Racine: Father Richard Racine

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Racine Picture Toronto Star 10 June 1994

Picture from Toronto Star 10 June 1994

Richard G. Racine

Ordained 1986.  Native of Cornwall. Ontario.  Former teacher who then entered seminary at St. Paul’s in Ottawa to become a priest.

Long term sexual abuse of Danny Bodzasy which started when the boy was 11 and continued for four years.  The abuse began while Racine was teaching  in Tamworth, just north of Napanee, Ontario – three years before Racine was ordained.  The Bodzasy family attended Racine’s ordination.

1994:  GUILTY plea.  Served five months of 15 month sentence

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10 January 1994:   R v Racine 10 January 1994 (includes complete text of Father Richard Racine’s letter to the court)

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17 December 2008:  BLOG What became of the allegations?

03 May 2008:  BLOG  Is there an applicable rule of law?

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2016, 2010, 2002, 1999:  address for Archdiocese of Kingston diocesan centre (CCCD)

late ’90s- about 2003:  living at Springhurst, an  Oblate residence in Ottawa, Ontario, volunteering as a cook with Shepherds of Good Hope in Ottawa, and often, when Oblate priest and good friend of Senator Alan MacEachen was not there,  ‘saying’ Masses at Shepherds of Good Hopes (P) (Yes, that is the Father John Hunt who worked as receptionist/staff in the early 90s for Ottawa  city counselor Mark Maloney)

back to Southdown, Ontario after his release from jail (M)

June 1994:  released from Brampton Ontario jail after serving five months of a 15 month sentence (M)

10 January 1994: sentenced to 15 months in jail and three years probation (M)

– at sentencing hearing was ‘diagnosed’ as a homosexual pedophile by  Dr. William Marshall.   According to Marshall, the possibility of re-offending plummets sharply after castration, but psychological counselling was still necessary because “Sexual interest is also in the brain, not just the testicles.”

– guilty pleas to charges of sexual assault, gross indecency and attempted buggery and was sentenced Jan. 10.

– was at Southdown when he wrote a letter to the court (Southdown is a “treatment centre” in Aurora Ontario)

1993:  address for Holy Name of Jesus, Roman Catholic Church, Kingston Mills, Ontario (CCCD)

July 1993:  charged with on one count each of sexual assault, indecent assault, gross indecency and attempting to commit buggery (M)

1993:  was writing a recipe column for the Kingston Archdiocese monthly newspaper, The Voice

1992:  assigned as Pastor at Holy Name Parish in Kingston Mills, Ontario (scroll down to “Personnel Changes in Catholic Diocese”) served one year

– “While serving as chaplain in the Frontenac-Lennox and Addington County Roman Catholic Separate School Board, Fr. Racine will work to evolve a house of discernment for young men who might be interested in the priesthood.”  (scroll down to “Personnel Changes in Catholic Diocese”)

– November 1992:   shaved his head to raise more than $1,000 so 12 members of his church’s youth group could take a trip to Denver, Colorado in the summer of 1993 (he was charged July ’93.  I don’t know if the trip ever got off the ground)

– Director of Vocations for the Kingston Archdiocese

“Father Richard Racine … came to the parish as pastor and Director of Priestly Vocations for the Archdiocese. He served only one year but during that short term he purchased the Convent from the Sisters of St. Martha and moved into that spacious building along with several other young men who were in residence in order to discern a priestly vocation.” (Racine Holy Name purchase of convent 1992 )

1992:  Pastor, St Francis of Assisi, Kingston, Ontario  (CCCD)  (This is the address listed in the directory for Father Robyn Gwynn  – Were they there at the same time?  I’m not sure,  There could be an error in dates –  Gwynn did succeed Racine as Pastor at St. Francis

Spring 1990: voluntarily underwent castration and counselling (M)

July 1988:  appointed Pastor at St. John The Evangelist Roman Catholic Church in Flinton and St. Killian’s Roman Catholic Church in Ardoch. ( scroll down to “Kingston archbishop appoints 6 pastors”)

chaplain of St. Paul’s High School in Trenton in 1988 (M) also, at some time,  provided
pastoral services at two unidentified separate elementary schools in the Trenton area

