Safe Sanctuary


The General Conference of The United Methodist Church, in April 1996, adopted a resolution aimed at reducing the risk of child sexual abuse in the church. the adopted resolution includes the following statement:

Jesus said, “Whoever welcomes (a) child… welcomes me.” (Matthew 18:5), Children are our present and our future, our hope, our teachers, our inspiration. They are full participants in the life of the churc and in the realm of God.

God calls us to make our churches safe places, protecting children and other vulnerable persons from sexual and ritual abuse. God calls us to create communities of faith where children and adults grow safe and strong.

Our congregation’s purpose for establishing this Safe Sanctuary Child Abuse Prevention Guideline and accompanying procedures is to demonstrate our absolute and unwavering commitment to the physical safety and spiritual growth of all of our children, youth and vulnerable persons.

The congregation of Ezion-Mount Carmel United Methodist Church is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for all children, youth, volunteets and vulnerable persons who participate in ministries and activities sponsored by the church. This covenant and guidelines statement reflects our congregation’s commitment to preserving this church as a safe and holy place where everyone can experience the love of God in a safe environment.

Key Volunteer Requirements (All volunteers must observe the: “Two-Adult Rule” at all times)

* No one convicted of child/sexual/domestic abuse.

* All volunteers must complete a screening process that includes a national criminal search, a sex offender registries search, and personal data which include
verification of name, birth date, social security number and previous addresses.

* All volunteers must be or have been (active) church members for at least one year.

* Adults in the same room can not be related.

* Adult volunteers shall immediately report any inappropriate behavior.

* Children and youth workers must be five years older than the oldest youth in the classroom.

* All teachers and leaders who interact with children/youth and vulnerable persons must be over 21 years and older.

* All volunteers must attend regular training educational events informing of church policies and state laws regarding child abuse.

* Rooms where children/youth and vulnerable persons activities take place will include windows on the doors, or doors will be left open.

* When escorting a child/vulnerable person to the restroom, the volunteer will stand outside the restroom and only assist the child/vulnerable person if
needed.Whenever the escort is in the restroom with a child, the door shall remain open, and never be closed.

Ezion-Mount Carmel United Methodist Church SAFE Team Members

Rev. Dr. Vernon M. Bryant, Pastor
Minnie Bazzelle, Co-Chair
Carol S. Wright, Co-Chair
Darlene Webb, Lay Leader
Sherese Brewington-Carr, Staff Parish Relations Committee Chair
Robert Jenkins, Trustee Chair
Audrey Boyer, Church Council Member at Large
Pearl Livingston, Parish Nurse and Congregational Health Ministries
Audrey Milton, Superintendent of Sunday School and President of United Methodist Women
Beverly Perry, Coordinator of Vacation Bible School
Sandra Hawkes, Children/ Youth Ministry
Nate Sampson, President of United Methodist Men
Wilma Whittington, Usher Board