National Day of Sorrow and Promise

The National Day of Sorrow and Promise will be held on 20 October 2019, the closest Sunday to the anniversary of the National Apology to Victims and Survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse, as the day is symbolic of the profound impact that institutional sexual abuse has had on thousands of lives over many decades in Australia.


The National Day of Sorrow and Promise emerged to acknowledge survivors of abuse within the Catholic Church and all those who have been hurt by that abuse. Underpinning this, was a clear promise for a better, safer future.

Liturgy Booklet

The starting point for the theme for this year’s liturgy was the pain of abuse for so many in different ways. There was a recognition that Jesus is with us in our individual and collective pain and that Jesus suffered for our sins. The wound of Christ from which water and blood emerges became a theme – life flowing from the wound.

Water is also used as a cleansing life-source as we move forward through the liturgy with hope-filled hearts in a present and future Church that protects all. The symbols of water and blood have been used throughout the booklet.

We hope and pray that life and healing may flow from the wounds suffered through this abuse crisis in our Church.

Feel free to download the Liturgy booklet for the National Day of Sorrow & Promise below, it has been designed to be printed as an A5-booklet.

We invite you to read the Promise Statement.