Safeguarding is an essential part in the life and ministry of the Church. It is the responsibility of all of us to ensure our parishes and institutions are safe places, especially for those who are vulnerable. Abuse and harm have no place in our diocese. There is zero tolerance to abuse, harm and any behaviour that falls short of appropriate safeguarding practices as expressed in National Policies.
Jesus welcomed children and blessed them. We are told that Jesus was indignant when anyone tried to keep the children away “let the little children come to me and do not stop them. It is to such as these that the Kingdom of God belongs.” (Mark 10: 14).
Jesus makes clear his view about those who seek to harm the vulnerable, “anyone who welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. Anyone who is an obstacle to bring down one of these little ones who have faith in me would be better drowned in the depths of the sea.” (Matthew 18: 5-6) Jesus’ stark words point to the horror and seriousness of abuse. Abuse is evil. It is destructive.
Everyone in our diocese is called to ensure that all diocesan institutions, parishes, clergy, employees and volunteers take appropriate steps to maintain a safe environment and put into practice Christ’s ministry towards children, young people, and vulnerable adults. Our diocese is committed to accompany and support all victims/survivors of abuse.
We seek to learn from them and their representatives about best safeguarding practice.
Bishop Declan Lang 11/2023
The Parish Safeguarding Representative: Mrs. Rosemary Woods
The Diocesan safeguarding team supports the ministry of the Church by providing a professional and robust support around the protection of children, young people and adults at risk, to ensure that worshipping communities are safe places where all have a positive experience of the Church in which they feel loved, accepted and safe. All issues will be dealt with in a sensitive and caring manner, in the strictest of confidence. The dedicated safeguarding team work closely with other agencies including the Police, Probation, Social Services and comply with the standards that are set by the Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency (CSSA). The CSSA has been set up as a professional standards body with regulatory powers which exist to regulate all Catholic Churches.
The safeguarding office is located at Alexander House, 160 Pennywell Road, Bristol, BS5 0TX
General enquiries: 0117 954 0993
07887 990 385