Final report to the 2009 Church of the Brethren Annual Conference on the 2007 Annual Conference Query: Child Abuse Prevention
Chris, a senior in high school, has lived in fourteen different foster homes. He has been rejected by his alcoholic mother, physically and sexually abused by foster parents, and punished for erratic behavior by frustrated teachers.
A four year old begged the counselor to protect her parents. The uncle, who had sexually molested her, told her that if she breathed a word to anyone about their "secret," her parents would disappear.
SECTION I. INTRODUCTION
1. Introductory Matters 2. Definitions 3. Policy and Principles of the Church 4. Purposes, Scope, and Application 5. Standards of Conduct for Clergy 6. Standards of Conduct for Lay Persons 7. Church Structure Concerning Sexual Misconduct Allegations 8. Reports and Complaints of Sexual Misconduct 9. Investigation and Assessment of Complaints 1 0. Report and Determination 11. Recruiting and Selecting Parish Workers 12. Supervision of Church Workers and Children 13. Training and Education
1. Introductory Matters
1.01. Terms and Interpretation
2004 Statement – PC(USA), pp. 809-810
Resolution on Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse Against Educators
The 216th General Assembly (2004) approved the following:
The Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy (ACSWP) recommends that the 216th General Assembly (2004) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) approve the following:
1. Approve the Resolution on Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse Against Educators, receive the full rationale, and encourage their churchwide study.
The 213th General Assembly (2001) approves the following resolution with comment:
1.1. The church’s first concern is for people. The body of Christ is a caring community. It cares that each person be in right relationship with God, with neighbor, with nature, with social systems, and with self. It is a caring shared among all the members. It is a mark of Christian love and discipleship. It reaches out to those most in need—the widowed and the orphaned, the weak and the lowly, the despised and the rejected, the hurting and the confused, the lonely and the solitary.
1. Laws express society’s recognition that sexual behavior affects not only the participants but also the health, strength, and survival of the society itself. Christians must beware, however, of equating sin with crime. Nor dare they accept the proposition that because behavior is not against the law it therefore must be acceptable. Their concern must be for laws that foster justice, mercy, equality of opportunity, and the protection of basic human rights.
1. Human beings are capable not only of good but also of evil uses of their sexuality. People are ready to exploit this fact to their own power or profit. Major industries are built up around satisfying “the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life” (1 John 2:16).
2. Among forms of exploitive sexual behavior against which Christians should be ready to work are those which:
(a) exploit children and youth, men and women, as in pornography and prostitution;
(b) take advantage of persons who are ill, helpless, dependent, handicapped, or of little power;