Friday, February 27, 2009

Maryland Requires Parental Permission for Body Piercing but Not Abortion

How interesting, really, that for many many years now schools can't give a student a Tylenol without a written parental consent but abortion could be done without parental consent. Just as pathetic is Maryland:

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Parental Consent Required For Tattoos in Maryland, But Not For Abortion

By Thaddeus M. Baklinski

BALTIMORE, February 26, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Maryland House of Delegates has unanimously approved a proposal to require "parental consent" for tattoos and body piercings done on minors. However, the state still only requires that one parent be notified that a minor is going to have an abortion, with no need for the parent's consent.

Republicans in the House tried and failed to amend the "tattoos and body piercing" measure to include parental consent for abortion when Del. Gail H. Bates, a Howard County Republican, asked to have the measure include parental consent for "other invasive surgical procedures."

However, House Speaker Michael E. Busch declined to consider the proposed amendment, arguing that it changed the purpose of the bill and was, therefore, out of order, according to a Baltimore Sun report.

Maryland's Parental Notification for Abortion Law (Article 20-103) requires that one parent or guardian be notified before a minor has an abortion. The parent/guardian does not need to consent to or agree with the minor's choice, but does need to know the minor is planning to have an abortion.

Maryland's parental notification law also says specifically that no notification is required if, in the judgment of the doctor performing the abortion: the minor is mature and capable of giving her informed consent to the procedure, or notification would not be in the minor's best interest, or notice may lead to physical or emotional abuse of the minor, or the minor patient does not live with her parent or guardian, or a reasonable effort to give notice has been unsuccessful.

Scott Davis of National Pro-Life Radio commented that the Maryland parental notification law is so full of loopholes that it is rendered practically meaningless.

"This gives the abortionist sole and unreviewable discretion in regards to parental rights," Davis explained.

"The physician may perform the abortion, without notice to a parent or guardian of a minor if, in the professional judgment of the physician, notification would not be in the interest of the minor.

"So a teenage girl's parents could be kept in the dark about an abortion, a medical procedure with grave physical and psychological risks, simply because the abortion provider thinks it's a good idea."

Davis also pointed out that each year approximately 22.6% of Maryland abortions are performed on girls 16 and under.

Swiss Women Abandoning the Pill Due to Adverse Health Effects

Swiss Women Abandoning the Pill Due to Adverse Health Effects



Matthew Cullinan Hoffman

PARIS, February 26, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The use of the contraceptive pill is plummeting among younger women, in response to growing awareness of its destructive health effects, reports a French bioethics site.

According to the site "Genetique," the use of "the pill" among women aged 15 to 24 years old dropped from 43% in 2003 to 26% in 2007. The rate of childbirth among the same group increased at the same time.

"The principal reason for this decrease is the attention paid by women to their health," says Genetique. "It is now proven that the pill suppresses libido and causes weight gain. The fear of cancer and sterility are equally responsible."

According to numerous studies on the effects of the contraceptive pill, its use is also linked to increased risk of heart disease, hypertension, and stroke.

Brain Death Criteria -- Really? Or Maybe Not.

By Hilary White - Rome correspondent

ROME, February 26, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - If a patient is able to process oxygen from the lungs into the bloodstream, maintain a normal body temperature, digest food and expel waste, grow to normal adult size from the age of four to twenty, and even carry a child to term, can he or she be considered dead? Can a person who is "dead" wake up and go on later to finish a university degree? Can a corpse get out of bed, go home and go fishing? Can he get married and have children?

These are among the real-life stories of patients declared "brain dead" presented by medical experts at the "Signs of Life" conference on "brain death" criteria held near the Vatican in Rome last week. Ten speakers, who are among the world's most eminent in their fields, sounded a ringing rebuke to the continued support among medical professionals and ethicists for "brain death" as an accepted criterion for organ removal.

Dr. Paul Byrne, the conference organizer, told LifeSiteNews.com he was delighted with the success of the conference, that he hopes will bring the message that "brain death is not death" inside the walls of the Vatican where support for "brain death" criteria is still strong.

Dr. Byrne, a neonatologist and clinical professor of pediatrics at the University of Toledo, compared the struggle against "brain death" criteria with another battle: "I'm sure that slavery was at one time well-accepted in the United States, and that people saw big benefits to slavery. And yes, it was difficult to go away from that but it was absolutely essential."

"Slavery was doing evil things to persons. This issue of 'brain death' was invented to get beating hearts for transplantation. And there is no way that this can go on. It must get stopped."

Participants came from all over the world to attend the Signs of Life conference, with speakers from Quebec, Alberta, Ontario, Germany, Poland, the US, Brazil and Italy. The conference hall was packed to standing-room only with physicians, clergy, students, journalists, and academics. Clergy included two senior officials of the Vatican curia: Francis Cardinal Arinze, the head of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Sergio Cardinal Sebastiani, the President Emeritus of the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See. Two senior members of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith were also present. Conference organizers told LifeSiteNews.com that they had expected no more than a hundred to attend and were surprised but very pleased with the crowd of over 170 for the one-day event.

Conflicting voices on "brain death" criteria are still battling in the Church. In February 2005, the Pontifical Academy of Sciences (PAS) refused to publish the findings of its own conference after the speakers roundly denounced "brain death" as a cynical invention to further the monetary interests of organ transplanters. The speakers said that using "brain death" for the purpose of organ harvesting results in the death of helpless patients. The PAS convened a second conference in 2007 with different speakers who, with only two dissenting, supported "brain death" for organ transplants. Papers from the 2005 conference that opposed "brain death" were excluded without explanation to their authors.

During a Vatican-sponsored conference last November on organ transplantation, at which not a single speaker raised their voice against "brain death," Pope Benedict XVI warned in an address that "the removal of organs is allowed only in the presence of his actual death." But on the Monday following the Friday organ transplant conference, only the PAS conference report in favor of "brain death" was posted to the Vatican website and not the Pope's warning.

Dr. Byrne said that a major function of the Signs of Life conference was "to support Pope Benedict," whose address in November, he said, had started to turn the Church against "brain death."

"It's here to demonstrate clearly that 'brain death' never was true death. What we're trying to do is come back to the truth and protect and preserve the life that comes from God.

"When there are attacks on life, then we, as physicians, defend it and that is what this conference is for."

The Signs of Life conference, sponsored privately by various pro-life organizations, including Human Life International, the Northwest Ohio Guild of the Catholic Medical Association, American Life League and the Italian organization Associazione Famiglia Domani, stood in opposition to the second PAS conference, which was titled, "The Signs of Death."

The Dignity of The Human Person -- Always, Whatever, Whenever

raymond@raymondarroyo.com

Christopher Nolan: The Unicorn Writer, RIP

This week the world lost a rare writer at the age of 43. He was not a media fixture and certainly not one of those writers making appearances at the literary salons. He was a Dublin homebody. But what an astounding person Christopher Nolan was.

Nolan was born with cerebral palsy, could not speak, nor control his extremities. Confined to a wheelchair, he was the type of person our society looks at with pity or largely ignores. Thankfully, his family never saw him that way. They loved him unconditionally, interacted with him and taught him as one would any child. He would go on to school, though no one fully appreciated his mental acuity.

A drug was discovered that allowed Nolan to move one muscle in his neck. (Bono of U2, who attended school with Nolan wrote the song “Miracle Drug” about the boy). At the age of 11 he was equipped with a “unicorn stick” which was fastened to his head. With it Nolan would peck at a typewriter. His mother had to apply pressure to his chin to stabilize the boy’s head, allowing him to work his art. It was a torturous process, taking him more than 15 minutes to produce one word on the page. And what words they were.

He published his first book at 15, a collection of poems appropriately titled “Dam-burst of Dreams.” His second book won Britain’s prestigious “Whitbread Book of the Year:” in 1988. It was called “Under the Eye of the Clock,” a biographical work in which he refers to himself as Joseph Meehan. At one point in the book Nolan writes of crying upon the realization that he is not like other children:

``Looking through his tears he saw [his mother] bent low in order to look into his eyes. `... Listen here Joseph, you can see, you can hear, you can think, you can understand everything you hear. You like your food, you like nice clothes, you are loved by me and Dad. We love you just as you are.' Pussing still, sniveling still, he was listening to his mother's voice. She spoke sort of matter-of-factly but he blubbered moaning sounds. His mother said her say and that was that. She got on with her work while he got on with his crying.
``The decision arrived at that day, was burnt forever in his mind. He was only three years in age but he was now fanning the only spark he saw, his being alive and more immediate, his being wanted just as he was....
``That day looked out through his eyes for the rest of his life. Comfort came in child-like notions, his clumsy body was his, but molested by mother-love he looked lollying looks at his limbs, and liked Joseph Meehan.'

Nolan was a Catholic, one who was often frustrated by his inability to open his mouth at communion time. But the mark of his faith is evident in his work. In “Under the Eye of the Clock” he wrote of Christmas:
“Bells pealed in all the Dublin churches as midnight nudged home its bashful meaning to all the crazy longing. Christ the God-child now breathed a human breath. The Word became flesh and dwelt amongst man. Manger-cradled the Saviour lay. Midnight Mass marked the moment for Joseph; crested now with knowing, he marvelled at the nobility of the human person.”

