WHY I WROTE “The Millstone Prophecy”
About three years ago, my son, a screenwriter/director recommended I view the documentary, “Deliver Us from Evil”. An expertly produced Amy Berg film that coalesced around the issue of clergy sex abuse in the Catholic Church, it was nominated for an Academy Award, losing to “An Inconvenient Truth” that year.
One of its true life central characters was Father Oliver O’ Grady, a serial pedophile who had been moved from parish to parish by his superiors to avoid the discovery of his crimes, which resulted in more sexual attacks on children at each new location. Complaining parents of raped and sodomized children were stonewalled, pressured into signing non-disclosure agreements, and even threatened with the direction their souls might travel after death if they caused harm to the Mother Church. O’ Grady was the Poster Priest for an epidemic of pedophilia and a culture of hierarchical cover up going back hundreds of years. I was not only amazed that these cases numbered in the thousands, but felt deeply incensed at the lack of a credible legal response in the arrest and incarceration of all the players in this conspiracy, even when statutes of limitations were not in play.
My first action after viewing the film was to purchase ten copies of it and become a lending library to everyone I could engage in conversation about the issue. However, my sensibilities as a Human Being kept nagging at me to do something more dramatic than passing out DVDs. I finally reached a tipping point after interviewing Barbara Blaine, the President and Founder of SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, the largest international organization for abuse survivors and their families.
There were already a number of excellent authors who had written non-fiction books about the issue which I would highly recommend. Authors Jason Berry and Thomas Doyle truly fit that role. In order to attract a wider audience, I was determined to write a detective mystery that could stand on its own in that genre and would also contain the factually historical elements of clergy sex abuse as a backdrop to the dangers faced by my main character, Lieutenant Dax McGowan…hence, “The Millstone Prophecy”. I hope you enjoy it.