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Priests for Life Newsletter

Volume 15, Number 2
March-April 2005

Table of Contents

Can you make a gift to enable us to send this newsletter to every priest in your diocese? Call Jerry at (718) 980-4400

Prayer Intentions

You are encouraged to remember the following intentions as you pray the Liturgy of the Hours:

March intention: That vacancies on our nation's courts may be filled with strong pro-life judges.

April intention: That youth leaders have the courage and creativity to speak about abortion.

Priests for Life Advisory Board of Bishops

His Eminence Alfonso Cardinal Lopez-Trujillo
President, Pontifical Council for the Family

His Eminence Renato Cardinal Martino
President, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace

Most Rev. John F. Donoghue
Archbishop of Atlanta

Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput OFM Cap.
Archbishop of Denver

Most Rev. Edwin F. O'Brien
Archbishop of Military Services

Most Rev. John J. Myers
Archbishop of Newark

Most Rev. John W. Yanta
Bishop of Amarillo

Most Rev. Thomas J. Olmsted
Bishop of Phoenix

Most Rev. Ronald M. Gilmore
Bishop of Dodge City

Most Rev. Sam G. Jacobs
Bishop of Houma-Thibodaux

Most Rev. Emilio S. Allue
Auxiliary Bishop of Boston

Most Rev. Rene H. Gracida
Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi

Most Rev. Paul V. Donovan
Bishop Emeritus of Kalamazoo

Most Rev. James D. Niedergeses
Bishop Emeritus of Nashville

Most Rev. James C. Timlin
Bishop Emeritus of Scranton

Most Rev. James S. Sullivan
Bishop Emeritus of Fargo

Most Rev. Francis A. Quinn
Bishop Emeritus of Sacramento

Most Rev. Albert H. Ottenweller
Bishop Emeritus of Steubenville

Most Reverend Juan Fremiot Torres
Bishop of Ponce

Most Reverend John Quinn Weitzel
Bishop of Samoa Pago Pago

Priests for Life Prayer Cards

Order the Priests for Life daily prayer of commitment to end abortion. Available in quantities of 25…excellent for pro-life events, parishes, schools.

Priests for Life Mass Cards

Friends and loved ones who have died will be remembered in the prayers and Masses of Priests for Life. Our new Mass cards are available free of charge.

You may send in your offering for each enrollment when you use it.

Order Form for Prayer Cards and Mass Cards

Please mail your order to: Priests for Life P.O. Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314

Or fax it to (718) 980-3900 or Email: orders@priestsforlife.org 

Name: ___________________________________

Address: _________________________________

City: ____________________________________

State/Zip: ________________________________

Phone: __________________________________

Email: __________________________________

r I have made my check payable to: Priests for Life.

r I have donated online at www.priestsforlife.org/donate

r Please charge my contribution to my credit card:

Card Type:_______________________________

Card #:__________________________________ Exp:____/_____

Signature:________________________________

rPrayer to End Abortion prayer cards: product #1670

Quantity ____25; ____50; ____75;____100; _____other (increments of 25)

@ $.10 Each for total $______

rMass Cards: product #1708

Quantity_______ (Free)

r Additional Donation $__________

Total Donation $___________

 

Coming to your Community…

At the invitation of the local diocese, or of individual parishes or pro-life groups on a national, state, or local level, Priests for Life is ready to come to your community to inspire and instruct those who work to defend life against abortion. Because we maintain regular contact with all pro-life groups, we are ready to bring updates on pro-life strategy and projects that are turning the tide on abortion throughout our land.

In addition to our 45 lay staff, Priests for Life is blessed to have a Speakers' Bureau of priests, deacons, and other lay experts.

Among the speakers are our four full-time priests on staff: Fr. Peter West, Fr. Denis G. Wilde, OSA, Fr. Walter Quinn, OSA, and Fr. Frank Pavone.

Our pastoral associates Jim Pinto and Dr. Paul Schenck, also serve the organization, bringing to our Speakers' Bureau a wealth of experience in pro-life activism and pastoral ministry prior to their joining the Catholic Church.

Paul was raised Jewish. He became a Christian and served for 22 years as a priest in the Anglican tradition. His pro-life activism brought him all the way to the Supreme Court in the case Schenck vs. Pro-Choice network, which was decided in his favor in 1997. In 2004, Paul was received into the Catholic Church by Fr. Frank Pavone.

Jim Pinto served as a priest in the Anglican Tradition for over 20 years and entered into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church in 2003. He is recognized nationally as an advocate for the poor, for racial reconciliation, and for the right to life.