His Mother, Bernadette told the Christian Science Monitor in the late 80’s: “``He has shown (people with disabilities) that life is worth living, and it doesn't matter whether you're in a wheelchair or a bed; it's what's going on in your mind and your soul that is important.''

Beyond his somersaulting innovation with language, the thing that lingers about Nolan is the improbable miracle of the man himself. I am in awe of the great sacrifices he made each day to share his voice with the world. Each overwhelming obstacle to communication was soberly considered, and ruthlessly overcome. Of writing he once said: ``My mind is just like a spin dryer at full speed. My thoughts fly around my skull, while millions of beautiful words cascade down into my lap. Images gunfire across my consciousness and, while trying to discipline them, I jump in awe at the soul-filled bounty of mind's expanse.''

How many able bodied people put off their calling, or make needless excuses for doing nothing. The next time those deadening temptations bubble up, we should think of Christopher Nolan. With a stick affixed to his head, in a body he could not control, his mother holding his chin, Nolan managed to produce a book of poetry, a play, a novel, a biography and an incredible witness for us all.

May Christopher Nolan rest in peace.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

BEST Pro-life Video Ever -- MUST See

When you get to this website, http://www.priestsforlife.org click on the picture on the right of the baby's hand and see the BEST video you have seen on pro-life. Unbelievable!

And please please pass it on to everyone you know ... whether they care of not. They might after this !

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Seven States Have Launched Efforts for Personhood Rights for Pre-born - More Expected

Seven States Have Launched Efforts for Personhood Rights for Pre-born - More Expected

DENVER, February 18, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Personhood USA has announced that since the beginning of the new year, seven different states have started efforts in support of the personhood of pre-born children. In addition, Rep. Duncan Hunter has introduced H.R. 881, the Right to Life Act, on the federal level, propelling the personhood movement forward.

Five States have now introduced bills affirming the personhood rights of pre-born humans from the moment of fertilization, including:

Maryland - HB925 - Delegate Don Dwyer
North Dakota - H.R. 1572 - Rep. Dan Ruby
Montana - SB 406 - Sen. Daniel W McGee
South Carolina - H.3526 - Rep. Liston Barfield
Alabama - SB-335 - Sen. Hank Erwin

Oregon has also begun a personhood amendment petition drive, and Mississippi's personhood amendment petition drive is expected to launch within weeks.

The common thread among all of these efforts is the goal to fill what is becoming known as the "Blackmun Hole" in Roe v. Wade. This is where Justice Blackmun implied in the Roe v. Wade decision that if the case were established that the pre-born human being was a person, the argument for abortion collapses. In Roe v Wade, it is acknowledged that the "fetus" is fully human, but the decision did not grant the rights of "persons" until birth.

"Personhood USA is standing with strong support for all of these efforts. We are committed to working tirelessly to establish personhood in every State, because this is the only way to restore dignity to the humans most vulnerable among us," stated Cal Zastrow of Personhood USA.

"Personhood efforts raise the standard of what it is to be pro-life. We expect that as the understanding that all humans are people spreads, the injustice of abortion will end," continued Keith Mason of Personhood USA.

Personhood USA is a grassroots Christian organization founded to establish personhood efforts across America to create protection for every child.

Pope Benedict strongly rebukes Pelosi over abortion

My 2 cents on this:

Catholics for Choice are delusional. No Catholic can remain in a state of grace and knowingly vote for someone who is pro-death if there is someone they could have voted for who is NOT pro-death. Catholics for Choice are not in a state of grace because they DO know and choose the sin anyway. My prayer is that good people of both Catholic Christians and protestant denominations will not be suckered in to believing Catholics for Choice...which is, by the way, a contradition in terms.

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Pope Benedict strongly rebukes Pelosi over abortion

Pope Benedict / Speaker Nancy Pelosi


Vatican City, Feb 18, 2009 / 10:18 am (CNA).- House speaker Nancy Pelosi’s photo-op with Pope Benedict XVI turned sour when the Pontiff used the 15-minute meeting to reaffirm the teachings of the Catholic Church on the right to life and the duty to protect the unborn.

No photo of Nancy Pelosi and the Pope will be forthcoming, since the meeting was closed to reporters and photographers. The two met in a small room in the Vatican just after the Pope's weekly public audience.

Immediately after the meeting, the Holy See’s press office released a statement saying, "following the general audience the Holy Father briefly greeted Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, together with her entourage."

"His Holiness took the opportunity to speak of the requirements of the natural moral law and the Church's consistent teaching on the dignity of human life from conception to natural death which enjoin all Catholics, and especially legislators, jurists and those responsible for the common good of society, to work in co-operation with all men and women of good will in creating a just system of laws capable of protecting human life at all stages of its development."

A significant number of Catholic and pro-life organizations expressed concern over how Pelosi would use the meeting with Pope Benedict to further her position that it is possible to be Catholic and pro-abortion.

Last August, Pelosi was rebuked by several U.S. bishops for attempting to theologically justify her position during an interview with "Meet the Press."

On Tuesday, Jon O’Brien, president of "Catholics for Choice," a small, well-funded organization that provides theological arguments to pro-abortion Catholic politicians, told The Hill that today’s visit between the Speaker and Pope Benedict would be an opportunity to highlight that one can be pro-choice and Catholic, and that there are much bigger issues out there to discuss, such as the fate of the poor in the global economic downturn.

"That would be a real conversation about choice, instead of this micro-obsession with abortion," O’Brien said.

Nevertheless, according to the Holy See's statement, the Pope spent the whole 15 minute conversation talking with Pelosi about the right to life and the need to defend the unborn.

A spokesman for Pelosi, who is now headed to Southern Italy as part of her Italian tour, said she would issue a statement later in the day regarding her meeting with the Pope.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Foolish Waste of Money: President Obama Will Soon Force Funding of Embryonic Stem Cell Research

President Obama Will Soon Force Funding of Embryonic Stem Cell Research

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
February 16, 2009


Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- A top advisor to President Barack Obama confirmed again that the president will soon be issuing an executive order to lift the limits President Bush put in place on embryonic stem cell research. Bush protected taxpayers from being forced to fund research involving the destruction of human life.

Top Obama aide David Axelrod said on "Fox News Sunday" that Obama is preparing to issue an executive order that will pave the way for more federal funding.

That's despite the fact that embryonic stem cells have never helped a single human patient and the kind Bush favored have already helped patients with dozens of diseases, illnesses, or medical conditions.

"We're going to be doing something on that soon, I think. The president is considering that right now," said Axelrod.

Obama himself guaranteed earlier this month during a meeting with leading Congressional Democrats that he will sign an executive order forcing taxpayers to fund embryonic stem cell research.

"I guarantee you that we will sign an executive order for stem cells," he said during the meeting, according to a Washington Times article.

His comments came in response to a question from Rep. James Langevin, a Rhode Island Democrat who is against abortion but favors embryonic stem cell research.

Obama previously indicated in a previous CNN interview that he would perhaps not sign the order but wait for Congress to send him a bill that would do so. Now, he says he will sign the order.

Obama said during the meeting that he would coordinate his executive order with Congress so that and the passage of the bill would be timed concurrently.

President Bush spent hundreds of millions of dollars each year of his presidency on stem cell research, with most of it going to support the most effective kind, adult stem cells, and the rest funding older embryonic stem cells that had been obtained prior to the implementation of his policy.

In addition to the moral concerns, pro-life advocates and many scientists say embryonic stem cells still have scientific problems.

They point to the development of tumors after the injection of embryonic stem cells into animals during experiments. The cells also trigger the immune system to reject them.

These problems have never been overcome and have prevented any use of the controversial cells in humans, although the FDA recently approved a human trial.

Some scientists say the human trial will not actually involve embryonic stem cells, but embryonic-like cells that will falsely make it seem embryonic stem cell research has advanced if the trial is successful.

ADULT Stem Cell Research Reverses Effects of Parkingson's Disease

Adult Stem Cell Research Reverses Effects of Parkinson's Disease in Human Trial

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
February 16, 2009


Los Angeles, CA (LifeNews.com) -- Scientists have published a paper in a medical journal describing the results of the world's first clinical trial using autologous neural stem cells for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. A leading bioethics watchdog says the results show more money should be put behind adult stem cells.

UCLA researchers published their results in February issue of the Bentham Open Stem Cell Journal which outlines the long term results of the trial.

"We have documented the first successful adult neural stem cell transplantation to reverse the effects of Parkinson's disease and demonstrated the long term safety and therapeutic effects of this approach," says lead author Dr. Michel Levesque.

The paper describes how Levesque's team was able to isolate patient-derived neural stem cells, multiply them in vitro and ultimately differentiate them to produce mature neurons before they are reintroduced into the brain.

The team was able to inject the adult stem cells without the need for immunosuppressants. Unlike embryonic stem cells, adult stem cell injections don't cause a patient's immune system to reject the cells.

