I am committed, and our local church is committed, to being an instrument of healing for those who are hurting.
BISHOP JAMES V. JOHNSTON, JR.
Above: The village of Bethany on the eastern slope of the Mount of Olives outside Jerusalem
BEGINNING OF OUR JOURNEY
In the wake of the clergy sexual abuse crisis, “Healing our Family” was elevated as a key priority identified in our 2019 diocesan pastoral plan, the Mutually Shared Vision. With welcome support from Bishop Johnston, a committee of lay faithful and clergy has established Journey to Bethany, an initiative to address wounds and provide resources for those in our diocese who have been harmed by clergy sexual abuse.
LISTENING TO YOU
As a first step, we solicited feedback from our diocesan community, with more than 1,400 parishioners and clergy across the diocese sharing their perspective via an anonymous survey. The findings from this survey provided critical insight to inform next steps for continuing the healing process.
The majority of survey respondents want to better understand our diocesan leadership’s vision for our community. The findings demonstrate the tremendous amount of hurt, anger and pain that has resulted from the clergy sexual abuse issue, with many impacted in some way. The results show that this community is clearly calling for Church accountability, transparency and commitment to change.
Journey to Bethany will be an important part of our healing and we are deeply committed to following through on the promise we made to help heal our diocesan family.
OUR PATH FORWARD
Now with a clear understanding of our diocesan community’s needs, Journey to Bethany will seek to accompany each survivor and provide resources and programming to support our diocese’s healing and bolster our Church’s path forward.