Domestic Violence

 Violence against women, inside or outside the home, is never justified. Violence in any form-physical, sexual, psychological, or verbal is sinful; often, it is a crime as

—U.S Catholic Bishops, When I Call for Help, 2002


If you would like to see what services are available in Orange County or feel like making a call now:

Domestic Violence Shelters, Abuse Hotlines in Orange County


Domestic violence is any kind of behavior that a person uses, or threatens to use, to control an intimate partner. The two key elements are threat and control. Domestic violence can take various forms:

  • Physical: Violent actions such as hitting, beating, pushing, and kicking. In many cases physical abuse becomes more frequent and severe over time
  • Sexual: Includes any sexual acts that are forced on one partner by the other
  • Psychological: Includes a wide range of behaviors such as intimidation, isolating the victim from friends and family, controlling where the victim goes, making the victim feel guilty or crazy, and making unreasonable demands
  • Emotional: Undermining an individual’s self-esteem, constant criticism, insults, put-downs, and name-calling
  • Economic:Examples include limiting the victim’s access to family income, preventing the victim from working or forcing the victim to work, destroying the victim’s property, and making all the financial decisions

The U.S. Catholic Bishops have made clear that domestic violence should never be tolerated. In the USCCB’s official statement of Domestic Violence, When I Call for Help: A Pastoral Response to Domestic Violence Against Women, the bishops firmly condemn all forms of Domestic violence. As Catholics we believe that domestic violence, in complete opposition to our Catholic Social Teaching, disintegrates the fundamental social institutions of marriage and family, endangers the life and dignity
of a human person, and deprives a person of their fundamental rights. Such action against the dignity of a spouse is a tragic reality that we are facing that must be exposed and addressed.

For more information on overcoming these obstacles, please visit For Your Marriage.


Resources for Domestic Violence Awareness

(Sunday, October 25, 2015 from the Domestic Violence Awareness Initiative (DVAI) of the Diocese of Orange)



Homilia sobre violencia doméstica en español


  • Mark the last weekend in October for Domestic Violence Awareness at your parish
  • Work with your pastor to be prepared as a parish to make referrals and share resources (you don’t have to know it all, just pass along the info and care!)
  • Make Human Options with all four hotline numbers available in your parish (available through our office)
  • Pamphlets, Books, and Support Group Material For Order
  • Invite an expert out to speak at your parish group


  • In an emergency, dial 911
  • You can also call the National Domestic Violence 24-Hour Hotline at 800-799-7233, 1-800-787-3224 TTY for counseling assistance
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline website
  • Find the support group nearest you