Diocese of Southwark responds to press reports on abuse allegations


As soon as concerns about Jonathan Fletcher’s behaviour were brought to the attention of Southwark, the statutory authorities, including the police, were informed. He was asked and agreed to withdraw from all aspects of his ministry exercised under his Permission to
Officiate (PTO) which means he was no longer able to minister in the Church of England.

Once the diocese was informed there was no criminal case to answer, the Bishop of
Southwark commissioned an independent safeguarding assessment based on information available at the time.

It concluded that whilst there was no evidence from the assessment that Jonathan Fletcher posed a significant sexual or physical risk to children there was a risk of him behaving towards vulnerable adults who may be seeking his spiritual guidance in a manner which may be harmful. In consequence, he has not been allowed to officiate in the Church of England since and formal contact has been made with him to explain this.

We have been alerted to further disclosures about Jonathan Fletcher’s behaviour and the diocese is looking at taking further formal action working closely with the National
Safeguarding Team and Emmanuel, Wimbledon.

The Church takes all safeguarding issues very seriously and the Bishop on behalf of the
diocese issues an unreserved apology to all those affected by these unacceptable
behaviours. Support is being offered to anyone who comes forward.

As with all serious safeguarding situations, a lessons learnt review will be carried out
according to the House of Bishops guidance.