Fr. Pavone welcomes Church’s “eagerness to reconcile those who have had abortions”

September 1st, 2015

NEW YORK — Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life and also Pastoral Director of the world’s largest ministry for healing after abortion, Rachel’s Vineyard, and also of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign, the largest mobilization of those who have had abortions, issued the following statement this morning:

“All of us at Priests for Life, Rachel’s Vineyard, and Silent No More welcome the letter our Holy Father issued today, indicating his compassionate concern for those who have had abortions, and making it easier for them to obtain the absolution of a priest. This step does not mean that forgiveness wasn’t available before. However, it simplifies the process outlined in Church law whereby, in certain circumstances, the priest needs to get authorization before giving absolution. In the Jubilee Year, priests will not need to delay that absolution, provided there is repentance.

“We welcome this concrete expression of the Church’s eagerness to reconcile those who have had abortions. We who oppose abortion do not oppose those who have had abortions; rather, we welcome them with mercy and compassion.  A very large part of our work at Priests for Life is to extend the urgent invitation to healing. We oversee the work of Rachel’s Vineyard (www.RachelsVineyard.org), a retreat program which constitutes the world’s largest ministry of healing after abortion and which enjoys the personal and enthusiastic support of Pope Francis.

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“Moreover, through our Silent No More Awareness Campaign, through which mothers, fathers, and entire families witness to the pain of being involved in abortion and the joy of God’s healing, we echo that invitation to healing through the testimonies of those who have found it. They share these testimonies in churches, at rallies, and in the media (see www.SilentNoMore.com).

“I have spoken with Pope Francis on five occasions specifically about our work of healing those who have had abortions, and healing even abortionists who have killed tens of thousands of children. We at Priests for Life will continue to train and encourage our brother priests to be the heralds of mercy and compassion in the face of abortion. Truth and compassion are not in tension; they are both aspects of the same God. To treat someone with compassion includes sharing with them honestly the truth they need to hear, and to be fully truthful includes revealing the reality of compassion and mercy,” stated Fr. Pavone.

The relevant portion of the Pope’s letter today is as follows:

“One of the serious problems of our time is clearly the changed relationship with respect to life. A widespread and insensitive mentality has led to the loss of the proper personal and social sensitivity to welcome new life. The tragedy of abortion is experienced by some with a superficial awareness, as if not realizing the extreme harm that such an act entails. Many others, on the other hand, although experiencing this moment as a defeat, believe that they have no other option. I think in particular of all the women who have resorted to abortion. I am well aware of the pressure that has led them to this decision. I know that it is an existential and moral ordeal. I have met so many women who bear in their heart the scar of this agonizing and painful decision. What has happened is profoundly unjust; yet only understanding the truth of it can enable one not to lose hope. The forgiveness of God cannot be denied to one who has repented, especially when that person approaches the Sacrament of Confession with a sincere heart in order to obtain reconciliation with the Father. For this reason too, I have decided, notwithstanding anything to the contrary, to concede to all priests for the Jubilee Year the discretion to absolve of the sin of abortion those who have procured it and who, with contrite heart, seek forgiveness for it. May priests fulfill this great task by expressing words of genuine welcome combined with a reflection that explains the gravity of the sin committed, besides indicating a path of authentic conversion by which to obtain the true and generous forgiveness of the Father who renews all with his presence.”

The full letter is at http://press.vatican.va/content/salastampa/en/bollettino/pubblico/2015/09/01/0637/01386.html#ing

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Fr. Pavone: Latest video highlights tight relationship between Planned Parenthood and procurement companies

September 1st, 2015

PriestsForLife
NEW YORK –  Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life and author of Abolishing Abortion, released the following statement today regarding the latest undercover video focusing on the sale of baby body parts:

“The ninth undercover video of Planned Parenthood released by our colleagues at the Center for Medical Progress shows the tight financial relationship between abortion clinics and companies that buy the body parts of the babies killed there. This video focuses on the oldest such company, Advanced Bioscience Resources, Inc. (ABR) and its relationship with Planned Parenthood Pacific Southwest. The interviews clearly attest to how the procurement companies pay the clinics, and how the sharing of personnel cements the relationship between the clinics and the procurement companies.

“The bottom line is simple. To deny the fact that Planned Parenthood sells body parts, alters the abortion procedure to do so, and is involved in this illegal activity at the highest corporate level, is now tantamount to asserting that the Earth is flat. The facts are not only in these videos, but also in the letter that Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood, wrote to Congress on August 27

“As Congress convenes again next week, Priests for Life, and numerous other national and local pro-life organizations, will press our elected officials to do their job and investigate Planned Parenthood and hold the organization accountable for its actions.”

