March-April 2012 Newsletter
Below you will find the Priests for Life March-April 2012 Newsletter but
first let me give you some other important updates.
We are in the midst of a Novena for the reversal of the Obama HHS mandate. A
new prayer will be provided every day through February 24. It’s not too late
to join us in prayer and spread the word. Find the novena prayers at
Priests for Life has created a webpage with a myriad of resources regarding
the HHS mandate where you can learn more and be kept up to date about the
lawsuit that Priests for Life has filed in response. Most importantly, I
encourage you to listen to the replay of our webcast with Congressman Smith
and other pro-life leaders at
http://InstantTeleseminar.com/?eventid=26593149 and it will help you to
come to a clearer understanding of the current situation and learn specific
actions you can take. Also, I have written “talking points” at
www.priestsforlife.org/hhsmandate/index.aspx to help you become well versed
on this issue and spread the word to others.
And stay tuned for a special announcement this week about our lawsuit and
about ways you can be involved in challenging the Obama administration!
Lent begins in a few days and so does our Lenten Prayer Campaign for Life.
Please make a special commitment to pray with us for Life this Lent, and
join our “Pray to End Abortion” cause at www.ProLifePrayers.com.
As you may know, Priests for Life was involved from the beginning in
strategizing for the growth of 40 Days for Life. If you are involved in
organizing or participating in any of the vigils this Lent, please see my
special video of encouragement at http://youtu.be/keT84SeTRBM.
Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life
Praise for our Work
Thank you for your consistent and relentless work on behalf of human life.
And thank you for your communications. I totally support Priests For Life!!
March - April 2012 Newsletter
Priests for Life has not slowed down for a moment in addressing the leading
concerns and efforts in the pro-life movement. Among our current activities
are the following:
States of Refuge
Working with a coalition of other groups, Priests for Life is committed to
bringing about the nation’s first abortion-free states. There are five
states – Wyoming, Arkansas, Mississippi, North Dakota and South Dakota –
which, as of this writing, only have one abortion facility left. To close
that remaining facility in each of these states would be a profound boost to
our movement. Moreover, public policy needs to make it as difficult as
possible for abortionists to do business in these states, or to open up
another facility in the future. See how you can help in this process by
going to www.priestsforlife.org/statesofrefuge.
Freedom of Conscience
As of this writing, activity was fast and furious in response to the Obama
Administration’s edict, thru HHS, refusing to accommodate the freedom of
conscience all Americans should have to object to funding contraceptives,
abortifacients, and sterilization in health insurance plans. Priests for
Life has launched a federal lawsuit against the Obama administration, and we
are supporting other actions. See www.priestsforlife.org/HHSMandate for
But another question arises just as urgently in the midst of this. Personnel
is policy. Elections have consequences, and the denial of freedom of
conscience is one of them. So doesn’t it make sense that part of the
response to this unconscionable action should be to examine what more the
Church can and should be doing regarding elections? It is not enough to
educate our people to oppose the harmful practices of those in power; we
have to educate them as to how to recognize such individuals before they
take power, and how to evaluate their positions when they are still
Both the civil law and the parameters of the Church’s mission make it
appropriate for our parishes and schools to inform people about the
positions of candidates for public office, so that their voting decisions
are well-informed. At www.PoliticalResponsibility.com, we will continue to
mobilize the people of God – clergy and laity alike – and give them the
tools to carry out this important responsibility.
Terri’s Day – March 31
The “International Day of Prayer and Remembrance for Terri Schiavo, and All
of Our Vulnerable Brothers and Sisters” (“Terri’s Day”) is observed each
year on March 31, the anniversary of her death. We invite individuals to
spend time on that day learning about Terri, and praying for all whose lives
are threatened in the same way that hers was. We invite Churches to hold
memorial services and to educate their people on the dignity of every human
life, despite disability or disease. We invite educational institutions to
help dispel the myths and inaccuracies about Terri’s life and death, and to
contribute to a mature reflection on the ethical demands of caring for the
weak and vulnerable. We invite all people to use the resources on our
website and to help us continue to draw good out of the sad and tragic way
in which Terri was treated. At www.TerrisDay.org, you will find prayers,
outlines for memorial services, homily hints, and other suggested activities
for this important observance.
