The Catholic Church affirms the inherent dignity of each human being as created in the image and likeness of God. Therefore, each person possesses inherent dignity. The sexual abuse of a minor is a violation of that person’s dignity for which there is no justification. Minors especially deserve the protection of society, since they cannot adequately provide it for themselves. The Diocese of Charleston is adamant that the abuse of children, including physical injury, sexual molestation, sexual exploitation, or grave emotional damage, 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. With the approval and consent of the Bishop, it 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 child sexual abuse. Open their hearts to Your call to be the “ears, eyes and voice of children and young people” 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