A Northland woman who revealed her story of sexual and physical abuse in an orphanage has been described as a "courageous warrior woman" who has inspired others to face their own torment.

Whangarei woman Beverley Lind, now aged 70, received the apology after highlighting abuse suffered at the Orphans' Home Papatoetoe run by a trust established by the Anglican Church.

Mrs Lind spent 13 years at the orphanage from 1947, and believes others were abused. She wants to encourage people to come forward.

Since her story was published in the Northern Advocate others have been inspired by her bravery.


The story prompted one reader to say he and his sisters had experienced very similar treatment at a children's home in Whanganui.

"Please pass on my heartfelt appreciation to Mrs Lind for having the strength and courage to fight for this outcome. It has been many years since I was in the orphanage, but her story has motivated me to seek justice for what the Church and their employees did to us," he said.

A website comment posted on the Northern Advocate site by Glo described Beverly Lind as a "courageous warrior woman" who had spoken out and said "not to secrets".

"As a survivors advocate in the catholic church back in the early 1990's I heard so many painful stories of horrendous abuse committed by religious, clergy and others in numerous powerful religious institutions, not just catholic, which have left raw wounds wide open and unhealed.

"The affects that this ultimate betrayal has, not just on the immediate victim but on their families, partners, children, grandchildren, their friendships, overall health and well being is enormous."

A 77-year-old Whangarei man said he was in tears as he read Mrs Lind's story as it brought back childhood memories of abuse he had suffered in a catholic school in London.

"My heart went out to her and her story brought a tear to my eye. There are so many people that have gone through the same sort of experience and people won't talk about it. It gets swept under the carpet," he said.

Following mediation in Whangarei earlier this year the Right Reverend Ross Bay, Bishop of Auckland, formally apologised in a letter for the pain and suffering experienced by Beverley Lind at the Orphans' Home Papatoetoe.

YesterdayMrs Lind said the church was not her enemy and she praised the help she had been given by Mr Bay.

"Ross Bay has supported me 100 per cent since he became aware," Mrs Lind said.