Services and informative websites
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The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children has a 24 hour hotline if you believe you have seen a missing child or encounter sexually exploitive images. NCMEC also has resources that parents, churches and schools can use in teaching children online safety.
A report from the Department of Health and Human Services that provides a number of resources to respond to the risk of child abuse and neglect among children with disabilities.
These guidelines, developed with the help of law enforcement, abuse experts, and church workers, provide carefully crafted counsel for churches. Safety of children and youth is foundational to the document, while finding safe ways for congregations to serve an offender spiritually within his specific legal restrictions.
Download Dealing with Sexual Offenders, the Congregational Guidelines document produced by WELS Special Ministries.
Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment is a Christian organization of child abuse prosecutors, psychologists, and other professionals who provide training, publications, and other child abuse prevention resources to families and churches.
It is important to recognize the differences when dealing with sexual behavior of young people:
“Recognizing and Responding to Developmentally Appropriate and Inappropriate Sexual Behaviors of Children,” by Victor I. Vieth. Currents in Theology and Mission 45:3, pages 50-55 (July 2018)
Statistical analysis and perspectives on juvenile sex offenders can also be found in the Office of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) summary of research on youth who commit sexual offenses against other children.
Lutheran Church Missouri Synod Child Abuse Resources. This website, created by a Missouri Synod (LCMS) Task Force on child abuse, contains articles, prayers, coloring books and other resources that may help churches and families in responding to the sin of child abuse.
Act Against Violence (ACT) Raising Safe Kids Program is designed to help parents raise healthy children and to reduce the risk of physical or emotional abuse. The program was developed by the American Psychological Association and its effectiveness is supported by research.
A comprehensive report prepared by the United States Department of Justice that details our current knowledge about adults and children who commit sexual offenses. The Sex Offender Management Assessment and Planning Initiative report may help clergy or others who must monitor convicted sex offenders in a congregation or in directing sex offenders to appropriate treatment and other resources that research indicates can lower the risk of recidivism.
The American Academy of Pediatrics: Evaluation Sexual Behaviors in Children. Parents, clergy, teachers, and others may struggle with discerning a child’s sexual behaviors. This article helps sort out normal and abnormal sexual behaviors in children and offers guidance when professional assistance is necessary.
Standing Up for Children: A Christian Response to Child Abuse and Neglect. All churches and schools need to be safe places where leaders actively work to prevent abuse. Freedom for the Captives (FFTC) offers online training videos taught by experts Mr. Victor Vieth, director of education and research at Zero Abuse Project and Prof. John Schuetze, a seminary professor and counselor. To learn more, check our training webpage. To request the training for yourself or your group, please complete our online learning registration form.
(SMART) is a United States Department of Justice program that monitors federal law on the registration of sex offenders. The SMART website has resources that can help churches or others understand registration laws in a particular state. Tags: Advocates, Ministry Leaders
Zero Abuse Project (ZAP) is an organization committed to transforming institutions to effectively prevent, recognize, and respond to child sexual abuse. Zero Abuse Project offers many excellent training courses, including “Keeping Faith: Empowering the Faith Community to Recognize and Respond to Child Abuse.”