The Way of the Nations
Noted Patristics blogger Mike Aquilina comments that the Fathers of the Church would "recognize America's moral landscape for what it is" meaning that the atrocities practiced during their time remain essentially the same as in ours.

He especially makes note of the gruesome Roman practice of what was done with newly-born children who were unwanted. I showed his comments to a friend and said "imagine living in a society like that." Then I caught myself. We are living in a society like that.

There seems to be an unawareness about what abortion does to our culture and our people. There also seems to be an inability to give this issue of the Right to Life the priority it deserves. Some people think the war in Iraq, or rather stopping the war in Iraq, has a higher priority. I disagree.

You can support the war in Iraq and remain a Catholic in good standing. It's also important to recognize that you can oppose the war in Iraq and remain a Catholic in good standing.

This is not the case with abortion and until we quit squabbling over what we should or should not be doing in Iraq, or anywhere else, then we will find it difficult to make progress in this fight.

Our society needs to be fixed. Let's not go down like the Romans did, fighting amongst each other and killing their young. Let's build a Culture of Life.
Texas Rally for Life
It's safe to say that people may one day brag about marching with Fr. Pavone in the various Marches for Life held around the country the way you hear people bragging about how they marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during the heyday of the Civil Rights movement.

So, here goes:

Today was the Texas Rally For Life in Austin and team members of Youth For Life from the Catholic Pro-Life Committee not only were there but they held the main banner in the front of the march (pictured), held most of the American and Texas flags and also marched with Fr. Pavone.

During his rally talk, Fr. Pavone answers the question of how long will it be before Roe is overturned:
"It will not be long, because more and more voters in this country are understanding that unless we elect candidates who understand the difference between protecting life and taking it, then they undermine the very purpose of government in the first place, no it will not be long!

Because more and more citizens are coming to realize that if we don't protect the right to life, every other right that we have goes down with it!

It will not be long because more and more of our fellow citizens understand that we cannot build a world of justice as long as we continue to allow the most fundamental injustice,

We cannot welcome the poor if we can't welcome our own children,

We can't open the door to immigrants if we can't open the door to our own flesh and blood,

We cannot persuade people that capital punishment is not the answer if we're executing children,

And we cannot have peace between nations if we can't even preserve peace between a mother and her own child, it won't work!"

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"Her beautiful face changed before my very eyes..."
A Sidewalk Counselor Story

While at the White Rose Women's Center on January 13, 2007, I heard a loud banging noise and thought it was someone knocking on the front door so I went downstairs. The door was open. Looking outside, I saw a woman walking toward Fitzhugh Avenue. Assuming she was looking for the White Rose, I called her. She walked back toward me and asked me where “4321” was. My heart sank, as that’s the address of the Routh Street abortion center. So I asked D why was she going there and she told me she had an appointment but she couldn’t find the place. I asked her if she were pregnant and she said “yes”.

That led to some fast talking and praying on my part as we stood outside the White Rose in the frigid rain and practically shouting over the traffic from Central Expressway. It was raining so hard I couldn’t even see her face clearly. Because D had come via the bus, she was soaked to the skin. Several times D started to walk away, but God heard my prayers. I was finally able to coax her inside and upstairs to the White Rose reception room. D began to fill out the intake sheet, but suddenly she jumped up and said she was going through with the abortion. Another counselor (S) and I followed her down the steps and outside into the frigid rain again. This time it took both of us talking and praying to get her back inside a second time.

We took her straight to one of the counseling rooms, shut the door, and got right into it, S across the table from D, and J sitting next to her. D was a very hostile young woman. Her words were filled with the hate and pain she was going through. She was "going to get even" with the man who had rejected and abandoned her. She was bound and determined to abort this baby because she was so angry at the father. I was struck by the physical signs these feelings produced on her face. The spirit of death had manifested itself in her countenance.

