The new documentary Deliver Us From Evil describes Father Oliver O'Grady as "the most notorious pedophile in the history of the modern Catholic Church." O'Grady allegedly molested more than two dozen children—as young as nine months old—in his northern California diocese for more than two decades. The church, meanwhile, allegedly covered up O'Grady's crimes, lying to parishioners and law enforcement while shuffling the priest from parish to parish. O'Grady was eventually caught, convicted, and prosecuted, and spent seven years in prison before fleeing to Ireland as a relative unknown
Amy Berg, a CNN journalist who had done a story about abusive priests, wanted to explore the topic further. She spent eight days in Ireland, where O'Grady had fled after his prison term, interviewing the former priest in his neighborhood. In the film, O'Grady speaks of his sexual desires as calmly as if he were talking about a flower garden. Those candid interviews, combined with further reporting and interviews with O'Grady's victims, make up much of Deliver Us From Evil, now playing in limited theaters
Berg, who describes herself as a non-religious Jew, says she wants to tell the victims' stories and expose the ecclesiastical corruption that makes it possible for priests to continue preying on children. In this interview with Christianity Today Movies, Berg doesn't come across as having an anti-religion bias, but as one who is able to see the tragedy of clerical child abuse from a different vantage point
We're told that there is no cure for pedophilia and that predators simply do not repent. What was your take on O'Grady?
Amy Berg: We don't know if he's repentant or not, though he's really willing to talk. I think he's so used to receiving ...1