Trauma and the Church

On this week’s podcast, Dan introduces a series on the role of trauma in the context of the local church. He offers three overall categories for trauma, arguing that it is far more widespread than many acknowledge, then discusses the body’s telltale responses to traumatic events. What would it look like for our churches to exist as communities of priests, prophets, kings, and queens who are aware of the pervasive, devastating nature of trauma and who offer hospitality, healing, and the possibility of redemption? “Hospitality is the core of what the community of God brings,” says Dan—“inviting people to goodness, to a feast, to sustenance, to solace, to healing.”

The church is by far the most significant place where the body of Christ has the opportunity to begin to deal with trauma. […] It’s not just the professional therapists and pastors who need to know something of the core reality of human trauma.

Professional therapists and pastors cannot bear the weight of trauma care alone. Anyone in our communities who interacts with, supports, leads, and cares for others needs to be aware of the nature of trauma and how it disrupts and derails the lives of its victims.

If we don’t understand trauma, we will be caught under the wheels of it.

In coming weeks, Dan will continue this series by reflecting on the unique trauma that comes in the context of marriage, as well as how to address our own vicarious traumatization and the necessity of self-care as we care for others.