Thinking Anglicans

IICSA Anglican Church hearing days 7 and 8

Updated 26 July (video recordings added)

Transcript for day 7 (Tuesday) See below for further links

Transcript for day 8 (Wednesday)

Video recordings;

Day 8 list of documents adduced

Day 8 witness statements

At the time of writing no further documents for day 8 have been published by IICSA, but there is extensive media coverage:.

Press Association via Daily Mail Vicar tells abuse inquiry archbishops ‘not fit for office’. (this report also appears in numerous other newspapers)

Church Times Absolute power will corrupt bishops, says Sentamu

Guardian Archbishop: church ‘shabby and shambolic’ in abuse case

York Press Archbishop of York denies mishandling clerical abuse allegations

Doncaster Free Press Former South Yorkshire vicar claims sex abuse reports were ‘ignored’ by clerics

ITV Vicar tells abuse inquiry archbishops ‘not fit for office’ (includes video report)

Telegraph Archbishop of York: Parishes are ‘enabling abuse’ by refusing to punish paedophiles whom they deem ‘lovely people’

And this analysis at Surviving ChurchThe Matt Ineson IICSA testimony. A crisis of leadership in the Church of England?

Documents adduced on day 7 include the following witness statements:

And there is this media report:

Church Times Bishops not qualified to adjudicate on safeguarding cases, says Munn

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Richard W. Symonds
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Richard W. Symonds

Transcript for day 8 (Wednesday) IICSA – July 10 2019 @InquiryCSA Revd Matthew Ineson – “I cannot see the face of Jesus in the Archbishop of Canterbury or York. I see hypocrites and I see pharisees. I see the people that Jesus stood up against…I’m sorry to be so direct, I’m a Yorkshire man. I don’t think those people are fit for office…Bishops sit on thrones. They live in fine palaces and houses, they wear the finest robes and garments. People literally kneel down and kiss the ring on their finger…That’s why they are protecting themselves…Why would I want an… Read more »

Fr. Dean Henley
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Fr. Dean Henley

Mr Ineson’s description of the Archbishop of York’s invasion of his personal space is alarming to read. A survivor of rape by a cleric, would find another cleric’s inappropriate touch potentially re-traumatising; the archbishop’s extensive safeguarding training ought to have alerted him to that possibility, and the need for the greatest sensitivity when encountering survivors. Sadly, in his evidence to IICSA Dr Sentamu’s hubris is clear for anyone to read in the transcripts.

Richard W. Symonds
Guest
Richard W. Symonds

The hubris of this Archbishop is beyond disturbing: Fiona Scolding QC asked him yesterday at the IICSA whether he believed he had made a personal mistake, in the course of responding to disclosures of clerical abuse, during his career: “Hand on heart, I don’t think so”, the Archbishop replies. Well, as Fr Henley rightly points out above, the Archbishop made a grievous “personal mistake” by his physical confrontation with an already physically abused Revd Matthew Ineson at Synod last year. No wonder the Church’s ‘confetti apologies’ are angrily dismissed as empty and beyond hypocrisy. A genuine apology is not possible… Read more »

Richard W. Symonds
Guest
Richard W. Symonds

Fiona Scolding QC, in talking with Graham Tilby today, “observes that the issue here surrounds the fact that, with the greatest respect to diocesan bishops, they have all the power and no accountability”

Paul Waddington
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Paul Waddington

This is a familiar story. The Archbishop says he thought the Diocesan Bishop would be dealing with it. No doubt, the Diocesan Bishop would say it had been reported to the Archbishop. Nobody does anything!

peterpi -- Peter Gross
Guest
peterpi -- Peter Gross

In other words, SNAFU — Situation normal, all fouled (this is a genteel website, so I encourage readers to substitute a more powerful four-letter word, in past tense, beginning with “F”) up.

For all their claims of divine guidance and being informed by a/the (H)oly (S)pirit, human religious institutions are still human.

Marian Birch
Guest
Marian Birch

I am afraid I simply don’t understand why George Carey should be penalised by the C of E for his safeguarding errors and omissions (errors which I certainly deplore and which are probably linked in some way to Carey’s strange personal mixture of hubris and insecurity), but that it seems that it is OK for Stephen Croft and John Sentamu to ‘get away’ with failings in this area which seem to be at least as serious. Of course the fact that Carey is already retired probably has something to do with it – it is far more ‘convenient’ for the… Read more »

John Wallace
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John Wallace

As someone with work experience of Safeguarding, it is sad to see clerics who have contributed greatly to move the C of E into the 21st century, rubbished for alleged failures in this area. As I said to an American colleague, in the late 80s and early 90s, as a Senior Teacher in a comprehensive school, I was sent very difficult teenage girls to manage as I was able to establish a relationship with them. In hindsight I am sure that they all had been abused in some way, but there was no mechanism for investigation. We just didn’t have… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
Guest
Rowland Wateridge

Thank you for this thoughtful and positive observation. I have felt strong concern about a number of issues where people have felt fit to pass judgements based on current knowledge and practice and, it has to be said, largely ignorance of conditions and, yes, accepted practice as they were at the time of the events. In the context of ‘approved schools’ this was starkly evident in a County Court trial concerning alleged historical abuse in a former (Home Office) Approved School. These were, of course, abolished many years ago. In the course of addressing the jury, the judge (a Circuit… Read more »

