Safeguarding God’s People
As the Body of Christ, we come together to form a loving, trusting community of believers committed to the promises of God in Jesus Christ. Whether we are lay or ordained, we are to treat members of our congregations, other staff members, and all in need who come to us, in such a manner that they may experience the healing ministry of Christ and be received with the same care and dignity our Lord showed to those who came to him.
Our churches are to be places of sanctuary for all of God’s people. The expectation of sanctuary in a sacred space is one of safety and community. To be a sanctuary, the Church must form itself as a pastoral community where trust is expected and upheld. Trust is fundamental to covenantal love and the well-being of the Christian community. Christian people have the right to expect that those they choose as leaders, lay and ordained, are committed to standards of behavior that are trustworthy. Pastoral leadership in the Church is a calling that entails the highest standards of personal responsibility and integrity.
In the Diocese of Tennessee, it is required that each of our parishes actively protect their children and youth so that we may live into our baptismal covenant and to help them grow stronger in their life in Christ. The Diocese of Tennessee requires all clergy and lay employees, plus some volunteers, to complete six Safeguarding training modules within 90 days of hire or placement in service. This is in addition to any training which may have been completed in another diocese, school, or institution. Individuals with fiduciary responsibilities or pastoral relationships, whether clergy, lay, employees, or volunteers, full-time, or part-time, are required to complete Safeguard training. Safeguarding God’s People provides clergy, lay leaders and volunteers with the information they need to protect the children, youth, and vulnerable adults they know and care for in their personal lives and the ministries in which they serve.
For more information on The Episcopal Diocese of Tennessee’s Safeguarding God’s People training, please contact our parish administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org.