The #MeToo Movement will be one of the historic markers of 2018. Its impact is felt in the entertainment industry, in politics, in businesses and, undoubtedly, in churches. While we have yet to understand fully the impact in local churches, we can anticipate changes that will come.
Here are five ways the #MeToo movement will likely impact churches.
1. More churches will adopt the Billy Graham rule. The Billy Graham rule, at its essence, says a person should not be alone with a person of the opposite gender if that person is not your spouse. This practice, disparaged and ridiculed by many as archaic, legalistic, and unfair, could have saved a lot of heartache if it had been embraced earlier. It will bring changes in counseling, travel, and meetings.
2. More churches will add #MeToo questions for background checks. There are already a number of background checks done on prospective pastors and church staff. Background checks for credit, legal, and social media are now common. It will likely be common for churches to ask prospective pastors and staff if there is anything in their history that could bring shame to the person and the church.
3. Smaller churches will make changes to make sure two people are not alone in the church office. It is not uncommon in many smaller churches to have only two people in the office, commonly the pastor and an assistant. Likewise, it is common for those two people to be of the opposite gender. Anticipate an acceleration of the trend toward virtual assistants, even (or perhaps especially) in smaller churches.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Thom S. Rainer