Tuesday, 20 March 2018

IICSA hearings - Monday/Tuesday 19/20 March

Updated again Wednesday afternoon

The transcript of the Anglican hearings for Monday 19 March is available here.

Witnesses heard were: two survivors, the Bishop of Manchester (concerning religious coummunities) and Graham Tilby (head of the National Safeguarding Team).

Media reports:

Church Times
Church must create ‘culture of challenge’ Peter Ball survivor tells IICSA

Abuse allegations must be reported, Church of England safeguarding adviser tells IICSA

Christian Today
Abuse inquiry reveals Church’s ‘stupidity, incompetence and lying’, says bishop

Serious abuse by priests could still go unreported, Church’s safeguarding chief admits

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church
Safeguarding – reconciling two perspectives.
The comments below this article, including those from Ian Elliott, author of one of the earlier reports, are worth reading.


The transcript for Tuesday is now published.

Media Reports:

Christian Today
Clergy burnt church files after being accused of covering up abuse, inquiry hears

Church Times
IICSA latest: the dean’s bonfire and the destroyed report at Chichester Cathedral

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Tuesday, 20 March 2018 at 7:18am GMT | TrackBack
You can make a Permalink to this if you like
Categorised as: Church of England

Simon the 2nd article under Christian Today doesn’t seem to be working. [Ed: Link now fixed. Thanks.]
Thanks so much for putting all the IICSA material on here.

Posted by: Anne Lee on Tuesday, 20 March 2018 at 2:07pm GMT

Once again Bishop Alan (the Bishop of Buckingham) shows he is not scared to say difficult things.

Posted by: Kate on Tuesday, 20 March 2018 at 8:10pm GMT

The transcript for Wednesday 14th March, which included the evidence from Rowan Williams and the current Bishop of Chichester was taken down soon after its original appearance and hasn’t reappeared. Similarly this day is missing from the YouTube recordings. What’s going on?

Posted by: Richard Ashby on Tuesday, 20 March 2018 at 11:43pm GMT

I suspect it is due to a need to redact some name or other identifying information that a witness unintentionally misspoke.

Posted by: Simon Sarmiento on Wednesday, 21 March 2018 at 7:05am GMT

I recall Dr Atul Gawande's 2014 Reith Lectures which dealt with things like systems and failures in medicine, and the need for systems to empower the people within them who can make a real difference. There is much for the church to learn from his analysis.

I find that a lot of the witnesses here have been unconscious of, or oblivious too, the way that power was operating in their contexts - power was not understood, not theologically examined in its practical aspects, and kept in the hands of people who had no locus to make a real difference eg Diocesan Safeguarding Advisers in relation to Bishops as a glaring example.

The practical reallocation of power, and the empowerment of first responders, frontline administrators, and ultimately of victims, survivors and complainants (Colin Perkins used the phrase "support to report" which represents a form of intentional empowerment) will be hugely countercultural for the Church - but has a huge biblical and theological pedigree. This for me is a sign that our structures have drifted away from embodying our theology and being vehicles for the gospel.

The resistance of some of those involved (Chichester Cathedral especially in recent evidence) to seeing the reality of a "closed community" is just one example of blindness to unaccountable power.

When we talk about culture change we need to be aware of such realities, otherwise we will be tinkering round the edges pretending that things are changing. And this will not be easily changed. At least that is my reflection on what I have heard and seen so far.

Posted by: Mark Bennet on Wednesday, 21 March 2018 at 8:41am GMT

The anger and upset by one victim at the hearing at rather glib apologies being made by church officials was poignant and challenging.

The apologies are coming across as far too late in the day, superficial and rather glib.

Can bishops please do more in word and action for victims?

Posted by: Dave on Wednesday, 21 March 2018 at 9:50am GMT
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