Safe Church has a very significant role in the CRCNA: to equip congregations in abuse awareness, prevention, and response. The reality is, this would not be achievable if it was up to denominational staff alone. This job is very large. It requires a vast team of people working at all levels—the denominational level, the classical level, and the church level—to be able to make this mandate achievable.
With churches all across North America representing a wide variety of cultures, it is vital that Safe Church depends on a network of support that represents the diversity of all our members.
We, as the Safe Church ministry staff team, would like to thank all of our safe church team members for their ongoing support for our ministry. You invest significant time and energy into ensuring that your churches are safe for not only your own congregations, but also for those people outside of the church. It is so important that our churches represent spaces that are safe for all people, that we can be a safe space for everyone.
This year, Volunteer Canada has chosen the theme for volunteer appreciation week (April 18 to 24, 2021) to be: The Value of One, The Power of Many. Each one of you, within your own church and your own classis is doing great work to advance the goals of our ministry. Yet, it is when we come together, when we stand side-by-side, supporting each other in this work, that we become even stronger and it is possible to envision a day when our churches are free from abuse.
Calling All Potential Volunteers!
Interested in learning more about Safe church and contributing to this amazing network of volunteers? There are two levels of volunteering that exist within every classis in relation to Safe Church.
1. Volunteering (maybe even developing!) the safe church team in your church:
What does a church Safe Church team do?
Safe church ministry works best within churches if it is developed as a team model than an individual person holding this role. A team can work together to ensure that policies are up to date, training is being implemented on an ongoing basis for the church community, councils are made aware of updates and changes to protocols and are encouraged on ways to actively supporting the work of safe church within the church, abuse prevention curriculum is being integrated into Sunday school and one Sunday a year is set aside as a special Sunday for Safe Church.
2. Volunteering on the classis Safe Church Team (as a team member or as a coordinator)
The classis safe church team functions as the primary support network for safe church ministry within the classis. The classis team brings together safe church leaders in each congregation for mutual encouragement and learning. Congregational safe church leaders can benefit greatly by knowing they are not alone and are part of a larger movement of safe church ministry. They gain confidence in their gifts and skills from training and networking with an active classis safe church team. In addition, the classis team works to build trust and good working relationships within the classis so that pastors and ministry leaders know who they can talk with regarding general abuse prevention and response initiatives, or when any specific safe church needs arise.
This chart provides an overview of all the safe church coordinators currently active in our ministry.
Perhaps you live in a region that currently does not have a coordinator and you feel led to explore this more. Feel free to reach out to us at [email protected] and we would look forward to discussing the role with you.
Perhaps you are in a church that does not have a safe church team. If you feel led to start a conversation about this, we would encourage you to reach out to the classis safe church coordinator, or if one is not noted, reach out to [email protected] to find out how to start the process!
Be a part of the Safe Church Ministry team today!