Information released by the General Board of Church and Society of The United Methodist Church:
NEW YORK CITY — United Methodist Women is a contributor to a one-hour interfaith documentary, “I Believe You: Faiths’ Response to Intimate Partner Violence.” The documentary will air on ABC-affiliated stations beginning Jan. 9, and will be available for airing through March 6.
“I Believe You: Faiths’ Response to Intimate Partner Violence” gives voice to survivors’ stories, makes clear the assistance faith groups can provide, and offers encouragement and direction for women trapped in abusive relationships.
The documentary was produced with the support of The New York Board of Rabbis, United Methodist Women, Presbyterian Women, the Evangelical Church in America, Odyssey Networks, the National Council of Churches (NCC) and a consortium of Muslim organizations. The program, which features the music of Janis Ian, airs as part of the Interfaith Broadcasting Commission’s Visions & Values series.
The documentary’s goal is to report on how faith groups are exploring ways to support, advocate for and help the healing of those who harmed by abuse. Its coverage ranges from rural programs such as the Susanna Wesley Family Learning Center in Missouri to urban programs such as First Step in Michigan, from prevention programs such as Healthy Relationships held at Camp Herzl in Wisconsin, to recognition programs like the Mikveh Attendants program in New Jersey, from support groups at Emma’s Place in Minnesota to healing programs at Mayyim Hayyim in Massachusetts.
Appearing in the program are Harriett Olson, head of the Women’s Division (UMW) of the General Board of Global Ministries, and the Rev. Barbara Certa-Werner, executive director, Harbor House Crisis Shelters, a Health & Welfare Ministry of the Wisconsin Conference, and other ecumenical and interfaith clergy and educators.
Others featured in the program include:
The documentary is made possible in part by the support of Odyssey Networks, United Methodist Women, The New York Board of Rabbis, National Council of Churches USA, Presbyterian Women, and ELCA-Justice for Women.
Dr. Debra Gonsher Vinik, head of Diva Communications, is producer of the program.
United Methodist Women has a link on its Web page with more information you can link to at I Believe You.
Editor’s note: United Methodist Women (UMW) and United Methodist Men (UMM) have endorsed the message of the National Declaration by Religious & Spiritual Leaders to Address Violence Against Women. The Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church signed this in 2006.
UMW and UMM have partnered to launch a domestic violence initiative to raise awareness and provide training in congregations. More information about their awareness campaign is available at Domestic Violence.
UMW urges you to contact your local ABC affiliate and encourage it to air the “I Believe You” documentary often and during prime time viewing hours. When you speak to the program director or assistant, mention the series title, “Vision & Values,” and the program title, “I Believe You.”
UMW has also set up a Web page related to the program. The page includes resources on domestic violence and study questions to help local congregations engage on the issue. The Web page is at I Believe You.
The Web page also gives you an opportunity to take a few minutes to fill out an online Domestic Violence Survey.
The General Board of Church & Society (GBCS) has developed a resource to help use film and video for advocacy purposes: Building the Movement through Film. The document is part of GBCS's Domestic Violence Web site that includes news, resource tools and a comprehensive compilation of United Methodist official policies on this subject.