Dr. Marion Duncan M.Ed. (Couns.), C.C.C., M.Div.
Hurting people come to us, the church leaders, expecting to be received into a place of refuge where they will find help, hope and healing, “But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, so that those who love your name may exult in you” (Psalm 5:11). This is what Christ designed ‘Church’ to be.
But instead of finding help, hope and healing, too many churches have been found to have imposed secondary victimization instead, on top of the original trauma that caused the person to come to us for help in the first place. Clarke, (1986), Adams (1994), Miles (2011) and Shubin (2017) documented that a pastor is most often the first person an abused person goes to for help, but studies show they are often the least effective.
When we boldly quote Jesus’ own words of Matthew 11:28, to invite people into our church communities for the purpose of “lifting their burdens” and to “turn their mourning into dancing” (Isaiah 61:3), it is only ethical that we, as church leaders, proactively fully understand the dynamics of the different kinds of burdens that people are likely to bring in to us, not for us to become therapists, but so that we can utilise the most relevant scriptural application that will bring Truth, Hope and Healing, instead of inadvertent Judgement, Condemnation and Shaming as too often happens in too many churches, still today. Clergy research participants of a study done in 2015, stated in the absence of not having received appropriate training:
“All clergy agreed that there was a need for training in working with survivors of sexual assault, along with domestic violence and child abuse. Participants suggested that the training should include legal information, referral options, and an example of a survivor’s experience in successfully working with clergy.”
(Yuvarajan & Stanford, 2015)
This is also the unanimous view of the research participants of my doctoral project, “Equipping Church Leaders to Minister to Abused and Oppressed People” when I test-ran such a course over a six month period with an interdenominational group of church leaders (Duncan, 2015). I credit the unanimous positive response however to the fact that the rational and details of the course was 100% biblically-based. Most clergy have still not acquired appropriate theological preparedness for what we are facing in the front-lines of general church ministry today, but once I have been given the time to explain what is involved and what is not expected of them, I have only had positive responses. The difficulty however, is in getting clergy to sit down to discuss what is involved in the training in the first place. Out of 500 invitees to my research project, I only secured nine participants. All but one of the nine who were skeptical and possibly a little fearful at first, but after the first session the evaluations were 100% positive and the participants were looking forward to the next sessions. We, as church leaders who live our life and teach others to live their life by the Bible, need to know what the bible says about our need to have specific training in ministering to abuse situations. God means us to be fully prepared to meet the challenge of ministering to disclosures of abuse situations in our church communities in order to be more relevant to our increasingly challenging lives i.e. meet people where they are in their need; have knowledge of appropriate protocols, ethical boundaries, what is required by the law, and to know when to pass people on to specialist referrals, all within the framework of an applied theological knowledge around the dynamics of abuse issues. This is especially significant today as the end-time prophetic message of 2Timothy 3:1-5 is seen to be coming into reality. There is an undoubted rapid increase of immorality and lasciviousness in the World today which is impacting the lives of our people worldwide: –
You must understand this, that in the last days distressing times will come. For people will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, inhuman, implacable, slanderers, profligates, brutes, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to the outward form of Godliness but denying its power. Avoid them! (2Timothy 3:1-5)
The apostle Paul is addressing church behaviour in this scripture. He is warning the church that there will be those who will propagate false teachings and cause great harm in the Church, and will allow evil to run rampant. Paul asks the people to pray “that they will repent and come to know the truth, and that they may escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will” (2Timothy 2:25). Instead of getting defensive when it seems the church is being criticized, our integrity will increase if we understand this is exactly what Paul was called to do and all the prophets of the Old Testament and the exact reason Christ came to this earth in the form of a man in order to correct the evil teachings and corrupt ways of too many church leaders. When we refuse to accept that we have a problem in many churches today, we are playing into the devil’s hands. I am not saying all churches at all, but certainly a substantial number that is causing a rapid exiting of righteous feet back out of many church doors, in their efforts to find safety, hope and healing and a thundering influx of those people who are attracted to the simplistic, authoritarian false teachings that are being taught.
