Thinking Anglicans

Bishop Peter Ball: An Abuse of Faith

Updated again Monday afternoon

An Abuse of Faith, the independent report by Dame Moira Gibb into the Church’s handling of the Bishop Peter Ball case, has been published today.

The full text of the press release is copied below the fold. This includes a statement by Archbishop Justin Welby.

The full text of the statement read at the press conference by Bishop Peter Hancock is available here.

Updates

The official press release has been updated to include video links:

Media coverage has been extensive, here is a small selection:

Church Times Lord Carey steps back from ministry after ‘harrowing’ report on Peter Ball case

Telegraph Lord Carey criticised by damning report which finds Church ‘colluded’ with disgraced bishop Peter Ball to cover up sex offences

Guardian Justin Welby asks George Carey to quit over church abuse report

Oxford Mail Ex-Archbishop asked to leave Diocese of Oxford over sex abuse ‘collusion’

Christian Today Church of England colluded in abuse by former bishop, says damning report and Archbishop Welby asks Lord Carey to consider his position as assistant bishop over Ball abuse case

Gloucestershire Live Church of England bosses helped to cover up former Bishop of Gloucester’s sexual offences

ITV News Bishop of Gloucester ‘shocked and distressed’ by church abuse review

BBC Church ‘colluded’ with sex abuse bishop Peter Ball

Update Monday afternoon

The Bishop of Oxford has issued this statement:

LORD CAREY: STATEMENT FROM THE RT. REV DR STEVEN CROFT, BISHOP OF OXFORD

“I have met with Lord Carey following the Archbishop’s letter to him. In light of Dame Moira Gibb’s review into the Peter Ball case, Lord Carey has resigned from his role as honorary Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Oxford. Lord Carey has accepted the criticisms made of him in the Gibb review and has apologised to the victims of Peter Ball.

He said in his statement on Thursday: “I accept the criticisms made of me. I apologise to the victims of Peter Ball. I believed Peter Ball’s protestations and gave too little credence to the vulnerable young men and boys behind those allegations. I regret that after Peter Ball was cautioned I did not place his name on the Lambeth list.”

Along with many others, I have been deeply distressed to read Dame Moira Gibb’s report with its narrative of the abuse perpetrated by Peter Ball which remained hidden for so long. I hope that the focus of attention will continue to be on the survivors of abuse and offering to them the care and support they need.

As the Diocese of Oxford we are committed to improving continually the quality of safeguarding and care and will seek to learn the lessons of Dame Moira Gibb’s review and put its recommendations into practice”.

press release
Independent report into the Church’s handling of Peter Ball case
22 June 2017
An Abuse of Faith, the independent report by Dame Moira Gibb into the Church’s handling of the Bishop Peter Ball case, has been published today. Peter Ball was convicted in 2015 of misconduct in public office and indecent assaults against teenagers and young men. The report was commissioned by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, following the conviction.

In her foreword Dame Moira states:

“This report considers the serious sexual wrongdoing of Peter Ball, a bishop of the Church of England who abused many boys and men over a period of twenty years or more. That is shocking in itself but is compounded by the failure of the Church to respond appropriately to his misconduct, again over a period of many years. Ball’s priority was to protect and promote himself and he maligned the abused. The Church colluded with that rather than seeking to help those he had harmed, or assuring itself of the safety of others.

We were asked to consider changes necessary to ensure that safeguarding in the Church is of the highest possible standard. The Church has made significant progress in recent years in its understanding of abuse. We have no doubt that the Church has a genuine commitment to meeting its responsibilities towards the victims of abuse. However we can see how difficult it is to make change across the complex structures of the Church. Progress has been slow and continuing, faster improvement is still required. It is the leadership of the Archbishops and Bishops which will determine whether change is effective.”

The report has 11 recommendations for the Church focusing on a range of issues including focusing on getting the right support in place for survivors, the leadership of bishops, strengthening guidance, reviewing the Archbishops’ Lists and the effectiveness of our disciplinary measures with regards to safeguarding related cases.

Receiving the report on behalf of the Church, Bishop Peter Hancock, the CofE’s lead safeguarding bishop, said: “I am truly sorry that as a Church we failed the survivors of Peter Ball; having read the report I am appalled and disturbed by its contents; as Dame Moira says in her foreword Peter Ball abused boys and men over a 20 year period and as a Church we colluded, we failed to act and protect those who came forward for help. There are no excuses. We accept all the recommendations and are working to action them.

