Terri’s Day

On March 31, 2005, Terri Schiavo was killed. She was a disabled woman whose estranged husband, and the courts to which he went, decided that she should be deprived of water and food.
Terri was not in a coma, she was not on life support, and she did not have a terminal illness. Terri was one of those people who cries out for our extra love and support, which her parents and siblings were ready to give her for the rest of her life.

I was at Terri’s bedside during her final hours and moments. As she was dying from lack of water, there stood by her head a display of beautiful live flowers, immersed in water. As I blessed and absolved Terri, I assured her of your love. Now I implore you to educate your neighbors.

–Fr. Frank

Recalling Terri’s Last Day

On March 30, 2005, Terri Schiavo had her last full day of life on this earth. I spent her last night by her side, praying with her, reading Scripture to her, and assuring her of the love of so many of you. Terri had not received a drop of water in nearly two weeks.

As I reached out my hand to touch hers, I could also reach it out to touch the vase of flowers that was next to her. And that vase was filled with water. The flowers were nourished; Terri was deprived of nourishment. Court orders saw to it that none of us could give her some of the water that nourished the flowers.

In a culture of death, law is divorced from humanity. And we are all victimized in the process.
–Fr. Frank

Acquitting the Killers

Abortionist George Tiller’s trial is over and the jury has rendered a verdict of “not guilty.”

It’s what we mean by a culture of death…The way we operate, at every level of society, favors death. The poison of abortion permeates the electoral process (resulting in public officials who support the killing); it permeates the educational institutions (who then invite and honor pro-abortion public officials); and the courts (putting people like Pastor Walter Hoye in jail and acquitting killers like George Tiller.)

Tiller belongs in jail. We have to understand once and for all that abortionists care nothing about pesky provisions of the law like Kansas has to introduce some slight measure of restraint (if we can even call it that) into the process of late-term abortion.

After all, if these abortionists can kill late-term babies and throw their bodies in incinerators in the back room after sometimes having the parents take locks of hair from these children after they are dressed up in post-abortion baptismal garments – well, then, their consciences are dead.

In reality, Mr. Tiller, you are not acquitted at all. You’re killing babies, and the verdict of the court of heaven is against you.

Time still permits you to repent. We will work and pray for that, and at the same time we will continue to persuade your “clients” not to let you near their children.

–Fr. Frank

Many People Are Waking Up

Many people around the country are awakening to the tragedy of abortion and the need to join the pro-life movement. “What can I do to help?” is one of the questions I hear most frequently.

One very important thing you can do is to memorize the phone number of the Option Line, at which people can find alternatives to abortion. The number is one eight hundred, three nine five, help. Run jointly by Heartbeat International and Care Net, the largest networks of pregnancy centers, this hotline connects people with the alternatives closest to them. It’s one eight hundred, three nine five, help.

At some point you are going to be able to give that number to someone who needs it. Remember, there are some abortions only you can stop. Get involved today.

–Fr. Frank

Celebrate Life with The Annunciation

Today, the Church throughout the world celebrates the Feast of the Annunciation.

This solemnity marks the moment when God Himself became an unborn child. At that moment he also began redeeming the unborn child — and all of us who once were unborn children. Never can the unborn be considered too small to be significant or to possess rights, for God Himself was that small.

In many countries, tomorrow’s Feast is observed as a special Day of Life, even by decree of the government.

At www.priestsforlife.org, you will find special prayers you can use in your homes and Churches as you observe this feast.
Let us all renew our commitment to the lives of the unborn, and to Jesus, whose image is in each one of them.

–Fr. Frank

Passion, Death, and Resurrection Bring Us New Life

Lent is a season of life. As baptized believers, we reflect on how the passion, death, and resurrection of Christ have brought us the new life we now live. We commit ourselves to join all our suffering to his for our own salvation and that of the whole world.

To help us all observe Lent, I have written a special Lenten prayer for life, and invite you to join me in saying it each day of this holy season. Please download it at www.priestsforlife.org. As we prepare to celebrate the victory of Christ over death, we commit ourselves to defeat the power of abortion and the culture of death. And as we practice Lenten penance, we can do no better than to reach out and save the lives of our youngest brothers and sisters.

