Tag Archives: Ex-Bishop Peter Ball

March 5 2018 – “‘Wilful blindness’ existed towards Church child abuse in Sussex, inquiry hears” – West Sussex County Times – Michael Drummond

https://www.wscountytimes.co.uk/news/crime/wilful-blindness-existed-towards-church-child-abuse-in-sussex-inquiry-hears-1-8403316

‘Wilful blindness’ existed towards Church child abuse in Sussex, inquiry hears

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse is taking place in London

MICHAEL DRUMMOND Email Published: 17:21 Monday 05 March 2018

A damning image of ‘wilful blindness’ in historic cases of sexual abuse of children who were ‘terrified and silenced’ by clergy in Sussex has been set out at a public inquiry. Fiona Scolding QC, lead counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), said abuse that left an ‘indelible scar’ on children was often ignored or forgiven.

In one segment, Miss Scolding described abuse by a Reverend Colin Pritchard: “There have been suggestions about the culture of abuse operated by Reverend Pritchard and that Bishop Peter Ball turned a blind eye to that abuse.” Reverend Pritchard, who was vicar of St Barnabas in Bexhill, pleaded guilty in 2008 to seven counts of sexual assault on two boys and was jailed for five years.

Speaking on behalf of the Diocese of Chichester and Archbishops’ Council for the Church of England, Nigel Giffin QC said the Church’s response to abuse in the last few decades was ‘not nearly good enough’. The IICSA inquiry in London will look into how far institutions failed to protect children from sexual abuse within the Anglican Church. It focusses on abuse within the Diocese of Chichester, which covers all of Sussex, as a case study.

Lead counsel for the inquiry Fiona Scolding QC Members of the public heard about dozens of offences in Sussex over the last 50 years. Miss Scolding said: “As a society we have ocer the past 10 years had to examine some uncomfortable truths about our wilful blindness to such abuse.”

She noted the convictions for sex offences of Michael Walsh, Terence Banks and David Bowring, who were associated with Chichester Cathedral and local schooling. Miss Scolding also told the inquiry how Reverend Roy Cotton, who was convicted in 1952 of gross indecency with a child, was at one point an ‘alleged abuser hiding in plain sight’.

Richard Scorer spoke on behalf of many of the victims

She added: “Despite his conviction the Bishop of Portsmouth considered him suitable for ordination as a man of ‘considerable ability’ free of any trouble for 12 years. “Because of his criminal record the then Bishop of Portsmouth ensured he did not have to undertake the usual recruitment processes.”

The handling by the Church of allegations made against Chichester’s Bishop George Bell will be discussed later in the inquiry, but not the truth of them or otherwise.

Richard Scorer, speaking on behalf of many of the victims, said: “If you want to abuse children there is no more effective way of terrifying and silencing your victims than to claim to have God on your side.

The inquiry will look into how abuse by people associated with Chichester Cathedral was dealt with

“The Church of England claims to offer moral guidance to the country yet clerical sexual abuse cases powerfully undermine the claim. This leads to the cover-up of abuse.

“The question is whether the Church of England can be trusted to put its own house in order.”

In a statement read out this afternoon, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said: “The failures that we have seen are deeply shaming and I personally find them a cause of horror and sadness. “That children have been abused within the communities of the church is indeed shameful.” The inquiry continues.

Read more at: https://www.wscountytimes.co.uk/news/crime/wilful-blindness-existed-towards-church-child-abuse-in-sussex-inquiry-hears-1-8403316

Advertisements

January 28 2018 – “‘Rebel Priest’ Rev Jules Gomes: Deluded beyond belief – why Welby can’t say sorry over Bishop Bell” – ‘Conservative Woman’

https://www.conservativewoman.co.uk/rebel-priest-rev-jules-gomes-deluded-beyond-belief-welby-cant-say-sorry-bishop-bell/

‘Rebel Priest’ Rev Jules Gomes: Deluded beyond belief – why Welby can’t say sorry over Bishop Bell

 

‘Wobbly’ Welby has unexpectedly firmed up into the Rock of Gibraltar. The Archbishop of Canterbury, who is acclaimed for apologising as prolifically as water dripping from a leaking tap, has abruptly turned off the stopcock and is refusing to apologise for the most monumental cock-up of his career.