“For the survivors, it may feel this is all too late. I am personally aware from my meetings with individual survivors in the course of my work that they live with the effects of this abuse for their whole life. I once again offer them my wholehearted apology. This Report affirms the direction and steps that we have taken to improve the consistency, robustness and rigour of our practice, but progress has been too slow. It has taken longer than it should have done, but we are absolutely committed to implementing Dame Moira’s recommendations and my role as lead bishop is to ensure this happens.”

Statement from Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby

“Abuse of Faith makes harrowing reading: the Church colluded and concealed rather than seeking to help those who were brave enough to come forward. This is inexcusable and shocking behaviour and although Dame Moira notes that most of the events took place many years ago, and does not think that the Church now would conduct itself in the ways described we can never be complacent, we must learn lessons. I fully endorse the recommendations in the report and will ensure that the House of Bishops addresses how we can implement these as soon as possible, working with the National Safeguarding Team. For the survivors who were brave enough to share their story and bring Peter Ball to justice, I once again offer an unreserved apology. There are no excuses whatsoever for what took place and the systemic abuse of trust perpetrated by Peter Ball over decades.”

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Interested Observer
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Interested Observer

“We believe that the Church’s attitude to homosexuality at the time played a part in the failure to act appropriately. Ball’s abusive behaviour was trivialised and its consequences were set aside. The age of many of the victims was also significant – most were not children and the safeguarding of vulnerable adults nationally was in its infancy. There was little understanding that men might be vulnerable precisely because they were seeking spiritual fulfilment.” Memo to parents: the Church of England was not a safe place for your children twenty years ago,. Memo to parents: it’s up to you if you… Read more »

NJ
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NJ

I’m not sure that’s fair Interested Observer. As we are increasingly discovering, 20 years ago the BBC, Parliament, hospitals, schools, churches (yes, including the CofE) and the list could go on, were none of them safe places for children. The safeguarding culture in all of them has changed immeasurably since then. And yet, I still fully expect that instances of abuse from the present day will emerge again in the future in all of these places. Abusers are clever, convincing, manipulative people. They specialise in getting round the most stringent safeguards. Also, procedures are only as strong as the people… Read more »

Parent Visitor
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Parent Visitor

It is so often said that abusers are clever, convincing and manipulative people. And it is true – but only for some! Peter Ball included. But all too often they are regular, ordinary folk and WE are blind to their progression towards and acts of abuse. In homes (where we know most abuse takes place), in schools, churches, sport, and other youth serving organisations, we are just not looking or noticing. The church (and wider faith communities) need to improve on so many fronts, including in how they respond when allegations are made or concerns are raised. But in all… Read more »

Betty Fisher Mrs
Guest
Betty Fisher Mrs

Vulnerable young men also implies those with learning disabilities. In 1994 my son – then aged 24 (now 48) – a committed member of his local church, was befriended ny a ‘flower-arranger’ at the church. He also suffers from cerebral palsy; autism; and language difficulties. The so called ‘friend’ took our son to his flat, and over the course of two days raped him, failed to feed him, made him watch pornographic videos. All oof which has left him with permanent scars, beyond belief. The suspicion is that the vicar knew what was happening, but when we reported this to… Read more »

Richard Ashby
Guest
Richard Ashby

What an appalling catalogue of crime, cover up, ineptitude, temporising, failure and deception is recorded in this report. Yet is not the first and it is to be feared that it wont be the last. In particular the culpability of the Diocese of Chichester is yet again laid bare. For me two important aspects stand out: homosexuality and episcopal authority. On the first the report says:- ‘We would simply emphasise that the Church must promote an open and accepting culture in which everyone, regardless of their sexuality or their views about homosexuality, is clear about their responsibilities towards those who… Read more »

Laurie Roberts
Guest
Laurie Roberts

Welby has written to Carey urging him to consider his position vis-a-vis his position as honorary assistant bishop in the Oxford diocese.

Laurie Roberts
Guest
Laurie Roberts

I encourage all interested in this subject and how victims are currently treated by today’s Church of England hierarchy to listen to this interview of Eddie Mair with a serving priest, abused in childhood.

