Survivor Care – What Religious Professionals Need to Know about Healing Trauma

by Christy Gunter Sim
Survivor Care – What Religious Professionals Need to Know about Healing Trauma
ISBN: 9781945935350
ISBN: 9781945935350
ISBN: 9781945935367

Help victims of violence and abuse find healing.

Written especially for Christian professionals and pastors, this book explains the complexities of violence and care.From a sound scientific and spiritual perspective, Sim gives concrete ways to address standards of care, healing, and confidentiality and shows why violence and abuse continue to plague our society. Beginning with the neurobiology of trauma, this practical guide outlines three modes of biological reaction and introduces specific ways healing and wholeness can occur. Sim also addresses the importance of self-care and vicarious trauma, including behavioral signs and symptoms.The book also details how community partners and churches can help victims.

Praise for Survivor Care

“For nearly 30 years, I’ve worked nationally and internationally to educate church leaders about domestic violence, promoting a focus on safety for victims and accountability for abusers. Dr. Sim provides excellent training, equipping pastors and church leaders with tools and resources for a compassionate, best practices response. I highly recommend her as an expert and advocate.”

—Julie A. Owens,

“Savvy, interdisciplinary, and deeply wise, this book deserves a wide audience, and the church will be better for it.”

—Robert Saler, Center for Pastoral Excellence, Christian Theological Seminary, Indianapolis

“Kudos to Christy Sim for breaking the silence about abuse in all communities. Victims are strong, but we need compassion, awareness, and resources to break the cycle of abuse.”

—Leslie Morgan Steiner, author of the New York Times bestseller, Crazy Love

“This book should be required for boards, personnel committees, human resource offices and anyone with the responsibility of survivor care. I needed this resource in every pastoral role of my ministry and as an active member of many nonprofit boards.”

—H. Sharon Howell, United Methodist clergy, Great Plains Conference and former president of the Scarritt-Bennett Center

“Many trauma survivors turn to their pastors and communities of faith first for support and healing.  But some faith leaders fail to recognize the incredible privilege and responsibility of walking alongside hurting people and feel ill-equipped to do so. Even with the best of intentions, they may injure the trauma victim more deeply, effectively pushing them away from the God they seek. Dr. Christy Sim has provided a resource to help pastors understand the impact and reality of trauma and how best to help victims find safety, security and healing. Every pastor should read this book and then keep it handy on the shelf for future reference for sources of help and information. This will become a ‘must-read’ for the pastors in my classes.”

—Judith A. Schwanz, Nazarene Theological Seminary, Kansas City, MO

“Sim gives voice to survivors in a call to churches to improve their understanding of and response to sexual and domestic violence. Her interest in linking trauma and neuroscience brings new understanding to the use of ritual, art, movement, and other body-centered practices for healing trauma in the context of faith communities.”

—Jeanne Hoeft, Associate Professor of Pastoral Theology and Care, Saint Paul School of Theology

Christy Gunter Simhas a doctorate from Saint Paul School of Theology, a Master of Divinity from Nazarene Theological Seminary, and over 500 hours of specialized training in violence and trauma. Dr. Sim offers expert advice, training, and consulting for domestic/family violence, sexual assault, secondary trauma prevention, and trauma healing for churches, faith leaders, and nonprofit community partners. For more information see