Welby has donned sackcloth and ashes and publicly flogged himself for the ‘hurt and pain’ the Church of England has (allegedly) inflicted on LGBTI people. Welby has crawled on his knees and cried mea maxima culpa for the ‘scars’ and ‘hurt’ to the campaigners for women’s ordination and ‘for my own part in that hurt’. Welby has walked on broken glass and slept on a bed of spikes as he even apologised for the Reformation. When the steam in the Lambeth pressure cooker threatened to blow off the lid, Welby apologised to a sexual abuse survivor for his office’s failure to respond to 17 letters seeking help and redress.

So why is Archbishop Justin, who like Uriah Heep has been ‘very umble to the present moment’, refusing to apologise for defaming the reputation of Bishop George Bell? Why has ‘Wobbly’ hardened his heart like Pharaoh in the story of the Exodus even after seven senior historians wrote an open letter complaining that the archbishop had shamed his office with ‘irresponsible and dangerous’ claims that Bishop Bell may have been a paedophile?

Welby’s Taliban-like intransigence has alienated even his loyal fans. According to a well-placed source inside the C of E, ‘there is a head of steam in the Church of England that could end up in his resignation over this’. If there is a miracle and the water in Lambeth Palace turns to blood or a plague of boils erupts on the skin of every canon at Canterbury Cathedral, Welby could well apologise by the time this column is published. There will be much rejoicing, and Bishop George Bell’s 93-year-old niece Barbara Whitley, who has called for Welby’s resignation, will pass the rest of her days singing the Nunc Dimittis.

So why doesn’t the spiritual head of 80 million Anglicans say the two most gracious words in the English language? Why is a man who is supposed to model repentance – the core Christian virtue at the very heart of the gospel – refusing to repent? Why has the Archbishop issued a statement that reads like a memo from the Ministry of Circumlocution and Periphrasis?

‘I cannot with integrity rescind my statement made after the publication of Lord Carlile’s review into how the Church handled the Bishop Bell case,’ states Welby categorically. Bishop Dr Gavin Ashenden has come close to describing the archbishop as psychologically unbalanced: ‘He has at best muddled himself. He is in the grip of what appears to be both a serious sin and a psychological distortion. At some point, he has conflated what he thinks is right with the notion of his integrity.’

I believe Welby is one hundred per cent sincere. His absolute and emphatic claim to occupy the higher moral ground and to be right beyond the faintest glimmer of doubt is not feigned. It is not a publicity stunt. Welby genuinely believes he is right and everyone else (including seven eminent historians, another group of theologians including heavyweights from the World Council of Churches, and Lord Carlile) is wrong.

If Welby sincerely believes he is right, we need to pray for him and to understand him sympathetically using the best spiritual and psychological resources at our disposal. The social psychologist Leon Festinger provides us with precisely such a vehicle of sympathetic insight into the archbishop’s mind and soul.

Rather unexpectedly, I stumbled on Festinger in an academic journal when doing research on the Hebrew prophets. What does psychology have to do with prophecy? Later, when studying apocalyptic cults I became even more interested in Festinger’s theory of cognitive dissonance. I also found his work invaluable in pastoral ministry when I met people who insisted that Jesus was going to return on a particular date (a house-church in a Mumbai suburb firmly believed that Jesus was coming back on November 20, 1999).

Following their research on a flying saucer cult, Festinger and his co-researchers argued that when a prophecy or strongly held belief is proved wrong, this results in intensification of belief. ‘Suppose an individual believes something with his whole heart; suppose further that he has a commitment to this belief, but he has taken irrevocable actions because of it; finally suppose that he is presented with evidence, unequivocal and undeniable evidence, that his belief is wrong: What will happen? The individual will frequently emerge, not only unshaken but even more convinced of the truth of his beliefs than ever before. Indeed, he may even show a new fervour about convincing and converting other people to his view,’ Festinger observes.

