Scapegoating and Spiritual Abuse in Church – in three parts
Table of Contents
Because reality becomes fuzzy, the created or manipulated diversions may seem to become real leaving the abusive leader feeling oppressed and attacked. The congregation can also become absorbed with fictitious enemies, thereby strengthening the alliance with the leader, who takes on the role of defender.
…remaining participants as falling into four distinct groups within the unhealthy church – victims, outcasts, enablers and co-conspirators … “What father [sic] among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead give him a serpent, or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion”. The most common manner in which this wrongdoing occurs surrounds the function of pastoral care. Under the guise of nurturing, any information obtained or charge heard may be twisted around to indict or discredit the victim or outcast.
This is the function of the outcast – not to punish, not to win, but out of concern for God’s church and people to caste a vision of change and health. If emotionally and spiritually capable, the outcast can serve as wounded healers to other participants as well as resolve to answer God’s call to stand in the gap.