Workshop on Safeguarding

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On 6th November 2023, 133 members of 90 religious orders gathered at Fraterna Domus north of Rome for a one-week conference on Safeguarding. There were 78 female religious from 51 congregations and 55 male religious from 39 congregations. Sr. Estela CJ and Sr. Anna CJ participated in the workshop and will report the results to the General Leadership Team and include its results in the mission of our sisters.

This important gathering of religious with responsibility for safeguarding was organized by the Care and Safeguarding Commission of the Unions of Superiors General (UISG / USG) in Rome.

Participants listened to informative, profound and challenging presentations in an atmosphere of deep trust, openness and sharing which helped to create an environment wherein participants could reflect, ask questions, and engage in rich sharing at tables.

A crucial point in the workshop was listening to the testimony of two survivors of abuse. The pain and life-changing effects of abuse became very evident.  As policies and protocols for prevention and protection are formulated, what participants heard must impact how a culture of safeguarding should be created and lived as a Gospel culture.

The workshop was experienced as a synodal journey, with participants and presenters taking time to reflect together on each day’s input. Members of UISG and USG are committed to providing a culture of safeguarding and to model this Gospel culture in their respective congregations and ministries.

Esther Finis