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About Us

Vision

Safe Church Ministry equips congregations in abuse awareness, prevention, and response. We help build communities where the value of each person is honored; where people are free to worship and grow free from abuse; and where abuse has occurred, the response is compassion and justice that foster healing.

Safe Church pursues our vision by offering training and support to volunteer safe church team members so that they can be resources for their congregations and classes. Team members provide learning opportunities, support, and consultation in their own local contexts.

Download this one-page summary of who Safe Church is and what we do. 

Amanda Benckhuysen

Rev. Dr. Amanda Benckhuysen

Safe Church Ministry Director
  • Consultation: providing assistance and support in situations where abuse or allegations of abuse arise

  • Abuse of Power: developing training and conducting seminars on abuse of power and the cultivation of healthy Christian communities that resist abuse

  • Advisory Panel Process: working with Safe Church Coordinators to put together and support an Advisory Panel in cases when church staff are involved in misconduct.

Before coming to this role, Amanda served as professor of Old Testament at Calvin Theological Seminary (Grand Rapids, Mich.). She has also taught at the University of Dubuque (Iowa) Theological Seminary and was a campus minister at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Amanda notes: "The position of director of Safe Church Ministry offers me the opportunity to use so much of my experience in creating, teaching, writing, mentoring, and consulting for a cause that is near to my heart."

616-240-8155
Eric Kas

Rev. Eric Kas

Safe Church Ministry Consultant
  • Consultation: providing assistance and support in situations where abuse or allegations of abuse arise

  • Restorative Practices: coaching and resourcing churches and ministries in restorative practices

  • Safe Church Coordinator Training and Support: working with Safe Church coordinators and teams across the CRCNA to promote abuse awareness, prevention, and response

  • Safe Church Media:  Hosting webinars and overseeing website design to make abuse awareness, prevention, and response more accessible.

I believe abuse affects us all, in major visible ways and in uncountable invisible ways as we all cope with a world that is not the way it is supposed to be. I also believe that as the church we cannot be silent and that Jesus is walking alongside us as our shepherd, both enabling us to keep the vulnerable safe, and equipping us to walk alongside others who have been impacted by abuse of all shapes. I'm thankful to be in this role creating abuse awareness/prevention resources, connecting and equipping our incredible Safe Church Coordinators, consulting in abuse situations, and catalyzing restorative practices in the Christian Reformed Church.

616-224-0717 (office); 616-299-2868 (cell)
Becky Jones

Becky Jones

Communications and Volunteer Specialist for Disability Concerns and Safe Church
  • Safe Church Coordinator Training and Support: working with Safe Church coordinators and teams across the CRCNA to promote abuse awareness, prevention, and response

  • Grant Opportunities: administering mini-grants for new Safe Ministry initiatives

  • Communications: promoting and reporting on Safe Church events through various media platforms

I work with two ministries of the CRC - Disability Concerns (2/3) and Safe Church (1/3). Prior to this role, I worked as a volunteer coordinator at a local art gallery in Burlington, Ontario, Canada. As a volunteer coordinator, I loved watching people give of their time in order to make our city a more community oriented space. Prior my work at the art gallery, I worked as an art therapist. In that role, I was able to walk alongside individuals living with autism, intellectual disabilities, dementia, brain injuries and many other physical and mental health challenges that impacted their life. I loved watching individuals connect with art and use it as a new form of communication and connection. I truly appreciated being able to advocate for them. I enjoy connecting with people, but I also appreciate the value of leaning into hard conversations and situations and finding a way through. I am thankful to be able to serve in both Safe Church and Disability Concerns.

905-336-2920 x4978