Today we sit down for a chat with Father Tom Greer from The Father Tom Mysteries by author J.R. Mathis.
What was your life like before your author started pulling your strings?
I was leading a nice, quiet life. After my ordination to the priesthood, I was assigned as the Archdiocesan Archivist, in charge of the records of the Archdiocese. This was perfect for me, as I worked as an archivist before entering the priesthood. The atmosphere was quiet, I worked mostly alone, and nothing exciting ever happened.
What’s the one trait you like most about yourself?
I think I have a fairly good sense of humor, though sometimes I wonder if anyone else thinks the same.
What do you like least about yourself?
That’s something I would not like to discuss.
What is the strangest thing your author has had you do or had happen to you?
I would say being forced to hear a confession at gunpoint. They didn’t cover that in seminary.
Do you argue with your author? If so, what do you argue about?
We haven’t had a serious argument yet. I’d say more polite disagreements, particularly concerning my interactions with Detective Helen Parr.
What is your greatest fear?
What makes you happy?
I find myself the happiest when I’m at the altar saying Mass. But I also have to say, remembering my wife Joan always brings a smile to my face.
If you could rewrite a part of your story, what would it be? Why?
My actions the night of Joan’s murder. Because either she’d still be alive, or I would be with her.
Of the other characters in your book, which one bugs you the most? Why?
Bless his heart, Nate Rodriguez. I like him, and he means well, but he’s so hyper he gets on my nerves.
Of the other characters in your book, which one would you love to trade places with? Why?
I know this sounds like a cop-out, but none of them. You see, I know their lives, their struggles, their hopes and their fears. I’m quite content with my own.
Tell us a little something about your author. Where can readers find his website/blog?
James loves his wife Susan and his grandkids. He actually works full time as an archivist for the federal government. Find him on his website where you’ll also find links to his social media sites and be able to sign up for his newsletter.
What's next for you?
Well right now I’m serving temporarily as chaplain for Our Lady of the Mount Monastery near Emmitsburg, Maryland. After the events of my recent stay at Saint Clare’s in Myerton, I’m hoping for some peace and quiet. But I think James may have other ideas.
The Penitent Priest
A Father Tom Mystery, Book 1
A wife murdered.
A killer at large.
A man of God with a painful secret.
When Tom Greer's wife Joan was murdered and her killer never caught, he left Myerton determined to leave the painful memories behind. Ten years later, now-Father Tom Greer returns as the temporary pastor of Saint Clare's Parish in Myerton--where he married and mourned his wife. Assigned there for four months, Father Tom’s only desire is to serve God's people quietly then leave again. He has no desire to revisit the past.
But the past won't leave Father Tom alone…
Secrets uncovered and a mysterious encounter in the confessional force Father Tom to confront painful truths about Joan and her murder. When a police detective--a woman from Father Tom’s own past--refuses to reopen the case, he decides to take matters into his own hands.
It turns out to be a fateful decision, for Father Tom has secrets of his own…Fans of Father Brown and Grantchester will love this first book in a new mystery series featuring Father Tom Greer.