Thinking Anglicans

IICSA publishes report on Chichester and Peter Ball

IICSA has published its report on the Chichester diocese and Peter Ball investigations.

Full Text of Report: Anglican Church Case Studies: Chichester/Peter Ball Investigation Report

Executive Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations

Press release: Inquiry publishes report into the Diocese of Chichester and Peter Ball

The Church of England has published this: Publication of IICSA report into Anglican Church 

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, IICSA, has today published its report into the Anglican Church  based on its case studies last year of the Diocese of Chichester and the response to allegations against the former Bishop of Gloucester, Peter Ball.

The 252-page report makes 5 recommendations about a range of issues. These will now be studied in detail and a full response released at a later date. The Inquiry’s third and final hearing in the  Anglican church case study  will start on Monday 1 July 2019 and run for two weeks. This will focus on both the Church of England and the Church in Wales in the context of their responses to allegations of child sexual abuse. The Inquiry notes that further recommendations directly relating to the findings in this report will be made following the hearing in July.

The Bishop of Bath and Wells, Peter Hancock, the Church’s lead bishop for safeguarding, said:

“We thank the Inquiry for the report and note the findings and recommendations which we will now study in full. The report states that the Church of England should have been a place which protected all children and supported victims and survivors and the Inquiry’s summary recognises that it failed to do this.  It is absolutely right that the Church at all levels should learn lessons from the issues raised in this report.

“Whilst the report acknowledges the progress the Church has made in safeguarding, we recognise that our work must continue at pace in order that we can ensure that the Church is as safe as possible for all. We are committed to working to bring in specific changes that will help us better protect children and vulnerable adults from sexual and all other forms of abuse. If anyone is affected by today’s report I would urge them to come forward. Details of how to do this can be found on the Church of England website.

“We are  immensely  grateful to survivors for their courage in coming forward to IICSA to share their experiences of how they were treated by the Church, knowing how difficult this would have been; their testimonies have made shocking and uncomfortable listening. Since the Archbishop of Canterbury asked for the Church of England to be investigated by IICSA as a matter of priority, we have sought to help the Inquiry  in every way that  we can  and  we will now fully consider the report.”

33
Leave a Reply

avatar
3000
6 Comment threads
27 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
16 Comment authors
Anthony ArcherRichard W. SymondsJanet FifeJill ArmsteadRowland Wateridge Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest
Notify of
Richard W. Symonds
Guest

Initial reflections regarding the IICSA Report – as they relate to the Chichester Diocese and the Bishop Bell case: Para. 434. “In 1995, some 37 years after Bishop Bell’s death, a letter was sent to his [Bell’s] successor as Bishop of Chichester, Eric Kemp. The author of the letter is known by the pseudonym ‘Carol’. Carol alleged that when she was aged between five and eight years, she was sexually abused by Bishop Bell. The abuse occurred every few months during visits to the Bishop’s Palace in Chichester. It included digital penetration, forced masturbation and attempted rape. The [IICSA] Inquiry… Read more »

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

I suppose it would be naive to think that rather than the language of mediocre local government functionaries (“It is absolutely right that the Church at all levels should learn lessons from the issues raised in this report.”) a Bishop in the Church of England might try “We are sorry”.

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

It’s also worth looking at the CofE press release, which reads as follows: “”We are immensely grateful to survivors for their courage in coming forward to IICSA to share their experiences of how they were treated by the Church, knowing how difficult this would have been; their testimonies have made shocking and uncomfortable listening. Since the Archbishop of Canterbury asked for the Church of England to be investigated by IICSA as a matter of priority, we have sought to help the Inquiry in every way that we can and we will now fully consider the report.” The reason that there are run-ons like “areimmenselygrateful” and “theircouragein” is… Read more »

Revd Dean Henley
Guest
Revd Dean Henley

Given IICSA’s conclusions about Archbishop Carey’s support of Peter Ball and his neglect of Neil Todd and the other victims of Ball’s abuse; why has he permission to officiate in the Diocese of Oxford, and ought this to be withdrawn immediately? I’m not a lawyer but reading these conclusions he seems to have been callous in his attitude to Bishop Ball’s victims. More than once IICSA concludes that the Church failed to give an adequate response to its questions – this is deeply shameful.

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

Why point a finger only at Archbishop Carey, Revd Henley?! A finger also needs to be pointed at the future Supreme Governor of the Church of England (Prince Charles) – among eminent others.

Re-read Matthew 7 v 5.