–Fr. Frank

Easter Hope

Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director
Priests for Life

Grief does strange things to us. It can keep us from seeing what is really going on in our lives, and prevent us from recognizing some of the most significant people we know.

On Easter morning, Mary Magdalene stood weeping by the tomb. Jesus himself stood there. But, St. John’s Gospel tells us, “she did not know him” and supposed it was the gardener. “‘Woman,’ he asked her, ‘Why are you weeping? Who is it you are looking for?'” The very cause of her grief was about to be removed by the one asking her about it. Little did she know that the reason for her weeping had already been destroyed. The Lord was present.

On Easter afternoon, two of the first Christians were walking from Jerusalem to Emmaus, “discussing as they went all that had happened. In the course of their lively exchange, Jesus approached and began to walk along with them. However, they were restrained from recognizing him. He said to them, ‘What are you discussing as you go your way?'” Again, the very reason for their grief had been destroyed by the One now asking them about their grief. The Lord was present and was walking with them. Their hearts began to burn within them.

As the Church continues to deal with the tragedy of abortion, she faces not only a sin against life, but a sin against hope. We do not see “abortion” walking down the street. What we see is a woman, a child of God, who is caught in the grip of despair. Even if she knows abortion is wrong, as most do, she sees no other way out. She, too, is in grief. She feels she must choose between the baby’s life and her life. The prospect of having the child is, psychologically, like a “death” to her: a death to her plans, her freedom, her future.

Grief does strange things. It can blind us to the value of the child.
It can also blind us to the presence of the Lord. He walks with us in our grief, and He asks us to share it with Him so He can remove it forever. Just as the Lord was present on the first Easter to those who thought they had lost Him, so is He present today to those who grieve. He is present to those whose fear and despair are so great that they have their own children killed.

The Lord is present to others through His Church. We, the People of Life, enter into dialogue with the mother tempted to abort. “Why are you weeping?” We learn her needs and fears, and we show her she is not alone. We walk with her, as the Lord walked with His grieving disciples. We provide hope. We speak her name, we break bread with her, we lead her to the company of the other disciples, we bring her to the strength of the Eucharist.

Abortion will flee in the presence of Easter hope. The Lord still walks with his people.

A Novena to Terri’s Day

On Monday, March 23, Priests for Life will launch a prayer novena in remembrance of Terri Schiavo, the brain-injured woman who was killed in Florida in 2005 by being deprived of all food and water. We invite you to join this novena by going to priestsforlife.org and downloading the special prayer we have prepared. The prayer reminds us that life is always a good, even when beset by disability ,and that it is precisely in its vulnerability that life shows forth the glory of God.
The novena concludes on March 31, the date of Terri’s death, and a day that has been designated as the International Day of Remembrance of Terri Schiavo and all the Vulnerable. Please join our novena, at priestsforlife.org, and invite your parish, school, pro-life group and family to take part in it.

–Fr. Frank

St. Joseph, Model for All Fathers

Today, the Church celebrates the Feast of her patron, St. Joseph. Though not the biological father of Jesus, who was born of a virgin, Joseph was his protector and the faithful husband of Mary.

Joseph is a model for all fathers today. Essential to fatherhood is the protection of one’s children. One of the main reasons for abortion is that the mother does not experience the supportive, faithful encouragement of the baby’s father. Often, the only “choice” in the matter is the abortion that the father forces on the mother. At other times, fathers tried to stop the abortion. But the law excludes them from the final decision about the abortion.

Men do suffer grief after the abortion of their child. Healing programs are available for these fathers. Contact priestsforlife.org for more information.

–Fr. Frank

Say No to Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Adult stem-cell research is nothing new. It has been going on for decades, and in fact has proven helpful in treating various diseases. In the process of this research, nobody has to be killed in order to obtain the stem cells.

Embryonic stem cell research, on the other hand, only began in 1998, and does involve killing a new human life in order to obtain the cells. The number of diseases that have been successfully treated with embryonic stem cells is zero. They have shown no medical benefit. And even if they did, such activity is immoral. The end does not justify the means.

Adult stem cells have treated various forms of leukemia, sickle cell disease, anemia, and carcinoma. Embryonic stem cells have succeeded in nothing.

–Fr. Frank