Victim Impact Statement by mother whose sons were sexually abused by Father Daniel Miller

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Victim Impact Statement

[Mother whose sons were sexually abused by Father Dan Miller ]

I am completing this statement both as a mother who has had to deal with the horrible truth that her children were sexually abused by someone I trusted and also as a person who has personally been betrayed by the actions of Daniel Miller.

I grew up in a large devoutly Catholic Family.  I am one of 14 children.  My mother was organist at our parish for 72 years.  My brothers and sisters and I were raised with the belief that the church was the centre of our community and both the church and the priests assigned to it were to be treated with the utmost respect.

Daniel Miller had an aunt and uncle who lived across the street from our family home.  As a child he used to visit there and came across the road often to hang out with our family because there were so many kids.  He spent more time with my younger siblings because he is about 10 years younger than me.  I have known him most of my life. When he arrived to serve at our church in Deep River I immediately welcomed him and offered my home and my family to him in friendship.  I wanted him to feel welcome and accepted.   Wednesdays were Father Miller’s day off and he had a standing invitation to join our family on Wednesday mornings for breakfast.

I have 7 children, 4 daughters and 3 sons.  Father Miller showed a special interest in my sons.  He often took one of my three boys on outings.  Sometimes he took all 3 but it was usually one at a time.  He came into our family at a time when we were very vulnerable.  I was going through a marital breakdown and there were financial problems.  He would take my boys for drives, buy treats, and take them on overnight visits to Renfrew.  These were things I couldn’t give them.  I was grateful for his offers and I sent my boys without hesitation.  I thought of how kind he was to extend himself to my sons in this way.  Looking back on it now I can see that he showed no interest in my daughters, it was only my sons.  I realize now that what I thought was kindness and generosity was really a plan to have me trust him enough to let him access to my sons.  I feel used.  He used me and my desire to make him feel welcomed and loved to gain access to boys he could abuse for his personal gratification.

I think the worst betrayal was when he agreed to counsel me because of the sexual abuse I had experienced as a child.  I shared that hurt with him and how I blamed myself for what happened to me.  How I felt unworthy and the affect that these feelings I had were having on my life and my relationships with others.   He told me it was not my fault and that I should forgive my abuser.  All the while he was abusing children himself.  He was abusing my own sons.   This makes me sick.

I still recall the day I innocently asked my son [redacted] why he chose to have a community pastor marry him instead of Father Dan. I guess [redacted] was tired of keeping the secret and when he asked me if I really wanted to know I suddenly felt my world start falling apart.  I confronted Dan Miller and without any prompting from me he told me had molested all three of my sons.  I had no idea.   Until you have experienced it you would never know what it is like to have that conversation with your children.  To go to them and tell them you know what happened.  The guilt I feel for not knowing, for not seeing when I myself had been a victim of sexual abuse – how could I not have known.  People tell me the fact that I didn’t know or suspect is a testament to the ability of Daniel Miller to deceive.  I see it as a personal failing.  I should have known.  I should have protected my children.

I wonder now how my sons listened to me speak of Father Dan in the highest regard.  How they must have suffered and struggled internally knowing what he was really like while I still believed in the sham that I thought was real.  I can only imagine the confusion in their little minds as children.   I wonder now how they would have felt when Father Dan performed my second marriage and they had to sit there and watch all the while feeling like they couldn’t tell me about how he had violated them.

My children lost their innocence.  Their childhood was stolen from them and they were put in a position where they had to deal with feelings and emotions they should never have known.   They kept the secret for decades while they watched me continue to allow Daniel Miller to be a part of our lives.

My sons have dealt with this each in their own way.  I am proud of them and their successes but I see how they have been damaged.  I see their lack of trust and how they isolate themselves from others.  I seldom see [redacted]. He buries himself in work and seldom comes home.  He says when he comes home he is forced to remember.  It is just too painful for him.

I would also like to comment on how Daniel Millers betrayal of my trust in him has affected my relationship with the church.  I cannot separate these 2 parts of my life – family from church because the church was my family.  I stopped attending church in 1999.  I couldn’t reconcile the words from the priest’s mouth with the actions of the church.   When I informed the bishops of what Daniel Miller confessed to me I was told they could do nothing.   That it was out of their hands.  I told the church authorities that if I saw or heard of Dan Miller officiating at church I would march to the pulpit and tell the truth about him.  I would not be a part of any attempt to keep his secret.  That he was a child molester and that people needed to keep their children away from him.  I was told I couldn’t do that and I said “watch me.” I had let my sons down by failing to protect them from a pedophile in a priest robe but I would not see it happen to anyone else.  The bishop told me to seek anger management counselling.  I was insulted.  Anger doesn’t begin to describe the way I feel.  I hold Dan in utter contempt and refuse to address him as Father Miller.

