Tuesday 17 May marks the Day of Prayer for Victims and Survivors of Abuse, which is observed during the Fifth Week of Easter in England and Wales. The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors (PCPM) suggested to Pope Francis that the worldwide Catholic Church should join together at this time to offer in a day of prayer, with the Holy Father welcoming the initiative.
Bishop Richard has asked that this day be recognised in parishes across our Diocese, with a number of prayers shared with members of clergy. The Diocese is committed to safeguarding as an integral part of the life and ministry of the Church:
Ensuring that children and vulnerable adults are kept safe and know they are loved is at the very core of the Church’s ministry. The work of safeguarding has to be seen within the overall mission of the Church. As she seeks to protect the vulnerable and weak, the Church needs to ‘act justly, love tenderly and walk humbly with God’. (Micah 6:8). It is a ministry of love and healing and seeks justice for all.
The Diocese will ensure that any allegations of a safeguarding nature are responded to promptly, and liaise openly with statutory authorities to support investigations, responding sensitively and compassionately to those in need, and ensuring perpetrators are held to account.
Praise to you Father of our Lord Jesus Christ the source of all consolation and hope. Be the refuge and guardian of all who suffer from abuse and violence. Comfort them and send healing for their wounds of the body, soul and spirit. Help us all and make us one with you in your love for justice as we deepen our respect for the dignity of every human life. Giver of peace, make us one in celebrating your praise, both now and forever. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
“Jesus made the crowds welcome and talked to them about the kingdom of God; and he cured those who were in need of healing.” cf. Matthew 4: 123
Safe Spaces provides a confidential, personal and safe space for anyone who has been abused through their relationship with the Catholic Church in England and Wales. Safe Spaces has a team of trained support advocates who are Independent Sexual Violence Advisors, and have received additional specific training in how Churches respond to abuse cases, and the way in which faith and church-related settings have been used to carry out abuse, and the particular issues affecting people who have had or still have, a relationship with the church.
T: 0300 303 1056 (there is an answerphone available outside of opening times)
To find out more please visit the Safe Spaces website: www.SafeSpacesEnglandandWales.org.uk