Priests for Life Directors Receive Prominent Awards
Frank Pavone and Janet Morana recently received special
awards for their pro-life leadership.
Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, was
honored with the A.D. King Advancing the Culture of Life
Award in January during the Martin Luther King, Jr.
Celebration Week in Atlanta. The presentation took place
during a January 14th program honoring Rev. A.D. Williams
King entitled, “Brother to the Dreamer, the Half that’s
Never Been Told.” “This is a great, great honor to be given
an award named for one of the pioneers for equal rights in
our nation, Rev. A.D. King,” said Fr. Pavone. “The struggle
to which Rev. King devoted his life, equal rights under the
law, continues today, as we strive to return protection to
the most vulnerable among us, the children in the womb.”
Alveda King, daughter of AD King, and a full-time Pastoral
Associate of Priests for Life, commented, ‘The civil rights
movement of today is the pro-life movement. It is therefore
so fitting that in honoring my father, Rev. A.D. King, we
established a Culture of Life Award, and are presenting it
to Fr. Frank. The dream of my father and my uncle must be
applied in every generation to the most marginalized members
of our society. Today, those members are the children in the
womb, and in their name we declare again, We Shall
The night of Fr. Pavone’s award also featured the
premiere of a new documentary on the life of Rev. A.D. King,
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s younger brother and fellow
civil rights leader, entitled “A.D. King, the Half that’s
Never Been Told.” The keynote address that evening was given
by longtime civil rights champion Rev. Dr. Otis Moss.
Janet Morana, Executive Director of Priests for Life, was
honored by Legatus, the international organization of
Catholic business executives, founded by Tom Monaghan. Each
year, Legatus bestows its “Cardinal John O’Connor Pro-life
Hall of Fame” award on influential pro-life leaders. The
award was presented at Legatus’ International Summit held in
Bermuda from February 5-7. Mary O’Connor Ward, the sister of
Cardinal O’Connor, traveled to the Summit for the occasion.
Janet commented, “The connection that Priests for Life had
with Cardinal O’Connor over the years, and the friendship we
continue to have with his sister, makes this award all the
more appropriate and touching. Priests for Life could not
have grown without the Cardinal’s strong support, and the
permission he initially gave to Fr. Frank Pavone, whom he
also ordained, to lead this ministry. As pro-life leaders,
we will do all we can to advance the Cardinal’s teaching and
Abortion Hurts Women:
An Interview with Executive Director, Janet
Janet Morana has served the Priests for Life
organization since 1993, and is a prominent pro-life
leader through her coordination of the Silent No
More Awareness Campaign worldwide, her work with
Rachel’s Vineyard, her travels and talks around the
nation, and her production of national and
international pro-life radio and television
When did you first start enunciating the
theme that abortion hurts women and that women
deserve better than abortion?
Janet: In 1989, when Fr. Frank Pavone and I
first began leading pro-life activities in St.
Charles Church in Staten Island, NY, we organized
the parish life chain and began talking about the
need for a sign to complement “Abortion Kills
Children.” We eventually contacted Royce Dunn, the
national leader of Life Chain, with the idea for a
sign that said “Abortion Hurts Women”, and they
agreed to produce that sign. It has been one of the
official “Life Chain” signs ever since.
We promoted the “Abortion hurts women” theme
in all our educational and pastoral work. We even
made an envelope stamp that conveyed that message
and encouraged activists to use it.
When you began working with Priests for
Life, what part did post-abortion healing play in
the vision of the ministry?
Janet: When Fr. Frank became National Director
in September of 1993, one of the first things we had
to do was to design letterhead. The phrase we
adopted was “Pro-Woman, Pro-Family, Pro-Life.” We
wanted our ministry to have a woman-centered
message, because we knew that women were being
pressured to abortion and not given the resources
they deserved to give life to their children.
In the clergy seminars we developed, the need for
priests to speak about healing in their pro-life
homilies was emphasized right from the start. The
emphasis on reconciliation and healing was always
central, pointing out that such healing was
available no matter how many abortions a person may
have had. In writing outlines of pro-life homilies,
one of the earliest examples we used was the woman
we came to know of who had 24 abortions, and that
even she would be welcomed back to the Church, upon
repenting of those sins.
Graphic Images Have
www.Unborn.info, Priests for Life posts images of aborted
children, as well as some of the numerous testimonies we receive
about how those images change minds and hearts and save lives.
Here’s one of the messages we received recently:
“Our son has on his cell phone, pictures of aborted babies.
Around a week or two ago he shared with us something that
happened at his place of employment. He was around some girls
more or less his age….They were talking about the woman’s right
to choose. Finally his cell phone was popped open with the
pictures of the aborted babies, thanks to God, and he was used
to share what pro-choice and abortion really is. One of the
girls there was shocked.... Another day, the shocked girl, told
my son that she was pregnant, and is keeping her baby."
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The Cross and the People of Life - 2 CD set
Every Good Friday, Fr. Frank Pavone preaches
the Seven Last Words, weaving the themes of the Passion
and the pro-life cause. He gives a Biblically based,
stirring call to draw strength from the cross to advance
the Gospel of Life. This CD set also includes his homily
at the Liturgy of the Passion.
Terri’s Final Hours
March 31 is “Terri’s Day,” marking the anniversary of
Terri Schiavo’s tragic death. Hear Fr. Frank Pavone’s
stirring “Reflections on Terri Schiavo” on this
forty-minute CD and read his eyewitness account of
Terri’s final hours in a brochure that tells the truth
you have not heard in news reports.
How did the post-abortion aspect of the work
grow as the years went on?
Janet: In 2002, I began discussions with
Georgette Forney to develop a campaign to get the
message of the post-abortion women out to the
general public. Through my constant Priests for Life
travels, I met many women who had had abortions, had
come to healing, and wanted their voices to be
heard. Georgette and I founded the Silent No More
Awareness Campaign and held the first gathering in
January of 2003. It is now the largest mobilization
in history of women and men who have lost children
In that same year, Rachel’s Vineyard, the world’s
largest ministry for healing after abortion, founded
by Theresa and Kevin Burke, became a ministry of
Priests for Life.
How does your personal experience and
training shape your work?
Janet: I have lost children by means of
abortifacients which I thought were merely
preventing pregnancy. I share my testimony about
that loss in the book “The Contraception of Grief.”
That experience helps me in my counseling of others
and speaking on the issue. I have also received
intensive training from Dr. Philip Ney, the world’s
premier researcher on the impact of abortion on
women and men, and the developer of the “Hope Alive”
training program for post-abortion healing.
What are your plans for the years ahead in
the arena of promoting this pro-woman message?
Janet: We intend to increase the number of women
who come to our healing resources after having been
hurt by abortion. The campaign website (www.SilentNoMoreAwareness.org )
is a key vehicle for this purpose. We expect to see
many register with the campaign so as to add their
voice to so many others who publicly declare that
they regret their abortion. Priests for Life is also
at the forefront of providing pastoral training for
pregnancy center directors and staff and promoting
alternatives to abortion. We want to show society
that it must come alongside women in an unplanned
pregnancy so that they can have the resources they
need to receive their pregnancy as an “unexpected
blessing” rather than a burden that has to be
encouraged to remember the following intentions as you pray
the Liturgy of the Hours:
March intention: That
God may strengthen those who suffer ridicule and rejection for their pro-life
April intention: That God may bless and
console the fathers of aborted children.