“Many of the victims have asked why the archbishop did not reach out to them immediately after he says he learned of the abuse. ‘The silence has been deafening’…”
*** WARNING: This post contains some graphic information. ***
Two weeks ago The New York Times published an explosive article entitled Harvey Weinstein Paid Off Sexual Harassment Accusers for Decades. Since the story broke, media outlets have been covering this and related stories non-stop. Now those who were childhood stars are coming forward claiming that pedophilia is the number one problem in Hollywood. [Actually, they’ve been sounding the alarm for quite some time but have been ignored for the most part, until now…]
Needless-to-say, Dee and I are not at all surprised. We have been researching these topics for close to a decade now and have discovered that the young and innocent members of society — both male and female — are extremely vulnerable in both secular and religious settings.
In the wake of the Weinstein debacle, The New York Times is setting its sights on a scandal that they believe concerns the Archbishop of Canterbury. Several days ago, the NYT published an article entitled Doubts Grow Over Archbishop’s Account of When He Knew of Abuse. That would be alleged abuse at the hands of John Smyth, a British barrister who purportedly carried out “sadomasochistic physical abuse” on young men in the 1970s and ’80s. (link)
Here is a screen shot of the crux of the NYT article:
At long last, those claiming to have been victims as boys are coming forward to challenge the archbishop.That takes a lot of courage!
If you are unfamiliar with this developing situation ‘across the pond’, here is a 10-1/2 minute video that will help bring you up to speed.
Dee and I first became aware of these allegations against John Smyth earlier this year, and we shared what we were able to find out at the time in two posts (see links below).
Now that The New York Times is investigating, they stand a good chance of getting to the bottom of what happened.
The NYT article includes some interesting information about Justin Welby, the current archbishop of Canterbury. When he was in his 20s, he worked in Christian holiday camps. According to the NYT article:
The archbishop, 61, was working abroad in 1982, when an internal investigation by an influential Christian charity supported allegations of sadistic practices by John Smyth, a prominent lawyer and evangelical leader who ran the camps.
The results of that investigation were never made public, and the allegations were dismissed when they were first reported to the British police in 2013 because Mr. Smyth had moved to Africa and was no longer in the country’s jurisdiction. It was not until Channel 4 news disclosed the accusations in a report earlier this year that a criminal investigation was started.
The 1982 inquiry, by Mark Ruston, a close friend of the future archbishop who has since died, was conducted on behalf of the Iwerne Trust, the Christian charity that oversaw the camps. The trust, which was chaired by Mr. Smyth, was a part of a network of camps inspired by the Anglican clergyman E. J. H. Nash, who recruited boys from Britain’s elite schools in the hope of evangelizing them.
The report accused Mr. Smyth of subjecting at least 22 teenage boys to savage beatings in his garden shed, with the intent of purging them of perceived sins such as masturbation and pride.
The NYT article details why those hurt by Smyth believe Welby knew what was happening. Smyth was …
banished first to Zimbabwe in 1982 and ultimately made his way to South Africa, where he faced new accusations in both countries about mistreated boys.
We encourage you to read the entire NYT article to understand the details of what is being alleged against the current archbishop.
Our hope and prayer is that the truth will finally come to light regarding what John Smyth did to those young boys and whether Justin Welby knew about it decades earlier.