In terms of literary worth this book would score quite low, but that’s not why it should be read. In these pages Chrissie Foster describes the excoriating trauma her family suffered, first at the hands of a paedophile priest and then at the hands of the Catholic Church. How she and husband Anthony coped with year upon year of psych units, thefts, underage drinking, suicide attempts and drug use as their two older daughters deteriorated under the weight of their suffering makes your heart bleed. The battles they and others have endured in trying to obtain justice and compassion from a supposedly Christian organisation are astonishing. The enormous hypocrisy of the Church hierarchy beggars belief. Today we’re all gobsmacked by the announcement of the guilty verdict against Cardinal George Pell, architect of the discredited and cynical Melbourne Response and a man who was combatively dismissive to the Fosters personally. The disgust we feel for these hard-hearted, power hungry clerics is being manifested in fewer bums on pews. If the Catholic Church doesn’t clean up its act it may cease to exist, and deservedly so. They’ve lost all credibility. It is simply impossible to quantify the heartache and suffering they have caused all over the world. From the pope on down they continue to refuse responsibility for acts that are illegal, immoral, evil.
I have been told over the years that all I have done in my life was my fault. I was never approached in the was this family were maybe because my parents were members of the church with my mothers brother and sister a priest and nun respectively. I came in contact with Risdale as he ate breakfast at my parents home after saying mass on Sunday and Daniels when he stayed in my parent s flat during his breaks/holidays but at those times none of this was known. My contact with O’Donnell was brief and I never spoke to him again. I lived a couple of doors away from this amazingly brave family for 9 years and learned of their struggles and heart break. My admiration for them knows no bounds and the heartbreak they have suffered has taken it’s toll. Forge ahead Chrissie my prayers are with you always. Christine Ethell
I hope George Pell and his fellow hierarchy of the Catholic church rott in hell with their paedophile priests. My heart goes to you Chrissie and your family. I can't imagine how you've dealt with this. At times I was reading through tears and wanted to put the book down... but I realised reading it was not anywhere near as hard as living your life... and I owed it to you (@ a minimum) to keep reading. Thank you for telling us this important story.
What this family has endured is shocking and heartbreaking. I feel great compassion for them in light of the torment, heartache and loss they have endured.
The proliferation of paedophilic practice within the church is far more common than I previously imagined and has probably been occurring since the establishment of "The Church". It has been estimated that only 3% of victims will have to courage to come forward and report the abuse ... so the true figures of those affected may very well be mind boggling. It is incomprehensible why some sick adults prey on defenceless children.
I also feel compassion for all the truly good Christian men and women who have devoted their lives to their faith and been so tragically let down by their church. I can only imagine how betrayed some followers must feel.
I just completed reading this book - so well written. I congratulate you Chrissy for sharing your family's difficult journey with your readers. The determination that Anthony and you showed to get justice not only for your own family but for all those children who have suffered at the hands of these pedophile priests fills me with admiration. Well done.
This book is well written and provides an insight into the lack of care the sexual assault victims from the Catholic Church. The Fosters have been treated shockingly by an institution that thinks they have moral high ground. Why anyone would want to identify as a Catholic is beyond me, believe in god if you want, but stop supporting this EVIL institution.
Pretty much qualify's for me the "utter betrayal of children by clergy" throughout the years. Pell should come back to Australia and face the music. He knew what was coming and got out just in time for him.