No church authority has ever approached my sons to validate them, thank them for their courage in coming forward, or to offer them counselling spiritual or otherwise.  Meanwhile Daniel Miller continues to benefit from the churches protection. He is still housed, supported, allowed to administer to the Grey Nuns – how can that be?

Even with is admission of guilt I hear people defend “poor Father Miller”.  That these “supposed victims” should be ashamed of themselves for making up these stories. That this is all about money.  To protect my son’s privacy I say nothing.  I have no doubt that Father Miller will have numerous letters of support attesting to his kindness and generosity – I was fooled by his kindness and generosity too.  It came with a very high price.   My family and my sons in particular pay for it every day with damaged lives and lost potential.   I do not want what has happened to be trivialized, minimized or downplayed.  This has caused real damage to real people’s lives.  We live with it every day.

9 Responses to Victim Impact Statement by mother whose sons were sexually abused by Father Daniel Miller

  1. Bernie Buechman says:

    I was just reading the statement by the mother who had her sons sexually,Mentally abused by a So Called Trusted and Respected Priest of the Family.I can not even Imagine for one second what this mother has gone through,The Abuse of Power In High Places.I am at the point in my Life where I believe in Faith and that comes in many places and many different forms,It does not mean it is the form of the Bible or a Priest or a Church Etc,Who is a Priest or any other member of the church who has never married to tell us how to live our lives and to listen to the church and its teachings.As it now seems there are more sinners within the church than outside ,it seems to me that evil is at work more so behind the doors of the church than any where else.Where does one turn when we have been taught all our lives how great the church is and do not question its internal doings.How many priests from years gone by that are now buried in a cemetery in our home town that may also have committed many illegal acts against a parish member,They are the Lucky ones!I was just looking last night at a baptism certificate from our local church in Pembroke and on the document there was a priests name who is now up on charges for misconduct,It makes me sick and if he is found Guilty I will make a point of taking those documents and have his name removed from them by the church.Thanks to everyone who has made all of us have so much more care and Love for Everyone who means so much in Our Lives,and Give Thanks to those so Brave to Tell There Stories Because we know there are many Victims who are not here to Tell them as they may have ended there Pain and Lives To Soon. It Seems to much so the Wolf Lurks within the churches walls Hearding its Sheep,Shame On Them!Shame on Us!

  2. Mary says:

    The whole point behind the contraception ban is to make sure predator priests have enough neglected children to molest. The UNnatural Family Cramming hoax outsources fed-up husbands to other women, thereby breaking apart families and leaving fatherless children easy prey for pedophile priests.

    • Sylvia says:

      You lost me here Mary. There are many victims who come from good homes with loving parents.

    • 1 abandoned sheep says:

      Mary, your comment makes no sense.
      Talking about contraception in the area of sexual abuse is just ridiculous.
      One has nothing to do with the other, and I think you know that.

      • JG says:

        I think Mary has been hurt and hurting…She is looking for a way to explain. I am prepared to be patient, or ridiculous, and give her a chance to open the door wider. I think her statement is a small piece of the big picture in her head.
        None of this abuse makes sense. Why should any of the victims or those hurt by priests and church be expected to have all the right words, the right approach?
        I remember where she is coming from….My Mother and her religious contemporaries were expected to have babies when they went to bed! Anything less was fed with guilt and shame from the pulpit! There is some link if you remove the exaggeration…”for the pain”.
        Patience.

        jg

        • Mary says:

