JULY 28 2020 – “THAT ‘SIGNIFICANT CLOUD’ HANGING OVER BISHOP GEORGE BELL HAS FLOATED AWAY FROM HIM AND IS NOW HANGING OVER ARCHBISHOP JUSTIN WELBY AND BISHOP MARTIN WARNER”

e99bc-6a00d8341c565553ef022ad38fe8e5200d-pi

Archbishop Justin Welby

“THAT ‘SIGNIFICANT CLOUD’ HANGING OVER BISHOP GEORGE BELL HAS FLOATED AWAY FROM HIM AND IS NOW HANGING OVER ARCHBISHOP JUSTIN WELBY AND BISHOP MARTIN WARNER” ~ RICHARD W. SYMONDS – THE BELL SOCIETY

 

NST CONSIDERS SAFEGUARDING COMPLAINT AGAINST WELBY – CHURCH TIMES – JULY 28 2020

 

“CHURCH LAUNCHES INVESTIGATION INTO HOW WELBY DEALT WITH COMPLAINTS ABOUT AN ALLEGED SERIAL ABUSER” – CHANNEL 4 NEWS – CATHY NEWMAN – JULY 27 2020

 

“JUSTIN WELBY – CHURCH OF ENGLAND INVESTIGATING COMPLAINT OVER HOW THE ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY DEALT WITH CHILD ABUSE CLAIMS” – i NEWS – JANE CLINTON

The man [‘Graham’], who made the complaint to the Church of England spoke to Channel 4 News anonymously calling into question why Archbishop Welby was still allowed to officiate and minister.

He said: “There should be procedures in place when disclosures of abuse are made to the Church of England. There are strict safeguarding procedures…I find it very difficult to understand why he still has permission to officiate and can still minister.”

He added: “I find it depressing and staggering that the Church of England can take so long to find out the truth about what actually happened.”

 

SIGNIFICANT CLOUDS HANG OVER CHURCH OF ENGLAND

photo

Chichester Cathedral – RWS Photography

 

“CHURCH OF ENGLAND INVESTIGATING COMPLAINT OVER HOW ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY DEALT WITH ABUSE CLAIMS” – DAILY TELEGRAPH

COMPLAINT MADE INTO HOW WELBY DEALT WITH A SAFEGUARDING COMPLAINT – ‘THINKING ANGLICANS’

Monday, 27 July 2020 at 11.24 pm by Simon Sarmiento

Channel 4 News reported on Monday evening: Church launches investigation into how Welby dealt with complaints about an alleged serial abuse

This programme can reveal that the Church of England has launched an investigation into how the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, dealt with complaints about a serial abuser of young men.

John Smyth was alleged to have beaten dozens of young men in the 1970s and 1980s.

One of those abused has now written to the Church of England, launching a formal complaint against Mr Welby, saying he failed to act properly when he learnt of the abuse.

More details are in the video (3 minutes).

The Church of England has responded with this statement:

It is in the public domain that when Lambeth was contacted in 2013 about an allegation against Smyth it liaised with the relevant diocese. This was to ensure that the survivor was being supported, police had been informed and that the bishop had contacted the Bishop of Cape Town, where Smyth was then living. However, since a formal complaint has now been received by the National Safeguarding Team, it is reviewing information and will obviously respond on this to the person who brought the complaint and take any further action if needed.

These issues will all be considered by the Makin Review which the Church commissioned last year into the Smyth case and is expected to publish into 2021.

The Telegraph has also reported on this: Church of England investigating complaint over how Archbishop of Canterbury dealt with abuse claims at Christian camps.

COMMENTS

Richard W. Symonds

That “significant cloud” hanging over over Bishop George Bell has floated away from him and is now hanging over Archbishop Justin Welby”

Of course, by implication, this equally applies to the present Bishop of Chichester Martin Warner regarding the Bishop Bell debacle.

It is very difficult to understand why he, Bishop Warner, also still has permission to officiate and can still minister.