The adult stem cells were highly beneficial for the patient involved in the study.

"Of particular note are the striking results this study yielded -- for the five years following the procedure the patient's motor scales improved by over 80% for at least 36 months," Levesque wrote.

He said he hoped a larger clinical trial would replicate the findings.

Dr. David Prentice, a former biology professor at Indiana State University who is now a fellow with the Family Research Council, tells LifeNews.com that the results of the study are wonderful news for patients.

"This evidence had been presented previously, but we now have the peer-reviewed scientific evidence for the effectiveness of adult stem cells in alleviating Parkinson's symptoms," he said. "While the data show that the technique needs refinement, this patient went for several years with little to no symptoms of his disease, even with only half of the brain treated with his own adult stem cells."

Prentice says the results continue to prove that adult stem cells outpace their embryonic counterparts.

"People need to take notice that it is not embryonic stem cells that provide promise of treatments in the future, but rather it is adult stem cells that are already providing safe and effective therapies for patients now, without the problems of rejection or tumors," Prentice explains.

"We need to pour our resources, especially taxpayer dollars, into adult stem cell research to foster more and better treatments and put the patients first," he told LifeNews.com.

Levesque is a principal investigator for NeuroGeneration, a biotechnology company, and is affiliated with the UCLA School of Medicine and the Brain Research Institute.

North Dakota House Backs Bill Telling Women Abortion Kills a Human Being

North Dakota House Backs Bill Telling Women Abortion Kills a Human Being

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
February 16, 2009


Bismarck, ND (LifeNews.com) -- The North Dakota House has approved a measure requiring abortion practitioners to tell women that abortion kills a human being and that human life begins at the point of conception. Those are pieces of information that women considering an abortion are rarely told beforehand.

Members of the chamber voted 61-31 to endorse the measure, HB 1445, which now heads to the state Senate for consideration.

Hampden Rep. Chuck Damschen says the bill is meant to provide women with more information and to further reduce the number of abortions taking place in the state.

HB 1445 would direct the abortion practitioner to tell women that an abortion will terminate the life of a "whole, separate, unique, living human being."

Tom Freier of the North Dakota Family Alliance says his group supports the bill as another way to help women understand the reality of an abortion.

"As obvious as this disclosure is, it is necessary for the woman to be fully informed before giving her ‘informed consent’ to this procedure which will terminate the life of this unborn little boy or girl," he told LifeNews.com.

The vote follows one earlier this month when the House passed HB 1371 on a strongly bipartisan 77-9 vote. That was a measure allowing women a chance to see an ultrasound of their baby prior to an abortion. The measure is designed to help women learn the humanity of their unborn child and to consider abortion alternatives.

While most abortion businesses do an ultrasound before an abortion is done on a woman and her unborn child, that doesn't mean the mother will have a chance to see it. Rep. Bette Grande, a Republican sponsoring House Bill 1371, hopes to change that.

Her legislation would offer women a chance to see an ultrasound in the same way she would be able to see an x-ray prior to other medical procedures.

The full House vote came after the House Human Services Committee voted 13-0 in favor of the pro-life bill.

Pro-life advocates say the bill is important because the Red River Women’s Clinic is expected to set a record for the number of abortions it is doing annually.

The abortion center has been doing abortions for just over ten years and did a record 1,358 abortions in 2003 and another 1,238 abortions last year.

Related web sites:
North Dakota Legislature - http://www.legis.nd.gov
North Dakota Right to Life - http://www.ndrl.org
North Dakota Family Alliance - http://www.ndfa.org

Friday, February 13, 2009

Missouri -- House Resolution Opposing FOCA Passed in the House

House Resolution Opposing FOCA Passed in the House
On Thursday, February 12, 2009, HCS/HR 294 & 212, handled by Rep. Bob Dixon (R-Springfield,) was passed in the House. The resolution calls on Congress to reject the passage of the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA). The resolution was debated over a two day period on the House floor before it passed by a vote of 116-40 with two representatives voting present and five representatives absent. To view how each representative voted click here to see the House Journal and scroll down to page 301. The resolution directs the Chief Clerk of the Missouri House of Representatives to send a copy of the resolution to all members of the Missouri Congressional delegation.

To See Who Voted Yes, No, Present, Absent Please see here:
http://house.mo.gov/billtracking/bills091/jrnpdf/jrn020.pdf

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Fraudulent Data Used By Catholics in Alliance

Fraudulent Data Used By Pro-Abortion "Catholic" Organization to Defend Voting for Pro-Abortion Politicians

By Thaddeus M. Baklinski

February 12, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The group Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, whose primary goal is providing moral, political, and theological cover for supporters of Barack Obama and other Democrats who support "abortion rights," released a study last August which purported to show that increased spending on various welfare programs resulted in substantial reductions in state abortion rates.

This study, however, was later proven to be false due to the fact that the authors used incorrect abortion data.

The study analyzed state level abortion data from 1982 to 2000 and claimed that many state level pro-life laws, such as those requiring parental notification for abortions performed on minor girls, had little effect on over-all abortion rates, and that increased spending on three specific welfare policies had significant effects on reducing state abortion rates.

According to the study, family caps, which deny welfare recipients extra benefits if they have additional children out of wedlock, increased abortion rates. Second, increased spending on the Women Infants Children (WIC) program reduced abortion rates. Third, increased spending on Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) also reduced abortion rates.

This study had a substantial impact on the debate over sanctity of life issues during the 2008 Presidential election. It was used to give the message to pro-life voters that they could best advance their interests by electing pro-abortion Democrats instead of pro-life Republicans, because the study allegedly demonstrated that the welfare policies favored by Democrats were more effective in preventing abortion than the pro-life laws supported by Republicans.

An analysis of the study by Michael J. New, an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Alabama and a visiting fellow at the Witherspoon Institute, however, found serious inconsistencies and errors in the data used in the Catholics in Alliance study. The group subsequently removed its study from their website in November 2008 and replaced it with a version substantially different from the original.

Professor New wrote in his appraisal of the original study that after the study was released the authors, Michael Bailey of Georgetown University and Joseph Wright, a Visiting Fellow at Notre Dame, discovered that they used incorrect abortion data for the years following 1997, with the result that the new version provided evidence that welfare policy has no more than a marginal effect on the incidence of abortion.

"In fact," wrote Professor New, "the new regression results indicate that none of the three welfare policies which the authors previously argued were effective tools for reducing the incidence of abortion have a substantial abortion reducing effect."

Professor New noted that one of the authors of the August study, Professor Michael Bailey, removed his name from the November version. Joseph Wright remained the sole author of the current study.

Professor New concluded his evaluation of the fraudulent study by pointing out that, "It is unfortunate that the faulty research of Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good was used as political cover" for the Obama administration's promotion of "abortion rights" and that the group "continues to miss the boat and mislead the public."

"As the Obama administration continues its assault on laws and policies upholding the sanctity of human life, pro-lifers need to hold Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good morally accountable."

Link to Professor New's analysis: http://www.moralaccountability.com/obama-on-abortion/holding...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Thank You Missouri House !

Missouri Right to Life Applauds the Missouri
House on Two Important Measures

Early this morning, February 11th, the Special Standing Committee on Children and Families heard House Bills 46 and 434, sponsored by Rep. Cynthia Davis and Rep. Bryan Pratt, respectively. These bills have bi-partisan support and, when passed, will protect women and save lives. A committee vote is pending to send these bills to the House floor for debate.

This legislation simply assures that women will have the option of seeing an ultrasound and will receive medical and factual information regarding her health and development of the baby 24 hours before deciding to undergo an abortion. This legislation also will give protection to any woman who may be coerced into an abortion.

Testifying in favor of the bills were several post-abortive women from across the state, invited by Missouri Right to Life. Their testimonies related their experiences, as well as the experiences of numerous post-abortive women that they have counseled. Those experiences range from lack of information on fetal development, and lack of support to stories of coercion and lack of information of alternatives and help for women in crisis pregnancies.

“The stories of these women and the countless others hurting from their abortion experience bring into sharp focus the need for the passage of these bills,” said Susan Klein, Legislative Liaison for Missouri Right to Life.

Missouri Right to Life, as well as, other pro-life organizations, submitted testimony in support of these bills.

Also today, during the morning session, the House took up and passed a resolution in opposition to the so-called Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA,) HR 212 and HR 294, sponsored by Rep. Cynthia Davis and Rep. Bob Dixon. The measure passed, with bi-partisan support, by a vote of 116 to 40.

These resolutions are directed to President Obama, the U.S. House and U.S. Senate and send a clear message that Missouri stands opposed, with bi-partisan support, to the so-called Freedom of Choice Act. FOCA will wipe out over thirty laws in Missouri and over 500 state and federal laws across the country that protect women and their unborn children from abortion. These protective laws have been passed and upheld in the courts since the Roe v. Wade decision.

Here in Missouri, some of those laws include but are not limited to, protection of minors from those that would take them for abortion without parental consent, tax-funding of abortion restrictions, a ban on partial-birth abortion, and requirements of information and a 24 hour reflection period.

