This made-for-television drama film, the second of two, explores the dark secrets at a Catholic boys' orphanage in Newfoundland and the aftermath of the scandal a decade and a half later. The story begins in Montreal as Peter Lavin, now a married father of two, is arrested for gross indecency and assault in front of his shocked wife, Chantal. Kevin Reevey, now twenty-five, is subpoenaed to testify against Lavin, but he refuses and threatens to disappear. Lavin learns that Brothers Glackin and Glynn have been arrested too, and firmly tells his lawyer that he is not guilty and will not accept a plea deal. Local radio host Lenora Pardy talks to her listeners about the story, wondering why arrests were not made fifteen years ago when the boys' official statements were taken. Detective Noseworthy finds Kevin and urges him to testify, but Kevin surprises him by revealing that he did not leave St. Vincent's after the scandal but stayed until he was sixteen. Noseworthy testifies about Kevin's statement and reveals that his superiors ordered him to doctor the evidence to protect the Church, and an official commission is called to look into the cover-up. The social worker tells the board that she never visited the boys under her care, having been ordered not to by the director's office.

Steven Lunny, now a drug addict and petty criminal, reunites with his older brother Brian for the first time in years, explaining that he has been called to testify against Glackin. Brian recalls his failed promise to rescue Steven from St. Vincent's, while elsewhere the orphanage director admits to the commission that when he heard the complaints of abuse, he turned them over to Lavin to investigate. Lavin refuses to allow his wife to testify as a character witness, and his lawyer suggests that he meet with a psychiatrist. While out with his girlfriend Sheilah, Kevin encounters a fellow St. Vincent's classmate who makes comments to him about Lavin, and Kevin attacks him. Sheilah, who was unaware of Kevin's past, questions him about it, but he flees from her without explanation. Lavin tells his psychiatrist that he never knew his biological parents and was raised in foster homes and orphanages, though claims that it made him stronger. Steven and Brian discuss their fantasies of revenge against their abusers, but while Brian explains that he finally let go of his rage after becoming a parent himself, Steven is less forgiving. Lavin is suspended from his architect job because of the case, and he describes his duties at St. Vincent's to the shrink. Steven returns to church for the first time with Brian's family, and the Minister of Social Services tells the inquiry board that he knew nothing about the abuse complaints.

Kevin reunites with Sheilah and suffers nightmares about Lavin, while elsewhere Lavin reunites with his wife and young sons. Chantal questions him about his reasons for leaving the Church and seems uncomfortable when he cajoles her into sex, clearly beginning to doubt him. Lavin tells his shrink that he feels "safe" with her and reflects on the joy of having his own family for the first time, and Brian fights with Steven when he finds him strung out on drugs. Noseworthy's boss Kennedy claims that he has memory problems when questioned about his part in censoring the boys' testimony, much to Lenora's disgust. Lavin states that he found sex "terrifying" before meeting Chantal, and then gives a young boy a ride home, remembering his days of watching the boys shower. He goes to confession and admits that he felt attracted to the boy and has "sinned" in a similar way in the past. The Monsignor tells the board that he knew about the abuse, but thought that further discussion of the matter would harm rather than help the boys. He adds that he was under instructions from the late Deputy Minister of Justice to move Lavin and to keep the matter quiet, and Lenora is exasperated that the guilt is being pinned on a dead man. Steven testifies about his experiences, but the defense lawyer points out that he has arrests for prostitution, among other things, and then causes an uproar when he reveals that Steven himself actually molested some younger boys while at school. Sheilah urges Kevin to seek out Steven and points out that he is still suffering profoundly because of Lavin, but Kevin still cannot bring himself to discuss it.

Glackin is found guilty, but Steven overdoses out of guilt and dies, and a heartbroken Kevin finds Sheilah at her job and tells her. They attend the funeral, and at the wake, a drunken Brian urges Kevin not to testify, saying that the experience destroyed his brother. The former Minister of Justice tells the commission that he was not aware of the investigation, but declines to elaborate, stating that he is bound by the oath of secrecy. Lavin finds that Chantal has sent their children away and intends to accompany him to the trial, and Kevin admits to Sheilah that he is still afraid of his abuser. Lavin admits to his shrink that he is afraid of himself in a sense and feels alone, and Chantal questions him as he prays fervently, saying that she can forgive him if he is honest with her. Kevin finally testifies about the night he ran away from St. Vincent's, explaining how Lavin abused him when he returned, and then vividly recounts the first time Lavin that assaulted him while they were swimming alone together, explaining that he had no family to visit him and at first believed that Lavin was showing him kindness. Chantal confronts her husband and demands to know if he is ashamed, but he reiterates that he merely "loved" Kevin in a compassionate way. She asks him if he has ever abused their sons, though he does not answer, and she declares that he is no longer their parent. The film ends ambiguously, with Lavin left alone in his torment.


  • NETWORK: CBC (Canada)
  • DATE: December 7, 1992
  • RUNNING TIME: 1:32:34
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: B:72820
  • GENRE: Drama
  • SERIES RUN: CBC - TV, 1992


  • Claudio Luca … Executive Producer
  • Colin Neale … Executive Producer
  • Sam Grana … Producer, Writer
  • Nicole De Rochemont … Associate Producer
  • Martine Allard … Line Producer
  • John N. Smith … Director, Writer
  • Des Walsh … Writer
  • Ed Riche … Writer
  • Neil Smolar … Music by
  • Henry Czerny … Cast, Peter Lavin
  • Sebastian Spence … Cast, Kevin Reevey (age 25)
  • Lise Roy … Cast, Chantal
  • Timothy Webber … Cast, Brian Lunney (age 30)
  • Kristine Demers … Cast, Sheilah
  • Sheena Larkin … Cast, Commission Lawyer
  • Brian Dooley … Cast, Detective Noseworthy
  • Mary Walsh … Cast, Lenora Pardy
  • David Hewlett … Cast, Steven Lunney (age 25)
  • Pierre Gaultier … Cast, Psychiatrist
  • Michael Chiasson … Cast, Lavin's Lawyer
  • Frank Schorpion … Cast, Defense Lawyer
  • Bryan Hennessy … Cast, Paul Stevens
  • Dereck O'Brien … Cast, Detective Owen
  • Berni Stapleton … Cast, Donna
  • Johnny Morina … Cast, Kevin Reevey (age 10)
  • Brian Dodd … Cast, Steven Lunny (age 10)
  • Ashley Billard … Cast, Brian Lunny (age 16)
  • Eric Lortie … Cast, Antoine Lavin
  • Daniel Lortie … Cast, Pierre Lavin
  • Kelly Ricard … Cast, Social Worker
  • David Francis … Cast, Lou Benson
  • Gary McKeehan … Cast, Minister
  • Ed Martin … Cast, Tom Kennedy
  • Sam Grana … Cast, Monsignor
  • Philip Spensley … Cast, Justice Minister
  • Frederic Smith … Cast, Commissioner
  • Greg Thomey … Cast, Brother Glackin
  • Alain Goulem … Cast, Brother Glynn
  • Jon Whalen … Cast, Glen Martin
  • Teddy Lee Dillon … Cast, Former St. Vincent Resident
  • Stephen Lush … Cast, TV News Reporter
  • Bill Barry … Cast, Priest at Cemetery
  • Kathleen Fee … Cast, Office Manager
  • Denys Ferry … Cast, Court Judge
  • Janis Spence … Cast, Judge
  • Ray Penton Jr. … Cast, Doorman
  • Jonathon Hoddinott … Cast, Brian's Son
  • Willy Lavendel … Cast, Blair
  • Kelly Russell … Cast, Fiddle Player