Richard W. Symonds

 

“A report [on John Smyth] commissioned by the Iwerne Trust and compiled in 1982, prompted by a suicide attempt by a survivor, was written by a C of E priest, the Revd Mark Ruston, when he was Vicar of Holy Sepulchre with All Saints, Cambridge” ~ Church Times
 
https://www.churchtimes.co.uk/articles/2019/18-april/news/uk/smyth-abuse-survivors-dispute-welby-claim
 
The Report – hand-marked ‘strictly confidential’ – was prepared in 1982 by the Rev’d Mark Ruston, vicar of the Round Church in Cambridge. It bears the initials of eight individual addressees – all Anglicans, some clergy – who by ordinary inference are more likely than not to have read and/or known and discussed its contents. It was the reason why John Smyth was removed from his role within the Trust, gave up a glittering career as a leading QC, and quietly left the country in what can only be described as an Establishment cover-up…The Ruston Report resurfaced in or around 2013 within the Titus Trust, the successor organisation to the Iwerne Trust” ~ Martin Sewell
 
https://archbishopcranmer.com/john-smyth-tortured-christian-boys-iwerne-inquiry/
 
“Canon Mark Rushton, a close friend of the Most Rev Justin Welby”
 
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/02/05/teenage-boy-forced-barrister-join-cult-beating-friends/

 

 

A STATEMENT BY THE COMPLAINANT – JULY 28 2020

A statement by the Archbishop Welby complainant at 1030 on 28 July 2020

This statement is issued on behalf of the complainant in the Archbishop Justin Welby case.

On 28 July Channel 4 News correctly reported that Archbishop Justin Welby is under investigation over alleged safeguarding failures, following a complaint I made on 12 June this year. The Church of England has issued a response today that fails to mention Archbishop Welby by name. Instead, the church states that it “ensure[d] that the survivor was being supported, police had been informed and that the Bishop had contacted the Bishop of Cape Town”.

I dispute entirely all three of these assertions.

First, on the matter of support.
I disclosed in the Diocese of Ely in March 2012. Far from supporting me, they were unable to find a counsellor until January 2014, 22 months later. At that stage I was offered £100 towards counselling. In the end I am not aware that the Diocese of Ely paid anything towards the counselling I received. I was not supported.

Second, on the matter of informing the police.
I never met, and was never formally interviewed by, anyone from the Diocese of Ely. I do not recall being told that that the Police had been contacted. It was never suggested that I speak to the Police and I had no contact with them. To this day, I do not know what, if anything, the Diocese of Ely, told the Police.

Third, on the matter of the Church of England relaying concerns to the Diocese of Cape Town. I have in front of me a copy of the letter the church is referring to. On the simple matter of facts, it was not addressed to the Archbishop of Cape Town but to Bishop Garth Counsell, the Bishop of Table Bay. There is no evidence that this letter was in fact sent or received. What is undisputed is that John Smyth continued in his role as Director of the Justice Alliance of South Africa for a further three years, and that during that time he continued to meet and groom young men in Cape Town.

I emailed the Diocese of Ely on at least six occasions, asking if Smyth had been stopped. These emails were sent on 21 May 2014, 16 June 2014, 4 September 2014, 2 December 2014, 10 February 2015 and 25 August 2015. For example, in May 2014 I wrote “What is his position in Cape Town? Have you heard back? A known abuser continues his ministry?….Has every attempt been made to follow up?” In December 2014 I wrote “Can you give me the slightest reassurance that, to the best of your knowledge he is not continuing now?” and in February 2015 I wrote “Can you categorically state that everything within your power has been done…to ensure that he is unable to have any continuing contact with boys and young adults? Have the appropriate authorities a full understanding of his history and the dangers? Has he been stopped?”

I received multiple replies saying that no one had acknowledged their letter to Bishop Counsell. In May 2014 I was told “The Bishop of Ely wrote to the Bishop of Cape Town (sic). There was no reply, either then or when I chased it up. We think they have no equivalent position to [safeguarding officer] in the South African church”. I was told “The only information I have about Smyth is gleaned from his website…..Unfortunately I have no power to compel agencies in South Africa to respond to my concerns and no professional routes to take this further. I know this will be difficult for you to hear and I am sorry that I am unable to say something more positive”.

I was repeatedly told by the Diocese of Ely that they could not get hold of anyone in Cape Town. My last contact with Ely was in August 2015, when I wrote: “Can [you] do nothing? There are no letters from Cape Town, no further leads? The man…may as we speak have a coterie of young men? Has every length been tried to find out?”

