I have enabled comments on Dad’s site so that anyone who would like to say anything or discuss anything that he has written may do so.
Thank you for sharing your info. I truly appreciate
your efforts and I will be waiting for your further
write ups thanks once again.
I stuffed up. I thought I was enabling comments, but in fact all I was doing was inserting contact forms into posts. I am rectifying this now and will post again explaining how to make comments on older posts soon.
I had known you for just a short time Lewis and enjoy your quick wit along side the headings of your post. Fly free Lewis, you are in no pain now. My condolences to all the family and friends of Lewis, May you rest in peace. Ann
Thank you for your lovely comments.
Dad really liked your work too. I think I added a link to his site on the Links page, but if I’ve forgotten, and want me to, let me know and I’ll do so.
The National Library of Australia are to evaluate Lewis’ website for preservation in their PANDORA Archive. I hope this is ok with you. Since 1996, their PANDORA Archive selects, collects and archives copies of Australian web sites and online publications to ensure long-term access to Australian documentary heritage, making most Archive content freely accessible to anyone, anywhere in the world. Details:
Email 4 February 2014 from email@example.com
Enquiry NLAref81386 regarding website of Mr. Lewis Blayse at lewisblayse.net
Dear Ms –
Thank you for the suggestion of this site. It looks like an important site.
We will take a look at the site and evaluate it for selection into the Pandora archive.
By the way, in recognition of its significance the PANDORA Archive was placed on UNESCO Memory of the World Australian Register in 2004.
Preservation of your dad’s work is important to me and others on this page and I’m looking at other destinations too.
Thank you so very much for what you’ve done 🙂 We’re all deeply touched and very proud that the site will be archived for future generations. Dad very much wanted for the site to be of use to future historians and now this is certain to be the case.
I have just received a phone call from Commissioner James Condon of the Salvation Army, informing me that they are paying for Lewis’ funeral.
Aletha and Sylvia and the other family members, bless you for being there for this profoundly gifted and committed man, your father and friend and inspiration. Now he is our inspiration and thank you for sharing him with us at this immensely sad time. It was very special to see Aletha on the 7.30 report last night and so beautifully expressing that he was in a good place before he passed.
I think this is great that the Salvos are acquiring some conscience, at long last, and funding the Funeral. BUT, if they are truly contritious and moral minded they will honor Lewis plea from 18 Aug 2003’s Four Corners show (The Homies):
“LEWIS BLAYSE: If anybody is to be compensated, I’d say it was my family, because they, you know… You compensate a breadwinner if he’s killed at work or something. If they’re psychologically killed…the family should still be compensated.”
Thank you Beth and snapspaner.
Time will tell regarding Dad’s wish, but I am fighting on this front and believe I will succeed.
A truly great Australian,now touring the heavens.R.I.P. Lewis .
Thank you, Jay.
Dear Aletha, Sylvia, and the Blayse family in fact and online,
I first knew of Lewis at the time of the NSW Special Commission of Inquiry when I began to tweet in support of DCI Peter Fox after revelations on the ABC. I subscribed to his blog, thank you for keeping it active.
I loved it when Lewis’ latest blog landed in my inbox at some ungodly hour of the mornings, as it was his habit to write then from the after-effects of Salvation Army “hell-hole home” atrocities, thank you Leonie S. I loved his habit of using the right word and the right sense to scythe through the crap of the day – and it was nose-high in New South Wales at the time of the Special Commission – perps of all professions tried it on but Lewis’ penetratingly accurate insights, observations and plain old knowledge was across the last scent of it. With references!
Time without number, Lewis’ blog arrived just as I felt despair at ever understanding or combating the horrendous machinations of Church, State and Law, and it kept me going by simplifying the War Crime proportions of Child Sexual Abuse in Australia. Crucially, it allowed me some understanding of it from the victims’ points of view. I’m grateful. The essence of Lewis’ writing lies not only in it’s value to victims of child sexual abuse as a voice for the voiceless, but because of the historic nature of his reporting and analysis.
Lewis was aided in this cruel subject by having the finest eye for the ridiculous I’ve ever known: pictures from the Vatican PR site of the latest papal fraud surrounded by children at the bottom of blogs “in the interests of fair and balanced reporting” are hilarious and on point.
I’ll miss you Lewis! The elegance of your wit, your mind and your mathematical soul stay with me. Condolences to all.
Diana First1 on Twitter / Sheena
Well said Diana
Thank you, Peter.
Thanks again for all the re-postings you did. Dad was always pleased.