So what happens if a person is forced to do or say something contrary to the opinion he strongly holds? First, a person might change his beliefs. Welby could simply admit he made a mistake. Second, a person might change the way he perceives his actions. This is what Welby is doing by insisting on his ‘integrity’, drawing on a tenuous analogy with the real abuser Bishop Peter Ball (oddly, I wrote a column on the tale of two bishops Bell and Ball and demonstrated how the C of E ‘smears saints and shields scoundrels’) and rationalising by drawing on his personal subjective experience of ‘discovering feet of clay in more than one person I held in profound respect’ as the benchmark of justice and truth.

He is trying to resolve his cognitive dissonance by standing by his slander that the heroic Bishop of Chichester, who sheltered Jewish children during the Second World War, was a child abuser who has a ‘significant cloud’ over his name, despite evidence to the contrary. The sordid saga has demonstrated that it is actually the Archbishop of Canterbury who has a ‘significant cloud’ over his name and office. It is the ‘significant cloud’ of self-delusion.

The global Anglican Communion can no longer afford the luxury of a Commander-in-Chief who has succumbed to what Friedrich Nietzsche called the ‘deplorable victory of the sanctified lie’.

  • Not so much a Christian Archbishop. More the wimpish CEO of a struggling charity wedded to the Labour party.

    Avatar

    Careful Jules you will be excommunicated.

    Avatar

    Agree wholeheartedly with your post, but sorry to see you adopting that awful American usage of the word ‘survivor’. Survivors are people who lived through Auschwitz or who are dug out ruins after an earthquake. Those who have suffered abuse are NOT survivors, they are victims

    Avatar

    Que sera, sera, whatever Welby will be.

    Avatar

    He is trying to protect the CofE Brand.

    His Brand has lost market share for a very long time and now only occupies a tiny segment of the market, due to the extreme left wing policies (theologically, socially and morally) that the self selecting hierarchy has embarked upon, regardless of the cost in membership (Or Biblical justification).

    Welby sees the future of the Cof E as being like Corbyn’s Momentum of Christian Britain and he will not condone anything that detracts from that trajectory.

    The lack of any apology is then seen as a rational act. He cannot upset what is his last significant customer base

    Avatar

    Like Donald Trump, Justin Welby ought to undergo a mental examination and make the results public. Only then, we will be convinced that he is mentally fit for the job. But if the issue is moral, more than it is mental, Welby must resign. After all, he has been pointing fingers at the Donald, and the President of the US has graciously apologised for his re-tweets of a certain video. If Welby’s morality cannot match that of Trump’s (whom he has severely criticised), then Welby ought to call in the Removals. Jesus’ words about first removing the beam from your own eye before you can remove the log from your brother’s eye, are more than apt here.

    Avatar
     

    Jesus’ words? The CofE don’t have faith in a book written by men don’t yah know. You simply behave in whatever way that “feels right”. If you are not sure then group prayer (preferably by a group of sisters, especially if you are male and always if you are female – of course, cannot ever have men having influence over women) can determine God’s will for your life.

    Where the Bible is used it is reinterpreted. Haven’t you heard about the Syrian Feminist who, singlehandedly got Jesus to change the direction of his ministry? It is one of their favourites. They have whole colleges reinterpreting the Bible to condone a Feminist, LGBTI and of course “abortion is a blessing” (actually stated by a female Principal of an Anglican Theological College)

October 19 2017 – “The Right Royal Cover-Up Continues” – Morning Star – Peter Frost

government-cloak-of-secrecy

https://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-4fe3-The-right-royal-cover-up-continues#.Weiy9PkrKUk

The Right Royal Cover-Up Continues


OCT 2017 Thursday 19TH
posted by Morning Star in Features

Edward Heath, Cyril Smith and an ex-archbishop of Canterbury are just a few of those exposed as part of the great abuse cover-up. PETER FROST worries the full the truth will never come to light


HARDLY a day can go by without another revelation about another Establishment figure being a child abuser or worse.

