Revd Dr Carrie Pemberton Ford

 Author of the CTE commissioned Report ‘Behind Closed Doors’ exploring the nexus of abuse between Domestic Servitude, Human Trafficking and Gender Based Violence, and how it impacts Pentecostal churches in the UK. She is a Senior Assessor with the UK College of Policing and has delivered Coercive Control training to a number of UK forces, with colleagues in Safe Lives and the NSPCC.  She  was the first ordained Women’s National Commissioner (UK government) co-chairing the working group on Human Trafficking, FGM, and Violence against Women. Carrie is an Anglican Priest and  convenor of  the Badfaithedforum. 
A message from the Conference Chair

I realised that the churches had something of an inter-denominational problem in this area of domestic abuse, with some of the findings of early MA theses I supervised on domestic abuse and the churches, back in the 1990s,  whilst I was the Project Coordinator for  the Currents of World Christianity (PEW foundation project) in Cambridge.  The dissertations were submitted as part of the Pastoral Theology Masters programme run through the  Cambridge Theological Federation.
In researching, Circle Thinking (Brill 2002) I encountered a pervasive undercurrent of violence embedded in  Colonialist projects across Africa, and noted how violence exploded in  domestic, public and church arenas when  power and control was contested.  Understanding the interplay of gender, power and cultural control is central to this work of dismantling abuse.

Twenty years later I have undertaken a number of interviews with survivors of domestic abuse within church leadership settings, survivors of marriage breakdown, and Clergy Discipline Measure instigators,  which will help inform this day. 

I and the Trustees, want to thank all those who have given their time to bring insight into the area under the spotlight, and look forward to welcoming you to a powerful, informative and hopefully with the right energy, transformative day exploring this aspect of Badfaithed in search of transformation.

Dr Olumide Adisa
Research Associate
Suffolk University Dr Adisa worked as the Research Lead examining live at home schemes in the UK and the role of third sector partnerships whilst working at Methodist Homes, assisting older people live independently for longer in their own homes.
 Financial Abuse:  what is it, how does it impact on individuals and households, and what is changing in relation to Government guidance for courts and prosecuting authorities.
Detective Superintendent Fiona Macpherson 

With over 25 years  in force Fiona  is a Detective Superintendent for Public Protection in Sussex. She has worked for much of her career in homicide  as the Senior Investigating Officer (SIO). Now the South East Region co-ordinator for Domestic Abuse policing, she reports into the national working group, and  is also a member of the Home Office Domestic Homicide Review Quality Assurance Panel a review panel concerned with the rising awareness on femicides consequent to Domestic Abuse violations.

 The changing face of Policing and Domestic Abuse interventions. 
Andrew Brown

Secretary and Chief Executive of the Church Commissioners

What is the role of the Church Commissioners in the support of those who find themselves the other side of the loss of Tied Housing.  Andrew will be interviewed by Carrie, and take questions from the floor on Value Linked Loans  and  the way in which the Church Commissioners interfaces with the Dioceses to make support available.  Is there more to be done? and if so whose responsibility and organisational levers are the ones to be adjusted?
Dr Lisa Oakley
Chair of the National working group for child abuse linked to faith and belief.
Dr Oakley chairs the Church of England Task and Finish group for Spiritual Abuse, where we are developing policy and practice in this area. She is  a Chartered Psychologist and recently appointed to Chester University as a senior fellow.
Spiritual Abuse what is this about?  The relationship of Spiritual Abuse to Domestic and Ecclesial abuse, and how it impacts on people’s lives.
Dr Lesley Orr

Research Fellow Centre for Theology and Public Issues. Dr Orr coordinated two decades ago an action-research project: Out of the Shadows: Christianity and Violence Against Women in Scotland (1995-97) in which Dr Pemberton Ford was a delegate researcher.  She was consultant to the WCC Decade to Overcome Violence 2001-2010. She is a member of the Iona Community.