Yes, he had an eye for the ridiculous. It was how he maintained his sanity. Sometimes we’d be falling about the floor laughing at the pompousness of some of these people. It helped us both keep going.
He also felt that everyone needed a bit of light relief occasionally, and I also think there’s something to be said for that.
I am very sad to hear the news today about the passing of Lewis. What an amazing and courageous man. I did not know Lewis personally however I have been recently following this site and saw this mornings feature on abc news. It mad me so sad that Lewis and so many other boys were treated so poorly as young kids. What an absolute trooper. The world has lost something great! Kathryn Brown
What a sad loss, a brave soul and strong warrior. My thoughts are with the family.
logged on to ABC website tonight to see the news of Lewin’s death. So sad, please accept my condolences. He is my cousin, his mum Jean ( Jane ) was older sister to my mum Nell Bull ( nee Chambers ) . My family lived nearby to Alkira & we didn’t know Lewin was there until he showed up in my brother’s class & told Peter they were related. Mum & Dad then went to the home to enquire about his well being & as a result he joined us for some holidays and outings. Later we heard snippets about his work in academia and politics. By the way my mum, Nell is still alive and well in Wynnum. I guess she is your great aunt. She has had a lifetime of charity work, more recently fundraising for the Phillipine cyclone victims. She is very proud of Lewin for what he achieved.
Thank you, Ken.
Rest in Peace Lewis.
May your light beam forever!
Thank you, Robyn.
My sincere condolences to a foot soldier I never got to meet I pray his soul will be watching over all of us and help guide us all to justice and dignity for all of us.
RIP Lewis Blayse
Thank you. I feel he is still with us, and I feel his energy in me.
7.30 Report filmed an interview with Lewis on Friday. Apparently he was in fine form. It is scheduled to be broadcast tonight. ABC1 7.30 pm Nationally. For those unable to watch, a link will be posted afterwards.
I can confirm that News 24 has announced on-air today Lewis’ passing.
I have contacted 4 Corners as well.
I have also contacted a very senior person in the Salvation Army and said that they should do as Lewis requested in the 4 Corners Homies program – compensate his family.
The person to whom I spoke said that they were aware of Lewis’ passing and “were in contact.”
Let’s see if there is some discovered honesty!!!
What a brave, inspirational man.
Thank you, Beth.
I am so sad to have learned of Lewis Blayse’s passing. I think it is generous of Aletha to invite us to contribute during this sad time. Thank you Aletha.
Thank you Lewis for your crucial and courageous contribution to this living history. Let us be inspired by your most worthy quest for justice.
Thank you, Adele.
In addition to my personal E Mail to Sylvia & Aletha I would like to post the following.
Like so many I was a daily follower of Lewis’ blogs & hoped to meet him. A number of people have suggested that I was responsible for the Royal Commission. Nothing could be further from the truth. I will forever reject that & would have liked to have told Lewis this;
My voice was just one, added to the many. The real credit belongs to those like Lewis Blayse who campaigned for years, sometimes decades for it to happen. Their endeavours to ensure something was done to stop institutional child sexual abuse was tireless & often at great personal cost. It is people like Lewis Blayse that are the real heroes. The Lewis Blayse’s of this world who never allowed their voices to be silenced. It is they who spoke so loud & irresistibly that their demands were no longer able to be ignored. It is to the Lewis Blayse’s of this world that the real credit for the Royal Commission rightly belongs. For that I personally thank him. Rest at peace Lewis & know what you set out to accomplish you so magnificently achieved.
To Sylvia & Aletha my deepest & sincerest condolences. He will be greatly missed by so many of us.
You both have every reason to be proud of Lewis & what HE achieved.
Thank you, Peter.
Dad would be proud to read what you wrote.
Despite your modesty, please know he thought you were a champion, and he said that of very few people.
Sincere condolences from the team at the Find & Connect web resource.
Thank you, Sal, and thank you for including his material on your site.
I will just pass on a couple of beautiful comments from Sylvia, Lewis’ wife and Aletha, his daughter. I found them helpful and others may as well.
“He said to our daughter yesterday that we have won. Let it be so. Let the message that he wanted to get out, on behalf of the kids in the Homes, be heard all that much more strongly now. Let his words resonate until no more children are ever hurt like this again.”
“His family and others who knew him personally knew him as man of unmatched gentleness, compassion, and integrity. His family’s love for him was as great as anyone could possibly love. We are so blessed and grateful to have shared our lives with him.”
Both seem to be coping well, but they are not up to posting their own thoughts at this stage. Hopefully they will do so in the future. They really want to see this site continue Lewis’ work and appreciate everyone posting here, so please don’t be shy.