The Speakers' Bureau also includes our Pastoral Associates Dr. Theresa Burke and her husband Kevin, Dr. Alveda King, the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and our Associate Director Janet Morana.

We also have other priests and deacons who are available for speaking on a part time basis.

We are ready to visit your community for a wide range of activities.

We offer seminars for the clergy, both Catholic and Protestant, on how to handle the abortion issue in preaching, counseling, and parish activities. We conduct training sessions for lay people who want to become active in the pro-life movement, or who have been active but are looking for new ideas and motivation.

We speak at pro-life conferences, address students in their schools and youth groups, give retreats, pray at abortion facilities, and conduct parish weekends which include preaching at all the Sunday Masses. We are also glad to offer individual consultation for the development of pro-life strategies and activities in compliance with the Bishops' Pastoral Plan for Pro-life Activities.

When we travel to an area, we want that to be the beginning of a fruitful relationship of pro-life encouragement and activity. We are one movement across the United States, and we want to work with you and your community on an ongoing basis. When we are in your area, we want to get to know as many people as possible, and help them to get to know us, our activities and initiatives.

And aside from travel expenses, we have no required stipend!

A partial listing of the travel schedules of our priests can be found on our web site by clicking here.

Our hallmarks are availability and flexibility. We want to do whatever you need us to do! To inquire about the availability of a Priests for Life priest, contact our Travel Office at PO Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314; Tel: 888-PFL-3448 ext. 258; 718-980-4400 ext. 258; Travel Dept. Fax: 603-908-3075; email: travels@priestsforlife.org

 

Terri Schiavo

[Note: By the time this newsletter goes to print, we do not know what Terri Schiavo's situation will be. Whatever it is, however, her life provides a critical test for society -- a test we cannot afford to fail.]

She is not dying. She is not in a coma. She is not alone, but rather has loving parents and siblings ready to care for her for the rest of her life. She has not requested death.

Yet a battle rages regarding whether Terri Schiavo should be starved. She has sustained brain injuries and cannot speak or eat normally. Nevertheless, the only tube attached to her is a small, simple, painless feeding tube that provides her nourishment directly to her digestive system.

Her legal guardian is her husband, who already has another woman -- by whom he also has children. He wants Terri's feeding tube removed. Of course, he could simply allow her to be cared for by her parents and siblings, and get on with his life, but he refuses.

On February 6, Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, visited Terri Schiavo for the second time, spoke with her and prayed with her. He found her "wide awake, alert, aware, and responsive." At various times in the visit she tried to vocalize responses, but otherwise communicated with her eyes and her smile, and by returning the kisses of her parents.

Terri is not dying. This is not a matter of "letting her go," because she isn't "going" anywhere. If, however, she is deprived of nourishment, then she would slowly die in the same way that any of us would slowly die if we were deprived of nourishment. It is called starvation.

If the courts permit that to happen, then why should that permission apply only in Terri's case? And where does the state get the authority to starve people?

For more information on this crucial case, visit our website, www.priestsforlife.org. If you want educational cards on Terri's situation, contact our orders department at orders@priestsforlife.org, or by calling 888-PFL-3448, ext. 237, or by writing Orders Department, Priests for Life, PO Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314.

Judges

The Constitution of the United States places the responsibility for writing laws in the hands of elected lawmakers. These men and women serve in the State legislatures and in the United States Congress. They are accountable to the voters who put them into office and who can remove them from office. They are to represent the voters as they craft and pass legislation that represents the will of the people.

Meanwhile, however, key aspects of public policy that contradict the will of the majority of Americans have, over the last several decades, been imposed upon us by another branch of government, the Judiciary. Unelected Federal judges, who are not accountable to voters and who serve for life, have given us policies that ban prayer and Bible-reading in public schools, that allow abortion-on-demand throughout pregnancy, and that remove more and more moral boundaries to perverse sexual behavior.

In the Elections of 2004, many voters made their choice for President and for their US Senators based on their view of the proper role of judges, namely, to apply the law rather than write their own opinions into law. Now, the President and the US Senate have a joint, solemn obligation to fill the many vacancies in the Federal judiciary. The President presents nominees; the Senate votes to confirm them by a simple majority.

In the past four years, we have seen an unprecendented and unconstitutional effort by pro-abortion Democrats in the Senate to block well-qualified nominees who enjoyed the support of the majority of the Senators. The blocking was done by filibuster -- that is, a technique of prolonging debate indefinitely, and hence preventing a final vote. The filibuster is a tool that can be used to block legislation, but here it is being used to block judicial nominees. Meanwhile, many courts remain vacant. The motive for these filibusters has been that many of these nominees are considered too religious and too pro-life.

