MacEachern: Father Malcolm MacEachern/Bishop Malcolm MacEachern

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Malcolm A. MacEachern (Father Malcolm MacEachern – later Bishop Malcolm MacEachern)

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diocesan priest ordained for the Diocese of Antigonish 1927.  Became Bishop of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island 1955.  He was known as “Big Malcolm” – some who knew him say he was a huge man – at least 6′4″ and also large build.

December 2010 lawsuit by man alleging childhood sexual in New Waterford, Nova Scotia in early 50s.

Picture from flickr.com: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lipcan3/307075535/sizes/o/in/photostream/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/lipcan3/307075535/sizes/o/in/photostream/

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01 December 2010:   John Carson MacKenzie Statement of Claim re Malcolm MacEachern

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Unless otherwise indicated the following dates and information are drawn from available Canadian Catholic Church Directories (CCCD), media (M) legal documents – Statement of Claim (L).  Additional timelines and information will be added as information becomes available. 

28 March 1982:  Died in Antigonish, Nova Scotia

24 February 1970:  Resigned (that’s an early resignation for a bishop?)

after retirement lived at St. Francis Xavier University, Nova Scotia

1968: Secretary of  CCCB (Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops) Education Commission with Bishops P.J. Skinner (chairman), James Carney, G.B. Flahiff csb, and T.J. McCarthy.

member of   CCCB Religious Education Committee with W.E. Doyle (Chairman), James Carney (Secretary), G. Emmett Carter and M.C. O`Neil

1967:  member of  CCCB  Education Commission with Bishop Patrick Skinner cjm (President) and G. Emmett Carter (Secretary) (CCCD)

member of  CCCB Religious Education Committee with Bishops Michael C. O`Neil, George B. Flahiff, W. Emmett Doyle and G. Emmett Carter) (CCCD)

11 October 1962 – 08 December 1965: Council Father for Sessions One, Two, Three and Four of the Second Vatican Council (Vatican II) (as were Remi DeRoo [Bishop Emeritus of Victoria, B.C.], Emmett Cardinal Carter [former Bishop of London and  Archbishop Emeritus of Toronto], Alexander Carter [Bishop Emeritus  of Sault Ste Marie], Philip Pocock [former Bishop  of Saskatoon, Sask., former Archbishop of Winnipeg, Manitoba, and Archbishop Emeritus of Toronto, Ontario] and George Bernard Flahiff csb [Archbishop Emeritus of Winnipeg, Manitoba  ] )

11 October 1962-08 December 1962; Session One

29 September 1963-04 December 1963: Session Two

14 September 1964-21 November 1964: Session Three

14 September 1965—08 December 1965: Session Four

18 January 1955:  Consecrated bishop of Charlottetown at St. Ninian Cathedral, Antigonish, N.S.  (1968-69 CCCD)  Principal Consecrator:  Giovanni Cardinal Panico , then Apostolic Nuncio). Principal Co-Consecrators: Archbishop Joseph Gerald Berry (Archbishop of Halifax – former Bishop of Peterborough, Ontario) and Bishop William Joseph Smith, Bishop of Pembroke, Ontario)

27 November 1954:  Named Bishop of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.  (1968-69 CCCD)

“Former pastors include Rev. J.H. Nicholson, Rev. Dr. A.A. Johnston, renowned historian of the Diocese of Antigonish, Rev. M.A. MacEachern who left here to become Bishop of Charlottetown, Rev. A.A. Beaton, Bishop George L. Landry, Rev. F.N. MacIssac, Rev. Bernard MacNeil, and Rev. John MacKinnon.”  (New Waterford Churches ref Malcolm MacDonald www_cbv_ns_ca_nwcomndx_history_churches)

1951:  Pastor at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish, New Waterford, Nova Scotia (L and C)

around 1953-54: according to legal documents sexually abusing John Carson MacKenzie.  MacKenzie was a altar boy – he was about 11-years-old when the abuse began.  The abuse transpired in the Sacristy, in the rectory and at church camp in Hay Cove, Nova Scotia (L)

1935-1951:  Professor of Philosophy at St. Francis Xavier University (C)