Nicky, in the very first comment here at the bottom, Aletha says she wasn’t sure if she enabled comments for all posts or just this one. I’ve checked and it appears commenting is not enabled for any other post here. When the time is right, perhaps you could help Aletha figure out how to enable comments for all the posts. It is a very valuable resource that Lewis created. Although the Royal Commission attempted to silence him, his voice here will continue to cry for justice. For years to come people will find this blog and comment on articles.
In keeping with Lewis’s excellent analysis on this blog, here is a fitting quote from the author of Trauma & Recovery, Judith Herman, describing the way in which perpetrators seek to control the disclosures and discourses of abuse:
“In order to escape accountability for his crimes, the perpetrator does everything in his power to promote forgetting. Secrecy and silence are the perpetrator’s first line of defense. If secrecy fails, the perpetrator attacks the credibility of his victim. If he cannot silence her absolutely, he tries to make sure no-one listens… After every atrocity one can expect to hear the same predictable apologies: it never happened; the victim lies; the victim exaggerates; the victim brought it on herself; and in any case it is time to forget the past and move on.”
It was definitely Aletha’s intention to enable comments on all pages, so rest assured we will help her make it happen.
Excellent quote. Interesting that the description of a perpetrators’ behaviour exactly describes the actions of the catholic church and other abusive institutions. I have always considered the institution a perpetrator of abuse, not just the abusive individuals. Let’s all start calling them that.
Someone else recommended that book to me on the weekend. I must read it.
You have an excellent grip on their strategies. Dad worked hard to expose such strategies too.
I hope that through your excellent work, you will continue also to help people see through the spin, the falsities, and the sheer lack of willingness to be truly humble and truly understand what has happened and make up for it and make sure it really never happens again. No more glib promises.
I originally knew of Lewis as Sylvia’s husband, and fellow survivor. But once Chris Wilding introduced me to his amazing blog I realised he was something very special, even among the incredible people you meet in the survivor community.
I was devastated by the news that Lewis had missed his chance to appear at the Royal Commission. Clearly it had been important to him. He had worked all his life to get us all to this place, and he above everyone deserved the chance to be heard.
But in the days since his death, hearing from his family and those who spoke to him just before he died, it is clear that Lewis had accepted that his role in this fight had been played, and he had achieved what he set out to do.
I don’t think he found it a hardship to leave us now.
We are the ones who will struggle to imagine a world without him still in it. Even those of us who never had the chance to meet him.
The fact that Lewis was alive impacted so many people in positive ways. He contributed significantly to making this country, this world, a better, more humane place. With his intelligence and determination he could have achieved anything. Despite the abuse, and the suffering, things he could not change, his was a life well spent.
We should all aspire to be able to say the same about ourselves.
I miss my father the writer and activist almost as much as I miss him as my wonderful, loving, and infinitely patient father.
But people like you are doing excellent work, and will continue to do so.
I am shocked to hear of Lewis Blayse’s passing.
I have never met him but have read his blog daily during the Royal Commission and forwarded it to many,
I am humbled by his contribution to the analysis of process and his communication of deep feeling.
I send condolescences and regards to the family who must be equally special..
Deepest sympathy and greatest respect to all
Thank you, Jane.
Thank you Lewis. Enjoy the universe.
Thank you, Emma.
A sad loss of a brave man.
Thank you, Clive.
We are sorry to learn of Lewis’s sudden death please accept our condolences we have a lot to be thankful to Lewis and his family in regards to him speaking out about the crimes committed in the horrible hell hole Homes run by the Salvation Army
Thank you Lewis for your blog and breaking the silence on Salvation army abuse and use of children supposedly in their care
CLAN has been contacted by someone who wishes to donate some money towards the cost of the funeral
If you would like to accept this contribution please contact me
Thank you, Leonie.
I wish he had been able to write as much on the Anglican Church as he did on the Salvation Army. He had much to say on that, and was going to outline what happened to him at the St George’s Orphanage at the appropriate time.
But things will go on, and people will never stop speaking out.
I appreciate being able to comment on the work of Lewis.Blayse. Thank you Aletha for making this possible. I, like many others whose comments appear on this site, have never had the privilege of meeting with Lewis but until his tragic passing I always imagined that some day it might be possible. I discovered Lewis’ Blog when I was googling for information about the Royal Commission. I then subscribed to his newsletter and discovered the brilliance of his writing. It was eloquent and poignant in that it was coming from one who suffered at the hands of monsters who have been dragged out of their dark place into the light. .My great disappointment is that Lewis was not granted that last wish, that he appear before The Royal Commission, about which he spoke much. I hope that Lewis’ name is brought before The Commission with sensitivity and that proper recognition be given to his courageous untiring efforts. Thank you Lewis.
