The Rev. Frank Pavone is the head of Priests for Life
ADVANCE STAFF REPORT
In a five-day trip to Rome, the Rev. Frank Pavone met with Pope John Paul II
and Vatican officials to discuss ways to further the growth of Priests for Life,
the national organization which Father Pavone heads. Father Pavone, traveling
with Anthony DeStefano, chief of staff, concelebrated mass with the pontiff and
had a private audience.
Father Pavone joined Priests for Life three years ago, while he was a
parochial vicar at St. Charles R.C. Church, Oakwood, and became national
director. Several months later he moved to Holy Rosary R.C.. Church in Port
Chester, where he acquired office space and equipment to supplement the main
office still in Bay Terrace.
Father Pavone presented the pope with two small gifts, including a special
photograph recently produced by Priests for Life, featuring a Catholic priest
surrounded by a large group of babies representing infants saved by the church
in this country from abortion, said DeStefano, and the pope was visibly moved by
the photo, which he blessed.
DeStefano, a Dongan Hills resident, said "the pope appeared in excellent
health and looked every inch the powerful world leader that he is, and he walked
with only a slight limp."
Father Pavone was among several priests present, and the cardinal secretary,
Monsignor Stanislaw Dziwisz, invited him to do the Gospel reading in English for
the small group of a dozen visitors, mainly priests and nuns, DeStefano said.
During the trip, Father Pavone spoke with officials in various departments.
"The response I received from these Vatican departments was overwhelming," he
said, terming it "amazing how closely they are following the work of Priests for
Life and how pleased they are with our success.
After meeting with Cardinal Lopez Trujillo, president of the Pontifical
Council for the Family, Father Pavone said, "We had preliminary discussions
regarding ways to internationalize Priests for Life. "The Pontifical Council for
the Family, which directs policy on the life issues for the entire Roman
Catholic Church, wishes to see Priests for Life expanded to every country in the
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