1935:  Doctorate in Philosophy from University of Louvain, Belgium (C and 1968-69 CCCD)

“? date:  Doctorate in Theology from University of Montreal

1930-1951:  Philosophy Professor: St. Francis Xavier University Antigonish (A History of St. Francis Xavier University, by James Cameron, 1996)

1927-1930:  assisting at parish in Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia (C)

11 June 1927:  Ordained as priest for the Diocese of Antigonish, Nova Scotia.  (Theology studies at Grand Seminary , Montreal, Quebec)  (1968-69 CCCD)

attended St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish (C)

05 October 1901:  Born in Broad Cove, Nova Scotia (CCCD)

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16 December 2010: “Ontario man claims abuse by N.S. priest in ’50s” & other articles re Malcom MacEachern lawsuit

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Diocese of Antigonish facing lawsuit

 101.5 The Hawk (Port Hawksbury, Nova Scotia)

Thursday, 16 December 2010 16:19

The Diocese is Antigonish is facing a lawsuit by an Ontario man who says a former priest sexually abused him as a child.

John Carson MacKenzie, 69, says he was abused by Reverend Malcolm MacEachern in the 1950’s.

MacEachern was the priest of the Mount Carmel Parish in New Waterford at the time.

He died in 1982.

MacKenzie says he was roughly 11 years old and an altar server at the church when he was abused.

He says it took place for roughly two years.

He’s looking for $1.75 million in damages.

The suit was filed in a week ago in Nova Scotia Supreme Court in Antigonish.

The allegations have not been proven in court.

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Ontario man files lawsuit claiming abuse by priest in Nova Scotia in 1950s

Soc.culture.indian

Canadian Press
Wednesday, December 15, 2010

An Ontario man has filed a lawsuit against Nova Scotia’s Roman
Catholic Diocese of Antigonish, alleging one of its former priests
sexually abused him as a child.

Antigonish, N.S. – An Ontario man has filed a lawsuit against Nova
Scotia’s Roman Catholic Diocese of Antigonish, alleging one of its
former priests sexually abused him as a child.

The 69-year-old man alleges he was abused in the 1950s by Rev.
Malcolm MacEachern, who was the priest of Mount Carmel parish in New
Waterford, N.S., at the time.

The plaintiff, who lives in Hamilton, alleges in the statement of
claim that the abuse began around 1953.

He says he was about 11 years old and an altar server at the church
at the time and he claims the abuse continued for about two years.

MacEachern died in 1982.

None of the allegations contained in the suit filed last Thursday in
the province’s Supreme Court have been proven.

The plaintiff is seeking $1.75 million in damages.

The diocese is trying to raise money for a $15-million settlement
with victims of alleged sexual abuse in a separate matter.

Bishop Raymond Lahey, who helped negotiate the settlement, faces a
trial of his own next year on charges of possessing and importing
child pornography in 2009.

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Diocese of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island website

Bishop Malcolm MacEachern

Born at Broad Cove, Cape Breton in 1901
Bishop of the Diocese of Charlottetown: 1955-1970

Bishop Malcolm was a graduate of St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish. He studied theology at the Grand Seminary of Montreal and in 1927 he was ordained to the priesthood for service in the Diocese of Antigonish.

Father MacEachern was curate at Sydney Mines for three years and then on the faculty of St. F.X. University for two years. From there he was sent to Louvain University in Belgium where in 1935 he merited a Ph.D. in philosophy. Earlier he had earned a doctorate in theology from the University of Montreal. He rejoined the St. F.X. faculty in 1935 as professor of philosophy, a position he held until 1951 when he was named pastor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish in New Waterford.

Late in 1954 Father MacEachern was appointed Bishop of Charlottetown and was consecrated in St. Ninian’s Cathedral, Antigonish on January 18, 1955. During the Bishop MacEachern years there was much new diocesan construction. S.D.U. added Marian Hall, a modern rink, Kelley Library, Duffy Science Building and Bernadine Hall. Other new structures included the large nurses’ residence of the Charlottetown Hospital, the Sacred Heart Home and the bishop’s residence-chancery (Dun Glaston). Two new parishes, St. Pius X and Southport were formed. Three Eucharistic Congresses were held in the diocese and in 1968 a missionary outreach into Latin America was begun with the sending of several priests there.