It is towards the end of the hour.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08tvjk7

Stanley Monkhouse (Fr William)
Guest

I’ve long been sad that so many good Catholic priests, especially in Ireland, should have been so vilified as a result of the crimes of relatively few of them, so in a strange way I’m glad that this report begins to lift the lid on the reprehensible behaviour of the Church of England. Shameful. A priest-victim of Ball on Radio 4 this afternoon excoriates Welby for continuing to ignore victims.

Laurie Roberts
Guest
Laurie Roberts

The Reverend Graham Sawyer, a survivor of Ball’s abuse, was interviewed today on radio 4 by Eddie Mair (see my post above earlier).

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jun/22/church-of-england-colluded-with-bishop-peter-ball-who-abused-boys-says-justin-welby

The Reverend Graham Sawyer, a survivor of Ball’s abuse, said he and others were treated with contempt by the C of E. “The church continues to use highly aggressive legal firms to bully, frighten and discredit victims … In my own case, I continue to endure cruel and sadistic treatment by the very highest levels of the church,” he said.

He called for a police investigation into Carey’s role in the Ball case.

rjb
Guest
rjb

Pray for Peter Ball, and pray for George Carey too.

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“Pray for Peter Ball, and pray for George Carey too”

And not the victims? How caring of you.

Not that you’re more concerned with the perpetrator than the victims, of course. The CofE: sympathy for abusers, indifference towards victims.

Will Richards
Guest
Will Richards

Given the immensity of what is contained in this report, this may seem like a very trifling point. But will someone – PLEASE – tell Justin Welby that he has no authority to ask George Carey to stand down as an honorary assistant bishop in the Oxford Diocese. I am no fan of Lord Carey, and the evidence in the report leaves me in little doubt that there is justification in his standing down. But only the Bishop of Oxford can do that. Welby is no longer the CEO of an oil company. Neither is he the Pope. He is… Read more »

Michael Ardern Mason
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Michael Ardern Mason

Was it absolutely essential for the video cameraman to so rudely interrupt the serious video statement delivered by the Bishop of Bath & Wells?

cseitz
Guest
cseitz

“He is merely the Archbishop of Canterbury, and his authority extends no further than his own Diocese.”

That was my reaction to +Carey being drawn into this as well. It wasn’t his diocese and he might well have said ‘you deal with Ball.’

jnwall
Guest
jnwall

Regarding Will’s comment about the authority of the Archbishop of Canterbury, my reading is that Welby did not “ask George Carey to stand down as an honorary assistant bishop in the Oxford Diocese.” According to the statement of the Bp of Oxford, Welby asked Carey to “carefully consider his position”. Apparently, Carey is being asked to “consider his position” in conversation with the Bp of Oxford. Given that the Diocese of Oxford is in the Province of Canterbury, for which the ABC is the senior ordained person, one would think that Welby has a certain authority in the Diocese of… Read more »

NJ
Guest
NJ

Will Richards,
He is the Archbishop of the Province in which Oxford Diocese is situated. I know TA readers are nervous of Justin claiming authority he doesn’t actually have over the worldwide Communion and churches in other provinces, but what’s the point of having provinces if the Archbishop has no authority within his own province?

T Pott
Guest
T Pott

Part of the problem, it seems, was undue deference to bishops. Recommendation 1 suggests the bishops reaffirm their own accountability for the safety and protection of everyone “within the Church”. Yet I can’t see any suggestion they should actually be made accountable, at least to anyone but themselves. Recommendation 7 suggests bringing other organisations, hitherto independent of the dioceses in which they sit, under the control of diocesan arrangements. The solution to failings In the episcopacy is: more power to the bishops. Perhaps there are strong reasons why, for centuries, some institutions have resisted episcopal control. Any recommendation to change… Read more »

Latecomer
Guest
Latecomer

Re Welby’s authority … if he had not made any comment, don’t you think the anti-church press would have had a field day pointing out that he was tacitly condoning Carey’s involvement?

