November 4, 2000
Priest urges opposition to abortion
By Tracie Mauriello
News-Sun Staff Writer
Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are fine for Sunday liturgy, but Friday, a
priest wanted to talk about Roe vs. Wade.
The election of abortion-rights candidates would destroy the country, the
Rev. Frank Pavone said Friday during a dinner to raise money for Clark County
Right to Life, an anti-abortion group.
"The implication of this election cannot be exaggerated," said Pavone, a New
York priest commissioned by the Vatican to coordinate the church's anti-abortion
activities throughout the world.
The next president would be able to shape the abortion debate if he has the
opportunity to appoint Supreme Court justices.
"It will be very hard to come back off the road that our nation chooses to go
down (Tuesday)," Pavone told about 300 abortion opponents at Tapestry and Tales
"This is not just a decision on the availability of a medical procedure, but
on what authority the government has to destroy human life," he said. "That's
the kind of election this is.... It is impossible to exaggerate how monumental
Pavone said the implications are far-reaching.
"Support for Roe v. Wade never stands alone in a vacuum. It always stands
with other perverse ideologies," he said. "Anyone who supports Roe v. Wade is
involved in a world view that supports the destruction of the United States of
America.... They're not just a little bit wrong, but totally destructive."
Roe v. Wade was the Supreme Court case that removed many restrictions to
Critics have questioned whether it's appropriate for a priest to take a
political stance, but Pavone makes no apologies.
"Of course I'm trying to influence the election. That's what it's about to be
an American," he said. "Woe to the church if we don't try to influence the
He challenged the audience to help sway undecided voters to the pro-life
"We need to stretch the minds of our friends, relatives, co-workers, anyone
anywhere that we possibly can," he said. The presidential race "is so extremely
close. We're talking about a couple of hundred people in a few key areas of the
Pavone is concentrating his efforts in Ohio, and will spend the weekend
speaking at events in Fairborn, Columbus and Cincinnati.
"I want to encourage political responsibility," Pavone said before taking the
microphone at Tapestry and Tales. "I want to reinvigorate everyone here as we
approach the election to try and reach as many people who might be on the fence.
I want to equip them to go back out and inform people."
Pavone has been a pro-life activist for more than 20 years and often appears
on radio and television. He is national director of Priests for Life.