The Catholic Church in Australia marks Safeguarding Sunday (formerly Child Protection Sunday) on the second Sunday of September each year at the conclusion of National Child Protection Week. In 2023, Safeguarding Sunday falls on September 10.
Safeguarding Sunday seeks to acknowledge the immense damage caused by the sexual abuse of children and vulnerable adults within Catholic contexts.
It makes a commitment to practices and protocols that create and maintain safe environments for all people. It invites people to pray for those harmed by abuse, both directly and indirectly.
Prayer for Safeguarding Sunday
you love and care for all of your children,
especially the smallest and most vulnerable.
We entrust to you the lives of children and adults at risk
who have been abused, neglected or exploited
and whose trust and innocence have been destroyed.
Help us to hear their cries of pain
and to take responsibility for those whose lives have been broken.
Help us to recognise the hurt felt by those wounded by abuse,
and the failure to be heard.
We pray that with the help of your grace
communities and families will find understanding and support,
so that now and in the future their wounds may be healed
and they may find lasting peace.
Let your grace and love fall gently now upon our children and adults at risk,
giving them the inner strength, peace and resilience
to seek out assistance when required.
We ask this prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you
in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever and ever. Amen