May 20, 2005

`Our Fathers' takes viewer inside church abuse scandal

Chicago Tribune

By Shia Kapos
Special to the Tribune
Published May 20, 2005

In "Our Fathers," a new made-for-television movie about the sexual abuse scandal in the Roman Catholic Church, one scene shows the fear and horror on a boy's face when his priest takes him for an afternoon drive to buy ice cream.

The segment haunts Bernie McDaid. He was that boy.

"I hid in the bushes to get away because I knew what would happen," McDaid said of the assault that followed. "My mother caught me and said, `How can you hide from a priest?' You're supposed to be able to trust your priest."

He hopes the two-hour movie, which debuts on Showtime at 7 p.m. Saturday, brings public awareness to the issue and knowledge that it can happen to anyone--if not by a priest then by a coach, a teacher or someone else you trust.

The film tells the real-life events of the scandal that broke in 2002 when a judge ordered that church documents about reports of abuse be unsealed. Since then, hundreds of people have said they were sexually abused and Cardinal Bernard Law of the Boston archdiocese resigned.

The stories of the victims are at the core of "Our Fathers," but the movie also tells the story of a careful cover-up by church hierarchy and discovery of the truth by a courageous attorney and the Boston Globe.

Posted by kshaw at May 20, 2005 05:52 AM