Safe as Churches? Royal commission addresses National Council of Churches
Royal Commission Chair, Peter McClellan delivered a hard-hitting speech via video link this week to the National Council of Churches conference in Melbourne. The speech includes a detailed summary of the Commission's work to date and outlines a number of its findings and thinking, including damning statistics about the incidence of abuse in religious organisations, particularly in the Catholic Church.
Following Justice McClellan's speech this week it now seems obvious that the Commission will have a lot to say about organisational cultures and how they positively or not engender child safe environments. They may also concentrate on personnel training, formation, supervision and accreditation in that context. Moreover, the Commission is very likely to suggest changes to our national criminal laws and to police reporting requirements.
But in churches like my own the conversation needs to be far deeper and more challenging.
Govt starts push for states and institutions to join national redress
Social Services Minister Christian Porter has begun the delicate job of convincing the states and other groups to join a Commonwealth scheme designed to compensate survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.
More public events and apologies from Catholic institutions
Edmund Rice Education Australia (EREA) will deliver a national apology on behalf of its schools to the victims and survivors of sexual abuse at the National Arboretum in Canberra on 1 June during EREA's National Principals' Conference. The Apology has been developed in consultation with survivors and is open to all.
For more information about attendance at the National Apology, please email Catherine Greenley at Edmund Rice Education Australia on firstname.lastname@example.org
St Stanislaus' College is planning to hold a public apology and Liturgy of sorrow and hope on Friday 16 June 2017.
In an open letter from Head of College, Anne Wenham says the apology is made 'with a shared acknowledgement that the abuse of children and young people was a failure of the Mission of the College which seeks to open the eyes, minds and hearts of our students to God's loving presence in their lives'.
May 31, Marist Brothers Project Roundtable, Sydney June 6, Keynote address to Wollongong Diocesan Assembly, Wollongong June 28, Spirituality in the Pub, The Sandy, Sandringham Victoria July 4, Address to Clergy Life and Ministry National Directors Annual Conference, North Sydney July 18, Address to University of third Age, Canberra July 19, Address to Australian Catholic Migrant and Refugee Conference, Melbourne August 24, Address biennial National Catholic Education Media, Marketing and Communications Conference, Surfers Paradise August 25, Address to South Australian Catholic Principals, Adelaide October 19, Address to Catholic Community of Geelong, Geelong November 4, Address to Catholic School Parents Australia, Hobart November 13 Address to Catholic Secondary Principals Australia, Adelaide