To see the latest video, and all the previous undercover releases, go to www.babybodyparts.com

 

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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Today’s Pro-life Reflection: Context Matters

September 1st, 2015

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This reflection is taken from my book, Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Such attacks strike human life at the time of its greatest frailty, when it lacks any means of self-defense. Even more serious is the fact that, most often, those attacks are carried out in the very heart of and with the complicity of the family—the family which by its nature is called to be the ‘sanctuary of life’ “(John Paul II, The Gospel of Life, n.11). 

Reflection: Not all sins against life are the same. Context matters. Greater dependence calls for greater protection. The family setting implies greater compassion.

Prayer: God of the family, Lord of the frail, may compassion and protection overflow from your heart to ours! Amen.

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Today’s Pro-life Reflection: Be Mindful

August 31st, 2015

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This reflection is taken from my book, Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Be mindful, O Lord, that mercy and kindness have been yours from of old. Remember not the sins of my youth” (Psalm 25:6-7).

Reflection: A woman wrote of her abortion, “It was very painful, physically and mentally. It affected me in the worst way. I felt very guilty. I couldn’t look at any kids. I know I won’t ever do it again.” Those getting an abortion think it will solve their problems, and they find out it only creates more of them.

Prayer: Lord, show us how to reach out to those who have had abortions, and how to understand their pain. Bring us all to healing. Amen.

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection: We can see … in the unborn child, the image of God

August 27th, 2015

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This reflection is taken from my book, Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“I have gazed upon you in the sanctuary so that I may behold your power and your glory” (Psalm 63:3).

Reflection: The baby in the manger and the man on the cross do not look like God; yet by faith we know Jesus is no mere man. The Eucharist does not look like Jesus, but we worship him. Christians are used to looking beyond appearances. Hence we can also see in the annoying or ugly person or the person who is unconscious in a hospital bed, or in the unborn child, the image of God.

Prayer: Holy Spirit, grant us to see beyond appearances to the dignity of every life! Amen!

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection: Give us the love that overcomes division

August 26th, 2015

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This reflection is taken from my book, Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our abode with him” (John 14:23).

Reflection: The Spirit is the bond of love between the Father and the Son. When the Father and Son come and abide with us, it is through this Holy Spirit. The Spirit unites the human family in bonds of self-giving love. Abortion, and other manifestations of the culture of death, however, divides the human family, because they are the opposite of self-giving.

Prayer: Holy Spirit, we need you and we long for the unity you bring. Give us the love that overcomes division. Amen.

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Fr. Pavone: Time to hold Planned Parenthood, lawmakers accountable

August 25th, 2015

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: August 25, 2015

Contact: Leslie Palma
347-286-7277

NEW YORK — Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, released the following statement this morning regarding a newly released video of a conversation with Cate Dyer, the CEO of StemExpress:

“We have consistently maintained that Planned Parenthood profits from the sale of baby body parts. This video shows that clearly. Making a profit on the sale of body parts is against federal law. Despite the convictions of some abortion advocates, Planned Parenthood is not above the law. It is time to hold them accountable for their actions, and it is time for us to hold our public officials accountable to their responsibility to properly investigate and prosecute this illegal enterprise.”

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection: Children are a gift from the Lord.

August 25th, 2015

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This reflection is taken from my book, Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Behold, children are a gift from the Lord, a reward of the fruit of the womb” (Psalm 127:3).

Reflection: Because children are a “gift,” they can neither be demanded nor discarded. That is why it is wrong not only to abort them, but also to “create” them through artificial means that replace normal human procreation. We do not have a “right” to children, but rather an awesome privilege to receive them, if God so chooses to give the gift.

Prayer: Lord, deepen our understanding of children as a gift. Give generosity to all parents, and patience to all those who await that gift. Amen.

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection: God…set me apart even before my birth

August 24th, 2015

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This reflection is taken from my book, Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“God…set me apart even before my birth” (Galatians 1:15).

Reflection: Many pro-abortion public officials will say they believe that life begins at conception. But then they say they cannot legislate that belief on those who think it begins later. But suppose someone said, “I believe that life begins at birth, but I cannot legislate my beliefs on those who think it begins later.” Then the newborn would lose their legal protection. Such protection is needed precisely when some believe others shouldn’t have it.

Prayer: Lord, give our legislators, and all your people, wisdom to know the difference between legislating beliefs and protecting lives. Amen.

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection: He will have pity on the lowly and the poor…

August 23rd, 2015

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This reflection is taken from my book, Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“He will have pity on the lowly and the poor; the lives of the needy he will save” (Psalm 72:13).

Reflection: Biblically speaking, the “poor” are not simply those who are materially deprived, but rather those who have no help but God. God has mercy especially on those who realize he is their only hope and only help. Those who are like God also have a “preferential option for the poor.” In other words, we go first to those who need our help the most.

Prayer: Lord, I pray for the “poor,” for those most abandoned and forgotten. Let their voices be heard and their lives spared. Amen.

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