The great Second Vatican Council took place during the Bishop MacEachern years here and he participated in all four autumn sessions, 1962-1965 inclusive. He also anxiously began arranging the many changes emanating from the Council. The sale of the S.D.U. campus in 1969 and the disappearance of this beloved 114-year-old seat of learning was a difficult moment for the bishop and diocese. Bishop MacEachern retired in February of 1970 and took up residence at St. F.X. University, Antigonish.  He died on March 28, 1982 and is buried in St. Margaret’s Church Cemetery, Broad Cove, the bishop’s native parish.

17 Responses to MacEachern: Father Malcolm MacEachern/Bishop Malcolm MacEachern

  1. Mike Mc says:

    This the first time I have ever read a Statement of Claim. Very lengthy and very revealing. What has happened in this case? When is a court date? I’m surprised no one else has come forward.

  2. Larry Green says:

    It is becoming more difficult every day to maintain the notion that there exists no causal correlation between RC priesthood and child sexual molesters. That is not to say that whatever the link may be it causes all members of the priesthood to become predators, but it should be by now, to any reasonable minded person ,that very clearly , obviously and undeniably there is a link. It also seems likely that whatever the correlating object is between priest and predator is the same object which links priest and enabler.
    What is it going to take to shake those who are in denial out of their dream state ? Why do so many find it so difficult to see that the Roman Catholic Church is a breeding ground for pedophiles?

  3. Sylvia says:

    This is a lawsuit Mike Mc so we don’t get court dates as in criminal actions. There is a big difference between civil law and criminal law. Lawsuits are civil actions, and are often settled before they go to trial. See this page: http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/dept-min/pub/just/08.html

    What happens between filing the suit and settlement or trial is generally not open to the public . Sometimes motions are filed in open court, but barring that the process is restricted to lawyers for both sides arguing their case back and forth by letter, email or phone. There are lawsuits which drag on for years and then settle just before going to trial. Unless there is publicity surrounding the action, either from the lawyer or the the plaintiff, we hear nothing of the outcome. In fact, unless there is publicity when a lawsuit is filed related to clerical sex abuse we the general public will know nothing of the case, unless that is the victim speaks out at some later date.

    Those Statements of Claim are actually public documents. Anyone who knows that a suit has been filed and knows in which court it is filed, can, for a fee, access the file. You generally need to know the legal name for the diocese which is named as a defendant in the suit.

    As for the Bishop MacEachern file, I believe it is too soon for it to be settled and I have heard nothing about a trial date.

    And, as for other victims coming forward, MacEachern (no relation by the way!) is dead so there is no possibility of us hearing of more complainants because more charges have been laid. In this case we will only hear of more if the victims speak up, or if we get word that another lawsuit has been filed.

  4. Mike Mc says:

    Well, after reading the lawsuit, I get the feeling this wasn’t a one time-one person happening. It would obviously help the victim if others came forward.
    You know, after reading the whole document, it seems like the lawyers and victim really worked out an acceptable position. I didn’t find it slanted because a lawyer was involved. I think the abuse and the rammifications concerning the Church are well presented. It’s hard to believe the Church didn’t know of this. But if they didn’t, they are still responsible for allowing this priest to act as he did. Of course, this was a few years ago when what the Priest said, was Gospel truth! You respected the Priest because your parents revered him or at least honored him (even if they didn’t particularly like him). And taking the age of the boy, it is understandable why he didn’t speak out or condem the priest publicly. The priest preyed on an innocent boy. And quite frankly,I’m amazed, he got away with it….at least on this planet. How many other men, both priest and victim, I wonder never got to tell their story over the centuries. Please note the word centuries. Sad indeed.

