Presbyterians Today

AUG-SEP 2018

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LEADERS of the event planners. "As employees, they often 'fall through the cracks' if something happens because they may not belong to the presbytery like CREs and clergy do." The synod invited two counselors to lead the two-day spring event: Drs. Caroline Burke and Krista Redlinger-Grosse. Both women work for LeaderWise, a Minneapolis-based company that supports nonprofits and clergy professionals on such topics as team building, appro- priate leadership, and personal and spiritual development. The workshop, Dingman says, provided the space for intimate discussion, as the limited number of participants provided a safe environment for sharing. The facilitators helped par- ticipants openly name their experi- ences, develop strategies for facing W hen the #MeToo hashtag exploded on the social media scene in October 2017, no one could have predicted its continued impact on the treatment of women both in and out of the work- place. For a while, #MeToo seemed to be more about bringing down famous people in big corporations or enterprises, like Harvey Weinstein and Matt Lauer. Hollywood is one thing, but harassment isn't supposed to happen in churches, right? Unfortunately, churches are not immune to inappropriate speech and behavior toward women, as the popularity of another trending hashtag, #ChurchToo, has indicated. Church leaders who have experi- enced harassment are now searching for ways to address and prevent it. The Synod of Lincoln Trails in Indianapolis has taken steps to help women in church speak out about sexual misconduct by hosting two conferences on the subject. The first conference, entitled "Empowerment and Restoration," took place in early spring at St. Luke Union Presbyterian Church in Bloomington, Indiana. It gathered a group of about 25 clergywomen, church employees and certified ruling elders (CREs). "It was important to include women who work in all areas of the church, whether as clergy or as staff," said the Rev. Sara Dingman, synod executive of Lincoln Trails and one Synod includes men in #MeToo talks 'We're in This Together' begins healing and brings hope BY REBECCA LISTER 16 AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018 | Pr e s by te r i a n s To d ay The #MeToo movement has broadened to a #ChurchToo conversation as the Synod of Lincoln Trails not only seeks to educate, but to also create a safe space, for both men and women to share stories.

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