Jillian's Experience Part 2

Meeting the Abuser

a brick tunnel with a window

Note: This is Part 2 in a series of posts by Jillian. Read Jillian's Experience Part 1, Introduction to the Abuse.

When I met Mac Smith, I was at a time in my life where  I felt as though some of my previous decisions needed to be absolved in order for me to reach heaven one day; I needed to confess the sins I committed in the eyes of the church. Smith claimed that he directly received verbal messages from Our Mother Mary.

When I met him, I was under the impression that he was a priest- the church he held his healing sessions at boasted about him, and the woman who introduced me to him swore that he worked miracles. Little did I know he was asked to stop practicing by the Catholic Church years ago, after the church concluded that Smith was not being spoken to directly by Mary. This piece of information would have been nice to know given that I saw him for eight months, hoping on the promise he gave to me- that he would assist in absolving my sins.

He did not absolve them, he mocked them, he used my spirituality to manipulate me, and then assaulted me. 

brown and black wall inside the cathedral

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

“I have to touch you here to heal the sins you committed when you got an abortion years ago. I have to touch you here for the times you gave your body away to other men.” 

I felt ashamed. I felt humiliated. He did this for months because he told me that Mary was there too, helping to heal me. That if I just came a few more times to see him, for him to put his hands on me just one more time, my sins would be healed. He told me just one more time every single time. 

I stopped going to see him when I realized Smith was abusing his power to abuse me. It took me a long time to share with others what happened to me, to share what Mac Smith did to me. Trying to suppress the things he did to me out of a feeling of shame in being so naive and trusting a priest who promised to lead me to salvation.

Previously, the world I knew looked black and white; now, it was only gray. I started to question everything I previously knew as truth. Plagued with an identity crisis, I began to lose touch with myself because my entire belief system was misconstrued by the actions of this man.

How could a priest, devoted to God, who devoted his life to spreading the word of God, use my faith in the church to abuse me because he felt he had the right to? 

brown wooden beaded rosary

Photo by James Coleman on Unsplash

Photo by James Coleman on Unsplash

About the Author

Jillian Coburn is an entrepreneur, inventor, outdoorswoman, and mother of three who is passionately committed to supporting and elevating women who have nowhere to turn and living under the shadows of domestic violence. A survivor herself, she assists women living with abuse by empowering and teaching them how to get out, heal and build a life they’ve always imagined.

Jillian is an author, speaker, and advocate who is dedicated to preventing child sexual abuse and holding offenders accountable.

Published by SurvivorSpace, an initiative of Zero Abuse Project