  5. JG says:

    It is mind boggling!…it goes on and on and on… Every time I think we all have a part of us that is secretly wishing for the abuse to stop or to finally discover this is all in the past…wishing, hoping, praying!…whatever maintains our sanity in the face of this Evil!…
    Sadly upon reading this legal document, I am left wondering how many copies could be made with just a few changes to the names…for all the victims of this clergy abuse, this institutional sacrilege…
    Conservatively?…disturbingly ….a wild guess….100,000…300,000…750,000…copies!
    …worldwide, over 50-100-200 years…longer!…
    It just makes me feel very numb, dizzy…
    The church is morally bankrupt to continue with the present approach!
    This is one that time will not heal…with history!
    You don’t come out at 60,70,80 years old to make this stuff up…Sadly, it is real and here!…and we have to deal with it with or without the “churches” cooperation. This is now very obvious!
    Victims need to continue coming forward in order to get out of this “snake and ladder” game the church is playing.
    Curling-up in a corner, forgetting, shutting-up…is not an option.
    I agree Mike Mc,… HOW MANY?

    jg..

  6. Mike Mc says:

    JG, I’ve never heard it that way but you are expressively correct when you say “snakes and ladders.” Snakes…slithering snakes. Ladders….you rise and just when you think you have accomplished ground, you slip. Will this ‘snakes and ladders’ game ever finish? I suppose so. When I look at the average age of priests in Newfoundland….which I believe is 60 yrs old, I wonder how the future holds? What will happen first? Will the abuse scandal finally come to a head and be eliminated by the year 2024? (That’s 12 years from now.) Or will there just not be any priests around? Anyone going into the priesthood today I can only hope is scrutinized and tested …as well as their personal history looked at under a fine tooth comb. But really, who is going to do the testing? I pity the poor man going in. I really do. I wish one such candidate would write something in here to give us hope.
    That being said, I wish the Church renewal, guidance, humility, penance, forgiveness and most important repentance. Only then will joy be there too!
    One final note, to JG your numbers are astounding…..but probably accurate. Yes indeed, that legal document you and I have now read fully could probably just have the names changes. Sad indeed!

  7. JG says:

    Mike Mc,

    Definitely!….definitely a snakes and ladder game…first with the victims, in secret, in confidence….sometimes after a “payout”…then when more accusations surface, the church “officials” weave and bob….and then when the Courts get involved, the lawyers…it becomes delays, postponements, change of plea, change of “representation”…we all have the picture! Always those “unavoidable”delays…

    The church won’t face up to it now, but a drastic change will be necessary…that is more involvement by women…married women….men, yes, married men…back to the “basics”!… the “fisherman”, the bookeeper, the farmer, the poor, the rich…
    within the church…or we can all write a few words for the obituary!

    “They” don’t seem to have turned the lights on but this is a new time…people can communicate, are more educated, not so subservient as in past years and “past centuries”… You know, the internet with all its faults is a worthwhile tool…you could almost say a “God sent”…still with the freedom (we all are still free to decide between Good and evil !) to do good with it or choose to go the other way…

    If you go back to Genesis:…” In the beginning was the Word and the Word was God…”
    I have been meditating on this one for a while…
    Maybe He does work in mysterious ways beyond our understanding… maybe we are all just part of the “plan”…not so smart on our own!
    So, we should do it well! Not turn on one another, be generous, patient and keep Faith…
    To quote a favorite writing I have carried from my teenage years, from Madonna House, Max Hermann’s “Desiderata”…maybe “the world is unfolding as it should…”

    jg

  8. Mike Mc says:

    (…and I remember the “B” very well. And a week of rhubarb…pie, sauce, veggies, jams,… no end to it. A field with an old fashioned scythe was all mine..for 8 hrs! But a true community! Good memories and my first taste of commune. No complaints!)

    • JG says:

      Ahh!….interesting that you were there also!..I was around Christmas…stacked bails of hay with another “kid” from Rochester….(so you are “much” older than I. :-)…you used a scythe!…) Helped to slaughter 6 pigs to “relieve” Shermann…I was there winter 71-72…
      Best of times! Hope it was “preserved”…
      jg

      • 1 abandoned sheep says:

        To Mike and J G- Perhaps you also remember FR. Bob P., he is my Spiritual Director. Small World !
        He was born about 7 hours before me.

