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How are you doing?

Are you doing okay?

We have collectively weathered a very hard and difficult time as a community and as a denomination. While we are starting to see restrictions lifted and slowly we are able to come out of isolation and be in community again in a more traditional, in-person way, it is important to pause and check in with others intentionally.

As a ministry we want to be very intentional about connecting with classis and understanding how the pandemic affected your church and what this means for your community as you move forward. We hope you all join us this month for our webinar where we take space to dive into this conversation. See you there!

—Becky Jones, Editor

Safe Church Webinar Series Updates

June Safe Church Webinar: On Being Restorative Congregations In the Aftermath of COVID

Join us Wednesday, June 9th when Anne Martin and Mark Vander Vennen, from Shalem Mental Health, will explore why restorative practices are worth it today and will define the following vital aspects of the framework for restorative practices: continuum of practices, practice domains, and the compass of shame.

Learn More Here


Learn about Restorative Practices!

Restorative Circle Workshop!

Join us Wednesday, June 23rd at 7:30p-9p Eastern, (4:30p-6p Pacific when Eric Kas and Liz Tolkamp and several other restorative facilitators lead a workshop on facilitating an active listening circle. This is a participative workshop where all will be first watching a restorative circle happen, then participating themselves in a "circle" via a zoom breakout room.

Register Here


Update! News about our July webinar!

July Safe Church Webinar with Scot Mcknight: On Creating Cultures that Resist Abuse and Promote Healing

Join us July 7th for a conversation with guest speaker, Dr. Scot Mcknight, author of The Church Called Tov: Forming a Goodness Culture that Resists Abuses of Power and Promotes Healing. Mcknight explores the concept of Tov, a place that creates cultures that resist abuses of power and promotes healing, safety, and spiritual growth.

Learn More Here


Part 4: When Spiritual Leaders Do Harm

Part 4 - When Spiritual Leaders Do Harm: Starting Small and Choosing to Be With in Small Oases of Restorative Resiliency

This is the final installment of a series of articles by Safe Church Ministry titled: When Spiritual Leaders Do Harm. Referencing Wendell Berry, Scot Mcknight, Laura Barringer and Restorative Practices, there are two ways that are suggested to prevent harm in spiritual communities: starting small, and choosing to be with.

Learn More Here


In Response to 215 children’s remains found in Kamloops

A Prayer for the Uncovering of Graves in Kamloops

This past week in Canada, the devastating news was announced that a mass grave of 215 Indigenous children’s bodies had been discovered at a residential school in Kamloops. This announcement was not met with surprise, but with deep sadness. May we remember all of those children who lost their lives, children of the Creator. Our justice ministries have worked together to offer prayers and resources in light of this heartbreaking discovery.

(To view the prayer: Prayer for the uncovering of Graves in Kamploops)

Learn More Here


Safe Church Partners with Calvin Seminary to Offer Summer Mini-Course 

Safe Church is teaching an online course this summer through Calvin Seminary as part of the "Ministry in a Covid-Shaped World" summer courses offerings.  "Together Again: Cultivating Safe and Healthy Communities after Covid," will be offered June 21-July 9 and will be taught in collaboration with staff from Pastor Church Resources and the Office of Race Relations.

This one-credit course is designed to provide Christian leaders with the framework and tools to begin instituting practices and behaviors that promote healthier and safer church communities. Topics of discussion will include: how to deal with conflict in ways that are constructive and healing; best practices for women and men working in mutually respectful relationships; attending to uses and abuses of power; becoming a more inclusive community; and relating to each other in restorative ways.

The course is designed for ministry and lay leaders and all others interested in cultivating healthier environments in their ministries and congregations. Participants can audit the class or take it for seminary credit.

Learn More Here


Join a Training on the Advisory Panel Process

One of the mandates of the Classis Safe Church Team (SCT) is to provide an Advisory Panel Process when allegations of abuse are brought by an adult against a church leader. Safe Church will be hosting an online training session this summer for those interested in serving on a panel. Fill out the form linked below to receive more information about this training.

Registration Form


Monthly Update

Abuse of Power

At its May 2021 meeting, the Council of Delegates adopted, for COD members, the Code of Conduct that was drafted for ministry leaders in response to the recommendations regarding the abuse of power at Synod 2019. COD members are now required to sign the Code of Conduct prior to service on the COD.

A Code of Conduct outlines clear standards, responsibilities, and expectations for the behaviors of individuals within a community and forms a basis by which to hold persons accountable for their conduct. Such accountability is especially important for ministry leaders as they have been entrusted with significant spiritual, emotional, and organizational power and influence. Their words and actions can have considerable impact on individuals and on the community at large both for good and for harm.  A Code of Conduct can be immensely helpful for ministry leaders in establishing a set of guidelines to prevent the misuse or abuse of power that would bring harm to others. 

You can find a copy of the proposed Code of Conduct for Ministry Leaders here We encourage all ministry leaders, councils, and classes to consider adopting this Code of Conduct for themselves and using it as a way to hold each other mutually accountable in exercising power in a Christlike way.  For Classes that would like a brief orientation to the Code of Conduct at an upcoming classis meeting, please contact

May Webinar recording now available!

May Safe Church Webinar with Dr. Amanda Benckhuysen: Biblical Perspectives on Human Dignity

This month, Director of Safe Church, Dr. Amanda Benckhuysen, led us through an exploration of biblical perspectives on human dignity and reflected on what it means to live out this truth in our church life together. The recording of this discussion is now available to view.

Learn More Here


Staying Connected

Follow us on YouTube!

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One day, Christ will return to establish a kingdom 
where there will be no more tears or heartache or reason to fear, 
where threats of harm, violence, manipulation, and bullying will cease, 
where justice, truth, and goodness will prevail, 
and where every person, 
regardless of gender, age, color, nationality, or ability, 
will be seen, valued, and loved.

Join us in leaning into this hope today.

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This monthly e-newsletter is a ministry of Christian Reformed Church in North America.

Christian Reformed Church in North America
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