Invite a Priests for Life speaker to your area! We travel around the country
and the world to convey the pro-life message. We offer parish weekends,
missions, retreats, training seminars, presentations at pro-life conferences
and banquets, prayer vigils at abortion facilities, strategic planning
assistance, and individual consultation. Find out more information about our
entire team and request a speaker at www.priestsforlife.org/speakers.
From horror to hope: An abortion survivor's story
Melissa Ohden’s story is not easy to hear.
“My mother meant to scald me to death in her womb,” says the survivor of a
saline abortion performed in 1977 in Sioux City, Iowa. "I was left for dead,
until a nurse discovered I was gasping for breath,” she explains. She was 2
pounds, 14 ounces.
Despite a poor prognosis, Melissa, who recently visited Priests for Life’s
headquarters, was adopted by a family who already had an adopted daughter.
"Until I was 14, I grew up thinking I was living a normal life,” she
recalls. She knew she was adopted but didn’t know the circumstances until
her sister, then 18, got pregnant and considered abortion. Her parents told
her sister the devastating truth, and her sister alerted Melissa.
Confusion and shock were compounded by survivor’s guilt when she thought of
the thousands of babies lost every day to abortion.
“I forgave them a long time ago,” she said of her birth parents and
grandparents, but her story made her realize that abortion is a tragedy for
generations of families.
A social worker and counselor, she began speaking publicly about the
abortion in 2007. A year later, her story came full circle when, with her
husband Ryan at her side, she gave birth to their daughter, Olivia, “in the
same hospital where I was supposed to die.”
To read more about Mrs. Ohden’s incredible journey, visit
Janet Morana now has a blog! Read and comment on her entries. See
www.thecatholicviewforwomen.com/blog Also, Janet taped in early March, along
with Teresa Tomeo and Astrid Bennett-Gutierrez, the first full series (13
episodes) of The Catholic View for Women, for EWTN. Stay tuned to her blog
You are encouraged to remember the following intentions in all your prayers:
March intention: That God may strengthen those who suffer ridicule and
rejection for their pro-life convictions.
April intention: That God may bless and console the fathers of aborted
Please join us in praying and promoting the following prayer initiatives
found at www.prayercampaign.org.
February 22 - April 5, 2012: Lenten Prayer for Life
March 22 - March 31, 2012: Novena in remembrance of Terri Schiavo
April 8 – May 16, 2012: Easter Prayer for Life
Order at www.priestsforlife.org/store
The Donkey That No One Could Ride
A brand new Easter classic by Anthony DeStefano, author of the bestselling
children’s book, Little Star. With breath-taking illustrations by Richard
Cowdrey, the New York Times best selling artist of the Marley and Me series,
The Donkey that No One Could Ride tells the tale of a weak and useless
donkey whose life is transformed after meeting Jesus and learning that all
things are possible if only he believes. (#3164, $15.99)
I Just Can’t Take It Anymore!
Can a small, slim book change your life? This one can! Pairing hilarious
photos of children with beautifully simple words, I Just Can’t Take it
Anymore will cheer up even the most discouraged people. In a lighthearted
yet profound way, Anthony DeStefano, author of the bestseller, A Travel
Guide to Heaven, coveys the essence of the Christian teaching on suffering,
all the while making readers laugh out loud and sigh “Aww.” (#3165, $10.99)
Sharing the Heart of Christ (1/2 price special)
By Kevin Burke, LSW * Theresa Burke, Ph.D. * Fr. Frank Pavone
Presenting abortion as a relational wound, this book explores the effects on
marriage and family life, and includes special chapters that address unique
issues for clergy in their ministry. (#2116, $5.00)
Church and Politics: Are We As Restricted As We Think?
Priests for Life and the Ave Maria School of Law co-sponsored this symposium
for clergy and attorneys. These symposium papers will give pastors a broader
understanding of the law in this area, and assist them to fulfill their
mission with greater confidence. (#1583, $3.00)
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