The latest story reveals that MI5 knew the country’s chief prosecutor had covered up a sex abuse inquiry into Cyril Smith but did nothing because it was not its job to expose paedophiles.

The files released by the intelligence agency show it was aware that the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) had lied to a newspaper over its decision not to prosecute Smith. But MI5 decided not to make the information public because its duty was to “defend the realm” rather than to expose a prominent politician accused of being a paedophile.

Another similar case has seen ex-Tory prime minister Edward Heath named by Wiltshire police who tell us — far too late of course — that Heath would have been questioned over sex abuse claims, if he was alive, when they came to light.

Of course a glimpse at the internet will demonstrate that Heath has been under suspicion for abusing young men and worse for years — accusations that have always been swept aside by the Establishment.

Yet another inquiry into abuse by Church of England Bishop Peter Ball has revealed just what a corrupt and hypocritical bunch the religious arm of the British Establishment really is.

This time the high-ranking Establishment figure who conspired to cover up sexual abuse and other wrongdoing was non-other than the ex-archbishop of Canterbury George Carey.

An independent report found that senior Church figures colluded over a 20-year period Ball, who sexually abused boys and men.

This is just one arm of a veritable octopus of Establishment cover-ups that touches clergy, government, police, intelligence services — right up to the very peak of British society, including several ex-prime ministers and even one heir to the throne.

When Ball was first accused of gross indecency against a 17-year-old boy in 1992, a string of senior Establishment figures — including Carey, other top clergy, Cabinet ministers, a High Court judge, public school headmasters and magistrates — came forward in his support, lobbying the police and Crown Prosecution Service.

Ball’s lawyers also told the police they had a letter of support from a high-ranking member of the royal family. It wasn’t hard to guess which royal they wanted to think they were talking about. When he was arrested Ball was Bishop of Gloucester, which covers Prince Charles’s Highgrove Estate. Ball described Prince Charles as a loyal friend.

Even after his disgrace Ball was offered, and accepted, a home in a cottage on the Prince’s Duchy of Cornwall estate. He continued to enjoy close relations with Charles, even reading the homily at Charles’ father-in-law’s funeral in 2006.

All that high-level lobbying meant Ball escaped prosecution for the offence. He received only a police caution.

The bishop continued visiting public schools until 2007. A fresh investigation was opened in 2012, which led finally to his conviction for multiple and serious sexual abuse.

One of Ball’s victims, Neil Todd, attempted suicide three times before killing himself in 2012. In the recent church report Ball was portrayed as the victim, whereas the church offered little compassion for the vulnerable and young Todd, being “most interested in protecting itself.”

This is an echo of a much earlier report from Baroness Butler-Sloss, who in an earlier review of abuse by Church of England clergy admitted she was more interested in protecting the reputation of the church than anything else.

Theresa May, both as home secretary and today as Prime Minister, has staunchly refused to include abuse

accusations about the Kincora children’s home in Northern Ireland.

Why is Kincora so important? Because there is abundant evidence that MI5, MI6 and other British intelligence agencies know that many high-ranking British Establishment figures were personally involved in the abuse. These included Lord Mountbatten — great uncle and mentor of Prince Charles.

It was Mountbatten who introduced the notorious Jimmy Savile into the royal family and paedophile Savile too became a regular Buckingham Palace guest and a mentor, adviser and fixer to Prince Charles.

Savile was never prosecuted but he certainly raped, molested and abused over a thousand children, many of them helpless patients in hospitals to which Tory minister Edwina Currie had given him uncontrolled access.

May’s refusal to include the Kincora boys’ home in the general inquiry is certainly because it would expose the connection between paedophiles, MI6, MI5 and the royals.