1986:  ORDAINED

attended St. Paul’s seminary in Ottawa (M)

sexual abuse of 11-year-old Danny Bodzasy began in 1983 and continued for four years

1983:  teaching om Tamworth, just north of Napanee, Ontario (M)

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Victim watches abuser freed Priest leaves jail after five months of 15-month term

Toronto Star

11 June 1994

Frank Calleja

[Scan of upper part of article with pictures]

With a rush of emotion, Danny Bodzasy watched yesterday as the priest who stole his youthful innocence rode out of jail to freedom.

Richard Racine, once a trusted family friend and mentor, left a Brampton jail at 8:30 a.m. in a corrections ministry van after serving five months of a 15-month sentence for sexually abusing Bodzasy over a four-year period a decade ago.

The assaults changed a trusting, happy-go-lucky youngster into a withdrawn and haunted young man who instinctively averts his eyes and talks in a quiet monotone.

“I cannot go to church any more,” Bodzasy’s mother said. “If this protest is all we can do, then this is what we’ll do. If it alerts someone, if it helps, then it will be worth it.”

Racine, 47, will spend the next several months at Southdown Home, a 40-bed treatment centre for Christian church employees in Aurora, north of Toronto.

To curb his admitted sexual appetites, the teacher-priest underwent chemical and later surgical castration.

Bodzasy was a youngster of 11 when the abuse started in the family’s hometown of Tamworth, just north of Napanee.

Now 22, he carried a placard, joining his older brother David, sister Kim McCutcheon, parents Lila and Julius and many relatives and friends in a low-key demonstration outside the jail.

The moment a stony-faced Racine passed the jail threshold, the Bodzasy family joined in a tearful hug.

“How can this be justice? How can this serve to help Danny and the community at large. I feel nothing but rage,” said David Bodzasy.

He urged the public to mount a massive letter-writing campaign to force governments to amend the justice system to put victims’ rights first.

Racine’s was Bodzasy’s teacher in the little community 30 kilometres (19 miles) north of Napanee and the deeply religious Roman Catholic family attended his ordination in 1986, three years after the abuse began.

The priest pleaded guilty to sexual assault, gross indecency and attempted buggery and was sentenced Jan. 10.

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Stolen youth Family of sexually abused man protests priest’s early prison release

Toronto Star

10 June 1994

Moira Welsh

TAMWORTH, Ont. – The picture of Danny Bodzasy as a young boy, wearing his hockey gear and a smile, makes his mother shake her head with quiet rage.

It’s the last picture taken of her son, now 22, looking happy. It was probably one of the last times he ever felt that way.

When Bodzasy was 11 years old, bursting with that incredible energy of childhood, he was sexually assaulted by his teacher – a man who became his family’s priest and their deeply trusted friend.

Week after week, over the next four years, Rev. Richard Racine justified one boy’s shattered innocence with the quietly whispered words that there was nothing more natural than the fellatio and fondling Racine so deeply desired.

But today, when Racine, 47, walks out of the Brampton prison where he served five months of a 15-month sentence for the sexual assaults, the numb, withdrawn man that Bodzasy has become doesn’t see it that way.

“He was a friend, he was an elder and he was a priest. I was brought up to trust those people and he was all three,” Bodzasy said in an interview. (The Star’s usual policy is not to name sexual assault victims, but in this case Bodzasy wanted his name used.)

His family is so outraged over Racine’s release, and a system that doesn’t require that victims be notified of parole board hearings, that they are planning to picket the Ontario Correctional Centre on McLaughlin Rd. when the priest walks out today.

Bodzasy, who talks in a monotone voice with long silences between his sentences, is comforted by the solid presence of Susan Smyth, a 49-year-old family friend who sat with him at her kitchen table last July, when he first told police of his bitter secret.

