7 May 2011

Ottawa priest who served time for sex abuse of girls still saying mass, parish priest and congregation unaware of his past

CTV News - Canada May 5, 2011

Ottawa priest served jail time for abusing young girls

There's shock among parishioners at a Catholic Church in Ottawa Thursday after learning an elderly priest has a prior conviction of sexually abusing young girls.

Father Jack McCann spent 10 months in jail for offences he committed in B.C. in the 1970s. He now lives in Ottawa where he's presided over masses at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in the city's east end.

The congregation loves him. But they weren't aware of his past until just recently.

"Very, very surprised. You must have the wrong priest," parishioner Darlene Rodda told CTV Ottawa.

Even the parish priest who works with McCann wasn't aware of his past. He just learned about McCann's conviction a few days ago after CTV started making phone calls.

"I was horrified to find out that I didn't have any knowledge of that and was never told about his background at all," said Father Stephen Liang.

McCann served as a priest in New Westminster, B.C. in the late 1970s. In 1992, he pleaded guilty to sexually abusing two young girls -- and was sentenced to 10 months in jail.

CTV Ottawa tried to speak to McCann, but he didn't want to talk.

Although he's served time for his crime, sexual abuse survivors say he should not be allowed to continue work with the Church.

"He should be defrocked. If he were in a daycare setting and was convicted of sexually abusing kids, no one would consider returning him to that daycare setting," said Rob Talach, a lawyer for sexual abuse survivors.

A spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Ottawa told CTV that McCann is not in active ministry and cannot celebrate mass without the supervision of other priests or bishops. However, that's exactly what he's been doing.

"Yes, he was saying mass on his own," Liang told CTV Ottawa.

The Archdiocese says it's dealing with the issue and Liang has been told that McCann won't be allowed to say any future masses.

The Church plans to hold a special prayer session on Saturday morning to tell parishioners that McCann has withdrawn from the parish for personal reasons.

With a report from CTV Ottawa's Joanne Schnurr

This article was found at:


Credibility of US bishops' reformed child protection policies challenged by Philadelphia clergy abuse scandal

A Catholic describes the spiritual turmoil and loss of trust in the church caused by the Philadelphia clergy abuse scandal

Many Catholic families have ceremonial photos that include pedophile priests due to cover up by Philadelphia Cardinals

Hundreds of admitted or credibly accused pedophile priests who escaped justice are unsupervised by church or police

Pope Benedict fires Australian bishop who suggested ordaining women and married men, bishops who protect pedophiles can stay

Tens of thousands of Catholic priests automatically excommunicated for "attempted marriage", while pedophile priests protected

Popes and bishops: childless old men more interested in protecting pedophile priests than the pain and suffering of their victims

Pope John Paul authorized 2001 letter to all bishops praising French bishop for hiding rapist priest from authorities

1963 letter by church expert on pedophile priests shows Pope Paul VI and Vatican officials ignored warnings to expel problem priests

Leaked confidential letter reveals Vatican's intention to prevent reporting of abuse to criminal authorities

How can Pope John Paul II be a saint when thousands of children were raped or molested by priests under his leadership?

No comments:

Post a Comment