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Nine O’Clock service – statement

South Yorkshire Police has announced today that Christopher Brain has been summonsed to Sheffield Magistrates court. A statement confirms that Brain is facing one count of rape and 33 counts of indecent assault, alleged to have been committed between 1981 and 1995 while he was leading the Nine O’Clock Service in Sheffield. The full release can be read on the link below.

The Diocese of Sheffield has been working with the Police and Church Of England National Safeguarding Team throughout this investigation. We cannot comment further on the specifics of the charges while the legal process takes place.

Bishop Sophie Jelley, Bishop of Doncaster and Acting Bishop of Sheffield, has said:

“We understand just how much courage it takes for victims and survivors to come forward and we commend their bravery. We are committed to working with them in the way they need, both to enable their support and the support of those who have not yet felt able to come forward. We would strongly encourage any who are affected by today’s news to contact us here at the Diocese of Sheffield or to go directly to the police. Abuse of any kind is a source of great sorrow and especially in relation to the church. In the Diocese of Sheffield, we are working hard to try and ensure churches are safe and welcoming for all people. This is a responsibility we take extremely seriously.”

We have a dedicated webpage for anyone who may need to discuss the personal impact of this news. Our safeguarding team are available to offer support and advice, and there are various support services you can explore on our dedicated webpages: Nine O’Clock service.

South Yorkshire Police: Priest summonsed over multiple non-recent sexual offences in Sheffield