Children’s Home Priest admits sex offenses!

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St. Lucia Star

St. Lucia

28 June 2011 

 by Alisha Ally

William Hodgson Marshall was attached to the St Benedict’s Parish at Morne Fortune and he also helped establish the Children’s Home in Ciceron. (Photo by Dan Janisse of the Windsor Star)

William Hodgson Marshall was attached to the St Benedict’s Parish at Morne Fortune and he also helped establish the Children’s Home in Ciceron. (Photo by Dan Janisse of the Windsor Star)

The Roman Catholic Church has been plagued with sex-abuse scandals from time immemorial and although the Vatican has publicly apologized to victims on several occasions, little is done to sanction clergy members who commit such heinous acts.

 This time around a Canadian priest has confessed to molesting the very children he took an oath to protect.  William Hodgson Marshall, 88, also known as Father Hod, was sentenced by a Windsor court to two years imprisonment for molesting sixteen people—one female and fifteen male.

Marshall was ordained in 1951 at the age of 28 and was known as an exemplary priest, a championship basketball coach and a teacher for half a century.  Now he is a registered sex offender.  His victims range from former students to children of his parishioners.  The earliest charge dates back to 1953.

In 1989, Marshall arrived in St Lucia to do missionary work.  He was attached to the St Benedict’s parish at Morne Fortune and also helped to establish the Holy Family Children’s Home in Ciceron.  He was removed from St Lucia in 1996, when allegations of abuse began surfacing in Canada.

 Most of the Marshall’s victims in this case were students at all-boys’ high schools run by the congregation of St Basil’s, a Roman Catholic order of teaching priests also known as the Basilian Fathers.

According to the Windsor Star, most of the victims were in Grade 9, but one was only seven-years-old. Another, the only female victim, was in her 20s. Marshall would call them out of class and have them line up outside his office for groping sessions he called “workouts.” Sometimes he would abuse boys in the presence of another student.

 “This is God’s way,” he’d say. “It pleases him and will help you get into the kingdom of heaven.”

Sometimes other teachers or priests would walk in thinking the room was empty. They’d quickly shut the door, leave and become part of what the victims call “the cover-up.”

 The Basilians issued a statement from spokesperson Rev. Timothy Scott that read in part: “The Basilian Fathers wish to express our deep shame that one of our members has acted this way. These criminal acts against children are a violation of our religious vows and are grievously sinful . . . This should never have happened.”

A joint sentencing submission from the crown and Marshall’s lawyer Andrew Bradie requests a two-year prison term, three years probation and an order to report to the sexual offender information registry and provide a DNA sample. Marshall may be eligible for parole after serving one-third of his sentence — eight months.

Marshall’s string of sexual assaults on children went unreported for nearly 60 years until a 43-year-old Windsor man complained to police in May of 2010.  From there, more victims began to come forward.  It is believed Marshall has many more victims who have not yet come forward.

Marshall, who is battling skin cancer, worked at Windsor’s Assumption College and St Mike’s in the 1950s. He then moved to Sudbury’s St Charles College, where he worked for nearly two decades. His next stop was as principal at St Mary’s College in Sault Ste Marie before returning to Windsor in 1985. There, he was the founding principal of Holy Names.

 Marshall remains a priest. He has not been laicized (defrocked) and there appears no move to initiate that process with the Vatican, which oversees expulsions. Rev Scott said there is little point in defrocking Marshall now, given his  age and the fact he will never serve as a practising priest again.

When Marshall gets out of prison, he will return to the Cardinal Flahiff Basilian Centre in Toronto, which offers a treatment program for clerics with psychological or spiritual problems. Marshall was placed there after the Basilians extracted him

 from St Lucia.

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Responses to Children’s Home Priest admits sex offenses!

  1. AVOCAR says:

    pa labiteed seh pwet sa la 8ull seh ti mamii la.fyahhhhhhhhhhh!!this world is very corupt with the vatican being head,regulating against jah laws and implementing their own,saying its illegal to posess an earthly plant(marijuana)and its legal for a man to push his tool where jah didn design it for,fyahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!and we being third world ppl deaf and blind and following and accepting every rule they imply,presently ass&james feels its a norm to imply homosexuality teachings in school,fyahhhhhhhhhhhh!!have u ever wondered why the vatican is a city in itself with only men as being members,they are real wolf in sheep clothing disguising in thy name of the lord but their real aim is to pick every likkle boy ackee

     

    • AVOCAR says:

       

      i think we as a nation are hypocrites amongs our ownselves.the gov’t find its necessary to infiltrate buggerism in our kids minds and in schools which is nowhere in the midst of our culture,his choice of words were(homosexuality is a reality and its about time we teach it in our schools)hypocracy!!the RASTAFARIAN CULTURE has been part of our heritage for some genarations now,why havn’t it been a part of our kids curriculum?i can mention a # of positivity from rastafari livity(1)farmers,food cultivators(2)upful ppl(3)loving,caring,sharing(4)bush doctors(5)non violent and i can assure u the list can go on,and yes to the pessimist there will always be WOLF IN SHEEP CLOTHING in wateva livity so not every dreadlockz that commit a crime should be deemed on rastafari.oh and i forgot to mention they dont molest kids.

