Q. What is unique about how we in London Spring and DDF have been working in the past year or two with Ealing Abbey on Child Sexual Abuse?
A1. Unique features are first, that we have adopted Processwork as our method.
A2. Second that as a priest-monk in the catholic church, one member has received support from new friends who see themselves as not closely or at all connected with church. These new friends include former catholics, jews, muslims and sikhs and those who have no religion and no sympathy with the catholic church.
We in DDF have worked together is a remarkable way, valuing diversity and learning to move together as a project.
Q2: How have we worked together?
A1. We organised a year-long series of storytelling events, for which a survivor wrote and delivered autobiographical stories to an invited and sympathetic circle.
We organised a national conference with Fr Hans Zollner SJ from the Centre for Child Protection, Rome as principal speaker. The conference involved a speaker, therapists and survivors. Survivors were welcome to speak in open forum and therapists were available for private consultation.
Fr. Zollner said that our method was “a new method we are going to use” and that we changed the way he worked in the Catholic Church. Pope Francis, with the help of Fr Zollner, organised a conference for bishops in February 2019 where bishops listened to the stories of survivors.
A2. We organised a colloquium on “Theology of Safeguarding” in February 2019. Papers were written and submitted in advance, responses were offered and there was deep listening.
A3. We plan a future conference in October 2019.