abuse and pedophilia in the Catholic church have been in headlines for decades,
but a new book by Tom Hogan explores the issue in a unique way – by going
inside the head of a young priest who has decided to become an avenger … even
as he experiences his own sexual urges.
Gabe Russell is the
protagonist in this work of fiction that incorporates many truths about the
issues that have left scars on the Catholic church. The conflicting emotions
that this priest experiences gnaw at him; He wants to punish those who have
abused innocent victims and stained the Catholic faith, yet he also wants to
satisfy his own desires with a woman who teaches at his seminary.
In this gripping
story entitled The Empty Confessional, Hogan shows us a newly minted priest who
finds release for his religious and sexual frustrations through violent penance
— retribution against abusers and rapists he discovers through the confessional
and the pedophilic priests within his own ranks.
Confessional plunges readers into the dark workings of the Catholic church and
its real-life tacit policy of protecting pedophilic priests, as told through
the eyes of Gabe, who, at just 27 years old, already has his own parish in
working-class Pittsburgh. But he is in crisis. He is sexually attracted to
Michelle, a teacher at the seminary where he also teaches, and he is frustrated
by the church’s lack of ownership of pedophilic priests.
Skilled in Krav Maga,
a violent Israeli form of self-defense, Gabe can easily disable and kill with
his bare hands. And as he hears confessions from battered and raped women, he
decides he can no longer just sit and listen. He targets the attackers one by one,
his taste for retribution escalates, and he eventually turns his attention to
the pedophilic priests in surrounding parishes. Enter Carla Jessup, a jaded
detective assigned to investigate the attacks. Carla turns to Gabe for his
insights on the church and the pedophilia within its ranks, unaware that he is
the actual assailant.
Will Gabe answer to
his crimes? Or will the seal of the confessional protect his secrets?
Tom Hogan is the
author of two novels: Left for Alive (2019) and The Devil’s Breath (2021), as
well as the co-author of The Ultimate Startup Guide, published in 2017. His
screenplays have won awards. He has also written for Newsweek and other
political and travel publications, including The Jerusalem Post and The