong
Please refer to step #3 to get help. You have a right to report a past crime, and you have a choice about when to seek justice. This can be a helpful step in the process of recovery.
5. When you are ready, involve your local church in your recovery journey
Please do not feel pressured or rushed. Consider inviting a Christian friend to accompany you in meeting with a church leader.
6. Being a victim is not the final word about who you are
Being a victim of abuse should not be minimized or denied. Your identity and worth is not defined by your experiences, what was done to you, or how you were treated. You are made in the image of God with inherent value and dignity. If you have faith in Christ, your identity is even more secure and robust. You are righteous in Christ, adopted by God, and secure in the Holy Spirit. You are loved and accepted by God because of Christ’s redeeming work on the cross. The gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ brings the power of redemption to the healing process.
But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
— Galatians 4:4-6
A Word to Everyone
First, if you believe a minor is being abused or neglected, it is your legal obligation to report it. Alamance County Children’s Services number is (336) 229-2908. Mebane Police Department’s number is (919) 563-9031. Any person or institution who has cause to suspect that a child under the age of 18 is abused, neglected, or dependent must make a report to the county department of social services (DSS). G.S. 7B-301.1
Second, responses to abuse can promote healing or bring harm to an already tragic situation. Some inappropriate responses may produce greater damage when a victim isn’t believed, is told to be silent, is blamed, is not supported, or his or her abuse is minimized. The church can bring the healing balm, hope, and power of the gospel to the abused and all those affected by abuse. Please, “weep with those who weep” (Rom 12:15, Gal 6:2, 2Cor 1:4). Pray for those who have been abused. Grieve with those who mourn what has been lost. Demonstrating love and support to victims, through the power of the Holy Spirit, is a privileged responsibility of the body of Christ.