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

‘Furthermore, [IICSA] investigators also found that Prince Charles’s correspondence with George Carey, the Archbishop of Canterbury at the time, “could have been interpreted as expressions of support” for Ball and an attempt to influence Lambeth Palace in his favour’

– Daily Telegraph (May 9 2019)

Susannah Clark
Guest

Prince Charles is an immensely compassionate and in most things decent individual, and I think as Christians we should acknowledge that *all* of us can be misled by people in life, or fooled and taken in by them, and honestly Richard, we *all* make mistakes. The Prince has done fantastic work with his idealism and work for young people through the Prince’s Trust. He has been visionary over environmental matters. He has been theologically liberal in his openness to the virtues of Islam. He has contributed for years to these countries, and supported his mother, and at the same time… Read more »

Kate
Guest
Kate

Another supporter of Charles here.

John Wallace
Guest
John Wallace

I should have added to my comment ‘and the abolition of a privileged and outdated monarchy.’

T Pott
Guest
T Pott

If the monarchy were abolished then Citizen Windsor’s behaviour would be irrelevant to disestablishment of the Church. But the main issue here is the behaviour of a bishop and an archbishop, and if any constitutional inference is to be drawn it is that the spiritual power should be subject to tighter control and supervision, not given greater power and freedom. How would disestablishment help in that regard?

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

And another supporter of Charles here – Amanda Platell [“Don’t blame Prince Charles…”]. Note: she also clearly doesn’t blame Lord Carey.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7017073/PLATELLS-PEOPLE-Dont-blame-Prince-Charles-bishop-Peter-Ball-duped-Rolf-Harris.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ito=1490&ns_campaign=1490

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

Susannah, I am very aware that if I point a finger of blame, three are pointing back at me. With that said, I do feel that certain contributors here are being disturbingly unfair and unjust in their choice of who is to blame – and who is beyond blame.

John Wallace
Guest
John Wallace

The fawning adulation of Charles Windsor, a deceitful adulterer over many years really makes me feel ill. What lack of judgement! What better evidence do we need to move to disestablishment and set the church free from its Erastian bondage?

Susannah Clark
Guest

John, if we are to believe the words of Jesus, nearly everyone has committed adultery. You may have done, for all I know. It’s not my business and I really don’t care. What is more interesting is the capacity of God to forgive and redeem. In Jesus’s terms, every time someone self-pleasures and gets aroused at the thought of someone other than their spouse, they commit adultery. I think that probably counts almost everyone here, if we are honest. We are so quick to judge (myself included). I don’t fawn over Prince Charles. But with specific reference to this case… Read more »

Revd Dean Henley
Guest
Revd Dean Henley

Mr Symonds, I was not present at the Inquiry so did I not see or hear all the evidence. The eminent members of the panel who have seen all the evidence and witness statements concluded that His Royal Highness was ‘misguided’. Their conclusions as to Lord Carey’s conduct are rather more damning and that is why I highlighted them.

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

Revd Henley, you state: “Their [IICSA’s] conclusions as to Lord Carey’s conduct are rather more damning [than His Royal Highness]” I strongly disagree with you – and I’m not alone: Have you read today’s Daily Mail Front Page “Charles Damned Over The Pervert Bishop” – ‘it is believed to be the first time a public inquiry has criticised a senior royal…The Church’s failures continued under Rowan Williams, who succeeded Lord Carey as Archbishop of Canterbury’ ? Or The Times Front Page “Charles had ‘misguided’ friendship with abuser” – ‘Such criticism of a senior royal by a public inquiry is unprecedented…’… Read more »

Revd Dean Henley
Guest
Revd Dean Henley

I don’t as a habit read the Daily Mail and so I missed today’s headline.

Jeremy Pemberton
Guest
Jeremy Pemberton

Because nothing can be done about Prince Charles – but there is an obvious remedy for Lord Carey – to remove his PTO.

Marian Birch
Guest
Marian Birch

I am no great fan of Archbishop Carey who treated my husband rather poorly 25 or so years ago – probably because my husband (a priest) wasn’t important enough and Archbishop Carey was rather focused on running after the important people (I resonate with comments in the report about Carey’s propensity to be overawed by the rich/famous and those who had the self confidence to puff up their own self importance). However I cannot see a qualitative difference between his failings and that of Steven Croft, the current Bishop of Oxford, in relation to another abuse case (which took place… Read more »

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

It would appear those most to blame – especially in Chichester (the worst of all Diocese for criminal sexual abuse) – are now dead.

This prevents ‘closure’ for many, so there is an attempt – verging on the desperate – to find someone to blame.

It’s called ‘scapegoating’.

