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When Home Hurts: A Guide for Responding Wisely to Domestic Abuse in Your Church

When Home Hurts: A Guide for Responding Wisely to Domestic Abuse in Your Church

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This book is intended to equip pastors, church leaders and church members to respond with the heart of God to situations of domestic abuse that occur in their local church. Prioritising the safety of the victim at all times, Jeremy Pierre and Greg Wilson seek to help you be the kind of church leader, church member, friend, parent, sibling, or neighbor who responds wisely. We want the church to be a new normal for those grown accustomed to abuse. A home that doesn’t hurt those inside, but instead welcomes them into the tender care of the Lord.

Split into three sections, When Home Hurts begins with an overview to provide a framework for understanding abuse and the people caught up in it, before moving on to advice on how to help in the short and long terms.

This very practical, pastoral book acknowledges the reality and the horror of domestic abuse, but also the reality and power of God to heal. It will be a helpful guide to anyone who suspects abuse within their church family but is unsure how to help without making things worse.

The five appendices at the end of the book offer helpful answers to difficult questions as well as additional resources.


Pastors will love the theological nuance and practical ways the authors lay out how to have tough conversations with victims, abusers and congregants. Counselors will appreciate the prioritizing of safety planning and trauma work with victims as well as the fresh insights of how to handle the passive resistance of the abuser.

-- Leslie Vernick (International speaker, relationship coach and author of ‘The Emotionally Destructive Relationship’ and ‘The Emotionally Destructive Marriage’)

Comprehensive in its scope and compassionate in its approach, I have no doubt that we will be returning to this resource time and time again to offer competent, biblical, gracious counsel to the abused. 

-- Jonathan D. Holmes (Executive Director, Fieldstone Counseling, & author, ‘Counsel for Couples: A Biblical and Practical Guide for Marriage Counselling’)

An excellent treatment of one of the most challenging topics facing the church today. Pierre and Wilson have tackled abuse in a way that is both practical and theologically robust.

-- Stephen Viars (Senior Pastor, Faith Church, Lafayette, Indiana)

This helpful resource will alleviate the concern and stress that will come in these difficult situations by helping define what your roles are and what they are not, giving you a plan and procedures to follow, and identifying key sources of support. I cannot recommend it higher.

-- Curtis W. Solomon (Executive Director, The Biblical Counseling Coalition)

When Home Hurts is packed with clarifying biblical insights and concrete action steps for church leaders who encounter Domestic Abuse. Tremendous wisdom and experience have gone into the shepherding plans and assessment tools found in this book. This makes it an essential and invaluable guide that every church should have at the ready. 

-- Darby Strickland (Author of ‘Is it Abuse? A Biblical Guide to Identifying Domestic Abuse and Helping Victims’ & Faculty member, CCEF )

Few experiences of suffering appear more overwhelming and complex than domestic abuse. This book will equip you with relevant truths of the gospel so that you can respond with strength, peace, and simplicity.

-- John Henderson (Associate Professor of Biblical Counseling, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky)

There is a great need for more Christian resources on abuse which understand that safety is the primary concern when a victim has the courage to confide their experience of abuse. That is why I am grateful for When Home Hurts.

-- Brad Hambrick (Pastor of Counseling, The Summit Church, Durham, North Carolina)

Written by wise and experienced church leaders, for church leaders, this book takes an extremely practical approach rooted in very clear and thoughtful theological categories. I am thrilled that this book finally exists!

-- Alasdair Groves (Executive Director of CCEF)


Jeremy Pierre, Ph.D., is Lawrence & Charlotte Hoover Professor of Biblical Counseling & Department Chair at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the author of ‘The Dynamic Heart in Daily Life’ (2016), co–author of ‘The Pastor and Counseling’ (2015) and staff pastor at Clifton Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky.

Greg Wilson is a Licensed Professional Counselor and leads Soul Care Associates, a counseling and consulting practice in Texas. His practice areas include counseling victims and perpetrators of domestic abuse and consulting with leaders of churches and other organizations on adopting best practices for care.
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When Home Hurts: A Guide for Responding Wisely to Domestic Abuse in Your Church
When Home Hurts: A Guide for Responding Wisely to Domestic Abuse in Your Church9781527107229
When Home Hurts: A Guide for Responding Wisely to Domestic Abuse in Your Church9781527107229
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