Janet Fife
Guest
Janet Fife

I agree that how senior clerics – or anyone – dealt with allegations of abuse needs to be put into the context of the time. However, I disagree that ‘The idea that a girl had been abused by her father was totally beyond anyone’s experience.’ Long before the 80s and 90s it was well known that this could and did happen. Canadian Christian psychiatrist John White, for one, discussed the subject tin his 1977 book ‘Eros Defiled’. Admittedly his treatment of it was not a good one, but he at least acknowledged incest occurred. Ellen Bass began collecting survivor accounts… Read more »

Richard W. Symonds
Guest
Richard W. Symonds

I agree with Marian B – the treatment of Bishop George Carey by the ‘higher echelons’ of the Church hierarchy is beyond hypocrisy and monstrously unjust. Where I do not agree with Marian B – and am somewhat puzzled – is in her judgement of the former Archbishop as a “strange personal mixture of hubris and insecurity”. I don’t think I am someone prone to deference, but I have had the privilege of knowing George Carey for the last three years or so in regard to the Bishop Bell issue. I have not detected a “hubris” within him. An “insecurity”… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
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Rowland Wateridge

The “man or woman in the pew” can only gain an impression of very senior clergy from what they read, what they see and hear on television, or from hearing them in the pulpit. Very few of us have had any personal contact with Archbishops. My impression of Archbishop Carey prior to becoming a regular reader of TA was of a compassionate and caring person. In spite of the many hostile things I have since read here, that impression hasn’t changed. He has unequivocally admitted that he was wrong about Peter Ball – so were many others. In mentioning the… Read more »

Janet Fife
Guest
Janet Fife

I would agree with you. I first met George Carey in 1984 when he interviewed me for a place at Trinity Bristol (I didn’t go). I have always found him to be truthful, genuine and, in many ways, humble. Unlike the current crop of senior Church leaders he has owned up to his mistakes. Peter Ball was my bishop in Lewes area and I know how mesmerising he was. Like all adept abusers he groomed everyone around him, and deceived many in the upper echelons of society in particular (because he focussed on them). I have always thought that the… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
Guest
Rowland Wateridge

A slight digression, but it seems that the enigma of Peter Ball persists. There was a letter in last week’s ‘Times’ following their obituary of Peter Ball (which I didn’t see) relating an amusing (?) event in a Sussex church. The letter also came from Sussex. I think Peter Ball was speaking about The Ascension, and by way of practical illustration his sermon concluded by his ducking down and disappearing in the pulpit and his brother jumping up and appearing simultaneously in the organ loft above.

Marian Birch
Guest
Marian Birch

You were perhaps not a member of the clergy in Canterbury diocese while he was Archbishop. I know very well several people who were and who felt that he was very keen to ‘keep clergy in their place’, was not terribly supportive and made it clear that he was the Archbishop whose decisions could not be questioned! Rowan Williams engaged with the diocesan clergy – and was loved by many of them – in a way that George Carey could not approach to. However my main point I want to make is that George Carey HAS himself been treated unfairly… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
Guest
Rowland Wateridge

I am a member of the laity, wondering what on earth is happening in the Church of England.

Katherine Wilson
Guest
Katherine Wilson

Matthew Ineson’s description of the Archbishop of York will come as no surprise to those of us who are involved with the Diocese of York. This archiepiscopate should have been well over by now. It never really delivered what it promised from the outset, and we have been in a state of controlled inertia for some years. We are longing for a more consensual, open and collaborative style of leadership. We want a depth of engagement, not soundbites and publicity stunts. The narrative hasn’t changed since 2005. And, yes, there is too often a complete lack of understanding of what… Read more »

Matthew Ineson
Guest
Matthew Ineson

Thank you Katherine. Well said!
Matt
@InesonMatthew

Alan Davies
Guest
Alan Davies

I have been wondering @Katherine Wilson, what possible circumstances could have justified allowing John Sentamu continue as Archbishop of York until a few days before his 71st Birthday. He was keen to stress that he had work to complete; but various clergy I know in the York Diocese just give me a blank look when I ask what this could possibly be. He won’t even be attending the Lambeth Conference. Then, as I was perusing the list of those ordained deacon in York this year, a familiar name jumped off the page. What’s the betting that this deacon is ordained… Read more »

Janet Fife
Guest
Janet Fife

Yes, Sentamu will ordain Margaret priest a few days – in fact I think it’s one day – before retiring. He also admitted, under cross examination at IICSA, that she completed Safeguarding training Part 2 only after ordination, ‘but before she started work’. Additionally, her training incumbent is the Archbishop’s chaplain. It’s all very cosy.

Bill Broadhead
Guest
Bill Broadhead

From where I’m sitting, Janet, this is not just cosy. It’s taking the Church for a huge ride – not least by presuming upon its consent. Someone on the General Synod should be asking how many recommended candidates in the average year are ordained prior to commencing training. Yes, we know Margaret has exercised a faithful and diligent ministry as a Reader for many years, and worked as a Selection Secretary at the Ministry Division. I know several clergy who speak very highly of her as the Secretary on their selection conferences many years ago. But the impression given is… Read more »

Janet Fife
Guest
Janet Fife

‘Cosy’ was ironic. The C of E is supposed to have a strict rule that no one can be ordained, licensed or given PTO without safeguarding training, yet the Archbishop’s wife hadn’t completed hers before ordination. York Diocese is so strict on this as a rule that retired clergy without PTO cannot even read a lesson or lead prayers in church. This is hard on those too elderly to travel to a morning’s safeguarding training a fair distance away, but who would still like to be able to read Scripture in church or at a meeting. Additionally, Abp. Welby admitted… Read more »