Grumpy High Churchwoman
Guest
Grumpy High Churchwoman

Background information here on Lord Carey’s PTO.
July 2018 statement from the Diocese of Oxford regarding Lord Carey’s PTO.
https://www.oxford.anglican.org/lord-carey-statement-from-the-rt-rev-dr-steven-croft-bishop-of-oxford/
And an interesting analysis here.
https://www.lawandreligionuk.com/2018/07/27/lord-carey-pto-statement-from-bishop-of-oxford/
And wider coverage here.
https://www.thinkinganglicans.org.uk/lord-carey-permitted-to-resume-public-ministry/

Cassandra
Guest
Cassandra

So the BBC’s summary, that “Lord Carey resigned as honorary assistant bishop in the Diocese of Oxford – his last formal role in the church – in June last year after a separate inquiry found he delayed a ‘proper investigation’ into Ball’s crimes for two decades”, is misleading, because the Bishop of Oxford has still given him PTO. OK, that may not be a ‘formal role’ but it is hardly a total ban on ministry. Indeed, the first of the links supplied by Grumpy High Churchwoman states that this is seen by that Bishop as a “safe space to exercise… Read more »

T Pott
Guest
T Pott

Has anybody suggested Lord Carey himself currently poses an unmanageable risk, when officiating? If not then withdrawing his permission would be cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face. He doesn’t officiate for his own amusement or the good of his health.

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“He doesn’t officiate for his own amusement or the good of his health.”

So why else does he? Is there a shortage of people able and willing to officiate in the diocese of Oxford such that a man who has been heavily criticised by a major inquiry is the last minister standing?

Rowland Wateridge
Guest
Rowland Wateridge

Could it not simply be that (in retirement) Lord Carey is still being true to his priestly vocation? As Richard Symonds points out below, he has apologised for his inaction which was due to his believing that a bishop of the C of E could not possibly be guilty of such things. He has since shown contrition for that inaction. Wasn’t his ‘crime’, if that is the right word, naivety?

Jill Armstead
Guest
Jill Armstead

So many people were overawed by his saintly reputation. He was very much admired as a good priest by ordinary parishioners throughout the diocese. And it’s a fact that in the 80s when I remember him, we were not at all alerted to sexual predators and safeguarding. Such things simply didn’t figure like they do now. I think he got away with it because such vile behaviour in a bishop – and a saintly bishop like Ball- was just too incredible to entertain.

Janet Fife
Guest
Janet Fife

I agree. Ball ‘groomed’ the whole area, he had a remarkable sort of aura about him. He was even invited to speak at the ecumenical evangelical renewal meeting in Eastbourne – and went down very well. Normally they wouldn’t have gone anywhere near a monk. I’m sure he is the monk who turns up to preach at the independent charismatic church in ‘Sacred Diary of Adrian Plass’, and wows them all.

Janet Fife
Guest
Janet Fife

I’m not sure that removing PTO is the appropriate sanction for retired clergy who have made safeguarding errors. Removal of PTO penalises everyone who may want or be in need of the person’s ministry; from family members who want the priest/bishop to officiate at a wedding or baptism, to overworked local clergy who desperately need to be relieved of officiating at a service now and then. Even if removing PTO were appropriate, why would that need to be permanent? Lord Carey has already had his PTO removed for a time, and is still not permitted to function as a bishop.… Read more »

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

Former Archbishop George Carey is acutely aware he made mistakes and did wrong, and he is genuinely sorry – something notably absent with the present Archbishop:

http://rebuildingbridges.org.uk/2018/10/07/address-by-baron-carey-of-clifton/

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

I’m in agreement with Janet Fife when she says:

“I have some sympathy with those who were deceived – though none for those who, undeceived, still refuse to do the right thing”

Richard W. Symonds
Guest

Answers on a postcard to:

http://www.georgebellgroup.org/

Perry Butler
Guest
Perry Butler

I remember bumping into Cheslyn Jones outside Pusey House the day Peter Ball’s appointment to Lewes was announced. He said in his inimitable way(twice) “What does Eric Kemp think he’s doing”

Anthony Archer
Guest
Anthony Archer

Many organisations, corporate, public sector and non-profit have come unstuck in the past through manifest failure to conduct due diligence in connection with senior appointments. My own parish nearly appointed a vicar in the late 1990s and was only spared considerable embarrassment when a smart churchwarden (a retired MI6 officer) challenged the bishop and told him the parish would not accept the appointment. He had unspecified concerns over the CV which he couldn’t quite put his finger on. The candidate was promptly collated at a nearby parish and went on to serve a jail sentence for historic sexual abuse. This… Read more »