Prince Charles often described Jimmy Savile as one of his best friends. He wanted Savile to be Prince Harry’s godfather — wiser counsel stopped that but the two men shared holidays and much else.

Royal patronage and the Establishment cover-up that came with it certainly shielded Savile. He was never prosecuted and when he died the BBC broadcasted sycophantic tributes. Only later was the ghastly truth revealed.

These Establishment cover-ups go back a long way. Many years ago respectful press barons keen to get honours would keep royal and political scandals from the public view.

 

By the 1960s and ’70s it was more difficult keeping these things under wraps. Some say the new wave of mass cover-ups started with a dossier compiled in the 1980s by the late Conservative MP Geoffrey Dickens and which he passed to the then-home secretary Leon Brittan.

Dickens, who died in 1995, told his family that he had details in the dossier that would blow the lid off the lives of powerful and famous child abusers.

In 1981, Dickens named the former British High Commissioner to Canada, Sir Peter Hayman, as a paedophile in the House of Commons. Parliamentary privilege meant he could not be sued for slander.

In October 1978, Hayman left a package of paedophilia-related material on a London bus. The police traced the package to him and then found his diaries describing sexual acts with children. Hayman was never charged.

In 1983, Dickens claimed there was a paedophile network involving big, big names — people in positions of power, influence and responsibility and threatened to name them too in the Commons.

In 1984 Dickens met with and gave his child abuse dossier to the home secretary, Brittan. Much later it would be revealed that Brittan too was himself an abuser.

Dickens received many threats for naming important and powerful paedophiles — threatening calls were followed by burglaries at his London home.

In 2013 Labour MP Tom Watson asked the Home Office for Dickens’s dossier. They told him it had been referred to the police at the time but had not been retained.

The matter was raised again in July 2014 by then Labour MP Simon Danczuk. Former director of public prosecutions Lord Macdonald said the circumstances in which the dossier had gone missing were alarming and recommended an inquiry.

Lord Brittan confirmed that he received what he described as a substantial bundle of papers from Dickens in 1983, when he was home secretary, and that he handed them all over to the relevant officials for further investigation.

A Home Office review said that information it received between 1979 and 1999 had been passed on to the relevant authorities.

Lord Brittan suggested his information had been passed to the police, but Scotland Yard told the Guardian it has no record of any investigation into the allegations.

According to the Telegraph, Mark Sedwill, then permanent secretary to the Home Office, admitted that it had lost, destroyed or simply not been able to find at least 114 potentially relevant files.

This has led to accusations of a high-level cover-up from some unexpected quarters. Senior Tory MP and former children’s minister Tim Loughton is one who has accused the Home Office of trying to hide the facts.

Lord Tebbitt has told BBC’s Andrew Marr he believes there had been a cover-up because at the time people instinctively tried to protect the system. “I think at the time most people would have thought that the Establishment, the system, was to be protected, and if a few things had gone wrong here and there it was more important to protect the system than to delve too far into it.”

May, who was home secretary for seven years, must take much of the responsibility for the most recent stages of the great cover-up.

She was finally persuaded in July 2014 to hold a review into many historic child abuse allegations. The independent inquiry into child sexual abuse finally tried to start work on July 9 2015.

May first appointed Baroness Butler-Sloss to chair the review despite the fact that she was the sister of Sir Michael Havers, who had as Tory attorney general suppressed the reporting of abuse claims in the 1980s. Butler-Sloss stood down as chair of the inquiry just a few days into the job.

The next chair was Fiona Woolf, who quickly resigned when it was discovered she was great friends with Lord Brittan and his wife.

It took some time to find the next chair. She was Justice Lowell Goddard, a New Zealand high court judge. When she resigned after less than 18 months she was replaced by Professor Alexis Jay. The inquiry was given new terms of reference but few believe it will ever produce any meaningful report.

In July 2015, previously lost Whitehall files were discovered. In one, dated November 1986, the then head of MI5, Sir Antony Duff, accepted a denial by an MP that he was a child-abuser, but noted that “the risk of political embarrassment to the government is rather greater than the security danger.”

