(Telegraph) - Child abuse has gone unchecked in the Church of England for decades amid a cover up by bishops, secret papers have revealed.
Information that could have prevented abuse has been "lost or damaged", concerns about individuals have been ignored and allegations have not been recorded. It means that the Church has no idea how many paedophiles are in its midst.
Lawyers warned last night that the Church faces a crisis as catastrophic as the one that engulfed the Roman Catholic Church and cost it millions of pounds in damages.
Richard Scorer, a solicitor who has specialised in child abuse cases, said that the Church of England's mistakes amounted to "an appalling, shocking level of negligence" that is likely to leave it open to claims from victims who have been too afraid to speak out in the past. The Church is to launch an urgent investigation on an unprecedented scale.
It will look at the records of thousands of clergy – including those who have retired – church employees, lay workers and volunteers dating back decades in an attempt to expose those who have previously escaped prosecution and identify those who pose "current risks".
Dioceses will appoint independent reviewers with access to all of their personnel files. These are due to be examined over an 18-month period.
However, the internal Church documents – leaked to The Sunday Telegraph – show that even if churchwardens, who are lay officials, are found to have previous allegations against them, the Church has no power to suspend them...
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Saturday, October 20, 2007
Anglicans Rocked By Sex-Scandal & Cover-Up, Pedophile Priests Go Unchecked
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: I told you this would come. Now here it is. The sex-abuse and cover-up scandal has hit the Protestant world. It starts in the Anglican Communion (as if circumstance weren't bad enough there already). I'm certain it will soon move its way through other denominations. Now let's see how much play this gets in the media. If the mainstream news doesn't give this just as much attention as it did the Catholic Church scandal, then we'll know just how anti-Catholic the mainstream media is...