David Gibson
Guest
David Gibson

“What’s the point of having provinces if the Archbishop has no authority within his own province?” asks NJ. The Archbishop does have authority (e.g. serving diocesan bishops are accountable to him for their personal ministry). But he does not have the authority to intervene in the internal policy decisions of other dioceses about matters such the licensing of clergy (unless they are under some form of prohibition – which George Carey is not). That is a matter for the diocesan bishop. For Welby to have written to Carey on this matter in the first place, let alone to have made… Read more »

Stanley Monkhouse (Fr William)
Guest

I lived in Ireland (republic) 1988-2003 and 2011-2014. I saw the change in which Irish clergy were treated as a result of clerical abuse scandals and the way in which the institution covered them up. As a clergyman in England for 11 years, I have been verbally abused in the street on several occasions, but not yet spat at, or worse, as some of the Irish clergy have been. As a representative of a deeply corrupt and hypocritical institution, I expect things to get worse, and I understand completely why they might. And look at the fawning that goes on… Read more »

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

My understanding of the private letter from Welby to Carey is that it was leaked, and not by Welby. I am happy to be corrected on this.

Anne
Guest
Anne

Am I the only person to see the similarity between the George Bell group and George Carey? In both cases we see ‘the church’ protecting its own.

jnwall
Guest
jnwall

Given that the report documents Carey’s withholding of evidence, does this open him to legal action, either criminal prosecution or civil suits?

According to English law?

Fr Frank Nichols
Guest
Fr Frank Nichols

How very sad – it would be helpful if as Christians within this Church of England we simply repented for the terrible harm our brothers in the faith have caused these vulnerable young men. I regret that this discussion thread has descended to a debate over the relative powers of archbishops and bishops. We should choose for ourselves the lowest place, be on our knees and confess our own failures, and the way in which these failures impact on our ability to bring people to Christ. Father, forgive us.

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“I saw the change in which Irish clergy were treated as a result of clerical abuse scandals” Irish clergy will, on current trends, essentially cease to exist within a couple of decades, along with the Irish Catholic Church. More than 40% drop in numbers of priests over the last twenty years, average age 65, 2/3rds 55 or over, very few in training, even fewer retained after they train. A vocation that was respected a generation ago is now regarded, outside the faithful (who themselves are, of course, collapsing in a roughly similar way) as at best a bunch of peculiar… Read more »

Andrew Lightbown
Guest

Of course ++Justin is entitled to ask former ++George to consider his position and, of course +Steven Croft, should meet with him to help clarify his position vis a vis acting as an Assistant Bishop in the Oxford Diocese. Surely this in occasion for the provincial and diocesan to act in concert?

Stanley Monkhouse (Fr William)
Guest

To IO. I can only comment on what I saw, most recently 2011-14 when I was Church of Ireland Rector of Portlaoise. This sizeable county town and Dublin dormitory, at the end of a good suburban rail service, has one large Catholic church. Daily mass attendance is 150 to 200, by no means all elderly. I attended from time to time. Three Sunday masses with the church full. The annual Lenten Novena with visiting speakers filled the church. I guess it’s the biggest church in the diocese of Kildare and Leighlin, the cathedral in Carlow being smaller. The social centre… Read more »

Anthony Archer
Guest
Anthony Archer

Great report, but how sad that it was necessary. Completely shocking in all respects. Lots of learning points for the Church. Try this for starters: “But it would be a mistake to think that Ball had a combination of talents, virtues and perversity unlikely to recur with therefore fewer lessons to learn. The Church will of its nature produce charismatic and inspiring leaders who are able to hold significant sway over the behaviour of individuals. One priest who had been abused by Ball and gave evidence to this review stressed that there is still a powerful “cult of personality” among… Read more »

Anthony Archer
Guest
Anthony Archer

Some come out of this well, but that cannot be much solace. This reference, which I take to be regarding the now Bishop of Dorchester, is an example: “Lord Carey was not without advice. His chaplain wrote to him in June 1994, concerned about the “storm of questions and criticisms” they could anticipate if Ball returned to ministry. The chaplain pointed out that they would be asked “Is this the kind of length of punishment that other clergy who have admitted to illegal acts of this nature normally receive? Why has a Bishop who has admitted so grave an offence… Read more »

Jeremy
Guest
Jeremy

Interested Observer,

I do not disagree with your assessment generally–especially as it might apply to the upcoming teaching document.

But at the same time I also hope that the Church of England’s desire to improve its own reputation–say, for safeguarding–will not cause it to sacrifice the reputations of people who themselves are innocent.

Anthony Archer
Guest
Anthony Archer

“But at the same time I also hope that the Church of England’s desire to improve its own reputation–say, for safeguarding–will not cause it to sacrifice the reputations of people who themselves are innocent.”

