New handbook for worship and gatherings

The Churches’ Network for Non-violence and the Global Initiative are delighted to announce the long anticipated publication of the new handbook, Ending corporal punishment of children – a handbook for worship and gatherings.

This substantial new resource offers a variety of tools to support a faith-based approach to the prohibition of corporal punishment and the fostering of positive, non-violent adult-child relationships, through Bible study, prayers, vigils, liturgies and reflections on corporal punishment of children as well as activism through celebration of key events in the UN human rights calendar and activities with children and youth groups. Many of the materials are suitable for both private and collective use and can be adapted for the local context or used to trigger ideas for further studies or reflections.

The handbook includes an introduction contextualizing the materials within the obligations of governments under human rights law to protect children from all forms of corporal punishment, and a final section outlining online resources to support further development on the issue.

Writing in the Foreword to the handbook, Marta Santos Pais, Special Representative of the UN Secretary General on Violence against Children, says:

“With strong resolve and example, religious leaders are uniquely placed to spearhead their communities’ contribution towards building a world free from violence against children and a society based upon the values of tolerance, respect, compassion, fairness and solidarity. This handbook is a precious tool to facilitate this process. It presents a clear overview of the arguments behind the call to prohibit and eliminate corporal punishment of children, and it contains inspiring guidance for religious leaders and communities to take an active part in the promotion of children’s rights and in the prevention and elimination of violence as a form of discipline or education.

The elimination of all forms of violence against children is a universal goal of paramount importance. Although it is an ambitious goal, it remains within humankind’s reach. It is upon us to pursue it and to believe in our strength to achieve it.”

The handbook is available here.

A limited number of hard copies is available: email

For further information, see the website of the Churches’ Network for Non-violence