The Hounds of Rome - Mystery of a Fugitive Priest
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Father Steve Murphy, a Roman Catholic priest, pastor of a parish in an affluent suburb of Washington, DC, revered by his parishioners, believes he is about to be elevated to Monsignor. But, out of the blue, he is transferred without explanation to a temporary university teaching post. Shortly after, he is ordered to a prison-like correctional monastery deep in the Sonora Desert of Arizona. Murphy knows that he has been a devout priest and is puzzled and angry that he has been thrown in with the derelicts of the Catholic clergy. At the monastery, he finds that he has been cast among the pedophiles, alcoholics, embezzlers and other serious offenders who the church hierarchy is pressuring to resign or be defrocked. Convinced that God wants him to continue his ministry, he escapes. Murphy is now a fugitive, pursued by monks from the monastery who are little more than thugs with others to "do whatever it takes" to stop him and return him to the monastery, or even kill him, if necessary. Why, Steve Murphy asks himself, is his church doing this to him?
a sacrifice for people’s sins. God the Father accepted the sacrifice of his son because people had done many bad things. Jesus’ death would allow people to go to heaven to be with God.” “What if Jesus had gotten his head cut off instead of dying on the cross, what would you wear on your chest? What if he was killed with a spear? The Aleuts kill fish with a spear. Did the people who killed Jesus have spears?” “Yes, they had spears.” “What would you hang on your chest if the people killed Jesus
particular was running scared. She was in a market not far from here when a terrorist‘s bomb went off. She wasn’t harmed but she said the horrible things she saw really scared her, and she decided to leave. Sarah and David do visit us every year and we get e-mails and telephone calls, but no more than that. And although they’re both married now, there are no grandchildren yet.” “And, as I have been telling Lou,” Barbara said, “grown children separating from their parents and making their own
him for burial. Steve knelt for a moment, touched the stone and said a prayer. Moving further along in the church he came upon a cavelike room containing an altar and a stone sarcophagus. Here again, a score of votive lights were suspended from the ceiling of the small room. Although the burial chamber had originally been at the bottom of the hill of Golgotha, the inside of the church had been levelled out so that both were at approximately the same level. On leaving the church Steve spotted the
concerned they might have disturbed people near them. No one paid any real attention to them with the exception of an occasional student who knew Janet and sometimes a student in one of his classes. Since the faculty dining room was considered the only socially acceptable place for faculty to lunch, none of the professors or deans saw them. His daily solitary Mass in the Crypt Church of the Shrine became a joy, especially on days when he knew he and Janet would be lunching together. It was a
showed his disgust by angrily kicking a spray of water into the air. Giving his pursuers a thumbs up, Steve taxied out of the cove and down almost a mile into the larger part of the pond. Swinging around, he aimed the seaplane straight down the middle of the pond and soared into the air above a speedboat pulling a water skier. The people in the boat waved at him as he flew over. The loons went crazy at the sound of the airplane. Loud wailing echoed across the pond from the birds on the nesting