More pastors say they are addressing these issues from the pulpit. Still, half say they lack training in how to address sexual and domestic violence.

In recent months, churches have been rocked by high-profile accusations of sexual misconduct among clergy.

While the Catholic church’s continued abuse scandal has dominated the headlines, Protestant churches have also seen high profile pastors accused of sexual misconduct.

More accusations are likely to come—from congregations big and small.

One in 8 Protestant senior pastors say a church staff member has sexually harassed a member of the congregation at some point in the church’s history. One in 6 pastors say a staff member has been harassed in a church setting.

Two-thirds of pastors say domestic or sexual violence occurs in the lives of people in their congregation. And many pastors believe the #MeToo movement has made their churches more aware of how common sexual and domestic violence are.

More pastors say they are addressing these issues from the pulpit. Still, half say they lack training in how to address sexual and domestic violence.

Those are among the findings of a new study on pastors’ views on #MeToo and sexual and domestic violence in churches from Nashville-based LifeWay Research. The study, sponsored by IMA World Health and Sojourners, is a follow up to a 2014 survey.

Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research, says the #MeToo movement—and more public discussion of sexual and domestic violence—seems to have gotten pastors’ attention.

“Pastors are starting to talk about issues like sexual harassment and domestic abuse more than in the past,” McConnell said. “They don’t always know how to respond—but fewer see them as taboo subjects.”

Most aware of #MeToo

For the study, LifeWay Research conducted a phone survey of 1,000 Protestant …

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Source: Christian Today

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