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Welcome to BALM

Breaking the Silence about the
Bullying and Abuse of Christian Ministers


What are we talking about?

Any unreasonable behaviour towards Christian ministers which undermines their ministry, causes excessive stress, and threatens their health, eg. constant criticism, shouting, threats, manipulation, lack of respect for time off, unrealistic expectations, lack of support, and even on occasions physical violence.

How does this affect ministers?

In the same way as it can affect any other human being! Prolonged negative stress can cause anxiety, fatigue, trauma, social phobia, poor concentration, anger, irritability, loss of self-confidence and self-esteem, depression, family breakdown, isolation, loss of faith, church phobia, frequent illness, prolonged absence from work, and in severe cases an end to ministry altogether. Recovery can take years, and there is often little understanding from church authorities.

So how can BALM help?

Following our own experience of being bullied in ministry we have set up the BALM website as a resource for bullied and abused ministers, and for anyone else concerned about these issues.

We hope too that BALM will raise awareness of the plight of bullied and abused ministers, and encourage better practice in churches.

There is also a BALM e-mail group providing a forum for mutual support and understanding.

The BALM e-mail group

This is now run separately from this website. More information and a contact e-mail address for the listowner can be found at


Other bullying and abuse in the church

You may have found this site whilst searching for support and information on other types of abuse in the church. We in BALM recognise that many different kinds of abuse can occur within the church and that clergy are sometimes the perpetrators of this. Much of the information on this site is relevant to all forms of bullying and abuse, but if you are not a minister you may be interested in our Additional Resources on Church Abuse.


Other pages on this website


Contact us



Pauline & Arthur Kennedy

(Click here to discover who we are)


Website last updated 13 February 2016

Where next?

BALM Home Page
Introducing the Founders of BALM
How to Support a Bullied Minister
What Not to Say to a Bullied Minister
How Bullying has Affected Me
Bullying and Spirituality
Group Dynamics
Links to Other Websites and Organisations
Book List
Counselling with Care
Bullied in Ministry
Bullying in the Church
Bullying and Burnout
Submission on Clergy Stress
Media Requests
Additional Resources on Church Abuse

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