The Catholic Church has today published its fifth annual report to the National Office for Child Safety on its progress in ensuring Catholic settings are safe for children and that organisations are responsive to safeguarding concerns. The provision of reports was a recommendation of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
The report contains sections on progress and achievements by dioceses, religious institutes and some schools and school systems in the following areas: Governance and structures; Education and training; Cultural change; Pastoral responses; Participation of children; Community engagement; Engagement with victims and survivors.
In the report’s foreword, Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB and Catholic Religious Australia president Fr Peter Jones OSA reiterated earlier statements that the Church is deeply sorry for the abuse that occurred in Catholic settings.
“We renew our pledge for the present and the future of a Church that listens, that seeks the truth, that responds compassionately, that desires healing and that acts with justice,” they wrote.
“Our shameful past informs and energises our ongoing efforts. We are mindful that for the Church to carry forward God’s mission for us, we must take seriously our responsibilities to keep all people safe, and especially children.”
The report can be accessed at: https://bit.ly/ CatholicNOCS2022