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Diocese of Raleigh Hosts Safe Environment Convocations

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The Diocesan Office of Child and Youth Protection is hosting four Safe Environment Convocations around the Diocese to provide parishes with easier access to information integral to their ministries. Each parish is asked to have a representative at one of the Safe Environment Convocations. 

Three Safe Environment Convocations have been held so far, at St. Stanislaus in Castle Hayne, St. Catherine of Siena in Tarboro and The Catholic Center in Raleigh. The fourth Convocation will be held at St. Patrick in Fayetteville on August 14th.  Registration for that Convocation is still open. For more information, contact register@raldioc.org.

At these meetings, parish representatives receive materials and updates that allow them to maintain their commitment to provide safe and sacred places for our children and youth.

In turn, all school and parish faith formation programs begin the year by providing parent resource materials for discussing safe environment issues in the home and by alerting the students to the safe environment leaders in the school/parish.  This gives youngsters a pool of trusted adults to turn to in case they are in a relationship that is hurtful.

Dr. John A. Pendergrass reported at the Safe Environment Convocation that, as of the 2009 audit:

  • 2,259 people were trained during the audit year
  • 24,258 parent resources were distributed
  • The Diocese of Raleigh has been found to be in full compliance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People.
  • To date, the Office of Child and Youth Protection has performed 12,092 background checks and trained 13,286 employees, volunteers and parents.

The 2010 audit documents will be submitted to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) at the end of August.

The Safe Environment Program of the Diocese of Raleigh strives to empower parishes, schools, families, and individuals to create and foster safe and healthy environments for children and youth in all aspects of their lives.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is providing a list of messages children hear in safe environment programs, including the fact that abuse is never a child’s fault and how to understand when personal boundaries may be breached.

Above: Dr. John Pendergrass, Diocesan Director of Child and Youth Protection, facilitating Safe Environment Convocation for parishes prior to the start of new school year.