        • JG says:

          Sheep,
          Sorry, no recollection of priest’s names…I recall however they didn’t mix much with the “commoners”…had their own table to eat, with the “B”…we sort of had to look up at their “privileges” …I remember names of “co-workers” but mostly faces…all looking for answers and we were satisfied with peeling carrots and sorting out truck loads of donations…
          A different type of “spiritual guidance” we didn’t have to discuss but understood well… and took away as life long “gifts”…
          jg

  9. JG says:

    I forgot…” the Alpha and Omega”…??!!

    jg

  10. Christopher Marlowe says:

    *Looking at this from a legal point of view there are two very big problems: statute of limitations/proof; and negligent management.  The topic of the Statute of Limitations (SOL) should make everyone think long and deep about what sort of a justice system they want. The SOL is premised upon repose, proof, and vigilance. Repose relates to being secure in your rights. We can see that an individual could feel secure in his right not to be sued by someone for something he did long ago.  After the SOL has expired, he can rest secure. This argument doesn’t hold up as well when we think of a guy who buggers young boys.  Who cares if he ever can rest secure?  But what about people who didn’t do anything?  What about their repose?  In this case, the Church is being sued for the alleged actions of a Bishop who died in 1982. That is thirty years ago. The alleged abuse took place in 1953 to 1955. The plaintiff is suing for $1.2 million.  Those people who hate the Catholic Church might say “who cares?”, but think about this: what if you inherited a large company from your grandpa, and thirty years after that some old guy sues the company alleging that your grandpa used to bugger him?

    (The SOL in NS have apparently been completely buggered.  The claim sites Limitation of Actions Act RSNS, c. 258 see (5) In any action for assault, menace, battery or wounding based on sexual abuse of a person,

    (a) for the purpose of subsection (1), the cause of action does not arise until the person becomes aware of the injury or harm resulting from the sexual abuse and discovers the causal relationship between the injury or harm and the sexual abuse; and
    (b) notwithstanding subsection (1), the limitation period referred to in clause (a) of subsection (1) does not begin to run while that person is not reasonably capable of commencing a proceeding because of that person’s physical, mental or psychological condition resulting from the sexual abuse.  See the complaint at 39: he just remembered after 60 years while undergoing therapy.)

    Proof presents a much bigger problem.  This case is essentially as case of “he said”.  There is no opposition, because the true defendant is DEAD. It is too late to send in the CSI team for DNA swabs.  We are supposed to take this 71 year old man at his word because that is about all the proof you are going to get.  I’m not saying that this guy is a liar, but the purpose of SOL is to try cases when there is some ability to actually get some evidence.  After a number of years pass, people forget and physical evidence disappears. 

    The last point, vigilance, points out the public interest in putting an end point to litigation.  Interest reipublicæ ut sit finis litium.   Equity aids the vigilant, not the indolent.  What the hell took this guy so long to file this lawsuit?  Did he just wake up out of a coma? 

    The second major point is that of negligence.  Basically, the law is that an employer is not responsible for the intentional torts of their employees UNLESS the tort is under the direction of the employer (not alleged here), OR the employer is negligent in their management of their employee.  The burden is the plaintiff must show that the Church knew of the Bishop’s actions and that they failed to take appropriate actions. The complaint alleges that the church must have known because he liked to be around boys a lot and the bishop must have confessed to buggering boys.  This is very weak.  There seems to be a lot of boilerplate language throughout item 22, but I don’t know of any specific instance that should have put the Church on notice. Item 23 is even weaker, and it implies that a man who spends time with boys should be suspect. Attention little league coaches and Boy Scout leaders! 

    The idea behind the SOL should cause any sensible judge to toss this out. Think about it: if this guy gets $1.2 million, then that is like ringing the dinner bell. Thousands of people could go file a case with the same allegations dating anywhere from 1953-1982.  (They would have to stop alleging things after the bishop died, unless the lawyers can somehow get around that one.)  With no need for proof, and boilerplate language substituting for actual knowledge and negligent management, the sky is the limit.  But I could not rest secure in a society that places no limitations on actions of this sort. After the Catholic Church has run out of money, the lawyers will start looking to school systems and hospitals.  Go and check out the statistics for sexual abuse by teachers. It is much greater than has been alleged against the Church.   

