This article was originally published by The Mennonite

SNAP-Menno joins international research study

Photo: Mennonite survivors of clergy abuse are invited to participate in an independent research study examining the causes of delay in reporting and treatment strategies for victims of sexual abuse. 

The Anabaptist-Mennonite chapter of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, SNAP-Menno, is assisting two researchers associated with the Stress Research Section of the World Psychiatric Association and the Center for Neuropsychiatric Research of Traumatic Stress at Charles University, Prague, in an independent research study.

Chris Kerns, a graduate student at Charles University and his research colleague and professor, Petr Bob, from the Czech Republic, are undertaking a detailed scientific survey to help explain the causes of delay in reporting and treatment strategies for victims of sexual abuse by church leaders.

Kerns and Bob approached SNAP-Menno leaders Cameron Altaras and Barbra Graber with an invitation to recruit a Mennonite cohort of participants for their research.

“We are excited about the opportunity to have a highly credible outside group help us assess the lived impact of church leader abuse on our own Mennonite survivors,” says Altaras.

For the purposes of the survey for the Mennonite community, “church leader” is defined broadly as anyone SNAP2(ordained or lay) placed in a position of authority by a congregation, conference, agency or institution of the church and includes pastors, youth pastors, theologians, bishops, deacons, elders, church camp counselors, church-affiliated health professionals, university professors, schoolteachers, guidance counselors, choir directors, coaches, music teachers and others from inside or outside the victim’s own family.

Mennonite-related survivors of abuse by church leaders of any denomination are invited to participate in the study, which involves filling out a survey with questions about the spiritual, emotional, and physical impact of church leader abuse on the victim’s life. The survey does not ask for names or details of the abuse experience itself.

For more information or to participate with full confidentiality and anonymity, send your mailing address to or contact Barbra Graber at 540-214-8874.

Anabaptist World

Anabaptist World Inc. (AW) is an independent journalistic ministry serving the global Anabaptist movement. We seek to inform, inspire and Read More

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