Why haven’t the seminaries prepared us to meet this challenge? Why do Christians continue to be so shocked when evil arises from within our churches? Don’t we read the scriptures? Don’t we believe the scriptures? Do we still believe in the evil force that is going through our churches like a “roaring lion” (1Peter 5:8) in these end times? How can the seminaries, in all good conscience, continue to send our pastors out into the field so unprepared, when the scriptures are telling us loud and clear that things are only going to get worse? Too many churches have become inadvertent havens for the perpetrators of abuse instead of a place of refuge from abuse (Demuth, 2013). And too many pastors are carelessly crossing personal boundaries of their parishioners without any awareness as to the impact that can have on the other person. Whether harm is meant or not, harm does occur when this happens. There are also those few of us who have chosen to acquire a pastoral position because of the power that it gives us over others. The devil is delighted at the current state of affairs in many of our churches and delighted even more when there is a reluctance to recognise this.
Johnson & Van Vonderen (1991), describe Johnson’s own awakening to the reality of the abuse of power and the resulting spiritual abuse that is pandemic in too many churches today. As the facilitating pastor, he received a woman at the altar for prayer who showed great fear of him.
I was not prepared for the look on the unfamiliar woman’s face as she came forward for prayer at the end of a church service. She was teary-eyed, anxious. But most of all, I saw fear. What’s more, as she began to speak, it became apparent what she was afraid of – me! (p. 11)
She described to Johnson how she had gone to her own church for help in her abusive situation, but they had only demanded action on her part and nothing from the perpetrator. She was told to forgive her abuser and be a better
example of a Christian wife, in order to win him over for Christ. When her situation was not resolved she was told that it was because of her lack of faith, and that she probably wasn’t even saved. She was trying one more time, as a faithful Christian, to seek God’s help by coming forward for prayer in her increasingly desperate situation. Johnson continues,
I realized that she wasn’t afraid of me personally – it was what I represented. I was a pastor, a figure of authority. And not just any authority – a spiritual authority, a “representative of God.” She was terrified of that (p. 11).
Her “terror” was rooted in the abusive history that she had experienced by her previous pastor, whose repeated questioning of her spiritual integrity had hurt her to the core of her being. He had rendered her physical, emotional and spiritual world unsafe (Matsakis, 1996, p. 16). “and coming to me for prayer was one of the hardest, bravest things she’d ever done …she exhibited the characteristics of an abuse victim” (p. 11). Her own pastor had not understood the complexity of the dynamics of the situation she was going through, and his simplistic scriptural application to her situation was a total distortion of Christian doctrine. She had trusted that as a “representative of God” he was speaking for God. She could not understand why her obedience to the pastor was not bringing about a resolve to her situation. “But this time the abuse wasn’t sexual, physical or emotional … Her abuse was spiritual … this woman had been shamed, manipulated and weighed down by a distortion of the gospel” (p. 11). Far from being an unfaithful Christian woman, it was her faithfulness that was bringing her to the altar one more time, led by the Holy Spirit, even in her very present Post Traumatic Stress reaction induced by simply being in the presence of a pastor. A well-known illustration of what it feels like to experience a Post-Traumatic Stress attack is to imagine facing a bear on its hind legs, with its jaw’s wide open, roaring with spittal running down its chin, paws outstretched and coming towards you to attack. This is the emotion this woman was experiencing as she made her way to the altar. Johnson continued:
Though Jesus came with “good news” to set us all free … The good news had become bad news; the message of life had been distorted until it nearly crushed out her inner life. … the concept of grace had been lost completely, and church in general was no longer a safe place.
And here she was, making her way to the altar for prayer, from a person whose position invoked terror to her inner being. “As a pastor I stood in the place of the one before me who had wounded her soul” (p.11, 12). This woman had been shamed. She had also been emotionally abused by her church community who had absorbed their pastor’s false teachings and had become “Twice as much a child(ren) of hell as (the pastor them)selves” (Matthew 23:15(b)).