Amen Rabbi Yehuda Levin

...Brooklyn, N. Y.-based Rabbi Yehuda Levin echoes this sentiment. He argues, "Each form of genocide, whether Holocaust, lynching, abortion, etc., differs from all the others in the motives and methods of its perpetrators. But each form of genocide is identical to all the others in that it involves the systematic slaughter, as state-sanctioned 'choice,' of innocent, defenceless victims -- while denying their 'personhood.'".... Rabbi Yehuda Levin


Please note Rabbi's blogspot in the list of recommended blogs.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Pro-Life *IS* Pro Human Dignity -- Horrors For Zimbabweans

Zimbabweans Flee From Horror To Horror
South African Camp Provides New Slew of Challenges

MUSINA, South Africa, FEB. 10, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Zimbabwean refugees, fleeing the humanitarian crisis in their own country, have found an equally "horrendous" situation in the South African camp where they are being held, says Caritas Internationalis.

Caritas reported today that an estimated 3,000 men, women and children are living in "dire conditions" in Musina, a South African border town.

Sister Aine Hughes of Caritas said, "The situation for Zimbabwean refugees in Musina is horrendous."

She explained: "People are herded together with no thought for their dignity as human beings. There is no shelter of any kind provided to the people. They sit in the blistering sun during the day and huddle together under the stars at night for safety and warmth."

The Zimbabweans fled from deteriorating conditions in their own country, including a crumbling health and sanitation system, a cholera epidemic, astronomical inflation, famine and political unrest.

The South African government classified them as "economic migrants," reported Caritas, which means that they may be denied asylum, be detained and deported.

Sister Hughes asserted, "The situation of the Zimbabwean refugees in Musina is in contravention of all the conventions and principles for humanitarian assistance and should be addressed with the utmost urgency."

Unprotected

Meanwhile, the Zimbabweans remain in a wire perimeter refugee camp the size of a football field, which lacks shelter, sanitation and protection. They resort to bits of plastic to shelter their children and belongings during rainstorms.

Sanitation consists of 14 chemical toilets and two "inadequate" washing facilities.

The report stated that "bribes are the only means of survival and for those who are too poor to be able to comply they are subjected to every possible form of discrimination."

Sister Hughes said, "Women with whom I spoke, shared how they huddle together at night in the hope of being able to protect one another, but despite that many are raped repeatedly, abused by both their own people and officials at the camp who are supposed to protect them."

Those Zimbabweans who have attempted to join the local community are meeting rejection due to the lack of asylum documents. Children have been driven from the school, or threatened with expulsion once their asylum permit terminates.

Some refugees who have found jobs have been cheated out of wages, and threatened with jail and deportation for not having the appropriate documents.

Caritas reported that aid organizations have given tents for the refugees, but "the municipality of Musina has rejected the offers."

Approximately 270 receive food parcels daily from the local Catholic Church.

Monday, February 9, 2009



T-Shirts available:
http://www.cafepress.com/ericsammons
Of course we know that Obama promotes abortion, but he did say what he said. Let's not let him forget it so that he can live up to his own words. Get your t-shirts!

Thanks for all of the above to Jimmy Akin, link below. Visit his blog !
http://www.jimmyakin.org/2009/02/not-to-put-too-fine-a-point-on-it.html

Brazil Developing Stem Cells Without Embryos

Brasilia, Feb 5, 2009 / 08:02 pm (CNA).- Brazilian media reported this week that at least five groups of scientists are developing stem cells without using human embryos, thanks to a technique that uses human pluripotent stem cells (iPS) being developed in United States, Germany, Japan and China.

At the end of January, a group of scientists led by Stevens Rehen of the Institute of Biomedical Sciences of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, and Martin Bonamino of the Division of Experimental Medicine of the National Institute of Cancer, were able to cultivate human pluripotent stem cells, that is, cells capable of developing into any kind of tissue.

Other groups in Brazil, such as the Department of Medicine at the University of Sao Paulo also announced they have been able to cultivate the iPS cells.

Vandal Defaces Crosses from University, D.C., Despicable Desecration

Washington DC, Feb 8, 2009 / 03:39 am (CNA).- The College Democrats at George Washington University have expelled one of their members after the unidentified student stole and defaced a number of crosses used in a Young America’s Foundation (YAF) pro-life display.

On the evening of Jan. 26 members of the College Republicans found the crosses scattered around the office they share with the College Democrats, the campus newspaper The Hatchet reports.

One cross was pinned upside down on a bulletin board and draped with a condom. Another featured a depiction of Jesus on the cross with the words “pwned” and “lol,” internet lingo for “owned” and “laughing out loud.”

The other crosses were inscribed with the words “Darwin,” “take a condom” and “Amelia West,” who is vice president of the Campus Democrats.

Brandon Hines, communication director for the College Republicans, told The Hatchet that he first saw the crosses during his office hours on Monday night. Pictures were taken and later appeared on conservative filmmaker Pat Dollard’s blog.

A New York-area church had donated the crosses to YAF to commemorate the anniversary of Roe v. Wade in a display on campus.

YAF president Rob Lockwood called the action “completely inappropriate.”

“It’s private property and disrespectful on a number of levels. If they want to do that in their apartment they would have the right to, but these were on display in a public student office.”

A Jan. 29 statement from the College Democrats said that a member of their group had apologized for the vandalism and was expelled from the organization, the Hatchet reports. The member was not named in the statement.

“We would never as an organization sanction such reprehensible conduct and we are tremendously upset that the organization's trust was violated by a member who chose to act otherwise," the statement said.

According to The Hatchet, West also commented in an e-mail:

“A simple apology is not enough to make up for the feelings of those affected and we ask all to realize that our organization has been hurt by this too… And now is the time for us to come together - Democrats, Republicans, believers of all faiths - and bring healthy closure to this incident while embracing the tenets of respect in this academic community."

Lockwood said the vandalism was reported to the university police department and the crosses are now in the department’s custody.

University spokeswoman Tracy Schario said the student responsible for the action has been identified by the school and will face disciplinary action.

Cardinal Rigali urges retention of pro-life Congressional spending laws

Cardinal Rigali urges retention of pro-life Congressional spending laws

Washington DC, Feb 8, 2009 / 05:47 pm (CNA).- Members of Congress are being urged to maintain pro-life provisions in appropriations bills in a recent letter from Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia and chair of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-life Activities.

“I urge you not to use this legislation to weaken or rescind longstanding provisions that protect U.S. taxpayers from being forced to fund and promote the destruction of innocent human life," Cardinal Rigali said, speaking on behalf of the Committee in his Feb. 5 letter.

He said he is joined by “millions of Catholics and others” who are sending to their representatives postcards bearing the message “Please oppose FOCA [the 'Freedom of Choice Act'] or any similar measure, and retain laws against federal funding and promotion of abortion.”

“While an extreme proposal like FOCA would overturn hundreds of pro-life laws at once, we are equally concerned that such laws may be overturned one at a time during Congress's appropriations process," the cardinal noted.

Cardinal Rigali’s letter highlighted pro-life prohibitions such as: the Hyde Amendment and similar measures which prohibit taxpayer funding for abortions; the Dickey/Wicker Amendment barring federal funding for research in which human embryos are created, harmed and destroyed; and the Kemp-Kasten Amendment preventing U.S. funding of organizations that support or help manage programs involving coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization.

“In a society that wants to reduce abortions, it makes no sense for government to force its citizens to fund and promote abortion,” he wrote.

The conscience protections provided in the Hyde Weldon Amendment to prevent discrimination against pro-life heath care providers are also of concern to the bishops and other pro-lifers.

“Clearly 'choice' is an empty slogan if physicians, nurses and hospitals must 'choose' to provide abortions or be forced out of the health care field,” the cardinal said.

Cardinal Rigali closed his letter by arguing that these laws and similar ones have been in effect for many years “no matter which party controlled Congress or the White House” because “they are modest, common-sense policies that are widely supported even among people who disagree on the legal status of abortion.”

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Archbishop Buti Tlhagale Harvesting ovarian human eggs in Africa

Below I have borrowed this news item from the blog http://spuc-director.blogspot.com/2009/02/catholic-universities-in-us-and-rome.html so that I can 1) get the word out on Archbishop But Tlhagale and 2) get the word out on said blog so that you will visit it often.

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Saturday, 7 February 2009

Catholic universities in US and Rome place African bishops in impossible position
Archbishop Buti Tlhagale, (pictured), the archbishop of Johannesburg, has denounced biological colonialism whereby "Harvesting ovarian human eggs in Africa will help meet the needs of embryonic stem cell research in industrialised countries" in his presidential address to the South African Catholic Bishops' Conference who met last week.

In the same address, in a clear reference to the The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) he refers to "unscrupulous campaigners" intending to legalize abortion. The CEDAW committee is notorious among pro-lifers for using the CEDAW convention to bully countries into allowing abortion, even though the convention doesn't mention abortion.