After a while S left to attend to other needs (the White Rose was short-handed that day) and I stayed on with D. We delved deeper into spiritual things. As I had my arm around her and talked softly about Jesus' love for her and her baby, and she slowly began to let go. Her body relaxed and she started crying. Pretty soon tears were streaming down her face as the pent-up anger came out. I asked if I could pray with her and she said “yes”. I prayed for her and then asked her to pray with me. I asked D if she would like to know this Jesus who loved her beyond all understanding and would never abandon her. Again, she said “yes”. D prayed for Jesus to forgive her sins and to come into her life. She gave her heart that day to the One who had made it and to the only One who could heal it. As D ended her conversation with God, her body continued to relax and the tears began to subside. I watched as her beautiful face changed before my very eyes into one of peace and serenity. By that time I had tears streaming down my face at the total awesomeness of a God who can bring about such a miracle.

I know that when this precious child accepted the Living God into her heart, that the demons of death were driven out of that room and out of that building. I could “feel” that something had happened!

D was thrilled to receive a brand new Bible, one in a shipment of Bibles which had just been donated to the White Rose. She and I looked through it and I suggested she start reading in the Book of John. We marked the page. I stressed the importance of spending time with God everyday, just as we need to spend time to make every relationship grow and deepen. God above all else deserves our time in prayer and the reading of His word.

By this time S came back to run D’s pregnancy test which proved to be positive. (I kind of “stood by” when D went into the restroom to make sure she got back into the counseling room okay!) And since it was lunch time, we got her something to eat and popped in the video “Caring” which is one shown to every White Rose client. I left her in there while that video was running. She let me know when it was over as she wanted to watch more! So she eventually watched two more videos. One was the very poignant “After the Choice” in which several women are interviewed who had abortions. This one pulls no punches and is a real tear jerker. The other one was an upbeat video which imparts hope to young women who find themselves in the desperate situation of an unplanned pregnancy. D said she especially liked this one.

Since D didn’t want to go home on the bus and since we had lots of goodies for her 7-month old son, she waited on me to finish what I had to do. But she enjoyed the wait as she looked through all the literature (asking appropriate questions), looked through the baby name book, shopped for maternity clothes, and took a tour of the Chapel. D loved the Chapel! She walked around and looked at every picture on the wall and asked who it was. And then she picked up a Roe Memorial flyer and announced to me “I want to go to this”!!!

D and I left the White Rose at five hours after her unborn baby was scheduled to die. By this time she was talking happily about her baby. She even called her mother on my cell phone to tell her the good news. Her mother was very relieved and happy! D said her mom was sad at first because she thought D had gone through with the abortion. Then D said something like this (paraphrase) "I would be feeling pretty sad right now if I had gone through with what I planned to do today".

On the way home we drove past the Cathedral so she could see where the Roe Mass would take place. D was so excited when I pointed it out. “Is that the Cathedral?” she cried in amazement! She had never been there before and was so eager to see inside.

D was baptized in the Catholic faith as a child, but nothing happened since then. She expressed a desire to go back to church and to learn more about the faith. I will encourage her to talk with the priest or deacon and eventually get into a confirmation class.

I am very happy to be one of two Gabriel Angels paired with D. Another Angel “also J” lives close to D and took her to Mass in her parish the next Sunday. D and “also J” hit it off right from the first time they spoke on the phone. AND, the most wonderful thing is that “also J” took D and her son to the Roe Memorial Mass on January 20 where they stayed for Adoration and the Reception/Info Fair. D was able to pick up even more pro-life literature, meet lots of people, and receive a pair of precious feet which are the same size as her unborn baby’s feet!

I have a very good feeling about D. That she is going to go forward in the Lord and she’s going to be okay. D lives with her mother and teenage sister. She is working part time and studying for her GED. She has dreams of becoming a registered nurse and even owning her own beauty salon someday. I told her there’s nothing wrong with having two careers – and she can do it!!!

When I think of D and the transformation that God brought about in her, the words of the Prophet Isaiah come to mind:

“… to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They (D - my addition) will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor.” Isaiah 61:3

The Lord has great things in store for D and those two precious babies for the display of His splendor!

submitted by "A"
January 25, 2007
The New Face of Feminism
Freezing cold, raining and miserable and yet they come to witness to the harm of abortion. This is the new face of feminism.
Dominican Friars of Washington DC
The student brothers of the Dominican Friars in Washington DC are a great community of men. If you know of anyone discerning a call to the Priesthood, the St. Joseph Province of the Dominicans is definitely a place to check out.