  2. Lucian Post says:

     

    I’ve read excerpts of the report the Vatican did on sexual abuse in the church and, basically, they blamed this infestation on the drug and sex era of the 1960s and that it was not pedophilia but rather a case or cases of ephebophilia since “most” victims were adolescent. Also that it is not a case of homosexual priests but that boys were in more “abundance” than girls.

    Of course all religious institution have their evils, so one is really not better than any… if in fact there is any but this problem has been a disease of the Catholic church, a church I grew up in as did the majority of St. Lucians. This problem should be at the forefront of their agenda or dissolve the damn thing… egotistic sadists damaging the innocence of those who are truly innocent. But nothing will get solved under this pope as he has some answering to do of his own.

    Before a priest has something to say… save it and go deal with these problems. When we see a change in the church, then come back and preach about the goodness the Catholic church has done. Children lives are at stake

  3. Botox says:

     

    It is not their fault, the religion has caused a sever perversion towards sex, what did you expect from saints?

  4. fbird says:

     

    1 Timothy 5:8 – For if a man cannot manage his own household, how can he take care of God’s church?

    priest are suppose to be married and have kids its the catholic church that denounce this behavior and thus contribute to the problem (a child that is told not do something curiosity always gets the better of them

  5. PreciousMe says:

     

    This man should be defrocked…why should he walk through those pearly gates of heaven or hell and NOT explain why he was defrocked.

     

  6. CODE RED says:

     

    Two years for molesting 16 children….all I can say is that if it were a black man….hmm

  7. King Junior Stewart says:

     

    O well what else is new. I wonder what Father Bisette thinks ? Did I get his name correct? Oh faaatheeer where hart thou, where hart thou old chap.

  8. Chichi says:

     

    “In 1989, Marshall arrived in St Lucia” “He was attached to the St Benedict’s parish at Morne Fortune and also helped to establish the Holy Family Children’s Home in Ciceron. He was removed from St Lucia in 1996,”

    The question we need to be asking is, did he leave any victims in St. Lucia?

    • The Observer says:

       

      That is what I am wondering too. How many of these children did he interfer with? How many lives did he shatter? Was anything done to help the children cope? hmmm

    • LUCIE says:

       

      I was wondering the same thing..And if there are are they willing to come forward?

  9. J.J.J.C. says:

     

    These people should marry and raise children.The creator said “It is not good that man should be alone. Genesis 2:18″
    We are told Peter was the first Pope, and he was a married man. Mark 1:30

  10. Joe grind says:

     

    I am shocked to know that father hod is involved in this act… I served as an alter boy when he was the priest at the bar St Joseph church in St Lucia… this is very much alarming…

     

    • right says:

       

      Care to share any excerpts? I take it that you were not victimized by him then??

    • humble says:

       

      Is that the right place to ask this type of question? Please St.Lucian be more thoughtful

  11. eddy says:

     

    Am not sure if is something done in st lucia [maybe] One thing for sure is that parents were proud to have their boys becoming altar boys and have brain wash our people into believing all kinds of foolishness but thank god st lucia is not the same with the influx of thecnology,

  12. Dee says:

     

    Given the level of ignorance in our little island i can almost guarantee that he left victims in St.Lucia as well. Sexual abuse is a subject that’s pretty much taboo. Yes! we do have alot of sexual abuse victims in St.Lucia;whether it’s by a priest or trusted family member. It’s more prevalent than one thinks. WAKE UP LUCIANS and smell the ‘Viss’.

  13. marie joseph says:

    Once again, a DIRTY BASTARD who slipped the net.

    Perverts like that have a certain aroma, smell and title

     
    • Used to be St Lucian says:

      Are you people naive or plain stupid? Don’t be looking for excuses for these perverts, whether they are married or not they straight up love messing wiyh kids and if they do get married they will mess with their own kids . Religion is cursed by God for decieving of the world

       

    • Vincentp says:

      My one burning question is when will Lucian victims of these unpardonable acts come out. Because for years growing up in the Catholic church as a boy I heard these rumors that priest were sexually molesting young boys. I was quite attracted by the idea of becoming an acolite but these same rumours stopped me. There is need for an official enquiry by the government of St Lucia on how wide spread this abuse was, who were the offenders, who were the victims? Are any me the above still living? This should all be paid for by the Vatican and if found guilty the offenders punished. A trust fund should then set up for victims of this abuse and their families again paid for by the Vatican. This acts…

3 Responses to Children’s Home Priest admits sex offenses!

  1. Sylvia says:

    This is good news. Word of Hod’s conviction will now reach those he knew while serving in St. Lucia. I pray that any who were abused by Hod in St. Lucia will now realize that they are not alone and will find the courage and strength to speak up.

  2. 1yellowknife says:

    Defrock him anyhow – never mind his age.

  3. Sylvia says:

    Amen 1yellowknife. He has the privilege of calling himself a priest no matter his age. He will keep the lost sheep away because of his presence no matter his gae. And, …he sullies the priesthood no matter his age.

    Defrock him. By all means provide for him. I have no problem with that. Heaven forbid that becomes the excuse NOT to defrock. But, defrock him.

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