Honourable and understandable thought Jeremy, but not many innocents have been identified in this report, other than survivors and victims. The culture needs to shift massively, and it will be towards the zero tolerance end of the spectrum.

Jonathan Jamal
Guest
Jonathan Jamal

A question that would come to mind here is that is Peter Ball still a Bishop and Priest or has he been laicised? or he still a Monk or has he been canonically released from his Vows as a Monk by the Instrument of Secularisation?

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

Re Fr. Frank Nichols, “I regret that this discussion thread has descended to a debate over the relative powers of archbishops and bishops.” Exactly. It’s a form of denial and misdirection. How telling that the instituional church, C of E, R.C.,whatever form, is obsessed with policing and prohibiting the attempts of sexual minorities within its ranks who aspire to healthy sexual expression while all the while providing covering fire for sexual predators. It is the shadow side of an institution which no longer has any public credibility. Perhaps it would help if everyone who offers himself/herself for ordination to any… Read more »

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“outside Dublin in what is still an extraordinarily socially conservative setting…Maybe things have changed even in the last 3 years.” In 2015, 46 of the Republic’s 47 Parliamentary constituencies voted “Yes” for same-sex marriage. That doesn’t sound like a Dublin/rural split to me. There was _one_ constituency in which the church managed to convince the population (or at least, 51% of it) to continue to oppress gay people: in the other 46, the church was told to mind its own business. And once emboldened by such judgement, most particularly by the non-arrival of the apocalypse that the “No” campaign promised… Read more »

Susannah Clark
Guest

It is incomprehensible that evidence in a case of possible sexual abuse should be withheld from the police.

cseitz
Guest
cseitz

“debate over the relative powers of archbishops and bishops” — speaking only for myself, when I read through the 81 page report I kept wondering why +Carey allowed himself to get so tangled up in a crisis that should have been tackled more locally. I sometimes wonder if people in power think too highly of their abilities to ‘solve’ problems that need more hard and fast action at the scene itself. The Balls began to sound like some perverse version of the importuning widow. She succeeded where they should have failed.

Froghole
Guest
Froghole

@Jonathan Jamal: Ball is no longer listed in Crockford (as far as I can see). His Who’s Who entry still has him styled as “Rt Rev.”, and states that he is a governor of Lancing (which is no longer the case; there are now – unprecedentedly – no clergy on its governing body), so it may be out of date. I assumed that he has not been unfrocked or has resigned his orders. Others might have better information. @jnwall: I am not a criminal lawyer, but I would query whether it might be argued that Lord Carey committed the common… Read more »

Stanley Monkhouse (Fr William)
Guest

IO, your analysis sounds unassailable. Young voters flocked back for the referendum. Their grand/parents will be dead before long. The churches will empty, even if they are not now. To bring this back on thread, I was profoundly depressed yesterday to think that I had given up one career for an institution that has been demonstrated to be deeply corrupt and hypocritical. I thought universities were bad enough. The church can no longer be trusted to police itself. Sarah Mullally on R4 yesterday was dreadful: evasive, shifty and mealymouthed. No hope there.

Fr Frank Nichols
Guest
Fr Frank Nichols

Thanks Rod Gillis for your thoughtful response to my post. Perhaps it would help if I said that my thoughts in asking the Father to forgive were simply from the Cross of Our Lord. I know that you will agree that there is nothing patriarchal in following the example of Jesus in his plea to the Father to forgive us the harm we do others.

Mark Bennet
Guest
Mark Bennet

“It is incomprehensible that evidence in a case of possible sexual abuse should be withheld from the police” – It is incomprehensible NOW. There is evidence in the report (including the decision to caution rather than prosecute when evidence was brought) that even only a few years ago the effect of bringing such evidence to the police might be quite limited. There is also some evidence I have seen (outside the report) that the culture of the church much more widely than individuals who get criticised in reports like this was for internal resolution of issues rather than referral to… Read more »

Edward Prebble
Guest
Edward Prebble

This is a very fine report, in the sense of the quality of the reporting, and a terrible report in the sense of its contents. Dame Moira deserves the deep thanks of the Church for the clarity of her analysis. Yes, the church may still try to practice denial (eg by fixating on the side issue of competing jurisdictions) but Dame Moira has made that much more difficult. One particularly commendable aspect of her report is her emphasis on the behaviour and culpability of those still living. Froghole is quite correct in suggesting that Kemp’s behaviour was reprehensible, but Dame… Read more »

