Following a long series of private and public allegations against Church Society, its staff and Council members, and against the Church Society Trust (the patronage body for Church Society parishes), the Council have decided that a full account of all our interactions with the individuals and parish involved should be published.
It had been our intention to commission an external independent review, but following repeated public calls for a direct response to the allegations instead, the Council agreed that we should make an exception to our normal policy of not responding publicly.
A full account of our relationship and interactions with the Church Society Trust parish of St Peter’s Stapenhill, and with the incumbent and his wife, the Revd Michael and Mrs Kate Andreyev, can be downloaded here.
As well as addressing the continued public accusations of bullying and abuse, this paper responds to all 26 of the points raised here insofar as they relate to Church Society.
An executive summary of the full report is also available here.
Our purpose in publishing these papers is transparency about the wider situation, including the experiences of the congregation, as well as Church Society’s role. We have been deeply concerned that much of the content and tone of online engagement has served to propagate incomplete and/or inaccurate information.
Church Society is committed to continually reviewing and improving our policies and practices to ensure that Church Society members, delegates at our conferences, members and incumbents of Church Society Trust parishes, Church Society staff, Council members and other volunteers, and everyone with whom we interact are kept safe and treated with dignity and compassion.
We recognise that some may consider that we should have continued to not make a public response, and some may wish that we had taken action sooner.
As the paper and summary make clear, the Bishop of Derby is the duly constituted authority in this case, with respect to both employment and safeguarding.
It is not the intention of Church Society to comment further on these matters. But we continue to pray for everyone in the church in Stapenhill, during these very difficult pastoral circumstances.
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