Cherish All ChildrenPreventing Child Sexual Exploitation
Cherish All Children Introduction
CHERISH ALL CHILDREN IS A NATIONAL LUTHERAN MINISTRY OF PRAYER, EDUCATION, RELATIONSHIP-BUILDING, AND ACTION TO PREVENT CHILD SEXUAL EXPLOITATION.
Confirmed members of the congregation pray daily for all children and young people, ages birth to 25.
Leaders provide at least two educational sessions yearly for junior/senior high youth and parents on the topic of sexual exploitation prevention and Internet safety. Pastors preach two sermons each year which incorporate preventing child sexual exploitation.
Members develop relationships with other groups in the community that are also working to prevent child sexual exploitation.
Out of the prayer, education, and relationships, a congregation discerns action appropriate for the children of their community.
As a result, congregation members will be:
• more aware of young people and their needs;
• more intentional about supporting young people;
• better prepared to detect and prevent sexual exploitation;
• better equipped to dismantle the system of sexual exploitation.
Cherish All Children provides publications and training to support synod and congregational leaders:
a weekly devotion/prayer based upon the Lectionary
stories to inspire leaders
E-Quipped for Prevention
ideas for ministry
ideas and support to get started
leaders who walk with you
leaders who gather to learn and grow
national leadership for prayer and education
leaders who gather to speak prevention
A MESSAGE ON COMMERCIAL SEXUAL EXPLOITATION
(ADOPTED BY THE ELCA CHURCH COUNCIL IN 2001)
“Love born of faith in Jesus Christ calls us all to attend to, discuss, resist, and reject the system of sexual exploitation.” (p. 1)
HUMAN SEXUALITY: GIFT AND TRUST
(ADOPTED BY THE ELCA CHURCHWIDE ASSEMBLY IN 2009)
“We are called to be trustworthy in our human sexuality and to build social institutions and practices where trust and trustworthy relationships can thrive.” (p. 2)
“The ELCA recognizes that congregations and other ministry sites must continue in their efforts to be safe places for children and youth.” (p. 14)
“This church…will oppose all forms of sexual exploitation within and outside this church.” (p. 17)
“The sexual body is never to be used as an object for commercial purposes, and this church will speak against the public idolatry of pleasure, freedom, and wealth that undergirds such practices.” (pp. 17-18)
“This church will respond in situations where business and corporate enterprises seek profit through disrespectful treatment of the human body.” (p. 18)
CONFERENCE OF BISHOPS
“Because of commercial sexual exploitation, I have seen pastors lose their calls. I have seen confirmands be lured into prostitution. I know there are young men in our colleges and seminaries who have addictive and destructive behavior that can destroy their lives and healthy relationships. There is Internet and child pornography. Our task force in Minneapolis is dedicated to keeping children safe, to educating adults, and to begin the hard work of giving the voice of the gospel to this dark side of our world.” – Bishop Craig Johnson, Minneapolis Area Synod
Cherish All Children was started by a Bishop’s Task Force in the Minneapolis Area Synod and has spread to nine other synods. Each synod forms a Task Force to generate awareness of sexual exploitation, engage and support congregations in this ministry, and celebrate ministry accomplishments. Congregations are the heart of Cherish All Children, where leaders act on behalf of children within and beyond the congregation.
I give great thanks for ALL who support the ministry of Cherish All Children as well as those who write the Wednesday Prayers. I can’t think of a ministry any more essential than this one. -Liz Macris, BS, RN, Faith Community Nurse
For more information: Amy L. Hartman, Diaconal Minister
Address: Cherish All Children
PO Box 583772
Minneapolis, MN 55458-3772
You are invited to make a financial gift to Cherish All Children to expand this ministry to protect and cherish more children.
Cherish All Children Additional Resources
Additional resources can be found in the Cherish All Children ELCA Congregational Manual; this can be obtained by contacting Amy Hartman:
Cherish All Children National Office
Amy Hartman, Diaconal Minister & National Director
PO Box 583772
Minneapolis, MN 55458-3772