The missing dossier has been linked with stalled investigations into the Elm Guest House child abuse scandal. Hayman was just one of hundreds of high-ranking visitors to this brothel near Barnes Bridge.

Prime minister Edward Heath, Liberal MP Cyril Smith, the Queen’s art historian Anthony Blunt, several other Conservative politicians, Buckingham Palace staff and a Labour MP were others on the long list of those accused of visiting.

In January 2015, an academic researcher found a file of allegations against unnatural sexual proclivities by high-ranking people. The document had gone to the prime minister Margaret Thatcher in the early 1980s. It was a classified report on Hayman’s original case but it was the handwritten notes by Thatcher that were most interesting — she was insisting that Hayman was not to be named.

She had written a “line to take” note saying: “Say authorities have carried out an investigation. Nothing to suggest that security prejudiced.”

The internet is full of everything from careful evidence-based case-studies to wild conspiracy theories. So how do we find the real truth?

Sadly we don’t because millions of pounds and thousands of work hours have produced enough smoke and mirrors to make sure that rare and dangerous commodity, the truth, will remain well hidden for many years to come. And that is just how those in the highest positions of power like it.

October 5 2017 – “Did Church keep abuse secret?” – The Argus

http://www.theargus.co.uk/news/local/15577806.Did_Church_keep_abuse_secret_/

Did Church keep abuse secret?

download

Former Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball

Former Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball

THE Anglican Church will be probed for potentially harbouring a “culture of secrecy” surrounding sexual abuse which allowed predators to offend unchallenged, an inquiry has heard.

The public inquiry into child sexual abuse is preparing to scrutinise the response of religious institutions to allegations of exploitation by the clergy.

This will include the disgraced former Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball.

Ball was jailed for 32 months in October 2015 after pleading guilty to a string of historical offences, including two counts of indecent assault.

Attitudes to sexuality will form part of the investigation into the Anglican Church, due to begin next March, a preliminary hearing of the inquiry was told.

It comes after the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, provoked debate by accusing the BBC of not handling reports of longstanding abuse with the same “integrity” as the Church.

Speaking at the new headquarters of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in central London, counsel to the inquiry Fiona Scolding QC said: “Culture is important because it shapes everything about the way that things are done within the organisation and it is both deeply embedded within an organisation and often difficult to change.”

Outlining the aims of the Anglican Church investigation, she said: “This will involve examining how far was there or is there a culture of secrecy within the Church.

“How far the Church’s approach to sex and sexuality contributed or contributes to difficulties with cultural change.

“How far does the hierarchical nature of the Church create a power imbalance which could inhibit the reporting of abuse.”

Ms Scolding said this would not only stretch to attitudes of the past, but also cover the current practices of the Church and any future reforms it has planned.

The preliminary hearing also heard 184,020 pages of evidence had been received for examination.

Around 100,000 have so far been reviewed by inquiry officials with 22,000 of these found to be duplicates and 35,000 deemed irrelevant.

Article of Faith, an independent review of how the Church handled Ball’s case, was published earlier this year.

Chaired by Dame Moira Gibb, the review found “Ball’s conduct has caused serious and enduring damage to the lives of many men”.

“Church Protected Paedophile Bishop” – The Argus – Front Page – June 23 2017

IMG_8551.JPG

http://www.theargus.co.uk/news/15366174.Church_helped_to_cover_up_sexual_abuse/

Church helped to cover up sexual abuse

THE Church of England “colluded” with and helped to hide the long-term sexual abuse of young men by one its bishops rather than help his victims, the Archbishop of Canterbury has said.

The Most Rev Justin Welby’s statement came as the Church published Abuse Of Faith, an independent review of how it handled the case of Peter Ball, the former Bishop of Lewes who was jailed for 32 months at the Old Bailey in 2015 after pleading guilty to a string of historical offences, including two counts of indecent assault.

