Father Murphy, created by Michael Landon, was a western family drama that ran from 1981 to 1983 on NBC. The show starred Merlin Olsen as John Michael Murphy, Katherine Cannon as Mae Woodward, Timothy Gibbs as Will Adams, and Moses Gunn as Moses Gage. Many of you will remember Merlin Olsen as a former Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle, as well as the character Jonathan Garvey on Little House on the Prairie.
In this show, John Michael Murphy (Olsen) poses as a priest who takes orphaned children under his wing with the help of a school teacher named Mae (Cannon) and his friend Moses (Gunn). Murphy’s cover as a priest allows the group to protect the children from a forced labor work house. By the end of the first season, Murphy’s true identity is discovered. Before the children are subjugated to a life of hard labor, Murphy marries Mae, and the couple is allowed to adopt the children.