MacDonald: Father Allan MacDonald

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Allan A. MacDonald

Priest, Diocese of Antigonish, Nova Scotia. Ordained 1940

2009 lawsuit filed by Philip Latimer alleges sexual abuse by Father Alan MacDonald  between 1973 and 1977.   Most of the abuse occurred in the rectory of Saint Paul Roman Catholic Church in Havre Boucher.

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2010:  Not listed (CCCD)

2002:  Green Meadows, R.R. #3,  North Grant, Antigonish, Nova Scotia (CCCD) (this is a community residence for seniors)

2000: address for Antigonish Diocesan Centre.  Same phone number as before (CCCD)

1998, 1995, 1991, 1985-85:  address given as Havre Boucher, Nova Scotia with phone no. 902-234-2898 (CCCD)  This is a different phone number than that of St. Paul’s in Havre Boucher.  It is possible that he was living in area but not actively serving in the parish?

1973-74, 1971-72: Pastor, St. Paul Roman Catholic Church, Havre Boucher, Nova Scotia (CCCD)

allegations of sex abuse by Philip Latimer date to the 70s when he was serving as an altar boy at St. Paul’s (M)

1968-69, 1967: Pastor, St. Paul Roman Catholic Church, Havre Boucher, Nova Scotia (CCCD

1959:  Pastor, St. Paul Roman Catholic Church, Havre Boucher, Nova Scotia (CCCD)

in charge of diocesan committee for sacred music (CCCD)

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Father Allan A. MacDonald, Diocese of Antigonish, NS

[posted on Ledroit Beckett website)

October 08, 2009

Philip Latimer is the name of the brave man sitting beside me today. He is a victim of sexual abuse by Father Allan A. MacDonald, a now deceased priest of the Diocese of Antigonish.

Philip is here to publicly announce his rejection of the class action settlement negotiated by Bishop Raymond Lahey. Philip seeks investigation and exposure of the Church’s awareness and reaction to the problem of clergy sexual abuse of minors, something which he feels the class action settlement does not provide. He is therefore commencing a civil lawsuit through which he seeks answers to his many questions regarding sexual exploitation by clergy in the Diocese of Antigonish.

Philip grew up inHavre Boucher,Nova Scotia. In the early 1970’s he was a young parishioner at Saint Paul Parish in Havre Boucher. He was an altar boy to Father Allan A. MacDonald, then pastor of Saint Paul Parish.

Philip respected, trusted and admired Father MacDonald. Father MacDonald breached this position of trust by sexually abusing and victimizing young Philip commencing when he was 11 years of age.

Father MacDonald abused Philip on an ongoing basis for a period of four years between 1973 and 1977. Most of the abuse occurred in Father MacDonald’s living quarters, the rectory at Saint Paul Parish in Havre Boucher.

As a result of the abuse, Philip has struggled through decades of fear, shame, guilt, depression, and alcoholism. He lived on the brink of suicide for many years. Today he breaks his silence and begins his search for the truth, which he feels is not adequately addressed in Bishop Lahey’s class action settlement.

Sexual abuse of minors is a crime of secrecy. Too often church officials and church communities are uncomfortable or unwilling to address the issue of sexual abuse. The perpetrators rely on this fact and on their relative position of power to silence the victims and prevent them from reporting the abuse. We can combat this problem through investigation, openness and awareness.

The process of civil litigation allows for such an investigation through the process of both documentary and oral discovery. There are many questions at this early stage which remain unanswered:

* Did anyone report Father MacDonald to the Diocese?

* Was any Bishop aware of Father MacDonald’s problems with young boys? * Did Father MacDonald offend at other Parishes?

* When was the Diocese first aware of one of their priests sexually abusing children?

* What was the Diocese reaction to this knowledge?

* What policies and procedures, if any, did the Diocese have in place to prevent sexual abuse of children?

* Has the Diocese ever treated priests for sexual deviance?

* Are there any other credible reports of sex offender priests in the Diocese of Antigonish that the public does not yet know about?

Anyone with answers to these questions or any information concerning Father Allan A. MacDonald is encouraged to call a toll free tip line at 1-866-674-4994.

Philip knows he is not alone.

An additional concern with Bishop Lahey’s settlement is the December 4, 2009 deadline for opting out. You cannot put a time limit on victims of sexual abuse. You cannot force victims to come forward before they are ready to speak out. The legal and medical community in this country have long recognized and protected a victim’s right to deal with such trauma on their terms and at their own pace. There is not and should not be a time limit on such tremendous crimes.

The fact that the Bishop’s settlement effectively gives all victims until December 4 of this year to come forward or forever keep their silence is quite frankly very alarming. For these reasons Philip is publicly announcing his rejection of the class action lawsuit. For him compensation is only part of the answer. Much more important to him is truth, awareness and prevention.

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N.S. diocese faces civil suit alleging abuse

CBC News

Last Updated: Wednesday, October 7, 2009 | 8:59 AM AT

A man who claims he was molested by a Roman Catholic priest in Nova Scotia says he will file his own lawsuit instead of joining a $15-million class action settlement.

The man alleges he was abused in the mid-1970s when he was an altar boy at St. Paul’s in Havre Boucher. The priest in question, Rev. Allan A. MacDonald, has since died.

A lawyer representing the man, Aaron Lealess, said both the Roman Catholic diocese of Antigonish and the archdiocese of Halifax will be named in the lawsuit, which he expects will be filed in Nova Scotia Supreme Court on Thursday.

Lealess said his client doesn’t want to be a part of the out-of-court settlement for people who said they were sexually abused by priests in the Antigonish diocese since the 1950s.

He said his client is launching a civil suit in the hope of uncovering more information.

