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Hidden Wounds in Our Midst

January 20 @ 9:30 am - 3:30 pm

A day to explore how, through preaching, worship, prayer, listening and learning, we begin to discern the challenge the gospel poses for our relationships, calling us to repentance, and enabling restoration and healing. The purpose of the day is to equip those involved in pastoral care and anyone who preaches, teaches or speaks into the issue of domestic abuse.


‘In Our Midst’

This is the first in a series of annual events, entitled ‘In Our Midst’ and organised by Cumbria Christian Learning, whose purpose it is to explore, reflect on and encourage the development of prophetic preaching. It is our hope and desire that these days may help us discern and articulate a gospel response to the manifold challenges we, as the church in Cumbria, experience in our contemporary culture and society.

In this inaugural event, we thought it appropriate to focus on prophetic preaching in relation to the challenges posed by domestic abuse, one of the key challenges facing the church today. This year’s prophetic preaching day builds on the pioneering work already undertaken in this county by Churches Together in Cumbria (CTiC), who have been committed to raising awareness of domestic abuse within faith communities.

In the creation and delivery of this day, we have worked closely with our colleagues from CTiC and the other denominations that form part of our ecumenical partnership, including the Methodist Church, The Salvation Army and the United Reformed Church.


The Programme

9:30-10:00 Arrival, registration and refreshments
10:00-10:15 Opening words by Bishop Robert Freeman
Please see Bishop Robert’s letter of commendation.
Welcome and introductions
10:15-10:30 Worship
10:30-11:00 Sermon on Esther 1:1–2:6 (Kathy Galloway) – followed by 5 minutes silence
Vashti is not a biblical heroine; in fact, as the woman who ‘just said no’, she has been the villain for millennia. But her story is our story, if we are concerned about domestic abuse, and thinking about where gospel is to be found.
11:00-11:20 Tea and coffee break
11:20-11:30 Introductions to the workshops
11:30-12:30 Morning workshops
See below for further information.
12:30-1:30 Lunch
1:30-1:45 Worship
1:45-2:15 ‘Wifely submission and male authority – the misuse of Scripture in domestic abuse’: A Sermon on Ephesians 5:21-33 (and 1 Peter 2:1-7) (Elaine Storkey) – followed by 5 minutes silence
2:15-3:15 Afternoon workshops
See below for further information.
3:15-3:30 Closing worship
3:30-4:00 Tea and coffee
There will be listeners available for those who may wish to talk or seek prayer.

Throughout the day, there will be a market place of local resources and agencies as well as a bookstall.


The Workshops

Except where indicated otherwise, the workshops will be offered twice, in the morning and in the afternoon. They explore a variety of responses to the issues raised by domestic abuse.

  1. Responses from theology and scripture: Esther 1:1–2:6 (Sarah Moore)
    This workshop, which explores the theology contained in Kathy Galloway’s sermon on Esther 1:1–2:6, will only be offered in the morning.
  2. Responses from theology and scripture: Ephesians 5:21-33 (and 1 Peter 2:1-7) (Roger Batt)
    This workshop, which explores the theology contained in Elaine Storkey’s sermon on Ephesians 5:21-33 (and 1 Peter 2:1-7), will only be offered in the afternoon.
  3. Responding prophetically in our preaching ministry (Karl Möller)
    In this workshop, we will reflect on the nature and purpose of prophetic preaching, focusing especially on what prophetic preaching might look like in relation to the challenges caused by domestic abuse.
  4. Responding pastorally (Alison Fleetwood and Eleanor Hancock)
    In this workshop, we will be looking at the practical aspects of responding to domestic abuse in our midst, be that within our church family or our wider community. Using case studies, we will discuss how we can respond well in listening, praying and signposting, and with regard for our safeguarding responsibilties.
  5. Responses informed by sociological perspectives (Elaine Storkey)
    The workshop will look at domestic abuse in both a global and local context. We will be reviewing some different analyses given by sociologists and psychologists, then look at the prevalence of domestice abuse, highlight changes in police attitudes, examine profiles of both perpetuators and victims, and discuss responses within the church. Examples of ways in which the Christian church might address and help to eradicate domestic abuse will be the concluding section of the workshop.
  6. Responding in and from our faith communities (Nicola Byrne and Tim Cooke)
    A practical workshop led by Domestic Violence Steering Group, which is working to raise awareness in our churches about domestic abuse. We will explore what domestic abuse is, the key issues it raises and how churches can support those facing domestic abuse and signpost them to appropriate help.
  7. Responding in worship (Kathy Galloway)
    ‘We participate in the same struggle as our biblical foresisters against the oppression of patriarchy and for survival and freedom from it. We share the same liberating visions and commitments as our biblical foremothers. We are not called to “empathise” or “identify” with their struggles and hopes, but to continue our struggle in solidarity with them. Their memory and remembrance … encourage us in historical solidarity with them to commit ourselves to the continuing struggle against patriarchy in society and church’ (Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza). This workshop will explore how we can express these visions and this solidarity in story, song and symbol.


