Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
No. 24/16 - 25th September 2016
Diocesan Safeguarding Day
Throughout the Diocese this weekend we focus our attention on the safeguarding and protection of children and vulnerable adults within our parish community. The parish Churches and all activities associated with them should be a safe, a secure and nourishing place for all particularly our children. It is here in the parish that children encounter Jesus Christ in the Eucharist and the Sacraments, in the community that celebrates and prays together and also in one another as they grow and develop in the faith they have been gifted with in baptism.
All who are involved in parish groups and ministries have attended training in Child Safeguarding and are being Garda Vetted in accordance with diocesan policy. We also have two safeguarding representatives in our parish.
Our Policy Statement reflects the Diocesan one which recognises and upholds the dignity and rights of all children, is committed to ensuring their safety and well being and will work in partnership with parents/guardians to do this. The Archdiocese recognises each child as a gift from God, and values and encourages the participation of childen in all activities that enhance their spiritual, physical, emotional and social development. All diocesan personnel [including clergy, religious, staff and volunteers] have a responsibility to safeguard children in a safe and caring environment that supports their best interests and prevents abuse.
‘The culture of safeguarding is imbedded within the Church and great credit is due to the many lay men and women who offer their service willingly and voluntarily working with their priests to ensure that this is so and remains so. There is a lomg way to go. Paradoxically the good things that have been achieved could become a temptation towards complacency. There is a tendency for people to feel that the child abuse challenge has been addressed and we can let our protective fences down. There is a tendency among some to say the Church over-reacted, perhaps understandably, but now we can get back to a regime that is somehow less robust. It would be foolish to think that all our structures have fully satisfactory safeguarding procedures in place. There is no room for complacency. We need vigilance.’ [Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Clonliffe College 12th June 2015]
‘Families need to know that the Church is making every effort to protect their children. They should also know that they have every right to turn to the Church with full confidence, for it is a safe and secure home. Consequently, priority must not be given to any other kind of concern, whatever its nature, such as the desire to avoid scandal, since there is absolutely no place in ministry for those who abuse minors.’ [Pope Francis on work of Pontifical Commission Protection of Minors 2015]
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