Ebony.com recently featured a series on Sexual Assault and African American communities organized by colleague and survivor, Lori Robinson.  Lori has written an important book about surviving and healing from sexual assault.  She conducted an interview with me where I talk about how black churches can best respond to sexual assault in the community.

Your spiritual home should be a safe haven, a loving community and the ideal space for healing. Sometimes, that’s the case.

But for some survivors of rape or abuse, church is where their pain is minimized or ignored. For others, it’s where they are blamed for their victimization. For still others, it is where sexual violence actually happens.

It’s hard to believe, but pastors are rarely trained to handle the trauma of sexual assault. Of course, there are churches and clergy well prepared to help survivors heal and to deal with sexual violence and its ramifications with spiritual wisdom and compassion. Some churches are actually agents of change, working to transform society and end rape. Yet it’s important to know that if your church isn’t that kind of place, it’s within your power to help change it. If you are seeking spiritual food for your healing journey, there exist churches where you can get it. In either case, Monica A. Coleman is uniquely qualified to guide you in the right direction.

Interview originally here