It is a source of deep grief to me that children and other vulnerable people have been subjected to abuse and mistreatment by clergy and other church leaders within the Anglican Church in Sydney.

To those who have experienced such abuse, I offer my deep and sincere apology. You should never have experienced the things that happened to you. The people who treated you in that way were wrong to do so.  You were not to blame.  Those who abused you exploited their position, and betrayed your trust.  Their actions were inexcusable and have no place in the life of the church or the community.

Often, when abuse was reported to those in authority, we failed you again.  Reports were not believed, not treated seriously or not acted upon.  On behalf of the Anglican Church in Sydney, I apologise. We owed you so much more.

Having listened to and learned from the survivors of abuse, I know that the impact can be very deep and last for a very long time. I know that it is not only the victims of abuse who have suffered, but often, their family members as well. I’m so very sorry that you have suffered in this way.  The Office of the Director of Safe Ministry of the Sydney Anglican Church is ready to assist you or your family members if that would be helpful to you, at this time or in the future.  You can find further information about that on this website under the tab, “Seeking Support”.

The Sydney Anglican Church has adopted thorough procedures for screening and assessing those who exercise ministry, or who seek ordination in the Diocese, as well as conducting regular training for clergy and volunteers in safe ministry, especially with children and other vulnerable people.  There is no place for sexual abuse in the Church and we are committed to doing everything we can to make sure that the things that happened to you never happen again.”

Kanishka Raffel – Archbishop of Sydney
September 2021

History of Archbishops apologies

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