Creating Safe Environments at Church

Every child deserves a chance to shine! April is Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month. Christian City is hosting the SHINE seminar to inform and equip ministry leaders, parents and all those who work with children.

Child abuse is real. It’s close. And it’s preventable.

Shine Seminar on the Christian City Campus

  • How to create safe environments at church, and at home, so our children will be able to be the bright lights God created them to be.
  • April 30th from 9 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.
  • For pastors, youth leaders, children’s workers and anyone who works with kids in a church setting.
  • Presenters, Exhibitors, Sponsors, Topic breakouts, Lunch

About the Shine Seminar…

  • Half-day experience filled with information, TED-talk type presentations from experts and introduction of available curriculum and training materials regarding the critical topic of child abuse and neglect.
  • Practical tools for pastors and staff to use in training all who work with kids.
  • Experts in the abuse arena who are able to answer questions and direct church leaders to various resources.
  • Time for questions and answers which relate directly to the needs and concerns of individual churches.

Expert Presenters

KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Mary Frances Bowley – Founder and CEO of Wellspring Living

Wellspring Living is an organization that offers services to victims of sexual abuse and exploitation. Their mission is “to confront the issue of childhood sexual abuse and exploitation through awareness, training, and treatment programs for women and girls.”

Mary Frances Bowley is also a published author whose books have inspired hope and action in the fight to eradicate sex trafficking.

Read More

Ms. Bowley notes that “Our vision is to serve locally and influence globally. Locally, we are committed to the rescue, restoration, and renewal of survivors. Globally, we hope to come alongside other organizations and give them a replicable model so they can do the same in their communities.”

As the founder and the “face” of Wellspring Living, she is a frequent guest on radio shows, does numerous television interviews, sits on a state task force on human trafficking, and helps to train and mentor people in other organizations who share her vision and the mission of Wellspring – to safeguard and empower domestic sex trafficking victims, and those at risk, to develop the courage and the skills to move confidently forward toward successful lives.

  • Founded Wellspring Living in 2001
  • Leading voice in America on the issue of sex trafficking and after-care
  • Founding member of the Governor’s Task Force for Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC)
  • Appointed to the Governor’s Commission on Domestic Violence in 2010
  • Part of the White House Blue Campaign fighting the domestic issue of sex trafficking
  • Author of A League of Dangerous Women (Random House; Waterbrook/Multnomah 2007)
  • Advisory Committee for Shared Hope International, National Colloquium Shelter & Services

Steve W. Collins

Mr. Steve W. Collins is the founder and Executive Director of Adults Protecting Children, Inc. After 17 years with Mission to the World, the mission agency of the Presbyterian Church in America, Mr. Collins resigned to start this nonprofit 2009.

Adults Protecting Children is committed to the training of adults in how to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to the sexual abuse of children.

Read More

He also works part-time as a regional coordinator for the Georgia Center for Child Advocacy. The Georgia Center for Child Advocacy’s prevention department is engaged in a statewide initiative to train Georgia adults in how to prevent the sexual abuse of children. As a regional coordinator, Mr. Collins works in the northeast portion of the state promoting this initiative.

Mr. Collins is an Authorized Facilitator for Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children, an adult-focused prevention training course. He is also a Certified Instructor for Darkness to Light, giving him the credentials to certify facilitators to teach the Stewards of Children materials. He also is a Prevent Now Certified Instructor for Darkness to Light as well as a Georgia Bright From the Start Specialty Trainer.

Mr. Collins and his organization have targeted specific counties in the north Georgia region with a goal of creating a prevention initiative in each county that will work toward training 5% of the adult population.

Mr. Collins has trained over 3,500 people in Stewards of Children and authorized over 280 individuals to teach the Stewards of Children materials. He has also provided this training internationally as well.

Great ideas and resources to help you Step Up and Speak Out for the kids in your church and community:

  • Designate a Sunday as “Speak Out for Children Sunday” (we suggest April 21 or 28).
  • Involve children and teens in the worship service. Have kids read scripture, sing a song, play an instrument, say a prayer.
  • Use the provided graphics during the worship that day and in communications leading up to the designated Sunday. Click to download.
  • Use the Devotional card as a bulletin insert or handout. Encourage everyone to pray each day for our children and their teachers, coaches and parents. Click to download.
  • Collect funds for the kids in the group homes at Christian City Children’s Village. Request cardboard cottages. Email