As I have mentioned before, I am very sorry to say that Cherie Blair, a fellow Catholic, endorses the work of CEDAW committee (as well as other radical pro-abortion groups) - and specifically its work on "reproductive rights". On a page in the Women of the World section of her website, Mrs Blair says:

"The [United Nations] Convention [on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) ... is the only human rights treaty which affirms the reproductive rights of women".

"Reproductive rights" is a term commonly used to include abortion on demand.

The page on Mrs Blair's website ends by linking to the CEDAW committee, which is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the CEDAW convention.

With Catholic universities in the US and Rome inviting Cherie Blair, a leading promoter of radical pro-abortion campaigning groups, to speak on subjects such as human rights and family life, it places African bishops seeking to protect their countries from "unscrupulous campaigners" in a well-nigh impossible situation.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

David Ogden -- Anti Life and Anti Family - Headed for Justice Department

Family Research Council
www.frcblog.com

February 3, 2009

Ogden Gnashing

President Obama is on his 15th day in office and his fourth nomination controversy. While the nation is distracted by a trio of tax scandals, other high-profile candidates are squeaking by unnoticed. One nominee at the Justice Department, David Ogden, nominee for Deputy Attorney General, stands out. Our research uncovered a lot of troubling details about Ogden--not the least of which is his long history of extreme anti-family views. On the issue of life, he has fought for taxpayer funding of abortion, for jailing peaceful protestors, against notifying parents whose minor children are seeking abortions, and against informing women of the emotional risks of abortion. He's been an outspoken proponent of specials rights for homosexuals, the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and unfettered access to pornography--even in public libraries. President Obama is considering Ogden for a top post in an agency created to enforce the same laws that he built a profitable career opposing. Join us in sounding the alarm over his appointment. Ogden's committee hearing is Thursday, so please contact your senators today to oppose his confirmation. To read more on Mr. Ogden's dangerous positions, visit Change Watch at www.frcblog.com.


(Just my personal thought on this...why would heterosexual males in the military want to take showers with homosexuals? Seriously, shouldn't the homosexual men take showers with the women? Wait, that won't work. Well, if homosexual men can take showers with the heterosexual men, why can't women take showers with the men? Ridiculous? NO, it certainly isn't. What's the difference?)

Most Americans Do NOT Want to Fund Abortion -- Obama Strikes Out on This One

February 3, 2009



PUBLIC OPPOSES FUNDS FOR ABORTION



The results of a Gallup poll asking the American people how they view some of President Barack Obama’s early decisions are revealing: his lowest support is on the issue of funding abortion. Three of four Americans agree with him on four of the issues asked about, and two-thirds support him on another; there were only two issues where he failed to receive majority approval (the closing of Gitmo and abortion funding).



Only 35 percent of Americans polled said they agreed with Obama on the following issue: “Allowing U.S. funding for overseas family planning organizations that provide abortions.”



Catholic League president Bill Donohue is making sure the Congress knows the voice of the people:



“We are contacting all members of the 111th Congress today notifying them that the American people do not want their money spent on paying for someone’s abortion. This has drastic consequences given the fact that the very day after President Obama approved funding for overseas abortions, he promised to restore U.S. funding of the U.N. Population Fund, a pro-abortion agency. And he has promised to sign the Freedom of Choice Act, the most sweeping and radical abortion-rights legislation ever written.



“The people have spoken. They generally like what Obama is doing so far, but they draw the line on funding abortion. It would behoove him to pay more attention to the American people on this subject and less time listening to the extremists at Planned Parenthood and NARAL.”



Contact your Congressman and Senators.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Spanish political party protests Obama abortion funding policy

Spanish political party protests Obama abortion funding policy


Madrid, Jan 29, 2009 / 07:07 pm (CNA).- The Alternativa Espanola political party has sent a “letter of protest” to the U.S. ambassador to Spain over the decision by President Barack Obama to “remover the barriers to the practice of abortion.”

In a press release, the party said the letter was delivered to the embassy “calling for the restrictions put in place by President Ronald Reagan to be maintained.”

On January 23, Obama signed an executive order lifting restrictions on the use of federal funds to promote abortion overseas. The so-called “Mexico City Policy” was put in place by President Reagan in 1984 after a U.N. conference that was held in the Mexican capital. President Bill Clinton revoked the policy in 1993 but it was reinstated by President George W. Bush in 2001.

What Is Happening 4 Years After Terri Schiavo's Deydration

As for my column, which you will find below in English and Spanish, we are approaching the fourth anniversary of the death of Terri Schiavo, who was killed by deliberate, court-sanctioned dehydration. March 31 is “Terri’s Day,” and we urge individuals, families, parishes, dioceses, and pro-life groups to observe that day (see www.TerrisDay.org for details). Please spread the word!
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Blessing the Grave -- Fr. Frank Pavone

I had the privilege of blessing the grave of Terri Schindler-Schiavo, who was murdered on March 31, 2005 by dehydration. Her grave is not far from the place where she died, and where people from around the world had gathered to protest and pray.

Those who visit the gravestone, however, will notice something highly unusual. While on most graves there is an inscription of two dates – when the person was born and when he or she died – on Terri’s there are three. Here’s exactly what the grave says:

Born December 3, 1963

Departed this Earth February 25, 1990

At Peace March 31, 2005

The whole world knows that she died on March 31, 2005. National and global media were present at the scene for days, covering every detail. Media were present again when I preached at her funeral mass. We know when she died.

But her gravestone has become a pulpit for the euthanasia movement. Those who killed her are now using her grave as a platform for their twisted ideology. What they are trying to say is that once her brain was injured in 1990 and she was no longer functioning like most of us, she wasn’t one of us anymore. She “departed this earth.”

This is actually a variation on an ancient heresy, which says that we are really spirits inhabiting a body. Terri couldn’t communicate normally. So, her “spirit” must have left her. The body was just a shell left behind. Those who believe she really “departed this earth” in 1990 can therefore pretend it was OK to kill her in 2005. After all, it wasn’t really her. She was already gone.

This is heresy, because Christianity teaches that we are a unity of body and soul, not simply a soul “using” a body. The body matters. What we do to the body, we do to the person.

Moreover, the gravestone inscription is a deep insult to all who are disabled, and to all those who love and care for them. Should they be considered already dead, too? Are we just wasting our time caring for them? Euthanasia advocates would have us think so.

A recent news story about a disabled unborn child quoted one as saying, “There’s no human life there.” Isn’t that the same idea? They think the baby has already “departed this earth,” so they don’t hesitate to abort the body.

As I blessed Terri’s grave, I also prayed that God’s people would be kept safe from this falsehood. And I recalled being in Terri’s room the day she died. I remembered her face, dehydrated from not having had a drop of water in two weeks. I recalled seeing the flowers, inches away, on her night table. They were immersed in water. And as I left the grave, I gave a final glance to the vase of flowers that was standing by the stone.

This column can be found online at http://www.priestsforlife.org/columns/columns2009/09-01-26blessinggrave.htm

Fr. Frank's columns are podcast. See http://www.priestsforlife.org/podcast

Comments on this column? Priests for Life, PO Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314; mailto:mail@priestsforlife.org; Phone: 718-980-4400; Fax: 718-980-6515

Bendiciendo la Tumba

Yo tuve el privilegio de bendecir la tumba de Terri Schindler-Schiavo, quien fue asesinada por deshidratación el 31 de marzo del 2005. Su sepulcro no queda lejos del lugar donde murió, donde gente de todo el mundo se reunió para protestar y rezar.

Quienes lo visitan notarán algo muy inusual en la lápida. Mientras que en la mayoría de los tumbas hay una inscripción con dos fechas, la del nacimiento y la de fallecimiento, en la de Terri hay tres. He aquí exactamente lo que dice la tumba:

Nació el 3 de diciembre de 1963

Dejó este mundo el 25 de febrero de 1990

En paz el 31 de marzo del 2005

Todo el mundo sabe que ella murió el 31 de marzo del 2005. Los medios nacionales de comunicación y los globales estuvieron presentes en la escena durante días, cubriendo cada detalle. Los medios también estuvieron presentes cuando prediqué en su funeral. Sabemos cuando murió.

Pero su lápida se ha convertido en un púlpito para el movimiento a favor de la eutanasia. Quienes la mataron ahora usan su tumba como una plataforma para su ideología perversa. Lo que están tratando de decir es que una vez que su cerebro se dañó en 1990 y dejó de funcionar como la mayoría de nosotros, dejó de ser una de nosotros. “Dejó este mundo.”

Verdaderamente, esta es una variación de una antigua herejía, que dice que realmente somos espíritus habitando en un cuerpo. Terri no se podía comunicar normalmente. Luego, su “espíritu” debía haberla abandonado. El cuerpo era sólo un caparazón que quedó. Quienes creen que realmente “dejó este mundo” en 1990 pretenden, por lo tanto, que estuvo bien matarla en el 2005. Después de todo, no era realmente ella. Ya se había ido.

Esto es una herejía, porque el cristianismo enseña que somos una unidad de cuerpo y alma, no simplemente un alma “usando” un cuerpo. El cuerpo importa. Lo que le hacemos al cuerpo, se lo hacemos a la persona.

