In August 2018, the University of Divinity will host a major ecumenical conversation in Melbourne, on the task of rebuilding and renewal after the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse
At a time when Australia’s churches are still in an early phase of absorbing and responding to the findings and recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, this two-and-a-half-day symposium aims to begin an inclusive, ecumenical and interdisciplinary conversation about the task of cultural change and renewal that lies ahead.
There are significant questions that need to be taken up in light of the Royal Commission’s final report:
- What are the theological implications of the child sexual abuse crisis and indeed the theological learnings to be gained from the Royal Commission?
- How do we support those who have been harmed, confront the damage that has been caused within the ecclesial community, and rebuild trust?
- How do we build ecclesial communities and ministerial practice marked by health and integrity?
- What are the neuralgic issues that need to be faced and addressed, and how can resistance to change be confronted positively and transformed for the good of the ecclesial community?
- What questions require further research?
- In responding to the Royal Commission, what can the various Christian faith traditions learn from each other?
This conference aims to bring together a broad cross-section of voices: church leaders, academics, people in religious and pastoral ministry, representatives of Church agencies, together with those who rarely get a voice, including survivors of abuse and their supporters, members of the laity, women, and church reform groups.