  11. Sylvia says:

    Christopher Marlowe, you say:

    “What the hell took this guy so long to file this lawsuit?  Did he just wake up out of a coma?”

    Where pray tell have you been? Please, before making such foolish comments, spend some time reading through this site.  It takes victims of clerical sexual abuse decades to come forward.

  12. PJ says:

    Marlowe, you are an idiot. What gives you the right to talk about victims being “buggered”? What an insensitive thing to write. You must be a defense lawyer because you are writing from the side of protecting the perpetrator. In all the posts I have ever read on this site, yours sinks to the lowest depth ever. You need to take some sensitivity training as you are totally unaware of how to speak to those who have suffered some form of sexual abuse. Go away unless you can find it in your heart to offer a sincere apology to all who are offended by your diatribe…and I’m sure there were many.

  13. JG says:

    *Christopher Marlowe….a voice of the frustration felt after a set back by the church…I think Lynn’s conviction and the winds of change is a threat to the clergy and their defense teams!!!

    ”….what if you inherited a large company from your grandpa, and thirty
    years after that some old guy sues the company alleging that your
    grandpa…”

    Some of his words, to explain the lack of empathy!….but if it was good enough to recover, 40-50 years later, to return to its rightful owners, valuables(paintings, Swiss Bank ”deposits”,etc…) pilfered under the oppression of the second world war, 40-50 years later or more,  it can never be considered unreasonable to ”attempt” to retrieve one’s dignity and sense of worth after a lifetime of ”oppression” by the church…The  result of ”abuse”!

    The church should be in the forefront of the battle for the victims instead of fighting it every step of the ”recovery”…

    The Marlowes of this world don’t have any interest in seeing the rules changed to do what is ”right” because it might take away their influence, their privileges, their need to be on the ”winning” team…They are very knowledgeable and quickly able to recite the ”rules of Law” but very slow to consider the ”spirit of the Law”…”His ”concern is ”about the money”…and isn’t it strange that the church which tried so hard to stay away from the Law is now trying to use it to its full advantage!…through its ”spokespersons”!

    No one should distress at their type of interventions on this site! They usually regroup every 3-4 months and return with new ”angles”…new ”jabs” at the ”opponents” to their rule…It is just a sign of their interior weakness and their arrogance! Not important that they be clergy or their representatives: they are trying to preserve a ”wrong” and human decency will have to prevail.

    He has now called ”the church”  an employermanagement!!!…second line in his post!…

    I take comfort that he agrees the work of Christ is no longer of their domain! Many on this site have been saying that for some time…”They have lost their way”…

    They hate that their old ally, DEATH, can now be challenged in NS, to start! They have relied on it for so long…another rule change not to their liking. Thank You for the ”research” Chris…

    To the victims who visit and write on this site,   even when there is silence, many are along with you. Never forget that. Sometimes to answer is just giving this type more air time …that is the only thing I am sorry for!

    jg

  14. Mike says:

    *Mr. Marlowe;
         The problem we are now facing with regards to sexual abuse by clergy is not the fault of lawyers, boy scouts, or little old wrinkled up men like myself. It is being caused by sexually disordered and mentally unstable ” men of the cloth”.
         I, and we, grew up idolizing these catholic priests. The world I grew up in was centered around the parish priest, who was God’s representative here on earth. His word was the law, and to object to his word meant terrible penalties!
         You obviously did not grow up in the same circumstances that I did. If you had, only then would you understand why it takes a man so many years to summon up the courage and strength to admit to the world and your family that you were the sexual object of your parish priest.
         Mr. Marlowe, this is a criminal act, a horrible breach of trust in a church and civil official!
         You seek to trivialize this, and I despise you for that. How much are you being paid by the “church” to stand up for them?
         If you aren’t being paid by the church, please enlighten us on why you seek to white-wash these acts.    Mike.

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