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Church of England Head Says It 'Colluded With' Sex Abuse

A church report into the case of a former bishop convicted of indecent assault was "harrowing reading," the Archbishop of Canterbury

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    Church of England Head Says It 'Colluded With' Sex Abuse
    Getty Images, File
    This July 16, 2008, file photo shows the Canterbury Cathedral in England, the spiritual home of the leader of the Anglican Communion. A new report found that a former bishop's conduct "caused serious and enduring damage to the lives of many men," but was hidden by the church.

    The head of the Church of England has said that the institution "colluded" with and helped to hide the long-term sexual abuse of young men by one of its former bishops.

    Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, made the statement Thursday as the church published a review of how it handled the case of former bishop Peter Ball, who was convicted and imprisoned in 2015 after pleading guilty to offenses including two counts of indecent assault.

    Welby said the report was "harrowing reading" and that the church didn't help those who were brave enough to come forward.

    The report said Ball's conduct "caused serious and enduring damage to the lives of many men," and that "the church at its most senior levels and over many years supported him unwisely."

    Pope Francis Comments on Sex Abuse in Church

    [NATL-PHI] WATCH: Pope Francis Comments on Sex Abuse in Church
    Pope Francis met with victims of clergy sex abuse Sunday morning and vowed "careful oversight" of the sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church to ensure "all responsible will be held accountable."
    (Published Sunday, Sept. 27, 2015)