Issue #3
March 29, 2019
Keep Our Children SAFE!
Get Ready To Talk About It!

A lot of the content that is published in our child protection program is about child sexual abuse. In a recent Child Protection Facilitator training class that I attended, the question was asked "why do the Virtus bulletins focus on child sexual abuse and they don't mention anything about the other forms of abuse?" I thought that was a great question. The trainer told the group that child sexual abuse is the most difficult form of child abuse to discuss and many parents today don't have open dialog with their children about sex and intimacy. Psychologists today recommend that parents have age-appropriate discussions with their children about physical development and intercourse. They encourage parents to use anatomically-correct terms for body parts starting at a very young age. If the child is curious about something and they ask a question about their body or if they ask questions about adult intimacy, professionals recommend that parents answer the question directly. It is best for a child to learn about their development and about sexual intimacy from conversations with their parents than it is to learn about it from their friends or worse, the Internet!

Approved Volunteers

When organizing an official St. Charles activity involving children, please check the list below to make sure that your adult volunteers are approved to serve with children. For legal reasons, St. Charles Parish cannot publish a list of people who are prohibited from volunteering around children due to abuse. If an adult volunteer is not on the approved volunteer list, it could be for a variety of reasons. Most of the time it means that the person got behind on their bulletins and became inactive. Please have your volunteer contact Steve Morris and he can help resolve the issue. If your volunteer has not attended a Virtus ® class, please have them visit Virtus Online to create a Virtus ® account and sign up for a Child Protection training class. Training times and locations can be found under the training tab by clicking on the Live Training link.

The April Virtus bulletin will be published on April 8, 2019
What is Abuse?
Experts categorize child abuse into 5 distinct categories. The definitions below were taken from the CARE House ® web site, a non-profit organization located on Valley Street in Dayton who are child-victim advocates in abuse cases throughout the Miami Valley.

Neglect  is the failure of a parent, guardian, or other caregiver to provide for a child’s basic needs. Neglect may be:
  • Physical (e.g., failure to provide necessary food or shelter, or lack of appropriate supervision)
  • Medical (e.g., failure to provide necessary medical or mental health treatment)
  • Educational (e.g., failure to educate a child or attend to special education needs)
  • Emotional (e.g., inattention to a child’s emotional needs, failure to provide psychological care, or permitting the child to use alcohol or other drugs)

Physical abuse  is non-accidental physical injury (ranging from minor bruises to severe fractures or death) as a result of punching, beating, kicking, biting, shaking, throwing, stabbing, choking, hitting (with a hand, stick, strap, or other object), burning, or otherwise harming a child, that is inflicted by a parent, caregiver, or other person who has responsibility for the child. Such injury is considered abuse regardless of whether the caregiver intended to hurt the child. Physical discipline, such as spanking or paddling, is not considered abuse as long as it is reasonable and causes no bodily injury to the child.

Sexual abuse   includes activities by a parent or caregiver such as fondling a child’s genitals, penetration, incest, rape, sodomy, indecent exposure, and exploitation through prostitution or the production of pornographic materials.

Emotional abuse (or psychological abuse)  is a pattern of behavior that impairs a child’s emotional development or sense of self-worth. This may include constant criticism, threats, or rejection, as well as withholding love, support, or guidance. Emotional abuse is often difficult to prove, an therefore, child protective services may not be able to intervene without evidence of harm or mental injury to the child. Emotional abuse is almost always present when other types of maltreatment are identified.

Abandonment  is now defined in many states as a form of neglect. In general, a child is considered to be abandoned when the parent’s identity or whereabouts are unknown, the child has been left alone in circumstances where the child suffers serious harm, or the parent has failed to maintain contact with the child or provide reasonable support for a specified period of time. Some states have enacted laws—often called safe haven laws—that provide safe places for parents to relinquish newborn infants.

If you witness or even suspect child abuse in any form, call 911 immediately!

Then, if the abuse took place on parish property, please contact Steve Morris at (937) 401-0521. Every report will be investigated by the Police, Child Protective Services, and/or St. Charles Parish and the Archdiocese of Cincinnati! Remember, you are a key part of our Child Protection team!
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Thank you for your efforts toward protecting our children.

Stephen B. Morris
Business Manager
937-401-0521 (direct)
St. Charles Borromeo Parish |