The Samaritan Counseling Center’s mission begins and ends with people and our community.

Integrating a Child Sexual Offender into the Congregation: Best Practices in an Evolving Field

Churches are increasingly presented with the challenge of offering the hospitality of God’s table to all who seek fellowship while protecting children and other vulnerable people. When it becomes known that a convicted child sexual offender desires to become part of the congregation, the decisions faced by leadership must be considered on a practical, theological, and legal level. Churches caught up in this difficult situation without preparation may quickly find themselves in an emotional firestorm as members react not only to the desire to protect children, but also re-experience the unresolved traumas of their own childhood.

We offer an introductory two-hour workshop on best practices that includes characteristics of pedophiles; how offenders engage children by “grooming” them; training church members for supervision of the offender; communicating with the congregation; and working with judicial and clinical resources.

Consultation services are also provided.

For more information, contact Linda Crockett, Director of Clergy & Congregation Care, at 717.560.9991 or email Linda

SafeChurch Focus

Building. . .

a faith-based movement to end Child Sexual Abuse

Moving. . .

beyond first generation “safe church policies and training” to shifting culture to inspire and equip adults to protect children from sexual harm in church and community

Connecting. . .

with others sharing a vision where people of faith take leadership to end the conditions that allow one in four girls and one in six boys to be sexually abused

Engaging. . .

survivors as sources of wisdom and leaders

Partnering. . .

with the Just Beginnings Collaborative to End Child Sexual Abuse