Resources for Accountability, Healing & Reconciliation
The obligation of the Church with regard to victims of abuse is for accountability, healing and reconciliation.
Religious communities and institutes for consecrated life, no less than dioceses and archdioceses, parishes, schools, and youth organizations, must ensure that children and youth who worship, study, or participate in activities sponsored by our communities can do so in the safest and most secure setting possible and be proactive to ensure that those who have abused are prevented from causing further harm to others.
CMSM has proactively worked to do all it can to ensure the protection of minors in men's religious communities since 2002.
These pages provide resources for men's communities and members of those communities at all stages of life and ministry.
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month
This is a both national and church effort. It is important to make this awareness part and parcel of the identity of men’s religious communities and institutes for consecrated life. View some key free resources for sharing in April and throughout the year.
Conversations That Matter
CMSM is privileged to distribute the excellent series of learning modules, Conversations That Matter, a resource designed to assist those in leadership of institutes for consecrated life for men, or involved in formational aspects of community life, to address the vital and important issues of sexual abuse of minors by clergy and male religious.
Over the past 15 years, CMSM has worked diligently on its own and with partners at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Praesidium and other organizations, persons and groups committed to ensuring the church is and remains a safe environment for minors. Here is some key documentation which highlights current information, reports, research and activities related to the protection of minors in the Catholic Church.
National Advisory Council
The Office for the Protection of Minors at CMSM is assisted in its task by a talented cadre of experts in the field who comprise the National Advisory Council (NAC). Similar to the National Review Board (NRB) of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB), the NAC is an independent panel of nationally recognized experts who volunteer their time and which advises CMSM on all matters related to the protection of minors for religious institutes of men in and throughout the United States.
CMSM offers a variety of events for our members, fellow religious, and other experts or professionals concerned with or working in areas related to the protection of minors in the church. The information for these events is shared with all participants and an archive is made available here on our website.
CMSM maintains a strong relationship with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) to ensure access to resources that can be both valuable and adaptable to the efforts for protection of minors that is ongoing in men's religious communities and institutes for consecrated life.
History of Programs for the Protection of Minors
Beginning in August of 2002, the Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM) embarked upon a long-term program of education and accountability, which honors and fulfills the standards set forth by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) regarding the protection of minors in the Catholic Church.