“We’re all just middle-class working people who came up against the system and it failed us,” Smyth said. “The system has to change. We found out by accident that he was being released.

“He took a young boy’s childhood and all he had to do was keep his nose clean for five months and now he’s out.”

A decade earlier, in this tiny community 30 kilometres (19 miles) north of Napanee, where farmhouses are surrounded by old, heavy-set trees, no one suspected why a little boy began withdrawing into his own sad world.

“When the abuse first started, he (Racine) told me it was normal, that everybody did it,” Bodzasy said. “Now I just want to let everybody know that you can’t trust as many people as you thought you could.”

His pain is mirrored by his mother, Lila, 45, whose sad eyes cast a shadow over her pretty, youthful face.

Racine, who taught Danny at a local separate school, was her confidant, calming her worries about her increasingly difficult son with offers of help. He took the boy on camping trips, offered him odd jobs at his nearby country home and telephoned constantly to see how he was doing.

Racine became so close that the entire deeply religious Catholic family attended his ordination in 1986 – three years after the abuse began.

The Bodzasys asked him to perform the marriage ceremonies of their eldest son and daughter, even though he wasn’t their parish priest.

He also performed the first rite-of-passage, the baptism, for their youngest son and four grandchildren.

“I thought he was there to help us,” Lila Bodzasy said. “When you’re having problems with your kid and someone is there to help, you just kind of grab at it.”

Lila and her husband, Julius, 49, watched their third child lose his happy-go-lucky self and grow into a man who walks through a room like he’d give anything just to become invisible.

“I don’t go to church any more,” she said quietly.

“I know what I did was wrong,” Rev. Richard Racine said in a telephone interview from prison this week. “I’ve taken some very serious steps to correct this.

“I was castrated. I had my testicles removed.

“I felt out of control. I felt also that I was wearing two faces, two masks. I was doing something morally objectionable and at the same time I knew I couldn’t stop.

“There was a compulsive part of my behavior that I did not like. I thought of suicide. And this (operation) was a blessing for me,” he said.

A newspaper article about castration of sex offenders caught the attention of the priest in 1988, something he now calls a “blessing from God.”

In 1989, through an Ottawa treatment program, he began taking drugs that chemically “castrated” him by depleting his testosterone levels.

“It was the first time in my life that I was free. No more compulsive behavior. Because of this, I said, ‘Look, I want this to be permanent,’ and I was physically castrated.

“I felt I could live a life. I didn’t deal with my problems before then. I can deal with them now.”

Racine will spend the next several months at Southdown Home, a 40- bed treatment centre for Christian church employees, located north of Toronto in Aurora.

The priest, who was sentenced Jan. 10 after pleading guilty to sexual assault, gross indecency and attempted buggery, said he has acknowledged that his sexual desires have ruined a young man’s life.

“What I did to the young lad was very bad. He came to see me a few months before I was arrested and told me he was going for counselling and I encouraged him.

“I said ‘Danny, yes, go to counselling,’ knowing full well what was going to happen to me.”

Bodzasy doesn’t hesitate when he recalls that same conversation with the man he’ll spend the rest of his life trying to forget.

“I told him I was going to go for counselling and he said, ‘Why don’t you just go away to B.C. There are lots of jobs out there.’ He wanted me to hitchhike out there and be on my own. He was going to give me a bunch of money to go.”

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Priest jailed for abuse

Windsor Star

11 January 1994

BELLEVILLE (CP) – A Roman Catholic priest who underwent voluntary surgical castration has been sentenced to 15 months in jail on charges of sexual assault, gross indecency and attempted buggery.

Rev. Richard Racine was charged because of incidents between 1983 and 1987 involving a former student. The victim, now 22, was first abused at age 11.

Racine voluntarily underwent castration in the spring of 1990, before any charges were laid, and also began counselling.

Dr. William Marshall, an expert in sexual deviance who works with inmates at penitentiaries in Kingston, testified at the sentencing hearing that Racine, 46, is a homosexual pedophile. Marshall said the chances of someone repeating offences after castration dropped sharply, but counselling was still necessary.

