Thursday, October 1, 2015

Harriet L. Miller Women's Center 

I doubt if Linda thinks of herself as a hero, but that’s what she is. She saved her sister Kathy’s life. Kathy lived in another country and was a victim of abuse from her husband. After struggling for several years with making a decision to leave him or not, Kathy, after yet another beating, made arrangements to escape. As she and her eight-year-old son waited to depart from the airport, Kathy began to have self-doubts. “God doesn’t want marriages to break up. Am I doing the right thing? Maybe I should try again.” In this stage of self-doubt, she called her sister, Linda. After listening for a few minutes, with all the strength she could summon, she reached through the phone with the strongest voice of authority she could find and ordered her sister, “Get on the plane!” According to Kathy, that was all it took to break through her doubts – it was as if the voice of God spoke to her directly – and she boarded the plane back to the U.S. and to safety in a community with family and friends who continue to give her support. Linda is a hero. She saved Kathy’s life.

·      85 -95% of all domestic violence victims are female
·      About 1 out of 4 women will be abused by a partner in her lifetime.
·      Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between the ages of 15 and 44 in the US;  more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined
·      A woman is beaten by her husband or partner every 15 seconds in the US
·      Police report that between 40% and 60% of the calls they receive are domestic violence disputes
·      50% of all homeless women and children in this country are fleeing domestic violence
·      The health-related costs of rape, physical assault, stalking and homicide by intimate      partners exceed $5.8 billion each year
·      In the US, more than 1200 women are killed each year by their intimate partner*
·      24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the U.S—over 12 million women & men during the course of a year**


  • Ask your pastor to preach on the issue of domestic violence so if there are persons in your congregation being abused, they will know their pastor is aware of this issue.
  • Publicize the domestic violence hotline in your church.
  • Make sure your pastor is aware of community resources for those experiencing violence and publicize those resources in your congregation.
  • Teach young people how to have healthy relationships ‐ ones that are free from violence.

Be intentional about lifting a voice of reason. And, if the occasion arises, let your voice reach across the distance and compel someone to safety. Be a hero and save a life.

**National Domestic Violence Hotline

If you or someone you know needs help, call 1800799SAFE.
Rev. Terry Heck
Director of the Harriet L. Miller Women's Center

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