Monday, September 26, 2011

Father Gordon MacRae - Removing the Scales from Our Eyes

Pedophilia. Such an ugly word. People everywhere are quick to close their ears, shut their eyes, and seal their lips at the mere mention of the word. At times I believe that some people (including me for a little while?) would rather see an innocent man in jail "just in case" rather than take the time and the trouble to look at the facts of a case such as Fr. Gordon MacRae's with clear and unbiased eyes. There is so much evidence pointing to this man's innocence and yet he still sits in jail after 17 years. I ask, for the sake of truth and justice, that those who visit here take the time to read this article by Ryan A MacDonald. It (along with his other articles) shows how easily lies can steal a man's freedom.

Where is the public outcry? Why aren't people demanding that this case be reviewed? Where is the outrage over the imprisonment of a man who may very well be innocent?

I just don't get it. Even when speaking of myself. If you've read my previous post (see here too) about Fr. MacRae you'll see what I mean.  Are we so blinded by the ugliness of pedophilia that we would cast a good man to the wolves "just in case" rather than peel back the scales from our eyes and admit that "just maybe, just innocent man may be falsely imprisoned?"

It crossed my mind that if Fr. MacRae had been accused of murder and that if there was as much proof pointing to his innocence as there is in his case...he would have been out of jail years ago. Actually, no, I take that back...he would never have been convicted. It is only because of the type of crime he was accused of that he was convicted. Had it been a murder trial it would have been tossed out of court in a heartbeat.

If I'm being completely honest:

For a short while there was a little part of me that just wanted to close my eyes and seal my lips and ignore the fact that an innocent man may be in jail for a crime he didn't commit. All because of one word...pedophilia. After reading about the case I just couldn't do it though. I hated that part of me that would even consider such a thing in the first place. What ugliness was there in me that I would even consider turning a blind eye to an innocent man's plight? What does that make me?

Sometimes it's hard to look at myself in the mirror. This was one of those times. I like to believe that people are basically good... but maybe the truth is that we are very often selfish and if something doesn't directly affect us we have a tendency to ignore it? After all, a man sitting in prison for 17 years doesn't directly affect me, does it? What? Am I my brother's keeper? So he lives and dies in a jail cell for a crime he didn't commit? What can I possibly do about it? does matter. Letting a man rot in jail and not speaking up if I believe in his innocence says a lot about a person's integrity. None of it good. It shows a heart completely lacking in compassion. It shows a heart of stone.

Sometimes stone walls do a prison make.


  1. Mary, I share your outrage at the injustice done to Fr. MacRae. And I don't believe he's the only one to be falsely accused and wrongly convicted.

    I'm also outraged at the Catholic church's heirarchy, especially the US Bishops. I respect certain bishops, but, mostly I feel disgust when I think of them collectively.

    Our prayers for Fr. MacRae and others in similar situations are making a difference, just as blogs like yours are making a difference.

    God bless you.

  2. Mary,
    I read Ryan's article when he posted it~excellent as usual. He presents the facts of Fr. Gordon's case so plainly and clearly. What is also clear is that the powers that be both inside and outside the catholic Church refuse to see these facts. Shame on them!
    Thank you for continuing to courageously write about his case.
    At first I was like you too Mary, but there were and are too many things that just did not add up to his being guilty. He also had the backing of too many good and reputable clergy like the late Fr. John Neuhaus and Cardinal Avery Dulles as well as Fr. Groeschel to name a few.
    Let us continue to speak out and pray that justice will be done in Fr. Gordon's case and others like it.

  3. A really big mistake is to believe in the "justice" system in the first place.

    Two bishops have abandoned Father McRae to his fate. How cold. We will now see what the new bishop of New Hampshire will do for him. If I lived up there I'd try to visit him from time to time, but the best I can do is pray. I do believe some day he will be vindicated.

