I don’t know how many remember when it was first revealed in articles written by David Boeri that Father Robert Drinan, S.J. had tried to help Whitey Bulger straighten out his life. He was at the time a twenty-something inmate serving his first hitch in federal prison for some robberies he committed. Drinan, a Catholic priest, was following the teachings of his Church as set out by Jesus who said among the things one must do to gain the kingdom of heaven was to visit those in prison: “I was in prison and you came to me.”
When Dick Lehr of the Globe heard about Drinan contacting Whitey he said that Whitey was laying a beachhead with Father Drinan, implicating that somehow Whitey was grooming Drinan, then Dean of Boston College Law School, to become part of his then non-existent criminal team that he was going to build up after he got out of prison. Lehr had no idea of a Catholic priest’s role or the teachings of the Church. Neither did Boeri who went around asking people if they knew Drinan was connected to Whitey.
The murder of Whitey is now being used by the Globe to continue its crusade, or better put vendetta, against its two main enemies the Catholic Church and the Bulger family. I noticed yesterday how it did an unwarranted attack on Whitey’s brother Bill which continues its long-standing fake suggestion against all credible evidence that he was somehow involved with or profited from Whitey’s criminal activities. As even a casual reader of the Globe would know, it believes its job is to harass and intimidate the Catholic Church by continually pointing to its deficiencies. The other day it sought from Cardinal O’Malley his response to its article on other Catholic bishops. Why O’Malley feels a need to respond to it escapes me.
The folk at the Globe’s 53 State Street office in Boston, who used to be on Morrissey Boulevard, could hardly believe their luck when they heard of Whitey’s death. They could go after both the Bulger family and the Catholic Church. The idea they conjured up is to suggest that Whitey should not be buried in a Catholic Church ceremony along with the suggestions that it is somehow evil for the Bulger family to have something to do with seeking a funeral mass for their deceased brother or uncle.
The recent column by two Globe writers, one who recently was in high disfavor with the Globe but who can redeem himself if he adequately intrudes on the Bulger family’s privacy, shows the attempts to which the Globe is going. They say Whitey secretly buried some of his victims, so sua sponte they add: “One question now is whether he is entitled to a Christian burial himself.” Why is that something that they should be concerned with?
They called the Bulger family to find out what was going to happen. They called various priests to talk about it. They call a theologian who says Cardinal O’Malley may have to obligation not to allow a funeral mass if public scandal to the faithful will result. Obviously, the Globe intends to make it a scandal as it does with everything else the Catholic Church does. Here’s their chance, Whitey did receive a funeral mass at St. Monica’s in South Boston on Thursday. The priest who said the mass and the Bulger family ignored the boorish behavior of the Globe people..
It wasn’t enough for these two writers to but into the Bulger’s private grief, they then suggest evil lurked in the hearts of some priests. They wrote Father Robefr Drinan became Whitey’s spiritual adviser “at the urging of Bulger’s brother Bill.” That is hardly likely. Bill was a struggling sophomore at Boston College and Drinan was its law school dean. Drinan’s involvement came through his friendship with the family, especially a sister.
They add about Whitey in his twenties serving 20 years that, “Drinan and a few other priests became his pen pals.” There is no record of any extensive correspondence between them which would make them “pen pals.” They suggest contrary to the facts that Drinan played a “big role in Bulger’s early release.” If anyone played a role it was House Speaker John McCormick and even he did little since Whitey release was nothing special.
The maliciousness in their writing should be limpid. They want people to believe Whitey in his mid to late twenties or early thirties was the Whitey of his mid-forties and afterward. There was no reason for anyone to expect him to become a gang leader when he was doing time for robbery. There was every reason for priests to try to show him the errors of his ways. They write as if these priests knew he was going to attack and take over Winter Hill and that they all were going to secure the beachhead for him. .
The Bulger family of good people has suffered enough having had a brother who became notorious? Even Whitey at separate times expressed his regret at having his family suffer because of his actions. Doesn’t decency demand that it be allowed to have their privacy during this time? The Globe should stop its efforts to interfere with that family, Whitey’s body, and his burial.
Fortunately Cardinal O’Malley did not do what the Globe sought which was to to block a Church funeral mass for Whitey . Hopefully he will ignore it in the future for he should know you can never please one out to get you.