          Thanks for your patient consideration for my bigger picture puzzle piece. My childbirth-ruined (commonplace obstetric bladder and bowel incontinence) mom feared death by another pregnancy guaranteed by the Natural Family Planning scam promoted by a playboy priest in our Towson, MD parish. He encouraged her to commit Munchausen by Proxy abuse against me as her permanent abstinence excuse. She chemically burned me head to toe to extort permanent abstinence from Dad to avoid creating another “genetic” monster like me. Meanwhile, that priest urged my dad to go to hookers instead while he banged Orioles’ wives! If we children had been better looking, our absent dad and mentally ill mom would have attracted pedophile priests as “babysitters”. NFP abstinence-only outsourced my dad to other women, as it does for most fed-up husbands. Broken families are favorite easy targets for pedophile priests and abused families should consider how toxic dogma, that kicks safe sex out of marriages, also sets up neglected, forced-birth kids as easy prey. If Catholics refuse to see the connection and demand reform regarding effective family planning, then pedophile priests will continue preying on the millions of forced-birth abandoned kids. Remember that the majority of priest-abused children haven’t come forward because they are HOMELESS and illiterate. Middle class white altar boys aren’t the only victims. They are just the tip of the ice burg.

          • JG says:

            Hello Mary,
            I was wondering if it was appropriate to continue commenting under this tread and I just re-read:”Victim Impact Statement by MOTHER …”, so I will continue…
            I read your last entry before going to bed last night and decided to sleep on it; I had a restless night! This is not an easy subject to comment on : abuse within the family. I remember “Eve” showing much courage as you are doing right now, just a few weeks ago. I was going to comment then but lost track of that tread. Eve, if you read this maybe you can help with my memory!…
            First of all, Mary, if your story is real and not just a script adapted to some other agenda(I thought of “freedom of choice” ..), my heart goes out to you and I want to salute your courage for speaking out. As in Eve’s case, I think not too many responses are heard because no one knows how to approach this subject of “treason” within the family, these “family secrets”… The only time I remember the subject being brought up was by some priests or supporters who were trying to deflect the attention away from themselves…I remember on some other tread I wouldn’t be able to find now where I could see how the confidence afforded to the clergy was precisely what contributed to spreading this abuse in the families. Thousands of priests traveling all over the world and spreading “their”disease like a hoard of mosquitoes over the years, the centuries…
            Oh! yes!, they had a great influence but not the one they were supposed to have in many cases.
            Mary, you are very angry, hungry and what you describe will keep me and probably others from sleeping well at night …
            I am filled with questions but I don’t know that they would help to make your life better…you refer to yourself as a “monster”, you mention “homelessness”, being “burned” chemically…
            There is probably not a worst condition for human beings than to feel they are not or were not worthy of being Loved…and everything you described is void of Love and Caring. You are right when you say the “predators” feasted on the broken families and the off springs, the weak and vulnerable but not less deserving! I am not going to preach to you if you have suffered as you described. What I see is an intelligent person who needs to drown out all these “old voices” and replace them with more gentle, Loving words. Stop repeating everything you have heard, all the lies about you and look in the mirror, in your own eyes: you deserve to be here, to feel happy and Loved. If you managed to survive everything you described, you can do anything…
            The only “ugly” I can see is what was done to you! If you can find a place in your heart that can make you smile, just a little, I guarantee you will be called “pretty” and “lovely”…Look for the “good” in you and others will find it along with you.
            Mary…you have a beautiful name, to start…
            I will keep you in my heart and my prayers all day, all week…for a long time to come.
            Be “good” to that person in the mirror; you know it wasn’t her fault…she was just a child!
            I wish you Peace in your heart and smiles in your eyes…

            jg

          • Eve says:

            JG
            I believe my story is under a victim C impact statement who was abused by Daniel Miller.

            I told my whole story for different reasons,mainly to show where and when in my life I was abused by a priest, also to make a point pedophiles are not usually some dirty creepy old guy who lives down the street, most are highly intelligent and well educated and make sure they are in positions of trust and influence guaranteeing them access to young children. After all who would suspect a teacher a well loved uncle or a Priest!!!!

            Everything they do is calculated, the career they choose the friends they make they are usually very charismatic amusing friendly and warm all for a reason to fool to con to engraciate themselves into people’s lives and homes all for a reason.

            That’s my take on it.

            Dearest Mary

            I’m so sorry for all you have suffered, the problem was theirs never yours , stand tall god loves you.

  3. Mike Fitzgerald says:

    Bernie;
    I share your feelings and concerns. I have wondered many times in the last few years why this evil seems to be rooted in some of our clergy.
    I have also felt that if I were the “Evil One”, what better way to destroy the world than to infiltrate the church at the highest level of it’s so-=called authority.
    We MUST think about this very possibility. Mike.

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