Clergy sex abuse victim- shared her story.

24 March, 2020

Rev. Barry McGrory

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Ottawa Citizen reported that Barbara Erlandson an Ottawa woman who was sexually abused by Rev. Barry McGrory in the mid-1970s is telling her story publicly for the first time.

McGrory was giving counselling to Erlandson for drug and alcohol use. After two months of counselling, he started sexually abusing Erlandson then a 15 or 16-year-old student and only stopped when Erlandson told McGrory that she was pregnant.
In 1977 Barbara Erlandson met with then-Bishop John Beahan one of the most powerful figures in the Catholic Archdiocese of Ottawa, to explained what had happened to her but she was made to feel as if it was her fault.

Years later, in April 1994, Erlandson filed a criminal complaint against McGrory with Ottawa Police. At that time McGrory was moved from the Archdiocese of Ottawa.

McGrory admitted in his interview with the Ottawa Citizen that Erlandson was one of three young people he sexually abused during his years at Holy Cross Parish.

Erlandson says her abuse at the hands of McGrory left her deeply cynical and sometimes angry. “His lack of empathy scarred me for life,” she says. “I have lost my faith and have worked all my life to continue to see the best in others. “Abuse is a reality: It permeates every level and place in the world that I live. I hope, by sharing this, I will help stop the cycle of abuse.”

Last year McGrory was charged with two counts of indecent assault on a male and two counts of gross indecency. He was found guilty for sex crimes dating back to the late 1960s by Ontario Superior Court Justice Michelle O’Bonsawin.
McGrory is to be sentenced early next month.

If you have a complaint against Rev. Barry McGrory or are a victim of sexual assault in Ontario, please contact us. We can help.