Peter Owen
Guest

Ball has been prohibited for life, as stated in the report:

3.12.2 On 11th January 2016 Peter Ball was sent, from Lambeth Palace, the following notification of a penalty under the Clergy Disciplinary Measure 2003: “After consultation with the Bishops of Winchester and London, the Archbishop of Canterbury has imposed upon you a penalty of prohibition for life with effect from 23rd December 2015”. This is the most serious penalty that can be imposed under the CDM and permanently bars Ball from performing any of the functions of his Holy Orders.

Will Richards
Guest
Will Richards

“I really couldn’t care less whether Welby or Croft tells Carey to stand aside; it is symptomatic of the problems with the Church that anyone thinks this is an issue….” @Froghole. I think it’s an issues (which is why I raised it in the first place). And this is why. The sustained abuse perpetrated by Peter Ball was undeniably rooted in the inappropriate exercise of authority and in Peter Ball exceeding his authority. You may come back to me with wails of protest saying that ecclesiological subtleties are not on the same scale. Really? Justin Welby has appointed himself the… Read more »

Froghole
Guest
Froghole

@Will Richards. I take your point, and thank you for expressing it as usefully as you have. I apologise for my intemperate remarks. Absent the right to conduct visitations (as per Chichester) I have never been quite sure what it means to be primate, and what metropolitical authority entails, and have struggled, as yet, to find much of use. However, I note Canon C14(1): “Every person whose election to any bishopric is to be confirmed, or who is to be consecrated bishop or translated to any bishopric or suffragan bishopric, or who is to be licensed as an assistant bishop,… Read more »

David Rowett
Guest
David Rowett

++Justin’s background in the Big Bad World at least makes him a little media-savvy – or perhaps (in a more refined tone) ‘aware of the importance of perceptions of justice’. Lord C – who, I note, has just resigned – is a former ABC, and wouldn’t it seem scandalous to the wider community if the present incumbent of the post appeared passive or buck-passing. ‘You can have as high an ecclesiology as you like, as long as your theology of the Kingdom is higher’. There’s a lot in the report about abuse of power and so on, but I wonder… Read more »

Jeremy
Guest
Jeremy

I have very little sympathy for George Carey. It seems to me that in several ways he was blinded by his prejudices. That said, I also have little sympathy for the present Archbishop’s efforts to corporatise the Church of England. I doubt the archbishops have any authority to sack bishops. After all, if Canterbury had the ability to sack bishops throughout the province, then why would an oath of obedience be necessary? The greater would include the lesser. As for the so-called Community of St. Anselm: As Will Richards shows, it is not a monastic community. It rather resembles a… Read more »

Gordon
Guest
Gordon

Why is Carey still in the Lords? He should resign his seat there. How can a man who appears to have colluded in a cover-up of abuse be a fit and proper person to be a legislator?

T Pott
Guest
T Pott

Interested Observer asks whether the C of E has been in the media recently for anything other than (sex). There were several reports on Maundy Thursday of Archbishop Carey speaking out about the UK government discriminating against Christian refugees from Syria, and doing less than it could to protect Christians across the Middle East from persecution and extinction.

It will be a pity if his voice on that matter is silenced.

american piskie
Guest
american piskie

I am afraid the Bishop of Oxford’s statement (or that of his legal advisers) sticks in my throat. In particular the phrase “the abuse … which remained hidden for so long..”; was there really no agency, somehow it just “remained hidden” did it? And then at once to hurry us on, hoping that “the focus of attention will continue to be on the survivors”; even ellipses have two foci, and I think most of us are capable of focussing not just on the survivors but also on how to minimise the chances of anything similar happening in the future, even… Read more »

Anthony Archer
Guest
Anthony Archer

If I may be permitted a further supplementary: the shocking Ball case raises myriad issues. One area of concern is how it was that he was even raised to the episcopate in the first place. That was primarily the responsibility of the late Bishop Kemp. Having become Bishop of Lewes we now know (and the records would have shown at the time) that he showed absurd leniency to abusive priests in his area (Abuse of Faith para 5.5.4). That raises the more fundamental question (which I have posed on TA before) of how it was that he was translated to… Read more »