Safeguarding is a duty and is the mission of the Church. The Catholic Church in Scotland aspires to the highest standards with regard to the care and protection of children and vulnerable adults, and actively promotes justice for, and provides assistance to, those who have been abused.
Church jurisdictions are committed to respecting, protecting and nurturing the dignity of all people and are determined that the Catholic Church in Scotland will offer a safe place in all Church premises and activities, and with all Church personnel.
The church is committed to improving its Safeguarding culture and to rebuild trust and confidence in the ways that children and vulnerable adults are kept safe.
The Church's Safeguarding approaches, led by each Bishop and Major Superior, and delivered by clergy, Religious, Safeguarding personnel and lay people in every parish community, Religious Institute and Catholic organisation, are designed to protect and heal, to safeguard and nurture all who have contact with Catholic faith communities across Scotland
we praise you for calling us
to the service of others.
We pray for a generosity of spirit
to ensure the vulnerable are protected.
We pray for a compassionate heart
so that we will reach out to those who are
wounded by abuse.
We pray for courage and determination
as we seek the safety of everyone
in our parish communities.
We dedicate ourselves
to this work of service
and pray that you will help us
to do your will
at all times and in all places.
1st October 2023
Safeguarding statement from the Diocesan Safeguarding Advisory Group
Parish statement to be read out please
Good morning/ evening.
Thank you, Father. My name is __Karen McArdle_ and I am the Parish Safeguarding Coordinator for this parish.
Today is the Sunday when all parishes in Scotland remind our communities that we take safeguarding seriously and promote a ‘culture of care’ – safe people, safe places and safe activities.
This means that all volunteers in regulated roles in the Church (working with children or protected adults) follow safe recruitment procedures. They supply references, have PVG checks and attend safeguarding training.
Our clergy and group leaders carry out risk assessments to consider how to run activities safely and put measures in place to prevent harm.
Importantly, all clergy, Church employees and volunteers who interact with children and vulnerable adults agree to respect and protect emotional and physical boundaries. They are also trained to be confident in sharing concerns appropriately and to challenge and report abusive behaviour.
Mistakes have been made in the past and we are truly sorry. Pope Francis has said that no effort must be spared to create a culture able to prevent abuse - but also to prevent the possibility of cover up.
When we are alerted to concerns or allegations regarding the safety or welfare of a child or vulnerable adult, regardless of when this happened, we respond with care and compassion. We have a mandatory reporting policy if there is an allegation of abuse.
We have a parish, diocesan and national structure in place to ensure the vulnerable are protected and to reach out to those who are wounded by abuse. My contact details are on the poster in the foyer – or you can catch me after Mass for a private word if you have questions or concerns. You could also contact the Diocesan Safeguarding Adviser, Mrs Jo Martin, directly. Her contact details are also on the poster and the diocesan website.
Please keep in your prayers all survivors of abuse.
Thank you for listening today and for keeping all our parish safeguarding coordinators, volunteers, priests, deacons and religious in your prayers. We thank everyone who volunteers their time, expertise and skills to build up our parish community.