Our Speakers and Workshop Leaders

Roger Batt is a Salvation Army Officer. He was ordained into Salvation Army ministry as an Officer in 1983 and has served in many different and varying roles. He is currently working as a Mission Enabler for the Salvation Army in the North-Wales and North-West England region. Roger is married to Noreen, and they have four children and four grandchildren. He has a passion of loving Jesus and his family and he also loves to participate in and watch sport.
Nicola Byrne is the Letgo Service Manager – Letgo is a Leading Light accredited service operating across Cumbria. The service provides a range of services to individuals aged 16 and over, experiencing domestic abuse, regardless of age, sexual orientation or gender.
Tim Cooke is a Minister with Penrith Methodist Circuit, and part of the CTiC steering group on domestic abuse. He has a passion for mobilising the church to raise awareness on the issue of domestic abuse and to providing support for victims and survivors.
Alison Fleetwood is the Healing Adviser for Carlisle Diocese. She also works part time as a GP in south-east Cumbria, and has a passion for healing and wholeness in body, soul and spirit.
Kathy Galloway is a practical theologian, campaigner and writer focusing on peace-making and social justice. A minister of the Church of Scotland, Kathy was Head of Christian Aid Scotland and a former Leader of the Iona Community. As Church Action on Poverty Link worker for Scotland, she has worked for a charity that supports women experiencing abuse in a religious context. She writes poetry and has published widely on justice issues, liturgy and spirituality.
Eleanor Hancock has recently retired from her role as Priest in Charge of Holy Trinity & St Barnabas Team Ministry in Carlisle. She is a founding member of the Churches Together in Cumbria Domestic Violence Steering Group, and one of a team who deliver awareness training across the county. As a survivor of domestic abuse, she found acceptance and healing through faith in Christ, encountering the unconditional love of God through her local church.
Karl Möller is Principal of Initial Ministerial Education at Cumbria Christian Learning where he is responsible for Lay Reader, Ordination and Post-Ordination Training. Among other things, he has written on the rhetoric of the Old Testament Prophets as well as on the Song of Songs, spirituality and sexuality.
Sarah Moore currently serves as President of the United Reformed Church in Cumbria, as President of Churches Together in Cumbria, and is a member of the Cumbria Christian Learning staff team.  She has an interest in how our faith impacts on daily life and is passionate about the importance of tackling difficult and controversial issues in the life of the Church.
Elaine Storkey is an experienced writer and speaker in relating the Christian Gospel to contemporary culture. She was President of Tear Fund and has been one of the longest-serving members of the Church of England’s General Synod (28 years). Her latest book, ‘Scars Across Humanity’, addresses the global incidence of violence against women.


Additional Information and Contact Details

The costs are £20 per person, including booking fee, but do let us know if you require a reduced rate.

Please bring your own lunch. Tea and coffee will be provided.

You can contact us on 01768 807765 or admin@cumbriachristianlearning.org.uk if you have any questions about this event. If you need disabled parking or access, please phone St Thomas’s church office on 01539 730683 to make any necessary arrangements.


Venue and Parking

The day will take place at St Thomas’s Church, Stricklandgate, Kendal, LA9 4QG.

St Thomas’s Church is situated just outside Kendal town centre, at the north-western end of Stricklandgate/Windermere Road (A6) opposite the County Hall.

Free parking is available opposite St Thomas’s Church in the County Hall car park. Turn into Busher Walk and park in the large car park behind the County Hall and Register Office. (The top car park is reserved for Register Office weddings.) Alternatively, for further car parking options, enter the postcode LA9 4QG on Parkopedia.



Please follow the link below to book your place(s). As part of the booking process, you will be asked to indicate the four workshops you are most interested in. We will do our best to assign you to your preferred two workshops, but as this may not always be possible, we request that you select four options.

If you have any problems with the booking page please give us a call or email us.


January 20
9:30 am - 3:30 pm
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Cumbria Christian Learning
01768 807765