February 26, 2005

Abusersí payroll

The Keene Sentinel

In 1983, Reverend Gordon MacRae was involved in a child-molestation incident in Hampton. The victim was a 14-year-old boy. Shortly afterward, the Diocese of Manchester assigned MacRae to St. Bernardís Church in Keene, where he became associate pastor. No one at St. Bernardís knew about the Hampton matter, but church officials did. They had even notified the N.H. Attorney Generalís Office, which decided not to prosecute.

Four years later, MacRae became acting parish administrator at St. Bernardís, replacing Reverend Steven W. Scruton, who had just been convicted of indecent exposure and was being sent off for what was described as intensive counseling. Unbeknownst to local parishioners, Scruton had been arrested in 1984 after a similar incident in Londonderry, but charges were dropped. When he left Keene, Scruton moved to Dover. But, instead of being counseled, he became a counselor himself ó to sex offenders in a Massachusetts prison.

In Keene, MacRae took on a new assignment in addition to his church duties. He was named executive director of Monadnock Region Substance Abuse Inc. That position brought him into contact with troubled children at the Spofford Hall rehabilitation center, where he also said mass. The Diocese of Manchester raised no alarms.

Posted by kshaw at February 26, 2005 01:49 PM