Defence lawyer David Crowe said his client had already shown penance by undergoing castration and volunteering for counselling.

Judge Richard Byers also recommended continued psychological treatment and placed Racine on probation for three years.

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Castrated priest pleads guilty of sex assault

The Ottawa Citizen

16 December 1993

KINGSTON — A Kingston area Roman Catholic priest has pleaded guilty to sexual assaults on a young male. Rev. Richard Racine pleaded guilty Wednesday to counts of sexual assault, gross indecency and attempted buggery. In a surprise twist, defence lawyer David Crowe told the court the priest was chemically and surgically castrated before some of the alleged offences, and therefore some of the acts impossible. He refused to elaborate on the castration when questioned after the session. He said he will give details when he presents his arguments at the Jan. 10 sentencing.

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August 3, 1993 22.31 EST

CRIME-Priest-Sex

Canadian Press

KINGSTON, Ont. (CP)
A Roman Catholic priest made his first court appearance Tuesday
after being changed last month with four counts of sex-related
offences against a teenaged boy.

Richard Racine, who was arrested July 13, was seeking a change
in one of the conditions of his release from custody in his brief
appearance.

He wanted permission to leave the county boundaries in order to
receive counselling.

Justice of the Peace Lorraine Watson granted the request as
well as a request from the defence to have the case adjourned to
Sept. 14.

Racine, 46, is charged with indecent assault, sexual assault,
gross indecency and attempted buggery for alleged incidents
between 1982 and 1987.

Police have not released the name of the complainant, now 22
years old.

The chancellor of the Kingston archdiocese, who attended the
hearing, later said Racine has been removed from active duty on
his pastoral assignments at Holy Name church.

Joseph Lynch confirmed that Racine, a teacher who was who was
ordained a priest in June, 1986, had been chaplain of St. Paul’s
separate high school in Trenton in 1988 and that he had provided
pastoral services at two separate elementary schools in that
eastern Ontario community.

Racine is originally from the eastern Ontario community of
Cornwall.

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Castrated priest gets jail for assaulting ex-student

The Vancouver Sun

11 January 1993

BELLEVILLE, Ont. — A Roman Catholic priest who underwent voluntary surgical castration has been sentenced to 15 months in jail on charges of sexual assault, gross indecency and attempted buggery.

Rev. Richard Racine was charged last year because of incidents between 1983 and 1987 involving a former student.

The victim, now 22, was first abused at 11.

Racine voluntarily underwent castration in the spring of 1990, before any charges were laid, and also began counselling.

Dr. William Marshall, an expert in sexual deviance who works with inmates at penitentiaries in Kingston, Ont., testified at the sentencing hearing that Racine, 46, is a homosexual pedophile.

Marshall said the possibility of someone repeating offences after castration plummeted sharply, but psychological counselling was still necessary.

“Sexual interest is also in the brain, not just the testicles,” he testified.

Defence lawyer David Crowe said his client had already shown penance by undergoing castration and volunteering for counselling.

“He is still a priest, but no longer will he be able to be a parish priest,” Crowe said.

“He has already lost something very special in that he’ll no longer have contact with parishioners.”

Judge Richard Byers read a letter at Monday’s sentencing that Racine wrote to the Ontario Court’s general division in July 1993. In it, he said he realized when he was charged what an appalling affect his behavior had on his family, friends, students and parishioners and his victim.

He added that until 1988 he “lived a lie” and asked for forgiveness.

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July 15, 1993 15.26 EST
Quebec-Ontario regional general news

CRIME-Priest-Sex

KINGSTON, Ont. (CP)
A Roman Catholic priest has been charged with sexually
assaulting a teenage boy.

Rev. Richard Racine, 46, a native of Cornwall, Ont., is alleged
to have committed four sexual offences over a five-year period
beginning in 1982 in the Tamworth area 40 kilometres northwest of
Kingston.

