Safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults

The Prelature of Opus Dei in Britain is committed to promoting the safety and welfare of children and vulnerable adults in accordance with the current standards set out for the Catholic Church in England and Wales and in Scotland by the respective Bishops’ Conferences.

Safeguarding Policy

The Prelature of Opus Dei in Britain is committed to promoting the safety and welfare of children and vulnerable adults in line with the policy and standards of the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission for England and Wales, and in Scotland by the instruction In God’s Image v2 issued by the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland, with the necessary adaptations required by the nature of the Prelature.

Following the publication of Pope Francis’ Motu Proprio Vos estis lux mundi (2019), Opus Dei’s Prelate, Mgr. Fernando Ocariz, issued guidelines for the whole Prelature regarding Safeguarding: Prelature Guidelines for Safeguarding Minors and Vulnerable Persons (2020). In this document he applies to the Prelature the guiding principles for the protection of minors and vulnerable persons enunciated by the Holy Father in the norms given for Vatican City on 26 March 2019. It contains general principles, safeguarding standards, a code of behaviour and general guidelines for the handling of complaints about the abuse of minors and vulnerable persons in the apostolic activities of the Prelature. 

In 2015, the Prelature in Great Britain approved its Norms for the Investigation of Complaints against Faithful of the Prelature relating to the Sexual Abuse of Minors. In 2022 following a re-organisation within the Prelature the Region of Great Britain became part of the Region of North-West Europe. Following this re-organisation and implementing the Prelate’s world-wide guidelines, a Regional Safeguarding Policy has been adopted (12 September 2022) for the investigation of allegations of abuse of minors or vulnerable adults in the activities of the Prelature of Opus Dei in North-West Europe.

The Prelature provides Christian formation in activities such as retreats, recollections, talks, courses and personal spiritual guidance, in association with various charities which own and operate the Centres of the Prelature: Netherhall Educational Association, Dawliffe Hall Educational Foundation, Ashley Educational Trust, Greygarth Association and Siddington Trust Limited. These charities operate Halls of Residence for University Students, Conference Centres and youth clubs, providing educational, sporting, and cultural activities, with which the Prelature collaborates in the giving of formation. Each charity has its own Safeguarding Policy and procedures and a Safeguarding Coordinator specifically appointed to deal with any concerns or allegations that might arise in the course of its activities.

The clergy of the Prelature follow the Safeguarding Policy of the Diocese in which they reside, receiving safeguarding training for ministry in that Diocese.

The Prelature has canonical norms for responding to allegations which apply in the first instance to the clergy of the Prelature, but also to the lay faithful of the Prelature if they are providing formation or spiritual guidance in apostolic activities of the Prelature under the authority of the Regional Vicar.

Safeguarding Coordinator for the Prelature of Opus Dei in Britain

Dr Michael Delany
Tel: 07905 997 420