The review, chaired by Dame Moira Gibb, found that “Ball’s conduct has caused serious and enduring damage to the lives of many men”.

It stated: “Peter Ball betrayed his Church and abused individual followers of that Church.

“The Church at its most senior levels and over many years supported him unwisely and displayed little care for his victims.

“Much of what we have described took place in different times and should be viewed from that perspective.

“But such perverse and sustained abuse by a senior figure in the Church and the Church’s failure to safeguard so many boys and young men still casts a long shadow.”

During his time as bishop, Ball hand-picked 18 vulnerable victims to commit acts of “debasement” in the name of religion, such as praying naked at the altar and encouraging them to submit to beatings, his trial heard.

The Archbishop described the report as “harrowing reading”, adding: “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.”

He restated his “unreserved apology” to the victims who had been brave enough to come forward, adding: “There are no excuses whatsoever for what took place and the systematic abuse of trust perpetrated by Peter Ball over the decades.”

There is criticism in the review of Lord Carey, who was the Archbishop of Canterbury at the time, and other senior figures in the Church, saying the Church was “most interested in protecting itself”.

The review states that Lambeth Palace’s actions, especially in failing to pass on six letters of allegations to the police, while giving them one which was of “least concern”… “must give rise to a perception of deliberate concealment”.

The review points out that the Church’s management of those seven letters, containing allegations against Ball, was perhaps “its greatest failure in these events”.

The NSPCC spoke of its disgust at the findings.

A spokesperson said: “It is utterly disgraceful to discover that collusion at the heart of the Church of England led to the abuse of so many young men and boys. Abuse can happen in any institution or walk of life and we must ensure it can never be covered up by the powerful. Abuse in our most revered institutions must be exposed and investigated, offenders brought to justice, and victims given confidence to come forward.”

ARCHBISHOP CALLS ON LORD CAREY TO STAND DOWN FOLLOWING RELEASE OF DAMNING REPORT

THE archbishop of Canterbury has asked his predecessor George Carey to step down as an honorary assistant bishop.

Lord Carey was singled out for criticism in yesterday’s report, with it stating he was more concerned with protecting the church rather than the victims.

In particular, it refers to Lambeth Palace’s failure to pass on six letters of allegations to the police.

Instead it forwarded one letter which was described as being of “least concern”.

The report stated this “must give rise to a perception of deliberate concealment”. It added that management of the seven letters was perhaps the church’s “greatest failure”.

It stated: “The letters came from a range of families and individuals quite independently of each other. They raised concerns which were all either indirectly or precisely suggestive of sexual impropriety, or worse, by Ball.

“These were not people who were at war with the Church or had any axe to grind. In fact, some of the correspondents go to great lengths to try to avoid rancour and find a constructive way forward.”

The report found that Lord Carey was significantly involved in the way the Church treated victim Neil Todd in 1992/1993. Despite years of abuse in Sussex, Ball was able to leave the diocese in 1992 to take up his post as Bishop of Gloucester.

A year later, the then 16-year-old trainee monk Neil Todd prompted a police investigation which led to Ball’s resignation from the clergy. Ball escaped with a police caution in 1993 for an act of gross indecency against Mr Todd who took his own life in 2012.

Lord Carey described the paedophile bishop as “basically innocent” and said he had a “very high” regard for him in a September 1993 letter to Ball’s brother Michael.

The review, which said Lord Carey had played a leading role in enabling Ball to return to ministry, described this comment as “alarming”. It added: “Ball was basically guilty and had admitted that. Lord Carey was also aware that the Church had received further allegations of potentially criminal actions by Ball.”

Current Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said the review made for harrowing reading.

Steven Croft, the bishop of Oxford, said Mr Welby had written to Lord Carey asking him to “carefully consider his position”. Mr Croft and Lord Carey will meet “in the coming days for that conversation. In the meantime he has voluntarily agreed to step back from public ministry”.

FURTHER INFORMATION
The Guardian