PM Kevin Rudd recently personally spoke on the impact of chaplaincy in his own life and the importance to the community
“… Just three months ago on the Sunshine Coast, where I grew up, we saw a remarkable demonstration of the positive impact that school chaplains can have on their community.
A couple in their 50s, Allan and Kari Taylor, were killed in the most tragic circumstances in a road accident on the Sunshine Motorway.
After that tragic accident, more than 3,000 people attended their funeral.
Many of them carried personal stories of the ways that Allan or Kari had helped, supported and inspired them, often through difficult times in their lives – stories that may never be told.
But what we saw in the lives and the tragic deaths of Allan and Kari was a strong testimony to the work of school chaplains – the quiet work that is making a difference in the lives of thousands of families every day.
School chaplains and counsellors are in a unique position to help young people navigate the often choppy waters of adolescence.
Chaplains do great work.
They provide a listening ear for individual students – who are often more comfortable talking to a chaplain or a counsellor than a teacher, because they see them as being independent of the school authorities.
They can arrange expert help with specific challenges, such as dealing with family breakdown, bullying, self-esteem, drugs, grief and behavioural management problems.
And when critical incidents affect a school – such as the bushfires earlier this year in Victoria – they can play a very important active role in helping the community cope with those hard times…”.