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For full reports and exact statements of the CRCNA position on a particular issue, see references provided below.

우리의 입장

학대는 인간 행위와 관계를 규정하는 성경적 지침을 어기는 죄입니다. 학대는 죄의 결과로서 인간의 삶에 만연한 비참을 드러내는 명확한 증거입니다. 남자와 여자 그리고 부모와 자녀가 서로 성경적으로 건강하고 확증된 방식으로 관계하는데 실패한 것이 학대의 근본원인입니다.

교회 카운실은 학대의 죄가 심지어 교회 내부에도 존재함을 공개적으로 인정해야하며, 교회 모임이 모든 사람들에게 안전하도록 적극적으로 행동해야 합니다. 카운실은 학대 문제를 신속하게 대응하기 위한 노력들을 지원해야만 합니다. 이를 통해 피해자와 가해자가 하나님 은혜의 치유하는 능력을 경험하거나, 그들의 지역에서 적용되는 법률과 그 절차들을 숙지하게 됩니다. 그리고 교회 지도자들이 학대 문제에 대해 정확히 알게 되고 민감하게 되는 계속 교육기회의 장을 제공합니다. 카운실은 또한 권위나 혹은 영향력 있는 직책의 사람이 학대를 했다는 고발을 받으면 즉각적으로, 단호하게 다룰 수 있는 절차를 채택해야 합니다. 총회는 북미주 개혁교회의 모든 노회가 학대방지팀 (또는 안전한 교회 사역)을 세우기를 격려합니다. 또한 총회는 (1) 신적 형상으로 창조되고 교회를 세울 때 은사를 활용할 책임이 있는 모든 개인에 대한 상호 존중, (2) 그리스도를 따라 상호 복종을 강조하는 섬김의 리더십, 그리고 (3) 상호 견제와 균형으로 구성된 교회 운영구조를 통해서 서로 책임지는  핵심가치를 확인하여, 북미주 개혁교회는 권력의 남용을 방지하는 문화를 조성하려는 결의를 다집니다.

또한 생명 항목도 보십시오.


Abuse prevention guidelines were reviewed and revised by various synods and adopted by Synod 1997. In 1994 synod established an Abuse-Prevention Committee, to which a director was appointed. In July 1999 the committee was made accountable to the Board of Trustees and became known as the Office of Abuse Prevention until 2009, when its name changed to reflect its work more comprehensively as the Safe Church Ministry. Synods 2000 and 2001 encouraged all classes to establish Abuse Response Teams. Synod 2002 adopted a policy of zero tolerance in cases of abuse and drafted a resolution expressing empathy with the Roman Catholic Church over its struggle with and the need for healing from abuse. In 2004 the CRC adopted guidelines for handling allegations of abuse against a church leader, and revised procedures were adopted in 2005, 2010, and 2019. The role of advocate established in 2005 was expanded in 2009 to include facilitation of restorative justice measures and equitable remedies for victims. Synod 2010 renamed this position to claimant advocate (Safe Church Trained). For information on restorative justice, see a report on the topic adopted by Synod 2005 ( Synod 2009 also approved the development of regional advisory panels to enhance accessibility, training, and networking for advocates and abuse victims. Synod 2006 called for the appointment of a task force to consider how the denomination ought to be responding to consequences of sexual abuse. The Abuse Victims Task Force reported its recommendations to Synod 2008, which referred the report back for refinement on some issues needing clarification. After distributing a refined report to the churches, the task force reported to Synod 2010, which adopted all of the task force’s recommendations. In summary, synod agreed to

  1. urge councils to
    • provide for pastoral care needs in situations of abuse, ensuring that such needs receive immediate attention, drawing on the resources of neighboring congregations, if necessary.
    • develop a plan for providing financial assistance for counseling, when needed, and to follow restorative justice guidelines for restitution in sustained allegations of abuse by a church leader.
    • engage in yearly review of policies and training on abuse prevention and guidelines.
  2. reaffirm support and application of restorative justice principles, encouraging churches to do the same and inviting the use of pilot projects to be coordinated by the Safe Church Ministry.
  3. urge the development of accessible educational resources and a clear handbook for council members to use in responding to allegations and situations of abuse.

Synod 2010 also issued a declaration confessing that the CRC has "not always justly and compassionately helped those who have been sexually abused" and has "not always justly or adequately disciplined church leaders who have been abusers" (Acts of Synod 2010, p. 867).

In 2014 synod adopted a revision of the Judicial Code of Rights and Procedures (Church Order Supplement, Article 30-c) that takes into account the CRC-adopted statements on abuse prevention and restorative justice.

Synod 2015 received an overture requesting that Church Order Supplement, Article 84 be changed “to include address of sexual abuse,” and, in response, synod instructed the Board of Trustees “to ask Safe Church Ministry, in concert with other denominational entities” to review and recommend changes, if needed, to Church Order Articles 82-84 and their Supplements regarding suspension, deposition, resignation, and reinstatement to office “in cases of sexual misconduct and sexual abuse” (Acts of Synod 2015, p. 644). In response to its mandate, the committee reported to Synod 2016, recommending various changes after considering imbalance and misuse of power, definitions of terms, and gradations in severity and victim impact, and after consulting with legal experts and with other denominations and agencies regarding their policies (Agenda for Synod 2016, pp. 675-76, 683-85, 699-717). Synod responded by adopting changes to Supplement, Articles 82-84; a new Supplement, Article 83; and changes to Supplement, Article 84. In connection with these changes, synod also adopted a new Supplement, Article 14-e. (See Acts of Synod 2016, pp. 863-66.)

In response to an overture asking synod to address issues related to abuse of power by church leaders, Synod 2018 reaffirmed actions by Synods 2010 and 2014 on abuse awareness and called for annual reporting to identify classes and congregations with and without Safe Church teams and policies. Synod lamented “the ongoing failure of some classes and congregations to implement safe church practices” and urged all classes and congregations “to learn from the best practices of others and to utilize the resources available through Safe Church Ministry” (Acts of Synod 2018, pp. 474-76). In addition, synod called for a team to bring recommendations to Synod 2019 “regarding how the CRCNA can best address patterns of abuse of power at all levels of the denomination” (Acts of Synod 2018, pp. 523-24). In response, Synod 2019 called for several measures toward creating a culture that prevents abuse of power. Such a culture would affirm the core values of (1) mutual respect for all persons as created in God’s image and responsible to use their gifts in building up the church, (2) servant leadership that emphasizes mutual submission in honor of Christ, and (3) mutual accountability through checks and balances built into governing structures. Synod called on the Council of Delegates to develop training for pastors on abuse of power, to draft a code of conduct and review abuse-prevention training for CRC ministry staff, to strengthen Safe Church Ministry, and to develop a policy regarding nondisclosure agreements that limits their use to serve the best interests of abuse victims. Among other recommendations, synod also urged classes and congregations to conduct abuse-of-power training and to ensure that abuse survivors have access to appropriate counseling services (Acts of Synod 2019, pp. 794-99). Meeting on behalf of synod in June 2020, the Council of Delegates endorsed a proposed program and timeline for abuse-of-power training for all ordained ministers of the Word, commissioned pastors, and candidates for ministry in the CRCNA (Minutes of the Special Meeting of the Council of Delegates 2020, p. 423). In June 2021 while again meeting on behalf of synod, the Council of Delegates adopted a code of conduct for ministry leaders and a report completed by the Abuse of Power Ad Hoc Committee, including recommendations for updating abuse-prevention training and policies for CRC ministry staff, for improving the appeal process regarding complaints, for the use of restorative justice practices as additional support, for evaluating conflict of interest or bias, and for developing a Dignity Team. In 2021 the COD also noted the completion of Synod 2019 directives regarding nondisclosure agreements, abuse-prevention resources for culturally diverse churches, recordkeeping, and implementation and monitoring (Minutes of the Special Meeting of the Council of Delegates 2021, pp. 633-37).

References to Agendas and Acts of Synod

Agenda for Synod 1989, pp. 309-10
Acts of Synod 1989, pp. 548-49
Agenda for Synod 1992, pp. 138, 313-58, 482-85
Acts of Synod 1992, pp. 560-61, 567, 671-77, 709, 731
Agenda for Synod 1993, pp. 23, 27, 55, 65, 286-87
Acts of Synod 1993, pp. 544-45, 579
Agenda for Synod 1994, pp. 32, 34, 48-49, 146-54, 191-97
Acts of Synod 1994, pp. 466, 517-18, 527-28
Agenda for Synod 1995, pp. 178-81, 555-65
Acts of Synod 1995, pp. 672-74, 678, 767, 779-88
Agenda for Synod 1996, pp. 161-62, 322-24
Acts of Synod 1996, pp. 374-81, 562-72, 578-79, 634-42
Agenda for Synod 1997, pp. 187-88, 195-207, 466-79
Acts of Synod 1997, pp. 674-86
Agenda for Synod 1998, pp. 139, 238-40
Acts of Synod 1998, p. 401
Agenda for Synod 1999, pp. 157-58, 453, 466-67
Acts of Synod 1999, pp. 554-55
Agenda for Synod 2000, pp. 32, 36, 523
Acts of Synod 2000, pp. 619-20, 684
Agenda for Synod 2001, pp. 36, 77-78
Acts of Synod 2001, p. 524
Agenda for Synod 2002, pp. 35-36, 47-49, 393
Acts of Synod 2002, pp. 538, 543
Agenda for Synod 2003, pp. 37, 51-53
Acts of Synod 2003, p. 682
Agenda for Synod 2004, pp. 39-40, 56-58
Acts of Synod 2004, p. 551
Agenda for Synod 2005, pp. 35, 54-60, 529-65
Acts of Synod 2005, pp. 761-62, 775-77
Agenda for Synod 2006, pp. 30, 70-73
Acts of Synod 2006, p. 642
Agenda for Synod 2007, pp. 33, 130-32
Acts of Synod 2007, p. 581
Agenda for Synod 2008, pp. 31, 35, 49-51, 324, 329-61
Acts of Synod 2008, pp. 457, 480-81
Agenda for Synod 2009, p. 86
Acts of Synod 2009, pp. 586-87
Agenda for Synod 2010, pp. 475-509, 707-708, 717
Acts of Synod 2010, pp. 862-67, 870
Agenda for Synod 2014, pp. 30, 72-84, 237
Acts of Synod 2014, pp. 559-60, 569-70
Agenda for Synod 2015, pp. 436-40
Acts of Synod 2015, pp. 644-45
Agenda for Synod 2016, pp. 675-76, 683-85, 699-717
Acts of Synod 2016, pp. 863-66
Agenda for Synod 2018, pp. 282-307
Acts of Synod 2018, pp. 474-76, 523-24
Agenda for Synod 2019, pp. 554-57, 587-615
Acts of Synod 2019, pp. 794-99
Agenda for Synod 2020, pp. 25-26, 40
Minutes of the Special Meeting of the Council of Delegates 2020, pp. 345-46, 371-74, 423
Deferred Agenda for Synod 2020, pp. 113-16
Agenda for Synod 2021, pp. 29-31, 44-71
Minutes of the Special Meeting of the Council of Delegates 2021, pp. 633-37