Anniversary service for child sex abuse survivors

October 22 marks the second anniversary of the National Apology to Survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse.

The Church has recorded a service for those congregations and faith communities who wish to mark the anniversary.

Assembly President Dr Deidre Palmer said the service and liturgy was part of the Uniting Church’s commitment to remember and acknowledge the harm done and to lament its role in causing this harm.

“This is an opportunity to reiterate our Church’s apology to survivors and our commitment to redress and reconciliation,” she said.

“As we mark this anniversary, we acknowledge the terrible breach of trust and the damage done to individuals, communities and relationships.

“This is part of our story that we will continue to acknowledge so that we never forget, and never become complacent.

“At the same time, we renew our commitment to live the Gospel of Christ by being a Church that embodies a culture and practice of safety.”

With the establishment of the National Safe Church Unit and UCA Redress Ltd, the Uniting Church continues to embed a culture of safety, learning from the mistakes of the past and making sure our current practice is focused on being a safe Church for all people.

The service may be used in full or adapted for use in Sunday worship or in a smaller online setting where people meet as part of a regular supportive gathering (such a study group or discipleship group).

“Although it is difficult, it is important to have these conversations. As time passes, we must ensure that we never forget. And we must remain diligent for the safety of children into the future,” Dr Palmer said.

To view the service, click here.

To download the accompanying liturgy, click here.

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