Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Commenting on Comments

I don't usually post about comments received in my combox but I thought this one (in regard to my post on Fr. Gordon MacRae) should be read by as many people as possible. Ryan A MacDonald is the author of two of the articles I linked to in my previous post and is also the author of the blog A Ram In the Thicket (which I highly recommend). In response to my post he remarked (I omitted a small portion but here is the part that caught my eye):
"As the author of two of the links mentioned in this post, I would like to comment further.... But it's even worse than the writer knows. The mother of this priest's accusers had a career as a child sex abuse investigator for New Hampshire's Child Protective Services. She had worked for years with the detective who choreographed this case. She had also testified many times as a State's witness in child sex abuse cases that came before Father MacRae's judge. By the time she appeared as the aggrieved mother of three men who stood to gain in excess of $650,000 in this case, she was already well-known to the judge. From day one in this trial the judge referred to the priest as "the defendant" and the accuser as "the victim." But there is a lot more. The accusers' mother and the police detective both had awareness of other cases involving other accused priests that had never gone to trial and had been quietly settled. So they lifted elements of those other cases and injected them into the case against Father Gordon MacRae. This had the Kafkaesque effect of causing Father MacRae's Diocese to distance itself from him from day one. Before trial, the Diocese tried to control this information by declaring MacRae guilty before he ever set foot in a courtroom. The levels of betrayal go on and on, but what was betrayed more than anything is the "justice" that we all presume takes place in a modern American court of law."

This fits in with a portion of the police report  I read that I couldn't quite follow as many of the names were blocked out and the report became quite confusing at times because of this. The officer referred a few times to a woman he worked with but I simply assumed that this was a fellow officer or someone employed by the police department. I didn't realize that this was an investigator for N.H. Child Protective Services. This "missing" piece of information casts even more dark shadows on a case that is drawing the attention of people around globe.  It also sheds light on areas of the case that reminded me of "copy cat" crimes (false accusations are certainly crimes) in that other priests were accused of the same exact crime, in the same exact place and even the details of the abuse were exactly the same.  What are the odds of this happening? The same exact scenario? The odds are slim at best.

I'd also like to recommend the post Called as Heralds of Truth written by Karinann at Daughter of the King. In this post she speaks about the clergy abuse scandal, Fr. MacRae, and the organization SNAP. In her comment section she remarks, "In the name of helping victims, organizations like SNAP have begun abuse of another kind." I couldn't help but be struck by the truth in this statement. What began as a group reaching out their hands to survivors of sexual abuse by priests has evolved into something else altogether. This is what happens when the cause itself becomes more important than truth. It's not hard to understand how this may come about when it concerns an issue as sensitive as child abuse but when a group gets carried away by their cause it no longer serves justice but, as Karinann says, it becomes abuse of another kind.


  1. Mary,
    I am glad you posted about Ryan's comment. It does need to be read by as many as possible, along with his articles. The holes in the case against Fr. Gordon and the abuse of our justice system become very apparent when reading what he has to say.
    Thanks for the link~just following your advice and making some noise. :)

  2. Ryan seems to be answering the questions that have been on my mind before I even ask them. I was wondering about this particular woman but I couldn't find the information I was looking for until I read his comment (which I found VERY interesting).

  3. Interesting Mary. Appreciate you sharing about the comment. Blessings.

  4. Hi JBR,
    Thanks for commenting on this post. As a survivor of abuse I know it can't be easy for you to read posts regarding this issue. I wouldn't post about this case if there were not red flags flying everywhere that point to the fact that a serious miscarriage of justice took place in regard to Fr. MacRae.

    I hope you and your mother are doing well. You are both in my prayers. God bless you, my friend!