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You Never Know Where Ideas Will Come From

I am taking a class on profile writing, and as part of that class, we did a conference call tonight with a professor who has been a journalist for decades, Tommy Shea. He formerly wrote a column for the Springfield Union-News in Springfield, Mass. about unsung heroes, and in preparation for this conference call, we were asked to read a few of his stories. The third story I read that he had penned featured a man who had been a victim of sexual abuse at the hands of a now-defrocked priest, Richard Lavigne. The focus of this column had an interesting twist, though, because Tom Shea revealed that this victim came to him asking him to do a profile on a "good priest," someone who had defied the church hierarchy and condemned those who sought to cover up the sins of Lavigne and others. The name of that good priest was one James Scahill. When I read that name, I was floored. I made my first Communion in 1975, a year after Father Scahill was assigned to Blessed Sacrament Church in…

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