Archive for April, 2008

The Pope, You Tube, and Cardinal Trujillo

Sunday, April 20th, 2008





Friends,

The Pope’s visit to America has certainly been exciting and has been a great way for the American people to get to know him better. I was present at the White House on Wednesday the 16th to join the President in welcoming the Holy Father. Janet Morana was also there, representing all the women and men of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign, which she co-founded (www.SilentNoMoreAwareness.org). Janet likewise was invited to a State Dinner that evening and greeted the President and First Lady, as well as three Supreme Court Justices (Chief Justice Roberts, Justice Alito, and Justice Thomas) on behalf of Silent No More Awareness and Priests for Life.

In his homily at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the Pope said,

The Church, as “a people made one by the unity of the Father, the Son and the Spirit” (cf. Lumen Gentium, 4), is called to proclaim the gift of life, to serve life, and to promote a culture of life. Here in this cathedral, our thoughts turn naturally to the heroic witness to the Gospel of life borne by the late Cardinals Cooke and O’Connor. The proclamation of life, life in abundance, must be the heart of the new evangelization.

He mentioned Cardinal Terence Cooke, who was Cardinal O’Connor’s predecessor in New York. Cardinal Cooke suffered from cancer all throughout his years as Archbishop of New York, though we never knew it. He never complained, and he kept up a tireless schedule of service to the people. In the course of his final illness, in 1983, he wrote a letter on the sanctity of life, which was read, as scheduled, on the weekend of October 8 in the New York parishes. The Cardinal had died two days earlier. In that letter he wrote, “The gift of life, God’s special gift, is no less beautiful when it is accompanied by illness or weakness, hunger or poverty, mental or physical handicaps, loneliness or old age. Indeed, at these times, human life gains extra splendor as it requires our special care, concern, and reverence.” Cardinal Cooke’s cause of canonization has been underway for years now.

In other matters, the videos I posted on You Tube, showing the abortion procedure, have been causing quite a stir and attracting a lot of visitors. If you can help me get more people to view them, not only will you be educating them about the procedure, but you will help us make the videos into a news story. The videos are as follows: 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=us_y9GP_-DA – Dismemberment D&E Procedure
www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBOAPleF1t0 – Suction Abortion Procedure 

My You Tube page is www.YouTube.com/frfrankpavone. If you become a You Tube subscriber (it’s free!) and then subscribe to my videos and put these procedure videos in your “Favorites” section, it will help them to get an even wider audience.

Finally, we got news last night (April 19) that Cardinal Lopez-Trujillo, President of the Pontifical Council for the Family, passed away. I worked with him during the years that I was there at the Vatican, and he was one of the Church’s greatest defenders of human life. Pray for him, and thank the Lord for his life and ministry.

Blessings!

Fr. Frank Pavone

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“Is This What You Mean?”

Monday, April 14th, 2008





Dear Friends: 

We in the pro-life community have been fed up for a long time with “public servants” who can’t seem to tell the difference between serving the public and killing the public. They mask the violence of abortion with the smooth language of “choice,” and refuse to protect the victims.

These politicians are found in both major political parties; some hold public office and others seek it. And many Church leaders have been hesitant to discipline such individuals, even though many of them claim to practice their faith.

These abortion supporting politicians get away with what they are doing in large measure because they refuse to talk about what the “choice” actually is. They try to avoid the word “abortion” altogether; but even when they use it, the word has lost practically all its meaning. Voters hear the word but are left with little or no awareness of the gruesome horror it represents.

This election season, it’s time for that to change. No matter what politicians or voters or Church officials are or are not going to do, it’s time that we who know what abortion is draw a line in the sand and give candidates and office-holders alike this challenge:

If you’re going to take a position on abortion, then you’re going to have to come clean about what it is. We are no longer going to let you obscure or trivialize the issue. Whether people agree with you or not, you owe it to them to be honest about what you’re talking about. 

Therefore we issue this simple call to honesty: We will describe abortion to you, and you tell us if that’s what you’re talking about.

That’s it, pure and simple. This is not a debate, nor a threat. It’s a call to clarity, a demand for honesty. That is not partisan, nor is it unreasonable; it is not fanatical or inappropriate in any way. Nor is this about religion or morality.

We just want to make sure that we’re hearing you. When you say “abortion,” we just want to make sure we’re both talking about the same thing.

I recently posted two videos on You Tube in which I describe and demonstrate the two most common abortion techniques, using the actual instruments of abortion and the words found in medical textbooks and court testimony. Click here and you will see the links to these videos, as well as brief quotes you can use from abortionists themselves.

For example, Dr. Carolyn Westhoff testified, “In the dismemberment D&E…it is necessary to insert our forceps…and then crush the head.” (National Abortion Federation v. Ashcroft, April 2004, US District Court, Southern District of New York).

Then simply ask “pro-choice” politicians (whether they are candidates or already in public office) if this is what they mean when they say “abortion.”  Yes or no. Ask it publicly. Ask it repeatedly. Ask it at town meetings, on blogs, in editorials. Those whose support they are seeking deserve to know.

