White Bluff United Methodist Church
Sunday, September 24, 2017

Safe Sanctuaries

Safe Sanctuaries Policy – White Bluff UMC
Abuse Prevention Policy

The General Conference of The United Methodist Church, in April 1996, adopted a resolution aimed at reducing the risk of child sexual abuse in the church. The adopted resolution includes the following statement:

Jesus said “Whoever welcomes a child...welcomes me.” (Matthew 18.5) Children are our present and our future, our hope, our teachers, our inspiration. They are full participants in the life of the church and in the realm of God.
 
Jesus also said, “If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones...l, it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea.” (Matthew 18.6) Our Christian faith calls us to offer both hospitality and protection to the little ones, the children. The Social Principles of the United Methodist Church state that “children must be protected from
economic, physical and sexual exploitation, and abuse.”
 
Tragically, churches have not always been safe places for children. Child sexual abuse, exploitation and ritual abuse (ritual abuse refers to abusive acts committed as part of ceremonies or rites; ritual abusers are often related to cults, or pretend to be) occur in churches, large and small, urban and rural. The problem cuts across all economic, cultural and racial lines.
 
God calls us to make our churches safe places, protecting children and other vulnerable persons from sexual and ritual abuse. God calls us to create communities of faith where children grow safe and strong. (From the Book of Resolutions of the United Methodist Church – 1996. Copyright @ 1996 by the United Methodist Publishing House. Used by permission. {pp.384-386})
 
Thus, in covenant with all United Methodist Congregations, we adopt this policy for the prevention of all types of abuse of children/vulnerable adults at White Bluff United Methodist Church.
 
for
A full copy of our Safe Sanctuaries Policy (PDF)