Racine, who has been pastor of Holy Name Parish in Kingston
Mills since 1992, has been removed from his duties until the case
is resolved, said a spokesman for the Archdiocese of Kingston.

The priest had earlier served in the communities of Ardoch and
Flinton, about 70 kilometres north of Kingston, and in Trenton.

Last November, Racine shaved his head to raise more than $1,000
so 12 members of his church’s youth group could take a trip to
Denver, Colo. this summer. He also contributed a monthly recipe
column to the Catholic Diocesan newspaper, The Voice.

Police have not released the name of the complainant, now 22
years old.

Racine is scheduled to appear in Napanee provincial court on
Aug. 3. on one count each of sexual assault, indecent assault,
gross indecency and attempting to commit buggery.

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Kingston priest charged with four sex offences

The Ottawa Citizen

15 July 1993

A Roman Catholic priest from Kingston has been charged with four sex-related offences involving a young male over a five-year period in the 1980s. Fr. Richard Racine, 46, has been released from custody and will appear in Napanee provincial court on Aug. 3.

The incidents allegedly occurred in the Tamworth area between 1982 and 1987, said Sgt. Dennis Bush of the Napanee OPP.

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PERSONNEL CHANGES IN CATHOLIC DIOCESE

The Kingston Whig-Standard

26 June 1992

Robert Nicol

The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Kingston, the Most Rev. Francis J. Spence, has made a number of diocesan personnel appointments, all of which came into effect on June 16.

Rev. William J. Powell, a native of Smith’s Falls, has been made the pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Cardinal, replacing Rev. Michael Reed. Fr. Powell, who has served as the associate pastor of Holy Family Parish and St. Joseph’s Parish, was ordained in 1957.

Fr. Reed will serve as the new pastor of St. Barnaby Parish in Brewer’s Mill, replacing Rev. Joseph Ainslie. Fr. Reed grew up in Belleville and obtaineed a Bachelor’s degree in Theology and Diploma in Pastoral Studies from St. Paul University and Seminary in Ottawa.

Fr. Reed will also serve as chaplain during the week at St. Mary’s of the Lake Hospital.

Fr. Ainslie was ordained in 1942 and served as pastor of St. Barnaby’s Parish from 1983. He is a former pastor of St. Francis de Sales Parish and retires in this his fiftieth year of priestly service.

Rev. Paul Hamilton, who has served in the past as chaplain at St. Joseph’s Provincial House, has been appointed pastor of Queen of the Holy Rosary Parish in Belleville.

Fr. Hamilton, who was ordained in 1984 at St. Mary’s Cathedral, has graduated with a master’s degree and licence in Canon Law after two years of study in Ottawa. In 1989, he was appointed as chancellor, episcopal vicar and judicial vicar for the diocese and associate judicial vicar for the Kingston Office of the Catholic Marriage Tribunal.

He will continue as associate judicial vicar and diocesan judicial vicar.

Rev. Richard Racine, a native of Cornwall and a graduate of St. Paul’s University and Seminary in Ottawa, is the new pastor of Holy Name Parish in Kingston Mills, replacing Rev. James McGarvey.

While serving as chaplain in the Frontenac-Lennox and Addington County Roman Catholic Separate School Board, Fr. Racine will work to evolve a house of discernment for young men who might be interested in the priesthood.

Fr. McGarvey was ordained in 1952 and has served throughout the Kingston area, including pastoral assignments at St. Mary’s Cathedral and St. James’ Parish in Stirling.

In 1983, Fr. McGarvey was named pastor of Holy Name Parish, from where he now retires after forty years of priestly service.

Rev. Robin Gwyn, a native of Montreal, was ordained at St. Mary’s Cathedral in 1988 following an internship there. Afterwards he was assigned to St. Francis Xavier Parish in Brockville, where he served as associate pastor and administrator.

In 1991, Fr. Gwyn was appointed chaplain of Regiopolis-Notre Dame High School. He will continue in that position, but will also serve as pastor of St. Francois d’Assise Parish, Kingston’s francophone parish.

