The Catholic Church affirms the inherent dignity of each human person as created in the image and likeness of God. Therefore, we respect the dignity of every person, as doing so reflects of our love for God. Abuse of any person is inexcusable but the sexual abuse of a minor or vulnerable adult is a particularly reprehensible violation of one’s dignity for which there is no justification. As they are unable to adequately provide it for themselves, minors and vulnerable adults especially deserve our protection. The Diocese of Charleston is committed to making every effort to create and maintain safe environments in which to worship and learn and we are adamant that the abuse of children or vulnerable adults will not be tolerated by anyone, especially church personnel.

The Office of Child and Youth Protection provides a pastoral response to, and competent processing of, allegations of abuse of minors and vulnerable adults. With the approval and consent of the Bishop, it also establishes, implements, supervises, and maintains safe environment programs in all parishes, missions and schools within the Diocese.

Prayer for Protection

Dear Lord, We ask You to bless these Your holy people who have participated in the Church’s efforts to help stop the abuse of those among us who are most vulnerable. In particular, bless those who work to protect our children from sexual abuse. Open their hearts to Your call to be the “ears, eyes and voice of children and young people and vulnerable adults” everywhere. Give them the vision and grace needed to fulfill the special commitments that each of them has made to making their homes, churches, schools, communities and world a safer place for all God’s Children. Amen