Our friend, Brother Francis de Sales Johnston, sent us a link to their blog that contains a video done by one of the brothers, Fr. Gabriel Gillen, O.P., during the recent March For Life in Washington DC.

Below is the link to the video and I do recommend that you watch it when you get a chance. The video shows short interviews with the various OP's that came along for the March as well as other attendees.

I long ago accepted that I could never forget
Last weekend's Rally and March ended up in front of the Federal Courthouse, where we held a brief prayer service and wreath-laying ceremony.

These are the words of Msgr. Mark Seitz, Pastor of St. Rita Catholic Church in Dallas, TX in front of the courthouse:

"Those of us 50 years and older can all probably recall exactly where we were and what we were doing on that fateful day in 1963 when President Kennedy was assassinated, not far from here. Practically all of us can remember with great clarity the day in 2001, we have come to know by its date, “September 11th”. I have another date etched in my memory, January 22nd, 1973. I remember it well. It continues as a wound upon my heart. I carry it like the Hebrew Phylactery inscribed on this bracelet on my wrist, not for show, but that I may humbly remember.

I long ago accepted that I could never forget.

On that day, when the court case that began right here at this courthouse was decided I lost a measure of my youthful innocence, and so did our nation. On that day, this nation, which I had always believed to be the most righteous and just nation the world had ever seen – a nation founded upon holy principles of respect for the dignity of every person and care for the weakest person – a nation that struggled to correct her faults and live those principles – shattered in my eyes. From that day to this one – 34 long years – she has taken scalpel in hand and legally torn her youngest members asunder – and her virtue as well.

But I have not lost hope, because I believe in a God who can restore to me my innocence and the nation’s as well. I believe in a God and a Redeemer who, with a word, can raise us to life.

To the One who alone can make us whole again, let us pray:

Good Lord of life, as we gather at this place dedicated to justice, but where a most unjust decision has its roots, we turn to you in somber recollection of that day, 34 years ago, when we as a nation betrayed our very selves. We recall in sorrow the lives of our unborn children, destroyed; the nurturing role of mothers and fathers, rejected; the conscience of a nation, deadened.

As citizens of this nation, members of this society, overshadowed by the culture of death, we beg for your mercy. As people of hope, inspired by your Gospel, we implore you, Jesus, to speak over us your words of life. You said to the little girl, “Talitha Koum” and she arose from the dead; to Lazarus you shouted, “Come out!” and he emerged from the tomb. Care for the millions of innocents who have been killed, that they may live in you; speak words of tenderness to mothers and fathers who have chosen death for their children, but who seek your forgiveness; raise up our nation to be true to herself and to you, O great Lord of Life.

In Jesus’ name we pray. AMEN!"

When Do We Mention Abortion?
Last Sunday's Dallas Morning News (print edition) has two articles about two people who recently announced their candidacy for the Presidency in 2008. One was Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) and the other was Senator Sam Brownback(R-KS).

Brownback is described as a "favorite of the religious right" who is "a fierce foe of abortion . . and opposes embryonic-stem cell research and gay marriage."

There is no indication in either article of how Mrs. Clinton feels or votes about the above listed issues. That is interesting because she has voted in favor of partial-birth abortion, has a 100% voting record from NARAL and has been endorsed by Emily's List, a pro-abortion PAC.

I wonder why the Dallas Morning News felt it was important to mention Senator Brownback's opposition to abortion but was strangely unable to mention Senator Clinton's stands on the very same issues? She even had an article twice as long as Senator Brownback's!

Update: Apparently, this is not a problem with the Dallas Morning News only.

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March For Life in every city
Catholic blogger Domenico Bettinelli mentions that there are two big marches taking place this weekend, one in San Francisco and one in Washington D.C. He laments the fact that there are not more of them out there for people to attend. I agree.

If you are close to those areas, please support those marches.

If you are NOT close to those areas, consider coming to Dallas this Saturday for our Rally and March For Life. Our goal is to make this Rally and March one of the biggest in the nation.

If you are not close to Dallas or in one of our border states (Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas or New Mexico) then consider supporting your local events or perhaps, if there is not one available, starting one of your own.

