Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist® Church

"Where Love is an Action Word"

Domestic Violence Awareness Day


October 29, 2022 Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church in Wilmington, NC, under the leadership of Pastor Derrin Davis, Sr. hosted its first Annual Domestic Violence (DV) Awareness Day. This DV Awareness Day marked an historic event for Ephesus and the community. For Dr. Tracey Ray, the event coordinator, this was a full-circle moment that could only be expressed with “Hallelujah”!  Dr. Ray serves as an Elder at Ephesus and the Executive Director of Safe Haven, a domestic violence intervention services organization. In silence, as a young adult attending Ephesus, Dr. Ray suffered the woes of intimate partner violence.

Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church recognizes there are individuals who have suffered and/or are suffering from domestic violence within our church, and definitely within our community. We are committed to being a change agent in our community and holistically serving the needs of our church members. Ephesus wants its members to know that it is a safe place. Ephesus is fortunate to have the expertise and resources of Dr. Ray who not only serves the local community, but is also a Governor Appointee for the North Carolina Council for Women (NCCFW) and serves as Program Council Chairperson for the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCCADV). 

Pastor Davis is committed to ensuring these resources reach Ephesus’ members and surrounding community. Domestic Violence Awareness Day at Ephesus was dedicated to celebrating survivors, praying for victims, and remembering those who lost their lives to domestic violence homicide. According to the NCCADV, there were thirty-six domestic violence homicides in North Carolina January 1, 2022 – October 1, 2022. Ignoring domestic violence and not talking about it in the church is not just neglectful, it can be lethal!

The NCCADV reports that nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner and 1 in 3 women have been physically abused by an intimate partner. As well, 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men in the United States has been raped in their lifetime. It is important to note that these are only reported incidents of abuse. These victims/survivors are in our churches! Every ill that plagues our communities, plagues our churches. 

Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church recognizes that there is much work to do and is committed to doing the necessary work to reduce incidents of domestic and intimate partner violence. 

If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence and you would like to talk with someone. Please reach out to your local domestic violence service provider or one of the resources below to connect with resources and/or a trained victim services advocate.  

-Dr. Tracey Ray