Más aún, la inscripción en la lápida es un insulto a todos los discapacitados y a todos aquellos que los aman y cuidan de ellos. ¿Debe considerarse también que ya han muerto? ¿Estamos perdiendo el tiempo al cuidarlos? Los promotores de la eutanasia quieren que pensemos eso.

Una noticia reciente sobre un niño por nacer discapacitado citaba a alguien que decía: “Allí no hay vida humana.” ¿No es acaso la misma idea? Creen que el bebé ya “dejó la tierra,” por eso no dudan en abortar al cuerpo.

Mientras bendecía la tumba de Terri, también recé para que el pueblo de Dios fuera protegido de esta mentira. Me acordé de haber estado en el cuarto de Terri el día que murió. Recordé su cara, deshidratada porque no había tomado ni una gota de agua en dos semanas. Recordé haber visto unas flores, apenas a unas pulgadas de distancia, sobre su mesita de noche. Estaban inmersas en agua. Y cuando me alejaba de la tumba, le di una última mirada al recipiente con flores que estaba junto a la tumba.

Esta columna se puede encontrar en la pagina de Internet http://www.priestsforlife.org/spanish/09-01-26span.htm

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Let me also provide you with the upcoming schedules for our own TV shows and Radio programming:

Hear us on EWTN radio on Catholic Connection with Teresa Tomeo. Fr. Frank Pavone is her guest every Wednesday at 9:30am ET and Janet Morana is her guest every Friday at 9:10am ET. For radio station information and to listen to the live show on the internet, go to www.avemariaradio.net

Defending Life: Watch on EWTN every Friday at 10pm ET and Saturday at 2:30am ET. Listen on EWTN radio every Friday at 1am ET, Saturday at 6:30pm ET and Sunday at 5am ET. For more information or to listen online go to www.ewtn.com

February 6-8: The Abortion Child Abuse Connection. Why has child abuse skyrocketed in America? In this program Dr. Philip Ney explores the mutual relationship between abortion and child abuse/neglect.

February 13-15: Abortion Survivor Syndrome. Our youth carry a heavy burden - abortion survivor syndrome. There are various types of survivors. Dr. Philip Ney explores some of the symptoms and the road to healing.

Gospel of Life: The shows air on "Angel One" Channel 101 on Sky Angel IPTV and channel 262 on Dish Network every Wednesday at 11:30pm. It also airs on Catholic Familyland (www.familyland.tv) - Sunday at 1am, Monday at 9am, Wednesday at 3:30am and Thursday at 11:30 pm. (All Times Eastern). Listen to Gospel of Life episodes online at www.gospeloflife.com

Week of February 1: Ask Fr. Frank. Fr. Frank answers some common questions we have received from our viewers.
Week of February 8: Reflections from Alveda King, Niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Please tune in and spread the word! In fact, you can help us – and your whole parish -- by asking your pastor to place in the parish bulletin an announcement about our TV shows. Thanks in advance!

Blessings and prayers,

Fr. Frank Pavone
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Blessing the Grave -- Fr. Frank Pavone

I had the privilege of blessing the grave of Terri Schindler-Schiavo, who was murdered on March 31, 2005 by dehydration. Her grave is not far from the place where she died, and where people from around the world had gathered to protest and pray.

Those who visit the gravestone, however, will notice something highly unusual. While on most graves there is an inscription of two dates – when the person was born and when he or she died – on Terri’s there are three. Here’s exactly what the grave says:

Born December 3, 1963

Departed this Earth February 25, 1990

At Peace March 31, 2005

The whole world knows that she died on March 31, 2005. National and global media were present at the scene for days, covering every detail. Media were present again when I preached at her funeral mass. We know when she died.

But her gravestone has become a pulpit for the euthanasia movement. Those who killed her are now using her grave as a platform for their twisted ideology. What they are trying to say is that once her brain was injured in 1990 and she was no longer functioning like most of us, she wasn’t one of us anymore. She “departed this earth.”

This is actually a variation on an ancient heresy, which says that we are really spirits inhabiting a body. Terri couldn’t communicate normally. So, her “spirit” must have left her. The body was just a shell left behind. Those who believe she really “departed this earth” in 1990 can therefore pretend it was OK to kill her in 2005. After all, it wasn’t really her. She was already gone.

This is heresy, because Christianity teaches that we are a unity of body and soul, not simply a soul “using” a body. The body matters. What we do to the body, we do to the person.

Moreover, the gravestone inscription is a deep insult to all who are disabled, and to all those who love and care for them. Should they be considered already dead, too? Are we just wasting our time caring for them? Euthanasia advocates would have us think so.

A recent news story about a disabled unborn child quoted one as saying, “There’s no human life there.” Isn’t that the same idea? They think the baby has already “departed this earth,” so they don’t hesitate to abort the body.

As I blessed Terri’s grave, I also prayed that God’s people would be kept safe from this falsehood. And I recalled being in Terri’s room the day she died. I remembered her face, dehydrated from not having had a drop of water in two weeks. I recalled seeing the flowers, inches away, on her night table. They were immersed in water. And as I left the grave, I gave a final glance to the vase of flowers that was standing by the stone.

This column can be found online at http://www.priestsforlife.org/columns/columns2009/09-01-26blessinggrave.htm

Fr. Frank's columns are podcast. See http://www.priestsforlife.org/podcast

Comments on this column? Priests for Life, PO Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314; mailto:mail@priestsforlife.org; Phone: 718-980-4400; Fax: 718-980-6515

Bendiciendo la Tumba

Yo tuve el privilegio de bendecir la tumba de Terri Schindler-Schiavo, quien fue asesinada por deshidratación el 31 de marzo del 2005. Su sepulcro no queda lejos del lugar donde murió, donde gente de todo el mundo se reunió para protestar y rezar.

Quienes lo visitan notarán algo muy inusual en la lápida. Mientras que en la mayoría de los tumbas hay una inscripción con dos fechas, la del nacimiento y la de fallecimiento, en la de Terri hay tres. He aquí exactamente lo que dice la tumba:

Nació el 3 de diciembre de 1963

Dejó este mundo el 25 de febrero de 1990

En paz el 31 de marzo del 2005

Todo el mundo sabe que ella murió el 31 de marzo del 2005. Los medios nacionales de comunicación y los globales estuvieron presentes en la escena durante días, cubriendo cada detalle. Los medios también estuvieron presentes cuando prediqué en su funeral. Sabemos cuando murió.

Pero su lápida se ha convertido en un púlpito para el movimiento a favor de la eutanasia. Quienes la mataron ahora usan su tumba como una plataforma para su ideología perversa. Lo que están tratando de decir es que una vez que su cerebro se dañó en 1990 y dejó de funcionar como la mayoría de nosotros, dejó de ser una de nosotros. “Dejó este mundo.”

Verdaderamente, esta es una variación de una antigua herejía, que dice que realmente somos espíritus habitando en un cuerpo. Terri no se podía comunicar normalmente. Luego, su “espíritu” debía haberla abandonado. El cuerpo era sólo un caparazón que quedó. Quienes creen que realmente “dejó este mundo” en 1990 pretenden, por lo tanto, que estuvo bien matarla en el 2005. Después de todo, no era realmente ella. Ya se había ido.

Esto es una herejía, porque el cristianismo enseña que somos una unidad de cuerpo y alma, no simplemente un alma “usando” un cuerpo. El cuerpo importa. Lo que le hacemos al cuerpo, se lo hacemos a la persona.

Más aún, la inscripción en la lápida es un insulto a todos los discapacitados y a todos aquellos que los aman y cuidan de ellos. ¿Debe considerarse también que ya han muerto? ¿Estamos perdiendo el tiempo al cuidarlos? Los promotores de la eutanasia quieren que pensemos eso.

Una noticia reciente sobre un niño por nacer discapacitado citaba a alguien que decía: “Allí no hay vida humana.” ¿No es acaso la misma idea? Creen que el bebé ya “dejó la tierra,” por eso no dudan en abortar al cuerpo.

Mientras bendecía la tumba de Terri, también recé para que el pueblo de Dios fuera protegido de esta mentira. Me acordé de haber estado en el cuarto de Terri el día que murió. Recordé su cara, deshidratada porque no había tomado ni una gota de agua en dos semanas. Recordé haber visto unas flores, apenas a unas pulgadas de distancia, sobre su mesita de noche. Estaban inmersas en agua. Y cuando me alejaba de la tumba, le di una última mirada al recipiente con flores que estaba junto a la tumba.

Esta columna se puede encontrar en la pagina de Internet http://www.priestsforlife.org/spanish/09-01-26span.htm

The Story of 21 Wk Baby Samuel


Monday, February 02, 2009
Baby Samuel, mom doing well
Controversy over fetal surgery continues after birth of famous infant
Posted: February 16, 2000
1:00 am Eastern

By Julie Foster
WorldNetDaily.com



Samuel Armas, the infant whose in utero surgery made history after a photo of the pre-born baby grasping the finger of his surgeon through an opening in Mrs. Armas' uterus energized pro-life groups and led to Matt Drudge's departure from Fox News, was born without fanfare.
Baby Samuel's hand

"We didn't want anyone intruding on his birth," said Julie Armas, who has had two previous miscarriages.