It is very important for us, as church leaders, to be appropriately prepared to receive people who have been re-victimized by some of our colleagues. Secondary Victimization in the churches is endemic today simply because seminaries are still sending pastors into the field of ministry theologically unprepared to specifically minister to abuse situations. It is important to for us to stop being shocked and surprised when a situation of abuse is disclosed. As Christians, we should already be aware of the insidious spiritual battle that has been raging on this earth since the temptation in the Garden of Eden, “For our struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12, 13). It is our responsibility to be sensitised to the common dynamics of abuse when in leadership, and be prepared with pre-planned, professional strategies to cope ethically and also caringly if at all possible. This is important otherwise we will not be able to be appropriately present when ministering in abuse situations of others. None of us are free from troubles in this world, and mindfulness to the dynamics of life’s difficulties is essential for us as the church leader and advantageous for our flock to also acquire in order to enhance the church body’s effectiveness as ambassadors of Christ.
Godly wisdom and knowledge of safety protocols and expected roles of the church leader and the laity when disclosures of abuse situations occur will help to prevent chaos in the church body. When a congregation has been informed as to the abuse preventive strategies available and gets their agreement to implement them, and prepares them as to the protocol to expect should a disclosure of abuse occur; who will be responsible for what and the way they are expected to behave will give the church body a sense of peace in the middle of what will inevitably be a very difficult time. But those of us who are unprepared ourselves and therefore have not prepared our church body in any way will inevitably find ourselves surrounded by fear-induced emotional outbursts from those with the loudest and most offensive voices; the alleged offender will have the space to manipulate people into ‘supporting’ him or her at the expense of the alleged victim/s and bullying and hateful protestations the like of which one has never heard before, will cause hurtful and divisive chaos throughout the congregation. If this occurs, it needs a church leader who does know what he or she is doing to be brought in to bring order out of chaos according to the risk management protocol. If the supervisory church leaders seem unwilling or incapable of doing this, we can contact the North American Division Risk Management who will be able to send someone to teach the congregation the appropriate protocol. It is the devil’s delight to cause chaos in our church communities by ignorance and misinformation. We read of this anomaly in Acts 13:10, “You son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, full of all deceit and villainy, will you not stop making crooked the straight paths of the Lord?” It is very clear by reading this scripture that we are to expect “deceit and villainy” in the churches, but if we learn to recognise it and have a plan of action to combat it we can become stronger as church leader and congregation learn together. We read in Galatians 5:1, “For freedom Christ has set us free. Stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.”
The pastoral position as church leader is an extremely vulnerable one, and one that can lead a person into temptation, unless we are prepared with a good plan of action ahead of time to avoid being drawn into sin, or even to give the appearance of being drawn into sin. The pastoral position gives the most power over the intimate lives of other people than any other helping professional. Because of that there is an increase in the prevalence of spiritual, emotional, psychological and sexual abuse in church communities and the corporate activities that is not found in any other non-profit organisation.
The stark reality of the matter is that clergy persons are the only professionals who can intrude into the intimate lives of people and are welcomed when she or he does so. This kind of behaviour would be viewed as unprofessional or boundary crossing in any other profession, yet for clergy persons this behavior can be perceived as caring or protective and that immediately makes the recipients vulnerable. Clergypersons can meddle in the personal lives of congregants without suspicion and this type of intrusion can be constructive or coercive. Clergypersons may know one’s family dynamic and can use this information to either empower or exploit. The pastoral/congregant relationship is never equal and this imbalance of power in the hands of corrupt leaders is a recipe for disaster (Oliver, 2014).
The extent of clergy abuse of power is being found to be phenomenal today, especially when it comes to sexual exploitation. This risk is not exclusive to any one biblical faith community, but abuse of power has been found in each and every one:
The simple fact is that clergy sexual misconduct is widespread in all faith practices and Christian denominations. It is not a few random, charismatic preachers that prey upon their followers as most folks commonly believe. In a study that occurred concurrently with a survey by the Baylor University School of Social Work, survivors of clergy Sexual Misconduct (CSM) hailed from 17 different Christian and Jewish affiliations: Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, Seventh Day Adventist, Disciples of Christ, Latter Day Saints, Apostolic, Calvary Chapel, Christian Science, Church of Christ, Episcopal, Friends (Quaker), Mennonite, Evangelical, Nondenominational (Christians), and Reformed Judaism (Oliver, 2014).
