{United Methodist Church of NJ Conference}

© 2015 Shari DeAngelo

God calls us to make our churches safe places, protecting children and other vulnerable persons from abuse. The United Methodists of Greater New Jersey resolved that every church have a Safe Sanctuaries policy and be compliant with its regulations.

Steps to become a Safe Sanctuaries compliant church

  1. Purchase Safe Sanctuaries: Reducing the Risk of Abuse in the Church for Children and Adults by Joy Melton 2008. (available through Cokesbury)
  2. Create a Safe Sanctuaries Policy for the local church, have the policy certified by the Conference Safe Sanctuaries Coordinator, Ryan Clements, by email and submit certification to annual local church/charge conference meeting.
  3. Set up a MinistrySafe account for your church and appoint a MinistrySafe Administrator (see below for details).
  4. Have all adults (laity and clergy, paid and volunteer) working with children, youth and vulnerable adults participate in a Safe Sanctuaries training and complete a background check through MinistrySafe.
  5. Implement policy, review and celebrate annually.

Getting Set Up in MinistrySafe

If your church has not gotten set up with a MinistrySafe account and does not yet have a MinistrySafe administrator, please have your church contact Ryan Clements at rclements@gnjumc.org.

MinistrySafe requires a local church administrator to manage your church’s MinistrySafe account. This is usually the church administrator, children/youth ministry leader, SPRC chair, or pastor. This person will have access to all staff and volunteer background records.

The person who will be the MinistrySafe administrator should be the one to contact Ryan Clements at rclements@gnjumc.org for the initial set-up.

Clergy background check

Background checks must be performed every five years in order to be in compliance with Greater New Jersey policy.

Please return to:
Joanne Sullivan
205 Jumping Brook Rd, Neptune, NJ 07753

Please include: $36.50
Note: Applications cannot be processed without payment

Download the clergy background check application here:

Background check for laity

• Please contact your church’s MinistrySafe Administrator to send you an online background check link for your church.

Online Training

As part of your church’s Safe Sanctuary policy, please complete the online Sexual Abuse Awareness Training through MinistrySafe. To access the training, please contact your church’s MinistrySafe administrator to send you a link for the training videos.

Please note that MinistrySafe’s Sexual Abuse Awareness Training is not meant as a replacement for your church’s regular training/orientation on its Safe Sanctuary policy and procedures.

Steps to writing a local church Safe Sanctuaries policy

  1. Develop a Safe Sanctuaries Task force or team in the local church.
  2. Review Sample Safe Sanctuaries Policy
  3. Create a policy that fits the needs and the ministries at the local church level. This policy should include what is in the sample policy.
  4. Have policy approved by Local church Trustees and/or Administrative Council.
  5. Submit policy to Greater NJ Conference Safe Sanctuaries Coordinator, Ryan Clements, to obtain a policy certificate of compliance.
  6. Submit certificate to annual church/charge conference.

Resources and Downloads

Additional Information

  • If you previously used Trak-1 for a staff or volunteer background report, you may contact Trak-1 Technologies at 800-600-8999 or email Ryan Clements for guidance.
  • For more information about Safe Sanctuaries visit the General Board of Discipleship website at www.gbod.org
  • To order Safe Sanctuaries materials visit www.Cokesbury.com.

For more information, contact: