Disgraced former priest dies in custody

Ottawa Citizen

August 19, 2020

By Andrew Duffy

A former Ottawa priest has died in custody while waiting to be sentenced for the sexual abuse of two teenaged boys in a church rectory.

Barry McGrory had been at the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre since December when he was arrested for failing to appear in court.

McGrory, the former pastor at Holy Cross Parish, died in hospital. He was 85.

Last June, Superior Court Justice Michelle O’Bonsawin found McGrory guilty on two counts of gross indecency and two counts of indecent assault for crimes dating to the 1960s. The judge said McGrory used his position in the Catholic church to “exploit vulnerable and naïve young men for his own satisfaction.”


McGrory was convicted of abusing three adolescent boys during his clerical career, and credibly accused by at least five other victims, both male and female.

At least three of those victims complained to senior church officials about McGrory, but their concerns were repeatedly dismissed.

McGrory himself said former archbishop Joseph-Aurèle Plourde was aware of his predilection for adolescents and did nothing.

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