If you were to start a church from scratch, what would you do to develop a safe church and safe ministry culture?
Would you put up signs around your church? Would you have someone do a talk during one of your services? Would you have your members attend a class?
There are many things your church can do to make walking through your doors a safe option for all people, because a safe church is one which has a safe culture. And this is accomplished by doing more than just training your kids leaders.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Abuse identified that a major risk factor for churches was their culture. They found that churches needed to create a culture where everyone was aware of the risks of harm and where everyone felt comfortable reporting concerns if they had them.
Whilst training your kids leaders is a great way to show people how to look out for and report unsafe practices and incidents, it is only one part of the puzzle for the good practise of safe ministry.
Developing a safe church culture means doing lots of things to make sure all people in your church are aware that you take their safety, and the safety of others seriously. It means helping all your members to be aware of each other’s safety. It means screening all volunteers to make sure they’re appropriate to be responsible for the people they’re leading. It means having your safe ministry policy in an accessible location, like your website. And not just doing this once and hoping nothing changes, but checking and updating all of these things regularly.
A question you might ask
Safe Ministry Check is a tool that is designed to help you take those extra steps towards developing a safe church culture. By checking and training your members and leaders, it’s a step closer to the overall safety of your church. Not only will it help you to safeguard your members, but it will also show your community how seriously you take the safety of children and vulnerable people which is key in developing a safe church and safe ministry culture.
So what will you do to develop a safe church and safe ministry culture?