“He wants to know, what did the diocese know about this priest, were there any reports of abuse to the diocese?” said Lealess. “He feels that civil litigation allows him access to answers, a better investigation into what was known about the priest who abused him.”

Lealess said his client was shaken by the news that the bishop who negotiated the $15-million settlement, Raymond Lahey, has been charged with possessing and importing child pornography.

“I think the opting out still might have happened, but the news about Lahey hinders victims’ trust and belief in the settlement negotiated by Bishop Lahey,” said Lealess.

Lealess said his client is seeking damages, but didn’t specify how much money he wants.

Priest accused after settlement announced

Bruce MacIntosh, a lawyer for the diocese of Antigonish, said someone contacted him directly claiming abuse by Rev. Allan MacDonald. He didn’t give details, but said this happened after the settlement was reached.

The $15-million settlement, announced last summer, was the result of a class action lawsuit spearheaded by Ron Martin, a Cape Breton man who said he was sexually abused by a priest as a boy.

Martin claimed the church, under instructions from the Pope, had a policy to keep sex-abuse allegations against priests secret. He also claimed the church, diocese and bishop sent priests from the Antigonish diocese for treatment for “sexual deviations,” but kept it secret and didn’t protect children.

The allegations in the class action suit have not been proven in court.

That lawsuit involved allegations of abuse by five priests. However, Lealess said the priest named by his client wasn’t one of them.

Last month, the lawyer for Martin, John McKiggan, said there were 39 claimants and he had heard from more than 50 others inquiring about the settlement.

Their claims will be reviewed in private. Lawyers for both sides said the process will spare people a lengthy, public and often traumatic court hearing.

Under the terms of the deal, Martin, as lead plaintiff, can withdraw if too many victims come forward and tap into the fund. In addition, the diocese can withdraw if any victims decide to pull out of the class action to sue the diocese separately.

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N.S. man sues Catholic diocese over alleged abuse

CTV.ca

October 08, 2009

A Cape  Breton  man who claims he was molested as an altar boy by a Catholic priest has pulled out of a class action lawsuit settlement to file his own civil claim.

Philip Latimer, 47, filed his own lawsuit against the diocese of Antigonish and the archdiocese of  Halifax  on Wednesday, instead of joining the landmark $15-million settlement for people who were sexually abused by priests in Antigonish since the 1950s.

Antigonish is the diocese where Bishop Raymond Lahey used to be Archbishop. Lahey helped orchestrate the settlement and is now facing child pornography charges in  Ottawa.

In a 22-page claim, Latimer alleges he was sexually molested in the mid-1970s by a different priest, Rev. Allan MacDonald, for four years when he was around 11 years old in the seaside community of Havre Boucher. MacDonald has since died.

The allegations in the lawsuit have not been proven in court. In a Thursday morning news conference, Latimer told reporters he is seeking $2 million but that what he really wants is answers. Latimer says the settlement orchestrated with the help of Bishop Lahey is unfair to the victims and fails to allow proper investigation into the diocese’s actions.

Latimer’s lawyer says his client wants a full investigation and exposure of the diocese’s awareness and reaction to the problem of sexually abusive priests in the Antigonish diocese. “I would suspect the people of this province and the people of this particular diocese want to know what went on, want to know how deep the rot was, or is, and need to know,” lawyer Rob Talach told reporters at a Thursday news conference in Halifax announcing the lawsuit. “If we’re all happy to pay off everyone and move on, then things are great. But if you want more, you have to ask for more, and I think that’s what Mr. Latimer is doing here today.”

The lawsuit’s statement of claim alleges the dioceses failed to investigate MacDonald’s “background, character and psychological state,” or warn supervisors and parishioners of his “difficulties as a priest.”

The suit also alleges the dioceses fostered rules and ideologies in which “deviant sexual practices were bound to develop among a percentage of the priests.”

Neither diocese has reacted to the allegations in the claim. Lahey says he decided to launch his suit after hearing that Lahey was recently charged in  Ottawa  with importing and possessing child pornography after Border Service Agency examined his laptop computer and allegedly found images “of concern.” He says the arrest made him question the integrity of the settlement. “That triggered something within me,” Latimer told reporters. “I was putting it out of my mind as best I could, but when the man that orchestrated the deal was no different than the men who committed the crime allegedly… that did it, that did it for me,” he said.

The settlement is intended to compensate anyone who was allegedly and known to have been sexually assaulted by Catholic priests in Antigonish since Jan. 1, 1950. Latimer wants to alert other victims that there is a Dec. 4, 2009 deadline for opting out of the settlement. He hopes others will join him in speaking out. ”

As of Dec. 4, if no one else steps out and reveals the truth about the things that are going to be hidden. They can never step out again,” he told  Canada  AM earlier Thursday.

“[Halifax Archbishop Anthony] Mancini says this is a time of healing. But the healing will start and stop on Dec. 4. If they truly want healing they wouldn’t put a timeframe on it.” Latimer added that the abuse destroyed his life and his Catholic faith. He hopes others will hold on to their beliefs. “Don’t lose faith in God. We have lost faith in the Church. But I’m going to ask you: don’t leave your church. You can’t trust men but you can trust God,” he said. He added: “It’s not easy to come out and reveal things that are very hard to speak about in public and put themselves in a vulnerable state. I’m doing it myself and realize it’s not easy.”

CTV.ca News Staff

1 Response to MacDonald: Father Allan MacDonald

  1. Michael De Young says:

    I use to go to dances in Havre Bouche in the early 70’s. If it’s the same priest I am thinking of, he was well known as a pal of many of the adolescent boys in Havre Boucher. I never heard anything about sexual abuse at the time, but heard lots of references to partying at the glebe house.

    MIke

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