You Tube links on the abortion procedures: 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=us_y9GP_-DA 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBOAPleF1t0

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Two Abortion Procedures

Wednesday, April 9th, 2008





Dear Friends,

Two You Tube videos I made recently have been causing a stir. Would you help me get them in front of as many people as possible?

In these videos, I demonstrate the two most common abortion procedures, using fetal models and also using instruments that were actually used to kill babies.

The links to the videos are as follows: 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=us_y9GP_-DA

www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBOAPleF1t0

On another matter, I want to give you this link to an article that explains very well the moral criteria for working for “imperfect legislation,” that is, laws that would increase the protection of unborn children yet not reach the final goal of protecting them all. This article was published in the Vatican’s newspaper, “L’Osservatore Romano,” by a moral theologian who teaches in Rome.

Let’s be clear. No abortion is OK, no circumstance can justify it, and no human government can authorize even a single abortion.

The principles in this article deal with situations where, acknowledging what I said above, the support does not yet exist in the legislature to secure the protection of every unborn child. (That, of course, has been the case throughout the whole time of legal abortion in America.) The lack of willingness in a legislative body to protect every baby is no excuse – for the legislators or for us – to walk away from the playing field and leave all the babies unprotected. When there is progress that can be made, that progress should be made.

Enjoy the article and pass it on: www.priestsforlife.org/articles/02-09-18evangeliumvitae73.htm 

Thanks!

Fr. Frank

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Martin Luther King, Jr. – 40 Years

Thursday, April 3rd, 2008





Dear Friends,

April 4, 2008, is the 40th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I remember that day as a young boy, though I didn’t yet appreciate the significance of it, nor the way it would connect with my own life.

All of us on the Priests for Life pastoral team are privileged to work closely with his niece, Alveda, and to know his sister-in-law, Naomi King (Alveda’s mom).

This anniversary of Dr. King’s death should provoke some self-reflection on the part of all of us. For what, exactly, did he give his life?

It was for the same principle by which we give our lives in the pro-life cause: the equal dignity of every human being.

That’s a cause worth living for and dying for. That’s the heart of the pro-life movement, just as it is the heart of the civil rights movement.

This anniversary prompts a few questions:

1.       Are we treating the unborn as real people, and each abortion as a real murder?

Each baby aborted is just as real and has just as much value as each person who was ever lynched or who ever suffered the evils of segregation. Let’s respond accordingly.

2.       Are we ready to sacrifice whatever it takes to protect these children?

Dr. King always called civil rights activists to stop counting the cost, and to focus on others rather than themselves. We too have to eliminate the “cost-counting” from the task of defending the unborn.

I thank you for what you do for the cause of life. As our nation reaches this special anniversary, I pray you will be inspired to give everything for the rights of the children in the womb!

Fr. Frank Pavone

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Through the Church

Tuesday, April 1st, 2008





Abortion will end.

The premise of Priests for Life is that abortion will end through the Church, because Christ has conquered death, and it is He who works through each of us to bring this victory to every segment of our society.

By the “Church,” I mean the entire Body of Christ. Pope John Paul II, in The Gospel of Life, told us, “No single person or group has a monopoly on the defense and promotion of life. These are everyone’s task and responsibility” (EV 91). He says this after asserting that the effort must be ecumenical and, in fact, must include the involvement of all people of good will.

The United States Catholic Bishops have provided marvelous guidance on how the pro-life effort of the Catholic Church should be undertaken, and at the conclusion of their national Pastoral Plan for Pro-life Activities, they echo what John Paul II said in the quote above. They write, “We hold in high esteem all who proclaim and serve the Gospel of life. Through their peaceful activism, education, prayer, and service, they witness to God’s truth and embody our Lord’s command to love one another as he loves us. We assure them of our continuing prayers. And we renew our appeal to all in the Catholic community to join with them and with us in building a ‘culture of life.’”

That openness to others, that esteem for those who work for life in every denomination, and even outside the realm of Christianity, is essential for success – and that attitude is inherently a Catholic attitude. The word “Catholic,” after all, means “universal.”

Those of you who follow my work know that we begin by energizing and activating the priests, who are called, by their ordination, to reach out well beyond the boundaries of the Catholic Church, and in fact to be spiritual fathers.

Back in 1994, I gave a talk to priests and lay leaders in the Philippines at the invitation of the local bishops. In that talk I said the following:

“It’s not any easier to raise up a spiritual family than a physical family. Some people say: “Priests don’t have any children, their lives must be easier.” But that thinking tends toward materialism, which sees physical realities as the only realities. Spiritual realities are real ones too, and priests have spiritual children! Think of those who hear the preaching and embrace Christ and His Church, or receive new life by the sacraments. These are our spiritual children! If we are not of the mind that we are to be generative, that we are to bring spiritual children into the world, then we are practicing what might be called a clerical contraception. We are ordained to bring forth life and to do so generously.” (For the full talk, see www.priestsforlife.org/articles/Role.html )

That’s where we need to start. Let’s pray that our priests be spiritual fathers bringing forth many children who will work hand in hand with all people to build the culture of life!

Fr. Frank

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