When abusers utilise misapplication of scriptures and false doctrine to satisfy their power-hungry desires they are coming up against the most powerful force in Creation. When we learn what these strategies are, we can expose evil and protect and redeem the people. Those of us who endeavour to remain teachable, and have had souls come to us who have been hurt by some of our colleagues, witness the devastation and harm these souls have experienced. Others of us have discovered after the fact, that we harmed a person by the way we intervened in their situation, and then it is our turn to feel devastated that we caused harm instead of bringing help to a vulnerable person. When we remain humble and teachable, we can take the opportunity to seek God’s help, seek help from specialist agencies to make theological and crisis intervention upgrades for the safety of our flock in the absence of this not being generally available in our seminary program. We can take the opportunity to do all that we can to correct the harm that we did. All of us are works in progress.
When church leaders misappropriate scripture and doctrine, whether they do so intentionally or not, they are just as responsible for the harm done as the original abusers themselves. Or another way of putting it is to find ourselves being criminal accomplices to the crime of abuse. We enable evil to continue when we deny the possibility that a pastor or any other “good” Christian man or woman who powerfully communicates
God’s word on Saturday or Sunday could beat his wife/husband and or molest his child on Monday (Tracey, 2005).
It is important to realise that any of us can sin, we are only human, and we need to be constantly mindful of exactly what it is we are teaching and exactly what it is that we are imposing on the lives that others have to live when they come to us for help, “Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; continue in these things, for in doing this you will save both yourself and your hearers” (1Timothy 4:16). I am not talking about those of us who deliberately set out to sexually or spiritually sin. There is no recovering from this. Once discovered there is no ethical return to ministry. There was no Godly ministry in the first place in this scenario, just an imposter utilising the church setting for selfish means. The sense of safety in the church would be compromised if this were to take place. Forgiveness can be given, but the consequences are final this side of Heaven.
In this day and age of abundant information on the dynamics of abuse, still, too many of us, for one reason or another, have gone into general pastoral ministry without having been theologically equipped to minister to the abused men, women and children who will inevitably come to us for help. Instead of bringing hope and healing, we have instead, unintentionally brought about disempowerment and a feeling of hopelessness to already disadvantaged persons. Seminaries and church leaders already in the field, for the most part, have closed their ears to the appeal of pastoral specialists in the field of abuse to include theological application to the dynamics of abuse, a process of self-examination of assumptions and pre-conceived ideas and step by step crisis intervention for the different kinds of abuses in the core program. I have not found such a program to date and would love to be wrong.
It is important for us as church leaders, to be aware of how deeply complex and how deeply painful the impact abuse can have on a person, and documentation has shown that some of us have attempted to bring about ‘quick fixes’ of troublesome situations. There are no ‘quick fixes’ when it comes to abuse. Mary Demuth stated in her article, “When the Church Prefers Perpetrators” on her online magazine,
Something is wrong when the church protects perpetrators and marginalizes victims. In recent months, we’ve seen a bit of the underbelly of covering up sexual abuse, demanding victims forgive and forget instantly for the sake of the poor offenders whose lives might be ruined if they were found out (tongue in cheek). …Unfortunately, we have become so enamored with the ministries we have built, forgetting that God Himself builds His Church (and thinking it weighs on our shoulders), that we have lived in depraved fear, preferring the words of perpetrators over the words of those abused (Demuth, 2013).
From Old Testament times God has needed to rebuke church leaders for getting carried away with the power the position can give us and for forgetting our true purpose as servants of the people. We, as church leaders, are documented to still be the first place many abused people come to for help, but are so often inadequately prepared to do so (Miles, 2011). Vulnerable people come to us for help trusting that we have been equipped to adequately do so, when only a minority of us have been found to have been adequately prepared. It is time to honour this trust once and for all and to acknowledge that this training is necessary for all pastors in the field whose first reaction in the first few seconds of an encounter with a hurting soul depends on whether they find hurt or healing in a church setting. Its more about learning what not to say, as opposed to what to say, coupled with trusted specialist referrals.