I dispute all three responses to my complaint against Archbishop Welby.

The complainant does not wish his name to be in the public domain.

For further information, please contact Andrew Graystone via andrew.graystone1@btinternet.com or 07772 710090.

 

 

MESSAGE FROM MARTIN SEWELL – GENERAL SYNOD MEMBER

Dear friends and colleagues, 

You may have heard that on Monday night Channel 4 News carried the story that a formal complaint has been issued against Archbishop Justin Welby alleging that the disclosure to him of the actions of the serial abuser John Smyth in early 2013 received an inadequate response by both him and Church House then and in the subsequent years, so that Smyth was able to continue his activities and abuse many further victims.  

Quite patently John Smyth was not stopped and remained as Chairman of the Justice Alliance of South Africa until 2017. By reason of this delay Smyth died before facing justice. 

The Church of England has put a statement on its website 

https://www.churchofengland.org/safeguarding/news-and-views/statement-smyth-case

This response was felt to be so inadequate that the complainant has issued the following further detailed rejoinder.

It is important to stress that the complainant victim, who I have spoken to many times, has made every attempt directly and indirectly  to avoid this matter reaching such an unhappy stage. This problem has existed for eight years, he has been very patient. The formal complaint was formally lodged on 12 June 2020; the complainant waited for news, perhaps for an announcement or even an invitation to sit at the core group table, just like the Oxford dons who arrived with no evidence against Dean Martyn Percy. No news or invitation came. “ Graham” of course had first hand evidence to impart.
At General Synod we were told that the establishment of a core group was the triaging system for complaints. Right now, the complainant does not even know if a core group exists or whether some other process applies here. The CofE announcement is buried deep within its website and you may notice that the announcement does not actually say that the usual core group has been established to progress the complaint; rather it says that the NST is simply “reviewing the information”.  
It is such privileged treatment and lack of transparency that has proved to be ‘the straw that broke the camel’s back’.   Both current Archbishops have had their complaints handled quietly, discretely, and remained in active office; Lord George Carey, the Bishop of Lincoln and  Dean Martyn Percy were named publicly and have had their ministries and duties curtailed. 
This sense of institutional injustice is felt keenly by survivors. It may be counter intuitive for most of us: survivors feel the injustice inflicted on senior Churchmen ostensibly in their name. They are incensed at the recognition that Church House continues to be an organisation operating arbitrarily, protecting some reputations, careless of others, and always prioritising its reputation and self interest over simple fairness for all.
You may notice that the CofE website announcement does not even confirm that the complaint specifically names the Archbishop. He, of course, is entitled to a fair hearing and the presumption of innocence which the Church notably denied to such as Bishop Bell in comparatively recent times, and continues to deny Dean Percy,  by progressing a complaint without primary evidence and through a core group thoroughly corrupted, inter alia, by multiple conflicts of interest. Church House never admits it is wrong. 
In his own case, the Archbishop did however, set a high bar for expectations of active involvement when such complaints arise. 

Giving evidence under oath to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) last year, Archbishop Welby said: “Nobody can say it is not my fault. It is so absurd. To say ‘I have heard about a problem but it was someone else’s job to report it’ that is not an acceptable human response, yet alone a leadership response”…..”If you know a child is being abused, not to report it is simply wrong, for every human being”. 

The case “ Graham” advances is that Archbishop Justin neither took sufficient action himself, nor did he ensure that action for justice and prevention had been taken, once Smyth’s cruelty was exposed. Graham” was personally known to the Archbishop as was John Smyth. 

Every attempt to spare the Archbishop and the Church embarrassment has been made but failed. How much of “Graham’s” entreaties have reached the Archbishop personally is less clear. That said, institutionally these wounds are entirely self inflicted. 

I have spoken to the complainant this morning. He says this  ‘I am not driven by a need for revenge or malice. All I want is the truth. We were denied justice by the death of John Smyth. For all to tell the truth, now, that is what we want.’  

Although a number of Church insiders have access to his contact details, nobody from there has communicated with “Graham” since he has reluctantly felt obliged to put the fact of his complaint into the public domain. His support continues to come entirely from the survivor community and their friends. The endurance of returning to remembrances of injustice is what victim survivors call “re-abuse”.
Martin Sewell

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s