"Imagine if thousands of pro-lifers marched in every major city in the US on that day? It would be awesome and they wouldn’t be able to ignore it, " Bettinelli says, and the truth is that this day will have to come where thousands, even millions of Christians and people of good will, will have to rise up and demand that this tragedy come to an end.

This day can't come soon enough.

Next year, the Catholic Pro-Life Committee will keep a running list of every March For Life, Rally, Prayer Service, or demonstration around the Roe anniversary on our web site www.prolifedallas.org. If you know of anything taking place, please let us know and we will post it for everybody.
Dallas Rally and March For Life this Saturday, January 20th
If you cannot make it to Washington DC or San Francisco for the annual marches for life, please consider coming to Dallas, TX for our Roe Memorial Mass and Rosary and our 2nd Annual Dallas Rally and March for Life.

Events will start Saturday morning at 9:00 am with a rosary at Fairmount abortion mill, the oldest mill in Texas, followed by a 10:00 am Mass at Cathedral Guadalupe (2215 Ross at Pearl). After Mass we will host the 2nd Annual Dallas Rally and March for Life. The Rally will take place in the courtyard and we will then march to the Federal Courthouse where Roe v. Wade began.

After the March we will head back to the Grand Salon in the Cathedral for refreshments and a pro-life info fair.

This Rally and March was put together by many local pro-life, pro-family groups in an attempt to work together in ending this great tragedy.

Go to www.prolifedallas.org for more information.
Welcome Pro-Life bloggers!
We want to thank Jill Stanek for her awesome post about our new blog!

For background, the Catholic Pro-Life Committee is one of the largest (if not the largest) Diocesan based pro-life groups in the nation. We have a staff of 35 people with hundreds of volunteers making up nine separate ministries. We have been called the "model" diocesan pro-life group and we base ourselves on the Bishop's Pastoral Plan for Pro-Life Activities. If you are part of a Catholic diocese, please read that document and make yourselves familiar with it, maybe even show it to your Bishop and ask him to implement it. The Pastoral Plan is the official response of the US Bishops to the tragedy of abortion in America.

Most people do not know that the Roe decision actually began here in Dallas back in 1970, and since it began here, we feel a strong desire to end it here. To that end, our Executive Director, Karen Garnett, has built the Pro-Life Committee into a very effective instrument in making certain that this does indeed happen. Karen is a recipient of the Cardinal Mindszenty Motherhood Award and just last year, was awarded the John Cardinal O'Connor Pro-Life Hall of Fame Award by Tom Monahan, the founder of the international Catholic group Legatus for her leadership in developing such a strong organization. Thank you Karen!

If you are in the Dallas/Fort Worth area next weekend, Saturday, January 20th, please consider coming to our Dallas Rally and March for Life. One of our goals is to make the Dallas Roe Rally and March for Life as big as the ones in Washington and San Francisco.

Thank you again Jill. You have been an inspiration for me and for many others and we look forward to working with you in the future in making "unconditional respect for human life the foundation of a renewed society."
A True Respect For Life is... What?!
Here is a letter to the editor from the weekend edition of the Dallas Morning News:

Show a true respect for life:

The proposed coal-fired power plants are distressing to many people of faith because they fly in the face of the core religious teaching of "respect life."

This means defending human life by reducing pollution and fostering an environment where human life can thrive, especially at its most fragile beginnings. This includes keeping unborn babies safe from toxins like mercury.

Respect for life means using God's gifts wisely and conservatively and building respectful communities that honor each person's voice, not autocratically "fast-tracking" decisions that will effect Texan's lives for years to come.

It also means respect for our capacity as God's children to grow and change; to solve problems as a community, and to love each other and the environment we share.

Bee Moorhead, executive director, Texas Impact, Austin

OooK! I have to pass on my congratulations to Ms. Moorhead who has successfully hijacked language typically used by the pro-life movement. I guess we should be flattered as imitation is the most sincere form of flattery and that the standard the respect life movement has set is apparently good enough for the environmental movement as well.

There is a trend in evangelical churches to take on the environment as a priority issue, but so far, this has not happened in the Catholic Church, but one can imagine that this kind of thing is not far off.