The greatest problem in advocating for this focussed, theological training for pastors is the fact that so many people inside the churches are unaware that there is even an issue of concern. Abuse victims are usually already in a general state of disempowerment when they seek help from their pastor and are not up to understanding or fighting against any ill-advised pastoral counselling at that time of crisis. If their experience is not ‘of God,’ they experience instead a sense of betrayal and incredulity that they are not receiving appropriate support and a tendency to sink into a state of silent hopelessness. These broken souls are “the Voiceless;” those who are so emotionally, psychologically and spiritually compromised as a direct result of having applied for help from an unprepared church leader.
A woman who claims she was sexually abused by her now-deceased adoptive father throughout her childhood is suing her mother, the Seventh-day Adventist Church and two of its schools, alleging they knew about the abuse but failed to protect her. (…) But whenever she timidly confided in Adventists about her unhappy home situation, she said she was called a liar and a troublemaker and told to pray for forgiveness for making derogatory comments about her father, a devout Christian man (Steffenhagen, 2013).
God is now making a loud and general call to the seminaries and the churches they serve that there cannot be any bystanders anymore. As with all forms of bullying, even if we, as church leaders, are apt in ministering to the abused, we need now, more than ever, to also be a “Voice for the Voiceless.” those of us who are unprepared to get into the trenches of life, are often found to give in to the same behaviour as the Priest and Levite exhibited in the story of the ‘Good Samaritan,’ where Jesus describes them leaving the wounded victim lying alone and bleeding by the side of the road (Nolan 2010). Nolan (2010) asks us to consider that the pain the wounded man experienced as he watched the Priest and the Levite pass him by, was far greater than the pain inflicted on him by the robbers in the first place. This is the secondary victimisation that many of our wounded people in the churches are still experiencing today as some of us are “passing them by” in our unpreparedness to deal appropriately with their situations of abuse.
As a survivor of sexual child abuses myself and a believer, I have found it very disheartening and alarming to witness the naivete of the church in response to a victim of abuse. I personally believe that the majority of the church in our nation does not understand how to respond to abuse because there is a lack of knowledge pertaining to the subject of abuse. Being made aware that there are still victims of abuse who may belong in your own ministry is crucial in the equipping of the church to become the safest place that God intended the church to be (Tchividjian, 2015).
Many church leaders of different denominations over the years have been found to have applied the same pattern of simplistic misapplication of scripture and doctrinal error to complex, abusive situations (Tracy, 2005; Doyle, 2008; Duncan, 2010; Baird & Gleeson, 2018). To me, this is the evidence of evil running through some of our churches. Too often, Pastors who lack knowledge of the dynamics of abuse, utilize Scripture in a simplistic, condemning way, that disempowers the victim and leaves him or her in even more danger than before he/she went for help in his/her situation of domestic violence (Duncan, 2003).
Kroeger and Nason-Clark (2001) talk about how the church needs to recognize when it has gone wrong:
If God has made us competent ministers, then we must declare God’s love and empowerment of all persons. We must insist that our spiritual leaders point to ways of life rather than death … the Bible teaches that abuse within the church family is most certainly our business and that we must adopt a very hard line against it (p. 139, 140).
Adams as long ago as 1994 cited appropriate training for church leaders as essential to maintaining the church as a place of refuge and to prevent secondary trauma.
By articulating and acting upon a theological and spiritual framework that accommodates (the abused person’s) reality while seeking to expand the theological constrictions that occurred in the face of trauma, a minister communicates; “Your reality is meaningful. Your safety is essential (Adams, 1994, p. 114).
Floyd (2008) tells us that “It is essential for those in ministry to understand the nature of crises and trauma as well as to have specific knowledge about how to help people under such circumstances” (p. 17). Floyd goes on to talk of the inevitability of those in ministry encountering “persons in the midst of crises (p. 17). The Scriptures warn us of the increase of depravity that is going to come over humanity just before Jesus returns (Matthew 24.21, Mark 13.19, Matthew 10:15, 2Peter 2:2-10, 1 Corinthians 5.1, 2 Corinthians 12.21, Jude 1.7, Ephesians 4.14-24). Church leaders need to be equipped for this onslaught now, and taught that perpetrators come in all shapes and sizes, even in people who we see as nice and good, even in church leaders themselves. Douglas & Kay (1997) cite Lebacqz and Barton,
The ministerial profession (is) especially vulnerable to sexual misconduct because of the nature of its unique powers. Pastors have the power of freedom, that is, the power that comes with not being under the continual supervision or surveillance of others; and they have the power of access and accessibility, that is, the privileged access to the personal lives of parishioners that comes with being in a profession long associated with giving care (p. 133).
