Archive for September, 2011

Official Statement on Protests

Friday, September 30th, 2011





I’m here in Amarillo and every few seconds some message of support comes in via e-mail, text, or phone. I’ve spent the last 20 years building up relationships with pro-life activists throughout the nation and around the world, and I can tell you it’s enormously gratifying to me to have such a wide array of friends.

As I have said in previous interviews (e.g. Al Kresta), I would not presume to tell others how to exercise their expressive rights under the U.S. Constitution, but I want to encourage everyone in this great pro-life movement of ours to continue to be to calm, respectful, thoughtful, peaceful and above all prayerful in the manner in which they go about supporting me, personally, and the Priests for Life family of ministries that I head.

Priests for Life has not taken the approach of public battles with, or criticism of, the hierarchy. When there are problems or disagreements or miscommunications that involve the Church leadership, Priests for Life addresses them quietly, respectfully, and behind the scenes.

The current situation has been thrust upon us; we did not seek it, and we hope our actions so far have reflected adequately the respect we have for the shepherds of our Church. Be assured we are neither organizing nor endorsing public protests of any kind.

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






On Oct. 18, Keep Quiet for Life

Friday, September 30th, 2011





Twelve-year-old Haley Altman was sent to the principal’s office.

Before third period, Courtney Woodward was out of red duct tape.

Josiah Wadsack only broke his silence for an after-school Bible study.

The three youths were among thousands of students across the nation and around the globe who took part in last year’s Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity. With more than two weeks to go until this year’s event – set for Oct. 18 – students at nearly 1,193 colleges, high schools, middle schools and home schools already have signed up to remain silent in solidarity with thousands of unborn children permanently silenced by abortion every single day.

The Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity is a project of Stand True Ministries, the Youth Outreach of Priests for Life.

Bryan Kemper, founder of Stand True and the Youth Outreach Director of Priests for Life, said he was inspired to start Silent Day in 2004, when a student from McNeese State University in Louisiana asked him, “What can I do to work with other students around the country, in solidarity, to help end abortion?”

Kemper realized how powerful it would be “if we got students to not only act in solidarity with others, but also with the children who are dying every day. As soon as I said it, I knew God had set something in motion inside of me.”

The Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity was born.

Many students wear red arm bands, and place red duct tape emblazoned with the word “Life” across their mouths, both as a way to help them remain silent and to increase awareness of their goals.

Youth groups, students, businesses and ministries that are interested in taking part should go to silentday.org to register and to find valuable resources, including informational fliers that can be handed out to explain the project to curious classmates, and a letter for school administrators prepared by the Alliance Defense Fund.

“We have heard of hundreds of girls who have canceled abortions because of this day every year,” said Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life. “Are you willing to give up your voice for a day for those who will never have a voice?”

To see how students across the country stayed silent for life last year, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cK7QG6hbNE8

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






Bryan Kemper to Lead Youth Rally in DC on Jan. 21, 2012

Thursday, September 29th, 2011





STATEN ISLAND, NY — Bryan Kemper, founder of Stand True Ministries and Director of Youth Outreach for Priests for Life, and James Nolan, president of Crossroads, will serve as masters of ceremony for the March for Life Youth Rally, to take place Jan. 21 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Washington, D.C.

Youth are the future of the pro-life movement but they are also very much its present leaders. Acutely aware that one-third of their generation has been lost to abortion, youth from across the country attend the March for Life every year to demand an end to the slaughter.

An impromptu youth rally before the 2011 March for Life attracted 300 participants. Organizers expect up to 1,000 to fill the hotel ballroom for the inaugural March for Life Youth Rally.

Kemper will speak at the rally, along with Martha Nolan, executive director of Crossroads, and Elizabeth McClung, executive director of the Austin Coalition for Life. Additional speakers will be announced in the coming months.

“As a father, youth leader and national pro-life leader,” said Kemper, “I believe we must give young people the tools to stand up for their faith and convictions. We understand the importance of raising up a generation of pro-life youth; to educate, activate and equip them in this battle to build a culture of life. We are excited to partner with the March for Life on the first annual March for Life Youth Rally as we engage and empower young people to fight to end child killing in America.”

