Author of Sacred Trust

Carol Penner

"I had read about pastoral abuse and understood it intellectually. But even that had not prepared me to actually sit and hear stories of survivors of pastoral abuse. It’s very hard to understand the complexity of this type of violation.

In these e-notes, I share insights I’ve gained in story form, because I think it’s an accessible way into the issues. Hopefully it will help you respond empathetically to anyone hurt by pastoral abuse."

Carol Penner

Carol is currently Assistant Professor of Theological Studies at Conrad Grebel University College. She has pastored at Lendrum Mennonite Brethren Church in Edmonton, Alberta, The First Mennonite Church in Vineland, Ontario and Welcome Inn Church in Hamilton, Ontario. She also served for a year as moderator of MCEC. Her Ph.D. in systematic theology was on the topic of violence against women and Mennonite peace theology. She has worked for Mennonite Central Committee Ontario in the area of family violence education, and has served as an advocate for survivors of pastoral sexual abuse.

Carol's Publications

  • “After Sexual Violence:  What Happens Next in the Community of Grace?” Vision Vol. 9, No. 2 (Fall 2008):58-66.
  • “Congregational Life after Abuse” in Spirituality and Health:  Multidisciplinary Explorations, edited by Augustine Meier, Thomas St. James O’Connor and Peter Loren VanKatwyk.  (Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2005): 73-84.
  •  “How Inclusive is the Inclusive Church?”  At Peace and Unafraid:  Public Order, Security, and the Wisdom of the Cross, edited by Duane K. Friesen and Gerald W. Schlabach, (Scottdale, PA:  Herald Press, 2005):195-210.
  • Healing Waters: Churches Working to End Violence Against Women.  (Toronto:  Women's Inter-Church Council, 2003).  
  • "Sexual Assault, Resurrection and the Healing Community" Consensus Vol. 28, No. 2 (Fall 2002): 49-60. 
  • “Physical and Sexual Abuse:  Violence in Gender Relationships” in Women and Men: Gender in the Church (Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1998):63-72.
  • "Content to Suffer? An Exploration of Mennonite Theology from the Context of Violence Against Women" Peace Theology and Violence Against Women, edited by Elizabeth G. Yoder.  Occasional Papers No. 16, Institute of Mennonite Studies, (Elkhart, Indiana, 1992):99-111.