If every allegation of child sexual abuse was simply reported by ministry leaders to appropriate authorities, the resulting positive impact would be immeasurable. When ministry leaders simply report suspicions and allegations of sexual abuse, the Church is perceived as a sanctuary where God's love and justice are demonstrated.
Why is reporting such a stumbling block for the Church? Why is it so difficult?
Answer: ministry leaders must gain understanding and take action.
Ministry leaders MUST:
- Understand mandatory reporting legislation
- Understand the limitations of 'clergy privilege'
- Understand how sexual abuse manifests in ministry contexts
- Have the courage to take action in deeply difficult circumstances