Okum, Fried & Okum (1999) observe the power that church leaders have over their congregations and the privilege that comes with that power; “The powerful can choose to ignore the less powerful” (p. 213). This is why the Scriptures tell us in James 3:1, “Not many of you should become teachers my brothers and sisters, for you know that we who teach shall be judged with greater strictness” (NRSV). 2 Timothy 3:16, 17, tells us, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness so that the (person) of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
As Church leaders, we owe it to our flock to utilise the “God-breathed” Scriptures in a way that brings life, not death. There are “incredible ministry opportunities” when the Church Body reaches out “to those shattered by abuse” (Nason-Clark, Clark-Kroeger, & Fisher-Townsend, 2011, p. 45). Christians are identified by their love for one another (John 13:35). Isaiah 61 describes the church as a place where the broken-hearted find healing, where the bereaved find comfort and where a spirit of despair is replaced with the garment of praise. Kroeger & Nason-Clark (2001) said that God’s people accomplish this for others when “God’s people go up to Gilead and apply its healing balm to the wounds of those who suffer” (Jeremiah 820-22; 46:1) (p. 55). Sensitivity to the dynamics of abuse ps the difference between causing secondary victimization on already traumatised people or not (Duncan, 2003). With situations of domestic violence for example, Fortune, as far back as 1987, has been telling church leaders,
There are three goals that you should keep in mind as you respond to her. (the woman in a situation of domestic violence) 1. Protect the victim (and children) from further abuse. (…) 2. Stop the abuser’s violence (. …) 3. Restore the marriage and family if possible, or mourn its loss. (…) If you try to begin with goal number 3, avoiding the first two, you will fail (p. 96, 97).
It is common knowledge by church and secular abuse specialists that those pastors who have not been equipped to minister to abused people always go for reconciliation of the marriage first. Jones & Schechter, was advising church leaders as far back as 1989 to equip themselves with this training.
It can be very distressing, when you think of yourself as a skilled professional, to suddenly come upon a gap in your own training. (…) If you are uncertain about the best way to help a client plan for her (or his) safety, alert the police and seek advice from the local program for abused women (pp. 312 & 320).
Nason-Clark, Clark Kroeger & Fisher-Townsend (2011) bemoan the fact that pastors are still generally untrained in ministering to those who are or have been abused.
We must also recognise a crisis of pastoral care in the practice of ministry as shepherding – a crisis in the conduct of ministers as pastor-shepherds … This crisis is especially important for the sheep that have been attached, and are suffering from wounds inflicted by their attackers (p. 12).
They go on to say,
Instead of tending their wounds, as Christ has commanded us (John21:16), we must sadly confess that abused women (and men) have often been further victimized by too many pastors in their misuse of power and authority, as well as their abuse of scripture (p. 12).
When pastors have gone out of their way to obtain appropriate pastoral training in the area of abuse, however, not only are lives saved and healed, but previous victims go on to become powerful disciples for Christ and the furtherance of the Kingdom of God as predicted in Isaiah 61:3:
To provide for those who mourn in Zion –
To give them a garland instead of ashes,
The oil of gladness instead of mourning,
The mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, to display his glory.
Dr. Marion Duncan M.Ed. (Couns.), C.C.C., M.Div. – Compassionate Cup Ministries – www.compassionatecupministries.ca
Dr. Duncan test-ran a course designed for the core seminary program called “Equipping Church Leaders to Minister to Abused and Oppressed People” with an interdenominational group of research participants in Saskatoon, SK, Canada. they unanimously recommended it be part of the core seminary program for general pastoral ministry. This course is currently being prepared for publication along with the accompanying book, Hidden Shame: A Biblical Response to the Epidemic of Secondary Victimisation in our Churches. (Photo: Dr. Duncan ministering in Ulukhaktok, NT, a fly-in only community just a little closer to the North Pole. She currently lives in the fly-in only Arctic community of Paulatuk, NT. )
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