We, at St. James, are committed to being a Safe Church. What is Safe Church? Here is an excerpt from the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire’s Safe Church Policy and Procedures:  

“In our Baptismal Covenant we promise:  

To seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving our neighbor as ourselves 

To strive for justice and peace among all people 

To respect the dignity of every human being  

Living up to these baptismal promises requires not only God’s grace but our willingness to examine the quality and conduct of our relationships within and outside of the context of our local church settings.  All who are baptized are to represent Christ and to proclaim by word and deed the Good News of God's tender love for all humanity. Our conduct in relationships is one of the most important ways in which this vocation is carried out.  

Any ministry relationship, whether with clergy or lay leaders, children or adults, involves authority and trust. Recognizing this is the first step to preventing abuse. When trust is broken or authority is misused, thus denying others their God-given dignity and human stature, then a sacred obligation is broken.  Harm is done to individuals, congregations, society, and the cause of the Gospel. Whenever this occurs, the church must act within the baptismal covenant with clarity and compassion.   

We want our churches to be places where people can go for prayer, counseling, sacraments and community.  We intend these sacred places to be springs of living water where people will find refreshment, healing, and inspiration. The wider society has a right to expect the Church to be a safe place: safe physically, safe spiritually, and safe emotionally.”  

For more on Safe Church, visit http://www.nhepiscopal.org/safe-church/ 

Safe Church training is a key component of St. James’ goals of a safe place to learn and to worship. Click Here For More on Safe Church Training

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