What is enditnow® Emphasis Day?
The enditnow® Emphasis Day comes in the church’s global calendar on the fourth Sabbath of August. It provides an annual opportunity for local churches to address domestic violence, to educate church members and leadership, to facilitate awareness in their communities, and to let victims know that their church cares about them.
Although it is an uncomfortable subject for many people, it has become more and more obvious that abuse is a serious problem for Christians and for Seventh-day Adventists. Abuse in any form deforms the body of Christ—for the victim, for the perpetrator, and for the church that is left with the hurting members.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church supports the enditnow® global initiative to raise awareness and advocate for the end of domestic violence around the world.
Why do you need a special day for this on the global church calendar? Because there is still domestic violence, including Christian families. Because there are so many more who still don’t understand the message of NO to violence. Because we need more persons with the right tools to help those who are suffering. Because God condemns all kinds of abuse and violence.
In 2016 , six additional departments of the Seventh-day Adventist Church joined Women’s Ministries as co-sponsors of the enditnow® initiative: Children’s Ministries, Department of Education, Family Ministries, Health Ministries, Ministerial Association, and Youth Ministries. Each of the sponsoring entities are committed to developing and sharing resources that address many expressions of abuse against women, children, and men.
What Can We Do?
The question for us is Should we do anything? Yes, we should. Then What can we do? What follows are a few things we can make a difference together:
- Visit the www.enditnow.org; there you will learn not only about the depth of the problem but how you can help get your own local church members involved.
- Present sermons and workshops to the congregation and the community on issues of gender-based violence relevant to your community. Offer to present age-appropriate information in local schools.
- Examine church policies and practices to be sure none foster or encourage hurtful or discriminatory attitudes towards women, children and men.
- Provide ongoing support to a local women’s shelter or other organization benefitting victims of gender-based violence.
- Care for hurting people in our church. Be non-judgmental. Develop support groups.
- Help raise awareness. Share materials about gender-based violence with your community.
The Northern Asia-Pacific Division has been mobilizing churches and leaders to support this special Sabbath as an opportunity to provide resources, information, education, hope and healing to our churches and the surrounding communities. So, they can go out with more awareness of the problem and how to respond.
Violence against women, children and men is real, it is here, and it needs to stop. That is what the enditnow Emphasis Day is all about. Be involved. Be an agent of healing. Be hope.
More information about the enditnow Emphasis Day and free resources follow the links below:
Raquel Arrais, NSD CHM/FM/WM Director