Father Frank Pavone commented, “It was the March for Life that ignited my commitment to the pro-life cause. I know this rally will plant the same seeds in the hearts of many new activists. I am also very proud of our Priests for Life Pastoral Team, which now includes Bryan Kemper, and which also includes Janet Morana and the Silent No More Awareness Campaign, which will likewise be an integral part of the activities in Washington in January.”

Stand True Ministries is the youth outreach of Priests for Life. It is a Christ-centered pro-life ministry determined to awaken the youth of this country and share the message of life and the Gospel of Christ. For information, visit priestsforlife.org/bryan-kemper

Since its inception in 1995, Crossroads organizes yearly pro-life pilgrimages across the United States. Visit crossroadswalk.org for information.

To keep up with updated information about the rally, visit the Facebook page, facebook.com/marchforlifeyouthrally

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






Baby Joseph: A Life Worth Living

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011





I learned with sadness tonight of the passing of Baby Joseph Maraachli, the boy from Canada who, earlier this year, made international headlines as his family fought to give him the basic care he needed in order to breathe. I extend my condolences and prayers to his family.

This young boy and his parents fulfilled a special mission from God. Amidst a Culture of Death where despair leads us to dispose of the vulnerable, they upheld a Culture of Life where hope leads us to welcome and care for the vulnerable.

From my first conversation with Baby Joseph’s parents, they expressed to me their trust in God. They had no demands of Him regarding how long their son would live. They just wanted to fulfill their calling to love their child unconditionally and to protect him from those who considered his life worthless.

And they fulfilled that calling. After encountering, to their astonishment, the unwillingness of the Canadian medical and legal establishment to give their son a simple tracheotomy, they turned to Priests for Life, and we arranged for the child to receive that treatment at Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center in Saint Louis. I’ll never forget the night I flew in the medical jet to pick up the baby and his dad. (Mom and their older child joined us shortly thereafter.) It was the middle of the night. It was cold, and yet new hope and joy were born on that Kalitta MedFlight. Joseph’s Dad Moe was literally pinching himself, saying he could hardly believe that his son was now free from the prison of a hospital where he had been, and able to receive a new evaluation and care.

And what a joy it was, after those weeks in Saint Louis, to celebrate Holy Thursday and, on that day, to see Joseph go home with his parents, breathing on his own without tubes or machines. Nobody denied that he had a serious, degenerative neurological condition, and nobody was unwilling to accept professional medical judgement. What we refused to accept, however, was the arrogance of medical and legal professionals who presumed to judge the value of his life, and to say he wasn’t worth treating. Yes, there is such a thing as a worthless treatment, but there is never such a thing as a worthless life.

That’s the line that needs to be drawn in the sand again and again. That’s the prophetic witness that needs to thunder from our pulpits and be lobbied in the halls of government.

I praise God tonight for the tens of thousands who stood with Priests for Life and other prolife groups to save Baby Joseph. We remain convinced that the value of life is not measured in months or years, but rather reflected in the love we share moment by moment. We all loved Joseph, because God entrusts us to the care of each other. In that conviction we will continue to counteract the culture of death and restore protection and equality to all, born and unborn.

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






Statement of Fr. Frank on Passing of Baby Joseph

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011





Amarillo, TX – Fr. Frank Pavone issued the following statement this morning on the passing of Baby Joseph Maraachli, the infant who earlier this year was flown from Ontario, Canada to St. Louis to receive treatment previously denied to him, which allowed him to spend his last months at home with his parents.

“I learned with sadness last night of the passing of Baby Joseph, and extend my prayers to his family. This young boy and his parents fulfilled a special mission from God. Amidst a Culture of Death where despair leads us to dispose of the vulnerable, they upheld a Culture of Life where hope leads us to welcome and care for the vulnerable.

“From my first conversation with Baby Joseph’s parents, they expressed to me their trust in God. They had no demands of Him regarding how long their son would live. They just wanted to fulfill their calling to love their child unconditionally and to protect him from those who considered his life worthless.

“I praise God tonight for the tens of thousands who stood with Priests for Life and other prolife groups to save Baby Joseph. We remain convinced that the value of life is not measured in months or years, but rather reflected in the love we share moment by moment. We all loved Joseph, because God entrusts us to the care of each other. In that conviction we will continue to counteract the culture of death and restore protection and equality to all, born and unborn.”

