Lent is a season of penance, growth, and renewal. It leads to the celebration of Easter: The resurrection of Jesus Christ, true God and true Man. As individuals, and as a community, we need such seasons in our lives.
All of us are starkly aware of the need for penance and renewal in the Church. Pope Francis spoke unambiguously of this in his final address to the bishops assembled in Rome to reflect with survivors of the crime and sin that is the abuse of minors in the Church. You can view the proceedings and addresses at www.pbc2019.org. Cardinal Vincent Nichols shares his own reflections in a message that you can watch on https://rcdow.org.uk/cardinal/
The Church in England & Wales is committed to the safeguarding of minors and persons at risk. We have structures in place to deal with allegations past and present. Each parish and diocese have named persons who are responsible for overseeing and implementing this commitment.
We need to listen to the accounts of those who are survivors. We pray for their healing, justice, and renewal.
We pray for ourselves, that we may be more aware, more vigilant, and better informed of the consequences of this crime, which, though it exits in every society, in every culture and people, strikes at the heart of our Christian message.
May our Lent be fruitful, in word, deed, and prayer. May the Church of Christ be a safe home for all God’s Children.