Eastern African Bishops strengthen commitment to child safeguarding Eastern African Bishops strengthen commitment to child safeguarding 

Eastern African Bishops reiterate commitment to child safeguarding

The Bishops of Eastern Africa wrap up a consultative meeting in Kenya with a renewed commitment to safeguard minors and vulnerable adults.

By Sr. Roselyne Wambani Wafula, fsp

At the end of a four-day consultative meeting held in Nairobi, Kenya, representatives from the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) Bishops Coordinating Safeguarding reaffirmed their firm commitment to protecting children and vulnerable adults.

AMECEA leaders emphasized their role as stewards entrusted with the care of all creation, drawing inspiration from Scripture. They highlighted the importance of children, recognizing them as "a gift from God" and a significant portion of the population in Eastern African countries.

"We echo Pope Francis' sentiment that a society which neglects its elderly and its children has no future," stated Bishop Charles Kasonde of Solwezi, Zambia, and AMECEA Chairperson for Safeguarding. "The Church in the AMECEA region acknowledges the challenges faced by children, including poverty, abuse, and exploitation. We are committed to creating a safe haven for all within the Church."


The gathering, which concluded on July 4, brought together officials from AMECEA and the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors (PCPM) to discuss child safeguarding strategies.

Their plan for the future emphasizes creating a safe environment within the Church for children and vulnerable adults. It includes reviewing and updating safeguarding policies to align with best practices and the PCPM's guidelines. Additionally, the Church will work to bridge knowledge and skill gaps among clergy, staff, and affiliates through training programs.

The AMECEA Bishops acknowledged the lasting impact of abuse on survivors and pledged their support for the Memorare Initiative, which offers counseling, spiritual guidance, and rescue services.

Meeting on the protection of minors
Meeting on the protection of minors

They emphasized listening to survivors, validating their experiences, and ensuring access to justice and healing.

The Bishops’ commitment extends to transparency and accountability. The Church will operate within the legal framework and actively engage communities through workshops and campaigns to raise awareness and promote a culture of vigilance and care.

The closing statement from Bishop Kasonde urged all community members to join in safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.

The AMECEA region encompasses conferences in Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.


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05 July 2024, 15:43