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






Thy Will Be Done

Monday, September 26th, 2011





One of the shortest and most powerful prayers we say, taught and used by Jesus Himself, is “Thy Will be done.” Union with the will of God is the heart of salvation and the essence of holiness. It is also the soul of the Culture of Life, where we do not pretend that human life is subject to our will. Rather, we welcome human life because it is God’s will to create and to entrust the lives of others to our care.

Not only accepting, but eagerly yearning for the will of God, causes us to serve the weak, and to work to see that human law reflects God’s will by protecting the vulnerable. Saying “thy will be done” also helps us avoid the temptation to throw life away when it is afflicted with illness.

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






Thy Kingdom Come

Monday, September 26th, 2011





When Jesus began His preaching He declared that the Kingdom of God had come among us, yet in the prayer He taught us, He instructed us to pray, “Thy Kingdom Come!” The kingdom, indeed, is already here. The Kingdom is Jesus Himself, united with His members who, together with Him, make up His Body, the Church. Yet the kingdom is not yet here in all its completion. It continues to grow, and it continues to strive against many enemies. God’s Kingdom, as the liturgy says, is a kingdom “of truth and life, of holiness and grace, of justice, love and peace.” This kingdom defines the Culture of Life, where the unborn and frail are welcomed and protected. Each time we pray the Our Father, let our longing for that kingdom increase.

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






The Church is the Only Vehicle

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011





The war against the unborn can only ultimately be stopped by and through the Church. Just from a natural point of view, this is a vast network of interaction and communication. Imagine what can happen if our clergy infuse that vast structure with clear, vigorous, and compassionate pro-life teaching and action. The Church is the only institution that has a Divine guarantee that it will prevail over the culture of death. “The gates of hell will not prevail against it,” the Lord said. The gates of death fall in the presence of life. To fully apply those gifts to the task of ending abortion, does not so much require more structure as it does more spirit, more awareness, more courage, and more determination to use both the means and the opportunities we already have.

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






Hallowed Be Thy Name

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011





In the Our Father, we pray “Hallowed be thy name.” When the People of God live in a way that reflects the holiness, justice, truth and love of God Himself, then God’s name is honored. In other words, God’s people give God a good reputation, and the word “Christian” is something people want to identify with, but when God’s people are unfaithful, God’s name is dishonored.

This is what happens when God’s people turn the other way and ignore the abortions that kill thousands of babies every day – or even participate in them. This dishonors both the rights of that child and the honor of God. Hallowed be thy name, through our commitment to life. Hallowed be thy name, through the sacrifice we make to defend life, and the care we give to mother and child alike.

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.






Bishop Roger Gries Urges: “Please Continue to Support Priests for Life”

Tuesday, September 20th, 2011





STATEN ISLAND, NY – The Most Rev. Roger W. Gries O.S.B., Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Cleveland, has offered his ongoing support for Father Frank Pavone and has asserted that the vital work of Priests for Life must continue.

In a letter dated Sept. 19, Bishop Gries wrote, “Over my ten years as Auxiliary Bishop of Cleveland, I crossed paths many times with Father Frank Pavone. During all this time I have found him dedicated to the preservation of life for the unborn. He and I both work and pray for the day when we will eliminate this horrendous evil from the face of the earth.”

Noting that “Supporting abortion happens to be the politically correct stance to take these days,” Bishop Gries wrote, “God would love to restore the peace and love found in the Garden of Eden before the fall. It is our challenge in this age to build up the Kingdom of God. We will only achieve this goal if we let His will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Bishop Gries asked for prayers for Father Pavone as he works with his bishop in the Diocese of Amarillo. “The work he had done since founding Priests for Life must continue as we face the future. Please continue to support Priests for Life.

Bishop Gries is among the Cardinals, Archbishops and Bishops who serve as advisers to Priests for Life.

“I was proud to stand up with Father Pavone when he asked me to serve on the Advisory Board of Bishops. Every opportunity that comes my way to stand up for life will find me speaking out against abortion,” the Bishop wrote. “Let us pray, pray and pray some more for the mothers carrying infants in their wombs. Also, let us pray for those who perform the abortions and work in those clinics for they need God’s grace to see the evil of their deeds.”

For the full text of the letter, see priestsforlife.org/update/roger-gries.htm.

Click here to leave a comment for
the article above.