The darkest cloud has a silver lining

Bishop-Peter-BallLast Thursday an 80 page report entitled ‘An Abuse of Faith’ was published focusing on the failings of the Church of England in the case of Peter Ball, one time Bishop of Lewes. The Author, Dame Moira Gibb was Director of Social Services in Kensington & Chelsea for part of her career. The report reveals shocking information about the way in which Peter and his twin brother Michael worked together to strengthen their influence and careers. As a result of the report the Archbishop of Canterbury has called on George Carey who was Archbishop between 1991 and 2002 to step down as an honorary Bishop due to his failings to address the actions of Ball when he was the Archbishop. I arrived in Brighton in 1978 and one of the people I met early on in my time at Brighton Polytechnic was a monk who was the Church of England chaplain, his name was Michael Ball and his brother was Bishop of Lewes at that time. I recall how quick Michael Ball was to criticise the theology of those he disagreed with, and as I listened to him, I concluded that we had little in common so our contact was short lived, primarily because he was being critical of people I knew and who I respected. The report is not easy reading, particularly as I have met nearly all of the people referred to within its pages, however on the last page there is one redeeming paragraph entitled ‘Good Practice’. This paragraph makes it clear that the survivors of abuse by people such as Peter Ball commended Sussex Police for their responses in their time of need. The report also acknowledges the good work carried out by Chichester Diocese Safeguarding Team in supporting survivors throughout the legal proceedings. It is good to know that despite all of the evil perpetrated by Peter Ball and the way in which the Church handled things in the past that there are people working for the church who are recognised for their goodness.


About ianchisnall

I have a passion to see public policy made accessible everyone who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as in policies on health services and strategic planning.
This entry was posted in Church Teaching, Policing, Youth Issues and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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