A Cesarean section was performed Dec. 2, 1999, bringing "Baby Samuel" into the world with new hope -- he had been diagnosed with spina bifida just weeks after his conception. Samuel's parents, Julie and Alex Armas, chose to subject mother and child to a relatively new procedure aimed at reducing the effects of spina bifida.

The debilitating disease damages the spinal cord, which can cause paralysis or weakness of the legs, bowel and bladder incontinence, neurological impairments and learning disabilities. Nearly all children born with spina bifida must undergo surgery to implant permanent shunts -- thin tubes that remove excess fluid that could otherwise cause brain damage.

While only time will tell how successful the surgery was, Samuel was born healthy and is home with his parents. Samuel now weighs more than 7 pounds.

"It's not a cure," Julie Armas told The Tennessean. "We understand that. It is some hope."

So far, he has not developed hydrocephalus, the potentially dangerous build-up of fluid in the brain that is a common complication of spina bifida. The latest ultrasound test of his head "was almost completely normal," said Armas, who has worked as an obstetrical nurse.

Leg weakness is another complication of spina bifida, and Samuel is receiving physical therapy to improve his leg function. Although he may eventually need braces below the knees to help him walk, "his orthopedist is very pleased with the way he's coming along," Armas said. "That really made us feel better."

"He's a typical little baby, keeping us up at night," his mother said.

The Armases have declined most interview requests since Samuel's birth, but the couple did go on record with USA Today about their ordeal. In an email to Dr. Laura Schlesinger, Julie Armas explained: "The decision to do the USA Today interview stemmed from the fact that it is believed that the vast majority of babies with spina bifida are aborted in this country."

"We wanted people to know that there is an educated, professional couple out there who love and value their child even though he is 'defective' by society's definition ...," she wrote. "No matter what Samuel's outcome is, we know that God has allowed him to impact others with a photograph of his tiny, unborn hand."
Dr. Joseph P. Bruner

Dr. Joseph P. Bruner, director of the Vanderbilt fetal diagnosis and therapy program, indicated the photo has less significance for him.

"Depending on your political point of view, this is either Samuel Armas reaching out of the uterus and touching the finger of a fellow human, or it's me pulling his hand out of the uterus ... which is what I did," he said.

Dr. Noel B. Tulipan, director of pediatric neurosurgery at Vanderbilt who closed the hole in Samuel's spine, noted both mother and fetus were anesthetized.

Even if he had not been under anesthesia, a fetus at Samuel's stage of development at the time of the surgery "would have no ability to reach out and grab anything," Tulipan said.

The operation was performed just 21 weeks after conception -- weeks before Samuel, the youngest child ever to undergo the procedure, could have survived on his own outside the womb. Full term is about 40 weeks.

Though babies undergoing fetal surgery to reduce the effects of spina bifida are given anesthesia to prevent pain during the procedure, a proposal to anesthetize third-trimester fetuses prior to abortion, also termed a "surgical procedure" by abortion rights activists, was rejected in California.
California State Assemblyman George Runner

California State Assemblyman George Runner introduced the Fetal Pain Prevention Act of 1998 which failed in the Assembly Health Committee on a party-line vote: 11 of the 13 Democrat members of the committee opposed the bill. Two Democrats did not vote at all on the measure.

An analysis written by Democrat staff on the committee notes the strong opposition of the bill by Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California.

"PPAC asserts that this bill disregards the health implications of anesthesia use in the third trimester for the mother," says the analysis. "To anesthetize the fetus, one must also anesthetize the mother. Based on her medical history and the present health crisis which requires an abortion, the use of anesthesia could be a serious threat to the woman's life and her future health."

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also opposed the bill, calling anesthetizing a fetus "the specific practice of medicine by the legislature. A political body would never consider dictating medical procedures for other conditions such as heart disease, brain surgery or eye care. It also is inappropriate for the safe, legal procedure of termination of pregnancy."

Staff goes on to say, "Third trimester abortions are very rare and are most often performed in hospitals. Most hospitals require approval of the procedure by a bioethics committee, and the procedures are discussed by medical authorities on the hospital's staff. These procedures are done only when women are faced with a serious medical condition and the life of the mother and/or fetus is in jeopardy."

However, statistics from the Center for Disease Control indicate 3,900 abortions are performed in the third trimester annually in California alone.

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, a British panel of medical and scientific experts, affirmed in October 1997 that fetal pain does exist and recommends that "practitioners who undertake termination of pregnancy at 24 weeks or later should consider the requirements for feticide analgesia and sedation."

American medical experts also indicate that fetuses beyond 20 weeks are capable of experiencing pain, or at least react to stimuli in a manner that could be interpreted as reaction to pain. One expert, in Congressional testimony, characterized the pain experienced in a partial birth abortion procedure as a "dreadfully painful experience."

The Committee on Moral Concerns supported the bill saying, "Since abortion is going to continue for the foreseeable future, the least we can do is treat human fetuses with the compassion we have for unwanted dogs."

Apparently fetal surgeons agree that their patients feel pain since anesthesia is given to both the mother and her child, although Bruner, who has performed 80 in utero spina bifida operations, continues to abort fetuses with the disease at the woman's request -- "an increasingly difficult position to be in," the doctor has said.

"Because we are performing surgery to improve the lifestyle of fetuses who have spina bifida, it is difficult to justify an operation that could also take that life away," he said. "As we walk through this mine field, society is going to have to take a good, hard look at itself, because it is untenable to hold both views."

Bruner has estimated that about half of women in the United States who discover they are carrying a fetus with spina bifida choose abortion.

Journalist Matt Drudge, author of the Drudge Report, attempted to use Baby Samuel's famous photo on his Fox News Network television show, but was forbidden to do so by network management.

"He was using this photo [also seen in] the National Enquirer as a jumping-off point to talk about partial-birth abortion," said Fox News spokesman Brian Lewis. "It was a picture of an emergency operation for spina bifida. We thought it was a blatant misrepresentation. It was a straight editorial decision."

WorldNetDaily columnist and Associate Editor Elizabeth Farah cautioned the network about its reason for censoring the picture.

"Would you have allowed Matt to make his point by displaying a picture of a different pre-birth child -- this one a victim of abortion?" she asked.

"If memory serves, no picture of an aborted baby's body or video has ever been seen in an establishment paper or on an establishment network," Farah continued. "The word censorship comes to mind."

Drudge parted ways with Fox News, canceling his weekly show. A Fox News spokesman told WorldNetDaily the desire to split was "mutual."

But Drudge isn't the only one under fire for trying to publicize Baby Samuel. Doctors meeting in Washington in December criticized a website maintained by the Vanderbilt doctors performing the crucial operation, saying it was used for "recruiting" women for the procedure. The critics also said the surgery should be stopped until it can be properly tested.

The Vanderbilt doctors insist, however, the website is only designed to provide information to parents.

Julie Armas said she might not have known about the procedure if her mother had not found the Vanderbilt website during an Internet search.

But the revolutionary new surgery is not just changing the lives of children with spina bifida or even just their parents. The photographer of Samuel's outstretched arm said the experience has changed his life.

The Armases agreed to let Nashville free-lance photographer Michael Clancy take pictures of the Aug. 19 operation. Clancy's now-famous photo of Samuel's hand was published in newspapers around the world.

The 43-year-old photographer, who had never before taken pictures of a surgical operation, said, "It has made a pro-lifer out of me."

Clancy said he hadn't realized abortions could legally be performed into the fifth month of pregnancy and later. In fact, abortions are legal until a day before birth, although states were given the ability to outlaw third-trimester abortions in the Supreme Court's decision of Roe v. Wade.

"It's an amazing experience," he said.

See Elizabeth Farah's column:
Why Fox censored Drudge

21 week old pre-born Samuel during surgery
WorldNetDaily Feb 2, 2009 article

View actual ultrasound of a 13 week baby here: http://www.wellsphere.com

Today's News & Views
February 2, 2009

Pro-Lifers Rally in Wisconsin as Critical Vote Approaches
By Dave Andrusko

Editor's note. Please send your comments to daveandrusko@gmail.com.

In two days the University of Wisconsin Hospital Authority Board will vote on Madison Surgery Center's highly controversial request to perform second-trimester abortions. The rationale offered for extending the age limits to abort older babies (between 13 and 22 weeks) is the retirement of Dennis Christensen, who provided second-trimester abortions at Madison's Planned Parenthood.

A coalition of pro-life groups rallied at Liberty Mall on Saturday, bringing with them boxes of petitions signed by more than 20,000 people. The petitions were subsequently delivered to Meriter Hospital.

The Madison Surgery Center is jointly managed by the University of Wisconsin (UW) Hospital and Clinics, Meriter Hospital, and the UW Medical Foundation. All are part of the system called UW Health.