The Tyranny of Respectability: fresh light on coercive control operating within the Churches.-
Former Chief Superintendent Helen Chamberlain – Public Protection and Domestic Abuse lead Nottingham Constabulary UK.
Badfaithed Trustee
Addressing the reluctance of reporting Domestic Abuse, emotional, financial and physical in professional settings, and where housing challenges arise.
The Rt Revd Jo Penberthy

Bishop of St David’s

Badfaithed Trustee

Why and how churches can become pro-active in addressing Domestic Abuse, and how church institutions can adjust some of the inhibitors to reporting, and full safeguarding for the future.
Dr Halleh Seddighzadeh (the ARMAN foundation USA)

Internationally recognised trauma therapist specialising in the full range of trauma impacting children and the harms associated across the spectrum of abuse.

Badfaithed Trustee

Fundamental Attribution Error, victim blaming, avoiding institutional accountability, trauma,  its impacts and the essential components of reducing long term harms.

Here is Dr Halleh speaking on some of her work in this area of addressing the ‘continuum of violence and trauma’ which Ecclesial Abuse forms its own tier.

Sir Bernard Silverman Emeritus Professor of Oxford University and former Chief Adviser to the Treasury (UK) The real costs and savings of Tied Housing to Churches and the professionals ‘in titled, post holder dedicated housing’.
Dr Kristin Aune

Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations
Coventry University

Principal Investigator on the 2016-18 project ‘Domestic Abuse in UK Churches: A Case Study of Cumbria‘ (with Dr Rebecca Barnes at the University of Leicester and Mandy Marshall, Director of the charity Restored).

UK Churches Case Study in Cumbria on Domestic Abuse.

Some learning emerging from the Domestic Abuse in , and further work to be undertaken.  Kristin will share some of her presentation with Mandy Marshall, who will note some of the prevailing strands of theological underpinning, at work in preserving cultures of abuse.

Following on from Kristin’s contribution we will hear from co-founder of Restored on the inspiration of the collaboration which realised this research.

Leslie Downie  

lawyer, legal author, and pro-poor land tenure specialist

Clergy Land Tenure: Mapping Marital Rights
 Hon. Dr Jocelynne Scutt

is a Barrister & Human Rights Lawyer and teaches law at the University of Buckingham. Her books include Women & Magna Carta – A Treaty for Rights or Wrongs;  Women, Law & Culture – Conformity, Contradiction and Conflict;  Even in the Best of Homes – Violence in the Family;  and For Richer, For Poorer – Money, Marriage and Property Rights.

 With Leslie Downie having developed her presentation in South Africa where she is a practising pro-poor land tenure specialist, we are utterly delighted to welcome the Hon. Dr Jocelynne Scutt to present Leslie’s recent mapping of marital rights, and to explore some of the issues which have emerged during the day through Jcelynne’s extensive professional experience.
Dr Susan Jervis   How to make dependants disappear.
An Organisational Perspective on a Gendered Military Institution. 
Susan Harrison 

An independent safeguarding adviser and children’s services specialist with over 25 years experience in social care, safeguarding, children’s services, partnership working, performance management and service improvement.

Making safe spaces.  Susan will recount the journey of Cognita, the educational consultancy working with safeguarding challenges,  post SCR at Southbank.  It is a story of how an organisation can achieve culture change/transformation, and Susan looks forward to working with the churches facing today.
  Callum Cowx

Lt Col Callum Cowx is a qualified solicitor and barrister, although practising as the former.


Callum is a passionate advocate of continuous improvement in the way the MOD confronts domestic abuse.  He is currently working in a non-legal HR policy role at the Army Personnel Centre in Glasgow.

  Lessons for the churches from the life of the MOD.  Both the church and the MOD have  clear policies that condemn domestic abuse, but  in practice Service law, policy, procedures, practice, previous culture, and lack of coherent training can inhibit addressing domestic abuse effectively and as the public (and congregations?) now demand.
Lucy Berry
Performance Poet
United Reformed Church (URC) minister
The first poet-in-residence for the Joint Public Issues Team (JPIT) of the Baptist Union of Great Britain, the Church of Scotland, the Methodist Church and the URC.
‘Poems and poetic songs allow like-minds an emotional gathering place. That can be dynamic.’

Lucy will be presenting three commissioned pieces of poetry reflecting on the day, with the themes of the day opened up for their emotional truth to resonate and create the momentum for change.

see more of Lucy’s work here.