Most every Sunday morning you hear me stand in front of the congregation and tell you that “this is a safe and sacred place…” We wanted to inform and reassure you that we have put into place safe church policies that are guided by the policies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and reflect current practices nationwide for activities involving minors. Here are the steps that we have taken to seek to insure the safety of our children and youth.
· All children are supervised by at least two adults at all times - in Sunday school, children’s and youth activities, choir rehearsals, youth group meetings, confirmation classes, and youth overnight retreats, mission trips, and pilgrimages.
· Infants and toddlers are cared for on Sunday mornings during worship by two or more professional adult babysitters who have undergone thorough background checks.
· Youth participating in overnight retreats or events are supervised by at least one adult of each gender.
· All adult chaperones of overnight trips will undergo a standard background check.
· It is our practice to maintain a smaller youth-to-chaperone ratio than is required by the hosting organization during our pilgrimages and mission trips.
· Ordained pastors, elders, deacons, and Stephen Ministers are considered mandated reporters by the Presbyterian Church (USA), as well as the state, and are charged with reporting any concerns immediately.
These measures contribute to the safe and sacred place that is First Presbyterian Church. We appreciate your understanding and support of our safe church policies. Together we will provide for the well-being of our children and youth, truly make this a sanctuary where all God’s children will not only be safe but will flourish.
Grace & Peace,
Paul & Kibbie