As well, Rev. Charles Gazeley and Rev. Joseph Lynch have been appointed associate chancellor and chancellor, respectively.

Fr. Gazeley studied at St. Augustine’s Seminary in Toronto and was ordained in 1958. He has served most recently as Catholic chaplain at Kingston General Hospital and Kingston Psychiatric Hospital, and has given chaplaincy service to the Sisters of Providence at Providence Motherhouse in Heathfield. He will now serve as associate chancellor.

Fr. Lynch attended Queen’s University and taught at Regiopolis- Notre Dame for 19 years before entering St. Augustine’s Seminary. He began his priestly assignments at St. Mary’s and will remain there in addition to serving as Chancellor of the diocese and episcopal vicar for chancery matters pertaining to marriage.

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Kingston archbishop appoints 6 pastors

The Ottawa Citizen

16 July 1988

Kingston Archbishop Francis Spence has appointed six pastors and three associate pastors effective Aug. 10 for parishes in the archdiocese.

Appointed pastors are Rev. Francis O’Neill, who takes over the parishes of St. Laurence O’Toole in Spencerville and St. Theresa’s in Augusta; Rev. Peter Murphy in Annunciation parish in Enterprise; Rev. Patrick Kelly, St. Mary’s parish in Carleton Place; and Rev. Brian McNally, who will serve in Sacred Heart parish in Lanark and St. Columkill’s parish in McDonald’s Corners.

Also appointed pastor are Rev. Rene LaBelle in St. Charles Borromeo parish in Read and Rev. Richard Racine in St. John The Evangelist parish in Flinton and St. Killian’s parish in Ardoch.

O’Neill is a native of Read and was ordained in 1947. For the past three years he has associate pastor at St. Francis Xavier parish in Brockville.

Murphy, a native of Elgin, was ordained in 1957. For the past five years he has been pastor in St. Mary’s parish in Carleton Place.

Kelly was ordained in 1960. The Belleville native has been pastor of Read since 1976.

McNally has been chaplain and and director of pastoral services at Hotel Dieu Hospital in Kingston for the past 13 years.

The Westport native was ordained in 1970.

Labelle was born in Brockville and ordained in 1978. During the past four years, he has been pastor of St. John’s, Flinton and chaplain at Nicholson Catholic College in Belleville.

Racine was born in Cornwall and, following a teaching career, was ordained in 1986 as a graduate of Saint Paul University Seminary in Ottawa.

For the past two years, he has has served as associate pastor of St. Peter’s Parish in Trenton. He receives his initial assignment as pastor of St. John’s, Flinton and St. Kilian’s, Ardoch.

He also will provide chaplaincy service to St. Paul’s High School in Trenton.

The following were appointed associate pastors:

Rev. William Powell, a Smiths Falls native who was ordained in 1957 as a member of the Capuchin Fathers. He will serve in St. Joseph’s parish in Kingston.

Rev. Robin Gwyn, of Montreal, was ordained in May. He becomes an associate pastor in Brockville’s St. Francis Xavier parish, where had been assigned temporarily.

Rev. Joseph McAuley of Prescott, a former teacher and principal, becomes associate pastor at St. Peter’s, Trenton.

2 Responses to Racine: Father Richard Racine

  1. Mike Fitzgerald says:

    Interesting fact – Fr. Racine and Fr. Hunt were both “saying” mass at the Shepherds of Good Hope. This is the same hostel that took in Mr. Gilbert Galvan (aka Robert Whiteman) when he excaped from a Michigan prison back in the 80’s, came to Ottawa and assumed the false name Robert Whiteman.
    Galvan went on to become Canada’s notorious “Flying Bandit”, flying all over Canada doing armed robberies of banks and jewellry stores. He used the Shepherds of Good Hope as his first base of operations. Mike.

  2. Bernard says:

    The Shepherds of Good Hope is not a ‘hostel’ it is a local non-profit organization that has several program including shelters, soup kitchen, assisted housing, clothing program, and housing services.

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