Madeleine Urion, “On Responding to Survivors: A Reflection on John 12:1-8”
‘When the sexual sin of those among us casts a shadow upon the body of Christ, the urge is to control the story and minimize the elements that are most damaging to the institution.
How do we respond to survivors?
Unless we truly listen to those who are telling us they are hurting, all we are doing is further participating in their dehumanization—the same kind of dehumanization Judas offered to Mary.’
Martha Tatarnic, “A ground-level response to ACCtoo”
‘The conversation in this small Zoom group was honest and painful. They represented a variety of ages and stages in our congregation, from those who had been part of our Anglican church since birth to those who had quite recently found a home with us. They talked about Jesus and how clearly their walk with him told them that they needed to join their voices with those who had been hurt. They wondered how and why so many names of those in leadership in our church might not be on that letter standing with the survivors too.’
Kyle Norman, “Bearing one another in Love”
‘The cure for hypocrisy, according to Nouwen, is accountability. As Christian people, we can only step away from hypocrisy by listening to each other, and by valuing each others’ voices and experiences. Accountability brings us together and unites us under the shared act of turning to Christ as Saviour and Lord. This ensures that we do not say to one another “I do not need you” (1 Corinthians 12:21). To embrace accountability is to embrace another as the very presence of Christ. Any community unwilling to enter this habit steps away from God’s vision for church.’
Bishop Andrew Asbil
‘In recent weeks hashtag #ACCToo has drawn our attention once again to the issue of sexual misconduct in the Church. The open letter signed by almost 400 people expresses specific concern about confidentiality surrounding an article that was being prepared for print in the Anglican Journal. At the heart of this letter is the deep concern for the Church and especially for those who have been abused, sexually assaulted and exploited.’
PWRDF Board of Directors
‘The Board of PWRDF strongly encourages General Synod and the Dioceses to review and strengthen policies and procedures that will ensure investigation, accountability and confidentiality in ways that protect and affirm survivors of sexual abuse and promote safe churches and workplaces.
The Board of PWRDF affirms the personal choice of all concerned individuals to sign onto the #ACCtoo letter including staff, Board members, and other volunteers.’
Bishop Todd Townshend
‘Along with so many of you, I feel deep grief when hearing about the continuing pain experienced by those who have survived sexual misconduct in the church. This is amplified when the same people are re-traumatized by the processes that attempt to respond to such abuse. …
‘Our Christian faith compels us to stand with any person who has been abused, especially those who have been hurt by the church. One very important way to do this is to make sure that our diocesan policies and practices for responding to abuses are as good as they can be.’
‘I and the staff of PWRDF are grieved by the conversations around sexual misconduct and breach of survivor confidentiality described on the website for #ACCtoo involving the Anglican Church of Canada. As an organization that strives to prevent gender-based violence and empower women and girls, PWRDF stands with the survivors and prays for their healing.
PWRDF affirms that survivors of sexual abuse should be believed and that cases of sexual abuse should be investigated and handled in a respectful, confidential and fair manner that does not cause further harm or trauma.’
Scott Jerome Potter
‘”Members of Council pray that these overtures may bear fruit, and/or that alternative pathways may be opened.”
As a member of CoGS present during the debate on the above Statement, I understood “and/or that alternative pathways may be opened” to indicate the desire of CoGS that the three survivors or their representative[s] have access to the full report independent of such a meeting. I hope that that was not another miscommunication.’
‘I didn’t sign earlier because I wanted to see what CoGS’s response would be before signing, and it felt weird to be signing a letter that was technically addressed to me. But I can’t just sit back and keep quiet anymore. I can’t let the statement from CoGS be the only thing coming from me on this. I want to publicly say that I did not support the CoGS reply to ACCtoo. I’m part of why the CoGS statement was “not unanimous”. I didn’t support it because it isn’t enough. We did not endorse the three calls to action in ACCtoo’s letter; we didn’t even address all of them.’
Andrew Stephens-Rennie, “Ash Wednesday, Psalm 51, and #ACCtoo”
‘Here’s the thing that I’ve been struggling with in putting this Psalm and the ACCToo letter together. The implications of the letter and the layers of systemic disfunction it points to—clergy sexual abuse, the trauma, how one part of the system says “it’s safe here,” while another part crushes the story, breaks trust, sharing details with the abusers against the victims’ consent, capped off with thin apologies and weak responses—have all been done in secret. Each of them seems to play to a logic of “against God only have I sinned.”’