Addressing issues of sexual abuse in Pagan communities

TWH –In recent years, allegations of sexual misconduct within Pagan and polytheist communities have become increasingly visible. The arrest and conviction of Kenny Klein led to a number of public allegations of abuse levied against the musician, and the ensuing wider conversation around these issues tended first toward recrimination before focusing on the challenges of consent culture in a sex-positive community. Yesterday’s Wild Hunt article on abuse allegations in one Wiccan church is evidence that working through these issues can be difficult, particularly for leaders who lack professional training around abusive relationships. To that end, several experts were asked to provide guidance as to what mistakes amateurs are likely to make, and what resources should be tapped into for support and guidance. While this advice was solicited in the context of the decision reached by board members of the Wiccan Church of Minnesota, the challenges faced in that organization are not uncommon in Pagan groups, which tend to be small and tightly knit.

The responsibility and training of Pagan clergy

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