  4. Susan,
    You're right...the odds are that he isn't the only one. Speaking of Bishops, we have a new one here in NH. He starts serving on Dec.8th and I'd like to start a letter and e-mail campaign once he's in. I don't know much about him other than his name and that he comes from New York but I hope he will be more open to Fr. MacRae's plight than Bishop McCormack. Here's the link:
    Thanks for commenting.

  5. Karin,
    Ryan's articles are eye opening to say the least and I hope people will take the time to read what he has written. His posts have answered a lot of questions I've had about the case.
    I'm praying for Fr. MacRae, too, and I hope he WILL be vindicated. Please pray that our new Bishop will look at the case with fresh and unbiased eyes when he gets here. We can help by hounding him ;) Thanks, Karin!

  6. Barb,
    Yes, it is cold. They had to cover there own back ends and I believe they were too caught up in their own troubles to be proper advocates for Fr. MacRae. It seems that way at least.

    Funny you should mention visiting him, I'd like to do that but then I remember that he doesn't know who I am :) I plan on writing him letters though. I should have done so already but the most I've done is send an e-mail. I think I'll try snail mail next.

    Please pray that our new Bishop is a caring and holy shepherd. Thanks for commenting, Barb.

  7. Typos!Typos! Please ignore them Barb! Lol!

  8. Mary,
    Thank you for continuing to write and share your heart about Fr. MacRae. Please let us know what we can do to help. This case is on my heart, and I would like to do something in addition to praying. Prayer is powerful, and prayerful action is too.

  9. Chocolate revel bars recipe link on my blog. FYI you gorgeous girl you! ;) Bake some up quick - you'll not only be thanking yourself for your clever baking skills, but your family will thank you and crown you Baking Queen of your castle.

  10. Kathryn,
    I'm hoping to start an e-mail and letter campaign once the new Bishop is settled in. I'll let everyone know. First, I'd like to contact Fr. MacRae and run it by him just in case. Meanwhile we keep praying :) Thanks for writing about Fr. MacRae too, Kathryn. The internet is a good way to spread information about his case.

  11. Thank you, Sarah :) I've always wanted to be Baking Queen of the castle. Unfortunately, I think Randy holds this title right now. I'll let you know if these bars knock him off his throne ;)

  12. Mary,

    I do not know anything really about Fr MacRae, only what I've read here on your blog. I do however know a priest who is suffering from an injustice. He is not allowed to celebrate Mass in public and exercise his priestly ministry and he has done nothing wrong. He was even proclaimed innocent, by the courts, of the crime he was accused of (similar to Fr MacRae). The diocese was too afraid of public opinion to allow this priest to practice his vocation even though everyone agrees he is innocent. For many years Fr has been leading a very quiet life obviously suffering. He is such a wonderful man and his loss to the diocese is a real crime. We have prayed and prayed for a change in his circumstances, that his case will be heard and he will be returned to us. But Fr humbly accepts the situation (with much pain I am sure). I can only imagine that his rewards in heaven will be infinite. He is truly following in Jesus' footsteps.

    I admire your convictions and how you are speaking out. Our standing up for our priest came to nothing (at least not yet) but I hope your prayers are answered.

  13. Sue,
    That's a sad but all too common story these days and it must cause tremendous pain and humiliation for your priest. I will keep him in my prayers. Did you know that St. Padre Pio was also falsely accused?
    This has happened in our state a few times. I hope your prayers are answered too, Sue. Father MacRae's case is becoming well known throughout the US (and other places) and I hope his case will be reviewed soon.

  14. Thank you for your prayers for our priest, Mary. You and your intentions are in mine. Padre Pio? One of my favourite priests! I have a relic: a small circle of his vestments, given to me when I was pregnant with Thomas. God bless.

  15. You are blessed, Sue! I would love to have a Padre Pio relic!

    Yes, Padre Pio was falsely accused more than once. I am asking him to intercede for Fr. MacRae and the priest you mentioned above. Thank you for your prayers!

  16. Sue,
    I was thinking that Padre Pio must have been interceding for you constantly during your pregnancy with Thomas and after his death. Just think, Thomas is friends with Padre Pio :) You have mighty intercessors!