May I take this opportunity to offer my heartfelt condolences to the family.
ps Aletha Thank you for keeping the site active
Thank you, Bruce.
I will continue to work on the site when I can, including to finish the categorisation of his posts that we had started to do, but never got to finish. I’m hoping this helps people down the line at various times.
Condolences to you and the family, Aletha..
Lewis was one of the best bloggers dealing with information coming from the Royal Commission into Institutionalised Child Abuse and I, and many others, are going to miss the detail he put into his work in his aim to bring justice for those who were abused at the hands of the Salvation Army.
Lewis’s quality saw me reblogging his material on several occasions and I only wish I had found his site earlier. I have reblogged his recent post about the ABC program which should be available on iView for the next 3 weeks. It will give folk an opportunity to see why Lewis was so motivated.
Thankyou for giving us the opportunity to comment about a man who really made a difference.
Can I suggest you add an extra post encouraging folk to reblog the post that moved them the most? Lewis was more than happy when I asked permission to forward his material and it may encourage others to get his message out.
Thank you for all the times you reblogged his material. We knew, and if we didn’t thank you, it was not because we weren’t grateful, but simply because there were only so many hours in the day.
You make an excellent suggestion. When I’ve finished the site categorisation job, I will do exactly that.
No problem Aletha. I’m betting you have suddenly found yourself flooded with things to do and we appreciate your work ethic. 🙂
The volume of material produced by Lewis is incredible and the number of folk affected by his work is outstanding.
Lewis Blayse was a first-rate writer and he will be sorely missed by all. My condolences to his family. My heart goes out to you all. I hope his “light” will continue to shine somewhere and will be an inspiration to us all and ending abuse of children. I believe children will be safer because of his efforts.
Thank you, Kathy.
Dear Aletha, Mrs Blayse et al
So sorry to hear of the passing of Lewis. What a true Australian hero. I found it so difficult reading how he was not able to testify at the Royal Commission hearings – and now he is gone. However, his testimony lives on this site.
Aletha, thank you for allowing us all to express our sympathy and appreciation for your amazing Dad.
Thank you, Adrian.
Thank you for your efforts Aletha, your father was a great man.
I wish I had the chance to get to know him better
Thank you, David.
He was looking forward to meeting you.
Aletha, I checked a few past articles and the commenting function is not available on those articles. I’m not familiar with Word Press so don’t have a suggestion for how to fix that, but thought you would like to know.
Thanks for letting me know. I think they should all be active now, but if not, please let me know and I’ll fix things up.
This is shocking news. I just had an email conversation with Lewis two weeks ago. I only know him from his writings here, most of which I tweeted a link to. After he was refused his right to address the Inquiry I emailed him to encourage him and he wrote back with encouraging words of his own. It is immoral that the Commissioners refused to let him testify.
My sympathies to you and your family, Aletha, and thank you for opening comments and keeping this blog online. The information it contains will be accessed for years to come, even if no further posts are written. I keep a blog archive of news reports where for a period of four years I added full reports of religion-related child abuse. After four years I stopped creating new posts, but did continue to put updated or related articles in the comments sections. Today, that archive gets more page views than when I was actively creating new posts. So, I think the same thing will happen with this blog, especially if people continually add comments to Lewis’s articles. It is a valuable resource for abuse survivors, child protection and children’s rights advocates and for those doing research on this issue of child abuse in religious contexts.
Hopefully, someone who knows Lewis and has yet to testify at the hearings will honour his memory and advocacy in their statements to the Commissioners. It is a great injustice they tried to silence his voice, which will remain loud and clear here on his blog.
Thank you, Perry.
I hope it will become a resource. A lot of what he said will only be understood when the time comes. When I finish the site categorisation, I hope it will be a help to people looking for research material or insights to help them in whatever way they find helpful.
I think Dad would never have gotten to testify. He would not budge from what he thought was right. And he was only half joking when he told me that he probably would have been thrown out of the room before he got to open his mouth because commission protocol required that he would have to have bowed his head to the commissioners, and he bowed his head to no man (or woman). Further, he would not have been able to outline the horrific abuses he suffered at the hands of an Anglican-run ‘orphanage’ because what happened to him there did not fall within the terms of reference of the commission. But they may be absolutely sure that I will get that story out for him, even if it cannot be through the commission.
