From the Revd Mark Nash-Williams
Sir, - Susanna Gridley (27 September) states
that "The Church of England does not appear to acknowledge this
spiritual abuse," and, the following week, the letter from Simon
Bass and Dr Lisa Oakley reaffirms that "the C of E does not
acknowledge that spiritual abuse exists."
But Responding Well to those who have been sexually
abused (2011) addresses spiritual abuse in section B12. The
paragraph "Those people who are abused by clergy suffer profound
spiritual abuse. The abuse shatters the victim's relationship and
trust in the Church, severely impacts on the ability to maintain
any connection with the sacred, and creates profound confusion and
doubt about God's love for the victim" seems to address Ms
Gridley's concern precisely.
Whether spiritual abuse is adequately addressed is another
matter; but it is at least acknowledged as a serious issue.
St Mary's Vicarage, Stamfordham
Newcastle Upon Tyne NE18 0QQ