Bahamas:  1954-2012

The journey of Scarboro missioners with the Bahamian people began after Fr. Jack McGoey made a visit to the islands in the early 1950s. He observed that priests served only the larger islands and since the 13,000 Catholics in the Bahamas were widely scattered, many were without the services of a priest. In 1954, in response to this pastoral need, Fr. McGoey and Fr. Craig Strang, both experienced missioners with years of service in China, became the first Scarboro missioners assigned to the Bahamas. In the early years, they travelled by sea and air to minister to the scattered groups of Catholics on the islands. Pastoral work was the main emphasis, but they also participated in efforts to alleviate the widespread poverty of the people by attempting to help farmers and establish schools to educate youth.

For the next 58 years, Scarboro Missions sent almost two dozen priests to serve in the Bahamas on the islands of Eleuthera, Harbour Island, Cat Island, New Providence, Bimini, and Grand Bahama. Fr. Ambie MacKinnon, the longest serving missioner to the Bahamas and the last to leave, served there for 37 years. Four Scarboro priests are buried in the Bahamas.

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