I have known of Lewis for the past 4 years by way of his equally courageous wife, Sylvia. It has only been since he started lewisblayse.net that I was able to see the mind and soul of this man. I sent several complimentary messages to Lewis on his daily synopsis and commentary of the investigations. He was a spy glass into the proceedings and a 2 ton Moral Elephant in the proceeding chambers. It is a terrible loss for me and we who want to know the Truth of these matters being investigated.
My profound condolences to Aletha, Sylvia, and all affected family and friends of Lewis Blayse.
Steven Spaner, SNAP Australia coordinator, http://www.snapaustralia.org
Thank you, Steven. I hope he responded to at least some of your emails. He was always running behind with them.
I am so sorry for the loss of your father. I am an American. I never met your dad or even saw a picture of him. But I was very sad and shocked to learn of his sudden death, as no doubt you were as well. His writing was wonderful and I know many people, all across the world, on behalf of abuse victims.
Thank you, Amy.
“He was a great man – a crazy, wonderful survivors genius.” who through his writing tried to reflect his own and other survivors experience.No words minced, down to the point, that is how I will remember you.You have given so much for so little in return, Thank You.
My heart goes out to all during this difficult time. Please accept my deepest condolences for your family’s loss.
Thank you, Andy.
Keep up the good work with your artwork.
The story continues. I was interviewed for the Homies story & I’m giving evidence on Monday at the royal commission. I’ll post afterwards.
‘Who must do the hard things?’
‘He who can.’
Thank you Kevin. We look forward to reading your post.
I saw you on the television, and I remember you from The Homies program.
You are clearly a brave and highly articulate man. I hope you continue to speak out even after the commission hearings are past.
I first came across Lewis via his blog some 10 months ago when he was reporting on the Victorian Inquiry. After reading all his previous blogs I realised here was someone who had not only an extraordinary writing talent and forthrightness, but was concise and fearless in that reporting. It was rather refreshing to discover someone who could see through the spin and lies of the churches and report accordingly, and put the churches’ criminal behaviour under the public microscope. But the tragedy of sexual and physical abuse from the Salvos resided in Lewis all his life and the pain never left him. He had a personal insight that none of us would wish to have, and the impact and consequences on his life were devastating and irreversible. He was a brilliant man academically, and also enjoyed an artistic talent. I cry for what might have been, as useless as that is.
Lewis, you will never be forgotten. Thank you for all the hard work you have done. Thank you for your wonderful courage. You will be very much missed.
I’m crying too, not just for my father, but for the loss of the future we had planned together, and for the posts I was going to help him do, but now can not.
I emailed you this week.
I would have loved to have spoken with you but you have been taken from us too soon. The stress that you have been under has been great .. greater than anyone should have to bear.
I apologise that someone with as much ability and insight as you were denied a chance, other than in the 2003 4 Corners program, to have an opportunity to tell the Royal Commission as it was..
But your use of https://lewisblayse.net/ to get it out there may well touch even more people.
Maybe that you passed away yesterday, is an indication that you HAVE done what you set out to do. Maybe, your work was done and now you can rest.
I am writing this in the hope that MANY people will pass your insights on.
I would love to come to your funeral as a mark of respect for your braveness and to say “thank you” for all your efforts in getting the messages out there but maybe this, my message with your link and to the 4 Corners Program, will keep your work going and genuinely touch many more.
In total respect for you, your commitment and mission and sympathy for your family,
Aletha please let us know if we can support you and the family (even financially) at this sad time. Perhaps the Salvation Army finally should compensate you all as this was his wish on 4 Corners.
Thank you again, Beth, for all you have done and all that you are doing.
As you know, I will continue his personal fight.
So shocked and saddened to hear of your Dad’s passing Aletha. I hope people will continue to read his posts here for years to come.
I hope so too.
My sympathy for the loss of your father. Watched “Homies” and thought the men and women who were horrifically abused were very courageous and strong to speak out against intitutionalised abuse suffered at the hands of people who should have provided safe guardianship. And to all those people who have experienced horrendous abuse and remain silent or anonymous I wish you safe journey through the remainder of your life and hope you have and will experience kindness, compassion and love from your fellow man.
Deepest sympathy to all on Lewis Blayse’s passing
Thank you, Cate.
OH Man, I wanted to be able to meet Lewis one day. Maybe when I become a beam too … so sad to lose this great force! – Kay Ebeling
Thank you, Kay.
Dear all. I hope that I have been able to enable people to comment upon and discuss all of the posts that he has made, but I may only have enabled comments upon this post alone. Hopefully it will be possible for people to comment upon any of the posts he has made over the last year.
Please anyone feel free to use this forum as a place to discuss any of the issues that Dad has written about. This is what he would want.
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