Violence Against Women in a Multiethnic Church
Domestic violence affects the lives of millions of women and children around the world; in fact, according to a new report from the World Health Organization (2013) physical or sexual violence affects 35 % of women globally. However, very little of the literature on domestic violence addresses the unique context of culturally diverse women (Rasche 1988; Riviera 1994). For that reason, we decided to study the women of a multiethnic church community. This chapter looks at abuse experienced or observed by eleven women, all attenders of a multiethnic church in a major metro area in the Midwest. The women come from diverse ethnicities, socioeconomic levels, and neighborhoods. Some are first- or second-generation immigrants from Africa, some are white, and some are women of color. In this chapter they discuss their experiences and views of domestic violence: giving examples, discussing perceptions of abuse in their families and communities, identifying factors that impact abuse, and articulating the role of faith in their healing and restoration. Two focus groups, four interviews, and a questionnaire provided both qualitative and quantitative data, which were analyzed for thematic content.
KeywordsDomestic violence Multiethnic churches Sexual violence Immigration status National origin Healing and restoration
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