Latest update from Rachel Bevilacqua (Rev. Magdalen):
Thank you so much for all your help so far in fighting to get back and
keep my family together. It’s a little over a year since we finally
moved back into our house in Georgia, our whole family back together.
It’s so wonderful to be together again I can’t describe how good it
feels, and how thankful we are to have been able to have two holidays
together so far without being split up again, even though the court
case started back up in September.
Since the first notification of the court case, we’ve come a long way.
I retained Mr. Brian Goewey to represent me, and got permission from
the court to testify by telephone. At the last court appearance,
Judge Punch, who had returned to the case, raised the issue of
inconvenient forum himself, and told the two lawyers to submit papers
about that issue, and he would decide it all in writing. So for the
first time in a while we had no pending court cases, just waiting for
the judge to decide!
After several weeks, Judge Punch dismissed the case! I was so excited
I didn’t know what to do, but then my lawyer informed me that it’s
possible to appeal even the dismissal of a case. Jeff has until
January 15 to submit an appeal, so I am counting down the days to find
out whether the case is finally dismissed beyond all recall from the
County of Orleans.
I haven’t spoken to Jeff since the decision, so I don’t know what he
will do, but I have to assume he’s going to try his hardest to appeal,
so each day that goes by without a phone call saying there’s an appeal
is a good day. I will write again after the deadline passes and let
you know whether we won!
Meanwhile, Mr. Mattingly, the original lawyer who won us the right to
go home in the summer of 2007, but who can’t represent me anymore
because I owe him so much, needs to be paid something before the end
of the year, or he will get in trouble with his partners. I still owe
him $24,000, but he never bothers me about it, and he took off a lot
of other charges to get it down that low.
Of course, I have no hopes of raising so much money, but I hope that
if everyone who reads this either sends in a little bit, just $10 or
so, or else forwards this email to someone who might be willing and
able to help, we can make it a good year for Mr. Mattingly after all,
so in the future when some other poor artist needs help, he’ll once
again step up to fight for civil rights, without worrying about a
We already raised $500 for Mr. Mattingly from the Jocko Dome-o
fundraiser in Cleveland, which is so awesome! So many amazing artists
and good friends came together and made some really cool art. You can
read all about it here:
I know the last time I wrote I used a link that wasn’t working for
everyone, so I’ve included this link that is pretty old but seems to
still work (sorry, you have to scroll down almost to the end):
Or if you want to just mail Mr. Mattingly a check, or use a card over
the phone, his info is:
Christopher S. Mattingly
42 Delaware Ave
Buffalo, NY 14202-3924
(716) 849-1333 ext 351
Together, we’ve already come so far. I could never have made it to
where I am today without all of you who have helped me so much
already. Thank you once again for all your help and support, and I
will write again as soon as I find out the final outcome of this long,
long, long case.
Rachel Bevilacqua (Rev. Magdalen)