A search of the word "abortion" on the web site of Texas Impact, which "exists to advance state public policies that are consistent with universally held social principles of the Abrahamic traditions," "yielded no results."
God's Sign is the Baby
From the homily of Pope Benedict XVI at Midnight Mass in Rome, comes the following thought:

"God's sign is the baby. God's sign is that he makes himself small for us. This is how he reigns. He does not come with power and outward splendor. He comes as a baby -- defenseless and in need of our help. He does not want to overwhelm us with his strength. He takes away our fear of his greatness. He asks for our love: so he makes himself a child. He wants nothing other from us than our love, through which we spontaneously learn to enter into his feelings, his thoughts and his will -- we learn to live with him and to practice with him that humility of renunciation that belongs to the very essence of love. God made himself small so that we could understand him, welcome him, and love him."
There are those who would say that the pro-life movement is full of people who "love the child, but forget the mother." Nothing could be further from the truth, of course, but usually the opposite is true, that those who call themselves pro-choice focus on the mother and forget the baby. They would even approve the destruction of that baby.

But God's sign is the Baby! Can you destroy the baby and not destroy the mother? Ask those who have been through this and see for yourselves what the answer is.

Focusing on the Sign does not mean we ignore everything else. Instead, focusing on the Sign is the very thing that allows us to go out and understand, welcome and love. This involves everyone, not just those who are in pro-life work, and not just those who are involved in social justice.

When you destroy the baby you destroy the mother. When you focus on the baby, you also focus on the mother. The two go hand in hand and to say that the mother is ignored is more a symptom of ignorance than anything else.
There's Plan B, and then there's reality
Received today in the mail is a friendly reminder postcard from NARAL Pro-Choice America that Plan B, the recently FDA approved over-the-counter "morning-after" pill for 18 year olds and above only, is not quite as accessible as they would like for it to be.

You are directed to give your local pharmacy a call and ask them (politely, no doubt) to carry said pill because, according to the authoritative post card, "access to this safe, effective form of birth control could help women across the country prevent unintended pregnancies."

This flies in the face of a recent study done by a prestigious medical journal, The Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, that said, among other things that, "increased access to emergency contraception pills enhance use but has not been shown to reduce unintended pregnancy rates." It also said that "no study has shown that increased access to this method reduces unintended pregnancy or abortion rates on a population level” and that “the consistency of their primary findings is hard to ignore."

What's not hard to ignore is the evidence that increased use of any type of contraception, whether it be emergency or non-emergency, does not lead to a drop in the numbers of abortions being done on women today. It's easy enough to see if you want to see it. But the lie continues to make itself known, and now through postcard mailing campaigns.

Who are you going to believe? A pro-abortion advocacy group or medical researchers who actually support Plan B admitting that it really is not all it's cracked up to be?
"If Roe v. Wade is overturned, we will deal with it at that time," she said.
That's a line from someone who has totally and without reserve dedicated herself to her life's goal of making certain that abortion is available on demand through all 9 months of pregnancy, through all 50 states for any reason or for no reason at all.

Or maybe it's a line from someone who supports abortion rights and encourages others to do so but is dismayed by the fact that more Americans are pro-life than ever before, more abortion mills are shutting down because there are no abortionists to replace the ones who are retiring and that, slowly but surely, people are starting to realize the devastating effects of abortion on the lives of the women who have them and the babies who are victims of them.

Maybe it's someone who understands that the end of Roe v. Wade is coming, and does not quite know what to say about it.

Actually, that line comes from Linda Meek, the Executive Administrator of Reproductive Services Inc. of Tulsa, an abortion business as she commented on the introduction of a "trigger-law" bill by Oklahoma Representative Mike Reynolds. The bill, if passed, would immediately ban all abortions in Oklahoma in the event that Roe v. Wade is overturned.

It certainly does seem like a downer to have this kind of attitude if you support abortion rights.

Can you imagine a General saying, "hey, if China invades the US in two years, we'll deal with it at that time." No, you can't. No self-respecting General, nor one who wants to get promoted, would venture to say such a ridiculous thing.

This is just more proof that the pro-abortionists realize that the end of all-abortion, all the time is coming to an end.