Watch Video: Disgraced priest George Smith appeared in Corner Brook court 14 December 2011 (CBC)

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8 Responses to Watch Video: Disgraced priest George Smith appeared in Corner Brook court 14 December 2011 (CBC)

  1. 1yellowknife says:

    This is footage taken in the courtroom – right…. isn’t that unusual
    Having spent a great deal of time in court recently (sigh), I thought camera’s were strictly ‘verboten’.

  2. Sylvia says:

    It’s very unusual in Canada 1yellowknife. I was shocked to see it. It’s a good move I think, so I was pleasantly shocked πŸ™‚ Any courthouse I’ve been doesn’t allow cameras (picture-taking) inside the courthouse, never mind inside the court room itself.

    I wonder if this means cameras will be allowed to roll during all of Father Smith’s court proceedings?

  3. Mike McCarthy says:

    I would like to make a few comments.

  4. Mike McCarthy says:

    I am disappointed in hearing about Fr Smith. Not only did he give my classes retreats or days of awareness back in the 70s in Corner Brook, but Bishop Lahey also dealt with my classes for Confirmation in the 90s. Bishop Lahey also confirmed my own teenage children when the new confirmation proceedure came into action. What bothers me is that both these two men were exceptional in their dealings with my students. They were humorous and direct…and their message was sound. The students appreciated them for what they said and believed in. So I ask myself, after hearing your interview on CBC radio Sylvia, how did these men’s darker sides battle with their own teachings and beliefs? It’s puzzling for sure. I feel that way about Fr Des McGrath who I knew as well. I believe he committed suicide a day before going to court. He too was an educated and well loved priest and supporter (and leader)of fisherman’s rights. Yes, this all puzzles me……and has made me very critical of priests and the Catholic church. From the Pope on down, there have been coverups of major sexual problems within the Church and its clergy. What was once thought of a “sacrifice” of celibacy within the priesthood is obviously seen now as “unnatural.” My friends who are Anglican married priests function well as married family people and are dedicated to ther church. Oh I know no marriage /relationship is perfect there either, but generally they are doing the work of their church and living “normal” lives. But for the Catholic priest, there has to be something wrong. These present sexual abuses are just the tip of the iceberg throughout the centuries. I have read some of your articles and seen the documents you have provided here Sylvia. In one letter to a Bishop by a priest, all we see is “coverup” and fear that the Church will be scandalized and that things will get out of hand and that the priest in question might be exposed in court etc etc. The Church recognizes it has a MAJOR problem on its hands and within its ranks, and yet it insistes on “covering-up” the issues and hardly dealing with the victims. In fact it only has dealt recently with the victims in settlements because of our outcry and our courts of law. If the Church could still deal with its problems internally, I’m sure the same situation of coverup would be happening. So Sylvia, keep up the good work. You spoke clearly and well on CBC…and I appreciate this. There was no over emotionalism or vendetta sounds in your voice. You were just presentting the facts and I’m sure you too are wondering like myself, where the Church has gone to. I believe it is doomed and I honestly wonder what man would enter the priesthood today. In fact, as a man I am ashamed that our gender has done most of the raping and killing and abuse in this world and throughout time. I still can’t believe the Church has not allowed women to fully take over the role…from the Pope on down…in the Church. When will it wakeup and see that women are the honest and loving people of this world. On a final note, I would love to know what BishopLahey will do in the future. Please keep us aware of this. He was a good man, he taught well, he spoke sincerely to my students, he made that sacrament of Confirmation meaningful to those teens. What must they be thinking now as adults.. probably with kids of their own? ! I know Lahey will walk a lonely journey till his death…..I feel bad about that. I truly do.

  5. Larry Green says:

    Mike, most of what you say is much along the same line of thought and emotion as myself.
    Which interview are you reffering to with Sylvia by the CBC ?

  6. Leona says:

    Mike, you have clearly articulated why it is so difficult for survivors of sexual abuse by clergy to recover. Over and over again we hear that these men ‘were exceptional’ spoke well, taught well! I remember saying to a friend that I often felt paralyzed, because so much of what I learned and practiced in my life that was good, I learned from Jack McCann. His were the sermons that people sat up and listened to. How does a child in their formative years reconcile the opposing messages of good and evil, received by their parish priest?

  7. MikeMc says:

    Larry…scroll down to Dec 21 pod cast at this site: http://www.cbc.ca/thewestcoastmorningshow/
    It is Sylvia’s discussion with one of our radio hosts. Good interview.
    To Leona, I can understand you fully. When the story broke about Fr Des McGrath…..I was shocked becaause we had had ENOUGH bad news about priests in Newfoundland. Not Fr McGrath??!!! I loved his sermons and he was actually a priest whoDID something…..he became the head of the Fisherman’s Union……well respected and a priest who believed in helping others. Then then the accusations happened…then the court date….then the suicide…I believe…..to be truthful I don’t think anyone really knew what happened..heartattack? Hushed up for sure.
    To Sylvia….I have a questiion I would like you to ask the Church. If Lahey admits he is guilty and was in Thailand etc and did have horrendous photos like “naked bound prepubescent boys with rosary beads around them ETC ETC….. why hasn’t the RC Church comeout and discussed this and asked Lahey and authorities to investigate those very abused kids over there? I mean the CHURCH knows this…it knows one of its BISHOPS was over there up to no good. Surely they have a duty to find those kids and helpthem out. I mean Lahey must be able to trace the origins of those photos or the places he visited…….how come the Church hasn’t spoken openly about this and publicly done something about this or at least comment? It needs to clean up its act!!

  8. Larry Green says:

    Mike, thank you and thank you Sylvia, good interview for sure. Sylvia your objective demeanour was so professional . I don’t know your professional background Sylvia but I suspect it is in a mixture of childcare and paralegal . Whatever your deepest motive is for creating and maintaining this website Sylvia I have absolutely no doubt that it springs from a very fundamental and very noble desire to do good for children who were-who are – and who will be physically , mentally , spiritually through sexual assault HURT. THANK YOU SO MUCH SYLVIA !

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