The Shack


William P. Young

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Mack’s Father Character Analysis

A violent alcoholic who abused Mack and other members of his family. Before running away from the family farm, Mack fills all the alcohol bottles he can find with poison. When Sarayu gives Mack the ability to see as God does, Mack sees his father; the man has forgiven him for poisoning him and seeks forgiveness for his behavior as a father.

Mack’s Father Quotes in The Shack

The The Shack quotes below are all either spoken by Mack’s Father or refer to Mack’s Father. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Independence from God Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Windblown Media edition of The Shack published in 2007.
Foreword Quotes

For almost two days, tied to the big oak at the back of the house, he was beaten with a belt and Bible verses every time his dad woke from a stupor and put down the bottle.

Related Characters: Willie (speaker), Mackenzie Allen Phillips, Mack’s Father
Page Number: 10
Explanation and Analysis:
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Mack’s Father Character Timeline in The Shack

The timeline below shows where the character Mack’s Father appears in The Shack. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Love and Relationships Theme Icon
Mack was born to an Irish-American family in the Midwest, and his “overly-strict church elder” father was a vicious drunk. When thirteen-year-old Mack tearfully confessed in church that he had seen... (full context)
Chapter 3: The Tipping Point
Love and Relationships Theme Icon
The Nature of God Theme Icon
...he doesn’t feel as close with God as Nan does, and also that his own father had mistreated him before his death. (full context)
Chapter 5: Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner
The Nature of God Theme Icon
...he’s losing Kate, and that Missy’s death was punishment for what he did to his father. (full context)
Chapter 11: Here Come Da Judge
Love and Relationships Theme Icon
...the fact that not all parents are able to care for their children well—Mack’s own father, she points out, did not love him well. Then, she asks him which of his... (full context)
Chapter 15: A Festival of Friends
Grief and Emotion Theme Icon
Sarayu says that the man having difficulty is Mack’s father. Overwhelmed with a mix of emotions, Mack runs towards his father as the light emanating... (full context)