Survey: 70 per cent Chinese Churches Never Pay Attention to or Talk about Sexual Abuse

By Ruth Wang, August 21, 2018 12:08 PM

#ChurchToo campaign

Almost 70 per cent Chinese churches never pay attention to or talk about sexual abuse, according to a survey about sexual assault among Chinese Christians. 

99 per cent people say churches or ministries need to provide sexual violence prevention education. More than three-fourths of them say they attend church services. 

The survey conducted by Christian Times, an online Christian news website in China and involving 100 interviews, explored sexual abuse among Christians.It reported the following results. 

The survey found that sexual harassment generally refers to "any verbal or physical violence or hint related to sexual content leading to psychological disgust, oppression, and panic in other people".

28 per cent of the participants claimed that they meet Christians who suffer from sexual abuse, with 33 per cent saying they experienced abuse. 

Among those victims, the results showed that almost half of them encounter sexual misconduct before becoming Christians. The abusers are mostly strangers and non-Christians, partially family relatives and school teachers, as well as  pastors/preachers and other Christians. 

The survey showed that the tragedy is more likely to happen at home and in remote environments. 

Asked what their reaction is to the evil conduct, 19 people say they were too afraid to be at a loss and 13 chose guilt. Six say that they felt angry and self-accused. 

In response to sexual abuse, 22 remained silent to keep it a secret from everybody and few of them told their parents, reported cases to the police or made it public, the study notes. 19 of them say that they felt understood and after pouring out the hurt. 

Among the victims, 16 say that they were not affected by abuse,10 suspecting or distrusting God and two hating God, it adds. 

17 respondents state that faith helped them heal their wounds and walk out of the hurt and 15 say that thanks to their faith, they were strong enough to face the hardships. 

36% of them say that they have completely got rid of the bad experiences, whereas 48% under recovery, 12% suffering from much hurt, and 3% feeling even worse. 

69% say that their churches never talked about or gave attention to sexual abuse issues, while 26% declare that their churches mentioned such matter and 5% received help from their churches for the topic. 

Although 59% say they don't receive relevant help from churches or ministries, 12% argue the counseling from churches/ministries were very helpful.

99 people hold that churches or ministries need to provide psychological counseling and emotional support, the study revealed. Meanwhile, they also need to offer legal knowledge, teach how to obtain evidence and help victims, and tell channels to make appeals.  

- Translated by Karen Luo

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