St John’s Parish Church, Ballyclare, is partnering with Women’s Aid to host a service to raise awareness of domestic abuse.
St John’s has been designated a ‘Safe Church,’ which rector, the Rev Jonny Campbell-Smyth, says signposts the church as a safe place where anyone with issues relating to domestic violence can come and chat and be referred for further support if required.
The parish also has two trained ‘domestic violence champions.’
Jonny said: “One in four Northern Ireland women have gone through domestic violence, which is really shocking. It means that in a congregation of 100 male and female, 25 will have experienced domestic violence.”
A number of churches in the Antrim Rural Deanery are exploring the Safe Church initiative.
Worship at the service which takes place in Ballyclare from 6pm-7pm on Sunday March 11 will be led by Steve Johnston.