safe church ministry overview

Sexual misconduct awareness and expectations of appropriate behavior

In 1991 the General Convention passed a resolution in which it declared that sexual abuse, exploitation, coercion and harassment of adults and minors by clergy and church employees are abuses of trust, a violation of the Baptismal Covenant, contrary to Christian character and are therefore wrong. The Church must be a safe place for all people, a place of respect, trust and caring. 

The Episcopal Diocese of Long Island is committed to upholding these values and maintaining an environment free of abuse of children and youth and of sexual exploitation and harassment of adults in its churches, schools and institutions. It is a commitment the Diocese requires all ministers of the Church, lay and ordained, to make and uphold. 

    Please CLICK HERE to go to the Diocese of Long Island

page on  Safe Church Ministry which contains

the specific policies for clergy. 

The clergy of our diocese, both priests and deacons are especially held to a high standard in upholding this sacred trust having taken on additional sets of promises, including the promise to pattern their life in accordance with the teachings of Christ in order to be “a wholesome example” to their people.

The Diocese of Long Island has policies that establish standards of behavior and “best practices” for all clergy, church employees and adults who work with children and youth and policies that establish standards and “best practices” for clergy, specified lay ministers and church employees. These policies can be reviewed on the Diocese web site, link just above. 

Persons who wish to report violations, suspected abuse, sexual exploitation or harassment may report such to their rector/clergy person in charge of the congregation (church warden in the absence of a clergy person in charge) or head of school (who will report this to the diocesan contacts) or directly to the Rev. Canon Patricia S. Mitchell, by email or phone (516) 248-4800 ext 166.  


Title IV of the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church requires every diocese to implement procedures for investigating and addressing allegations of misconduct on the part of any member of the clergy in the diocese. The diocese has these procedures in place.

Anyone may report information concerning possible misconduct by a clergy person in any of the following ways: a telephone call, e-mail, letter by mail or in person meeting by appointment. Such a report should be submitted to the Rev. Canon Patricia S. Mitchell, by email or phone (516) 248-4800 ext 166. 

Upon receipt of an allegation, the Intake Officer will notify the Bishop Diocesan, make preliminary inquiries as she deems necessary and submit a written report to the Bishop Diocesan and the President of the Disciplinary Board who will then meet together to determine appropriate actions and responses.