According to the Badger Herald newspaper, the center "is governed by the UW Hospitals and Clinics Authority Board, which is composed of members from each of the hospitals along with seven representatives from UW." It is this governing body that is "in charge of, among other things, setting the hospital's policies."

Board Chair David Walsh told the newspaper, "The staff there is proposing they take over some of the responsibilities that were previously held by Planned Parenthood." He added, "I envision that a presentation will be made by those recommending it, and we'll discuss it and make the decision that day."

Last month, Barbara Lyons, executive director of Wisconsin Right to Life, told Today's News & Views that if the proposal goes through, "This would mean that you could go to the center for arthroscopic knee surgery, and maybe in the next room they'd be dismembering an unborn baby." In addition, she said, " the fees you pay for the surgery would in fact be subsidizing abortions, since the funds will be commingled."

Over the weekend Lyons told the Badger Herald, "Abortions are always a health concern for the mother, and there are mental health concerns for everyone that goes to that surgery center. It's a bad mix."

The consensus appears to be that the vote is very close.

Catholic Democrat Hypocracy -- Letter to The Holy Father

Please contact Congresswoman DeLauro at her website. http://delauro.house.gov/contact_form_email.cfm

February 2, 2009



CATHOLIC DEMOCRATS CHIDE POPE (http://www.catholicleague.org)



On January 29, nearly 50 Catholic Democratic congressmen sent a letter to Pope Benedict XVI stating their concerns over Bishop Richard Williamson’s comments questioning the historical record on the Holocaust. The bishop belongs to the St. Pius X Society, a group which recently had its excommunication lifted by the pope. The congressmen implored the pope to denounce the bishop’s views.



Catholic League president Bill Donohue spoke to this issue today:



“The congressmen’s letter to the pope smacks of posturing and hypocrisy, and is factually wrong. They begin by saying ‘we are writing to express our deep concerns with your decision to reinstate Bishop Richard Williamson to communion with the Catholic Church….’ The fact is that the pope did not reinstate the bishop to communion with the Church—he merely lifted the excommunication of the group to which he belongs. In order for the group to be fully reinstated, it would have to express its fidelity to the teachings of the Church, as well as the norms of Vatican II. In other words, the letter is based on a false predicate.



“Facts aside, this kind of posturing is a disgrace: for American congressmen to lecture the pope about an event in which he was personally victimized, and about which he has long condemned, is nothing short of arrogant.



“The hypocrisy is mind-boggling. They beg the pope to ‘publicly state your unequivocal position on this matter so that it is clear where the Church stands….’ How ironic that most of these very same Catholics fail to speak with clarity about what the Church teaches on abortion. Of the 47 signatories, the majority have a 100 percent NARAL score (meaning they vote with the radical pro-abortion group on every issue). The leader of this group, Rep. Rosa DeLauro, never agrees with the Catholic Church on abortion—her NARAL score is 100 percent.



“One more thing: they addressed the pope not as a head of state but as a ‘spiritual leader.’ Didn’t they ever hear of respecting separation of church and state?”

Mexico City Policy Reversal - Causes Outcry from Latin American Leaders

Mexico City Policy
Obama policy reversal causes outcry from female Latin American leaders


Caracas, Jan 30, 2009 / 04:32 am (CNA).- Several Latin American leaders have criticized President Barack Obama’s Jan. 23 reversal of the Mexico City Policy, arguing its funding of organizations which promote or perform abortions both disrespects the right to life and threatens countries whose laws protect unborn human life.

Christine Vollmer, President of the Caracas-based Latin American Alliance for the Family (ALAFA), in a Wednesday statement called the decision a “horrible way” to begin relations with Central and South America.

“Instead of a positive message of wanting to work to better conditions for every Latin American, President Obama has announced his willingness to fund the enemies of the people of Latin America, whose laws generally are very respectful of the right to life before birth.”

Liliana Negre de Alonso, Vice-president of Argentina's Senate and president of the World Action of Parliamentarians and Political Leaders for Life, attacked the U.S. president’s decision.

“We can’t say we defend human rights if we don't defend the first human right, the Right to Life from conception to natural death,” she said. “To use public funds to finance groups that promote abortion is not respecting the First Human Right, Life.”

Congresswoman Martha Lorena de Casco of Honduras voiced “deep regret and sorrow” that “one of President Obama's first decisions is to revoke the Mexico City policy.”

“I interpret this action as a promotion of abortion and a threat to the national legislation of my country,” she said.

Julia Regina de Cardenal from the El Salvadoran organization "Yes to Life” said her country’s constitution and laws have “total protection” for the right to life from the moment of conception.

“Our ‘Yes to Life’ organization works on a daily basis to provide practical help in a loving and life-enhancing way to poor women who have difficult pregnancies,” she said.

“Ours is the ideal situation: protective legislation and practical, life-enhancing help for people who need it. The U.S. government should follow our example; we shouldn't be pressured to repeat their tragic, anti-life experience!”

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Good For Holy Angels Academy in Minnesota !

Minnesota Catholic school revokes honors for legislator over abortion


Minneapolis, Jan 31, 2009 / 03:43 pm (CNA).- A Catholic high school in Minnesota has denied honors for a state legislator who is a candidate for governor, citing his active support for “pro-choice issues.”

Holy Angels Academy in Richfield, Minnesota had considered alumnus State Rep. Paul Thissen as a nominee for its Activities Hall of Fame, which recognizes those who “through their citizenship and achievements, have brought honor to themselves, their school and the community.”

Thissen, a 1985 graduate of the school, was to accept the honor at a January ceremony, the Star Tribune reports.

However, the school’s president called Thissen days before the ceremony and asked him to withdraw his name from consideration. He refused and was told the day before the ceremony he would be stripped of the award because of his support for abortion as a state legislator of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party.

According to the school, an alumnus’ record at the academy constitutes the primary criteria for the award but the nominating committee also considers activities and professional life afterward. Thissen’s legislative actions contradicted Catholic teaching.

"Mr. Thissen had an outstanding activities career at Holy Angels and has had much success beyond," the school's president, Jill Reilly said in a statement.

However, she reported that the nominating committee was not aware of his voting record regarding “right-to-life issues.”

“As a result of Mr. Thissen's public and professional position to actively support pro-choice issues, with regret, AHA has chosen not to include Mr. Thissen among this year's inductees,” Reilly said, according to the Star Tribune.

Thissen reportedly wrote a letter to Reilly citing his record as a proponent of health care coverage for children and as an advocate for the poor. He cited his participation in football, basketball and track while at the academy and also noted his position as president of the student council.

“It's not the biggest thing in the world, but the school was and is important to me," Thissen told the Star Tribune. “Many of my closest friends, even today, were my friends back then. The recognition meant a lot.

“When I heard about this, I really was disappointed, not so much because of the award, but because the award was for something that had nothing to with my position on giving women the choice of what to do during a pregnancy.”

Thissen is reportedly a regular Mass attendee and has been a frequent contributor to the school.

Explaining its decision, Holy Angels Academy referred to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ document “Catholics in Political Life.” The 2004 document states that those in public life who do not work to correct abortion laws are “guilty of cooperating in evil and sinning against the common good.”

Dennis McGrath, spokesman for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, told the Star Tribune that the archdiocese did not intervene in the matter, calling it “purely a decision by the school.”

Bone marrow stem cell therapy may halt multiple sclerosis

Bone marrow stem cell therapy may halt multiple sclerosis


Chicago, Feb 1, 2009 / 01:13 pm (CNA).- An experimental therapy using bone marrow stem cells stabilized and in some cases reversed early-phase multiple sclerosis, a new study reports.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease that hinders movement and coordination and causes muscle weakness, cognitive impairment, slurred speech and vision problems.

In the decade or more after its onset, MS is characterized by gradual, irreversible neurological impairment. It has no known cure.

Richard Burt of Northwestern University in Chicago led a team of scientists in clinical trials for 11 women and 10 men who did not respond to standard drug treatments, according to a newly published report in the British medical journal The Lancet.

They “rebuilt” the patients’ immune systems, removing defective white blood cells that attack the fatty sheath or myelin that protects the nervous system.

The patients’ immune systems were then replenished with haemopoeitic stem cells extracted from the patients’ bone marrow. These specific stem cells are capable of giving rise to any form of mature blood cell.

After an average follow-up period of three years, 17 of the 21 patients improved by at least one point on a standard disability scale. None had a final score lower than they had before undergoing the stem cell therapy.

Five of the patients relapsed but achieved remission after receiving other immunosuppressive therapy, the Lancet study says.

Participants had MS for about five years. The clinical trials mark the first time the stem cell technique has been applied to young and relatively healthy individuals in the early “relapsing-remitting” stage of the disease.

The study also finds that the procedure “not only seems to prevent neurological progression, but also appears to reverse neurological disability.”

Gianluigi Mancardi of the University of Genoa in Italy wrote in a commentary in The Lancet that further trials are needed using control groups.

However, the results “imply that this is a valuable alternative to the transplant conditioning therapies used so far.”

MS affects millions worldwide, including almost 400,000 in the United States.