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Contact: Vicky Thompson
ISSUE FACT SHEET
Healing Child Abuse Spiritually
Headline news always has tragic stories about child abuse, whether itís physical, psychological, or
sexual. What can be done spiritually to heal adults and children who have experienced abuse?
What Research Says
According to the Family Violence Prevention Unit of Health Canada, children who have been abused and
neglected often report having lost their sense of faith, not just a religious belief in a divine being, but also their faith in themselves, other people and the world around
them. It is common for abused children to display what has been called a shattered soul or soul pain. Adults who have experienced abuse display less interest and participation
in organized religion.
According to the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS), child protective service
agencies in the U.S. received about 3 million referrals of possible child abuse in 2000. Among the 879,000 cases substantiated after investigation, 62 percent suffered neglect,
19 percent were physically abused, 10 percent were sexually abused, and 8 percent were psychologically maltreated.
According to NCANDS, 84 percent of victims were abused by a parent or parents. Mothers acting alone
were responsible for 47 percent of the neglect and 32 percent of the physical abuse. Nonrelatives, fathers acting alone, and other relatives were responsible for 29 percent, 22
percent, and 19 percent, respectively, of the sexual abuse.
According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, sexually abused children may
develop sleep problems or nightmares, depression or withdrawal from friends or family, refusal to go to school, delinquency or conduct problems, secretiveness, unusual
aggressiveness, or suicidal behavior.
What Vicky Thompson Says
As a child, I was sexually abused by my grandfather and I know how child abuse can damage the ability to
trust and have faith in yourself, others, and God. This break from spiritual faith can separate abused children from their inner resources, including self-love, personal power, and
spiritual intuition. I discovered the spiritual growth tools in The Jesus Path as a part of my own personal journey to spiritual healing. Spiritual healing comes from
spiritually addressing the patterns and behaviors developed during childhood to survive the abuse experience. Meditation immediately brings this pain to the surface, allowing you
to emotionally and spiritually reprocess the experience and choose how you will live today. Childhood survival strategies donít work for an adult who is no longer in an abusive
situation. I canít change the past, but I have the power to choose how the abuse experience affects my life today. I chose to spiritually heal myself through meditation, prayer,
affirmations, and divine guidance, restoring my faith and trust in myself, others, and God. Spiritual healing also is effective in resolving other life issues.
What The Jesus Path Says
The Jesus Path integrates ageless spiritual
principles into a personal practice for everyday divine living that inspires inner and outer peace. In choosing to follow the will of God, we recognize that there is a knowing,
wise part of us that has carefully planned our journey here upon Earth. If one of the goals of life is remembering our inner connection with the eternal aspect of our Spirit, then
each experience becomes an opportunity to choose to make this connection. Each trial and tribulation becomes a moment for personal greatness and a chance to pull from the greater
resource of Spirit. My own pain over my childhood abuse compelled me to seek help from a power greater than my own. That experience catalyzed growth despite the pain I endured. We
each can choose how we view our lifeís experiences: as a mortal blow to living a full life or as a gift that we must open and explore and accept in our life. A gift offers us the
chance to see every experience as an opportunity, full of pain, revelation, and joy. Life is rich, and we can choose to be a part of its abundance. (The Jesus Path: 7 Steps to a
Cosmic Awakening, Vicky Thompson, Red Wheel/Weiser, March 2003, $16.95, page 35.)
THE JESUS PATH
7 Steps to a Cosmic Awakening
Reconnecting with Your Inner Spirit During Changing Times
by Vicky Thompson
Published by Red Wheel/Weiser, Paperback $16.95, 282 pages
Publication Date: March 2003