Letter to participants at the Tallahassee Rally
for Terri Shiavo
Sunday, March 13, 2005
Dear Friends of Terri Schiavo:
It is time to rally.
Amid the darkness of our culture, that threatens to engulf all
who are weak and vulnerable, we the People of God must rally and must cry out
for justice! Your presence here today indicates that you have heard this cry in
your own hearts, and that you are ready to respond in the days ahead.
On two occasions, most recently last month, I have had the
opportunity to be with Terri, to pray with her, and to bless her. I saw her
smile, I heard her try to speak, I saw her return her parent’s kiss. And I
watched her focus on my words as I told her that she has many friends around
this nation, many people who love her and stand with her.
My friends, I was talking to her about you, and this week we
must turn our love for Terri into concrete and heroic action. No judge, no
court, no magistrate, no power on earth can authorize the starvation of a fellow
human being. It does not matter how many decrees Judge Greer or any other judge
wants to issue. When they permit the taking of innocent life, those decrees lack
all authority, and must not be obeyed. Just as the apostles, when told not to
preach the name of Jesus, disobeyed men in order to obey God, so those who are
told to do the slightest thing to assist in the taking of Terri’s life must
disobey, and they must disobey swiftly, completely, and courageously.
All of us must obey God, and defend the lives of the
defenseless. As we defend Terri, we are defending countless others who are, or
will be, in her circumstances in the months and years ahead. Indeed, we are
This is a unique moment in our history, and we are called to
lead the way. May our courage not fail, and may our hope not disappoint.
God bless Terri Schiavo, God bless her family, and God bless
each one of you!
Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life
President, National Pro-life Religious Council