Now the question is whether we will see the same behavior in this new Congress, especially with the prospect of Supreme Court vacancies on the horizon, and whether the Senate will act to prevent the filibusters. Contact your US Senators and demand that the Senate prevent the filibusters of judicial nominees. Tell your Senator you want to see an up-or-down vote on each of the President's nominees, without anti-religious bias. If a Senator opposes a nominee of the President, then let the Senator vote against that nominee. Let those who favor the nominee vote in favor. The point is, let there be a vote, and let the process work like the Constitution says it should.

Happy Anniversary, Evangelium Vitae!

This year marks the tenth anniversary of one of the most important documents Pope John Paul II has ever written. "The Gospel of Life" ("Evangelium Vitae") is an "encyclical letter" (meaning it is a letter of high authority sent around the world by the Pope), and presents the Church's answer to the question, "Why is life good, why is it sacred, why should it be protected in every circumstance?"

Priests for Life is preparing educational materials that you can use throughout the year to deepen your understanding of this historic document. For more information about these materials, or for copies of the encyclical itself, contact our Orders department orders@priestsforlife.org, or by calling 888-PFL-3448, ext. 237, or by writing Orders Department, Priests for Life, PO Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314.

Gearing up for Commencement!

Over a million children per grade level throughout the nation would have been with us had they not been killed by abortion. Over a million members of each graduating class this year have been legally destroyed. Priests for Life asks, therefore, that each school yearbook and graduation ceremony include a remembrance of those who would have been graduating had they not been aborted.

A sample entry in a school yearbook could say the following: "In prayerful remembrance of our fellow students who have been lost from abortion…We do not condemn those who felt they had to do this; rather, we weep with them now…and we pray for the day when the most frail and vulnerable lives will enjoy the same protections the rest of us do."

In the graduation ceremony, an empty chair or a lit candle, or a cap and diploma resting by themselves can stand as a reminder of these students, and the words above can be spoken to explain the significance of these symbols.

Please, do something. How can we explain it if we forget or ignore these children?

Alveda King joins Priests for Life Staff

Dr. Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King, Jr., has become a Pastoral Associate of Priests for Life. A pro-life advocate as well as a civil rights advocate, Dr. King will head up the Priests for Life Office of African American Outreach. She will be available for speaking engagements in parishes, schools, and pro-life events as a member of the Priests for Life Speakers’ Bureau.

She also participates in the Silent No More Awareness Campaign (a project of Priests for Life and NOEL), through which she speaks about her own two abortions and how the Lord Jesus Christ has brought her forgiveness and healing. Alveda has stood with the Silent No More Awareness Campaign in Washington, DC and elsewhere at gatherings in which the women hold signs that say "I Regret My Abortion."

On her website, www.KingForAmerica.com, Alveda declares that like her uncle, she too has a dream about equality. But she asks, "How can the dream survive if we murder the children?"


Priests for Life Clergy Seminar

Washington, DC

April 12-13, 2005

If you are a priest, deacon, or lay pastoral leader, we want you to know about the "Washington DC Briefing" that we are privileged to co-sponsor on Tuesday April 12 and Wednesday April 13 in our nation's capitol.

The National Pro-life Religious Council and Priests for Life are teaming up with Wallbuilders (www.WallBuilders.com) to co-sponsor this inspiring briefing. Under the expert guidance of David Barton, President of Wallbuilders, you will get a "Spiritual Tour of the Capitol" on Tuesday evening. You will learn things you never knew about the Christian convictions of our Founders, see some of the their original letters, and learn how much the very foundations of our nation are rooted in the Gospel.

Then, on Wednesday, you will hear from members of the House of Representatives, the Senate, and the White House. They will talk about the issues of the day, but more importantly, they will talk about how they live out their Biblical convictions as they handle the issues of the day.

When you read the newspaper or watch television, you only see a small fraction of the men and women who serve in Washington. You will leave this briefing greatly inspired to know how many men and women of faith are there, living and spreading the Gospel of Christ.

These briefings are held by invitation, and space is limited. If you are interested in receiving an invitation, call our office today at 1-888-735-3448 and ask for John at extension 224. Alternately, you can email john@priestsforlife.org or fax 413-803-0073. You can also go to www.WallBuilders.com and click on "Pastors' Briefings" under "Upcoming Events." Find the April 12-13 event and request an invitation. Please join us!

 

 

Priests for Life
PO Box 141172 • Staten Island, NY 10314
Tel. 888-735-3448, (718) 980-4400 • Fax 718-980-6515
mail@priestsforlife.org