At the DNC: The Untold Story, Pro-Life Protests
You won’t see a lot of their activities on television and those you see will not be placed in a favorable light. This is the world of pro-life activism in Denver during the Democratic National Convention.
At the Pepsi Center, Randall Terry, founder of Operation Rescue, and a group of 30 others staged a sit-in near one of the entrances. “A vote for Obama and Biden is a vote to sustain legalized child killing,” Terry was shouting. “The police are enforcing the laws of obstructing traffic yet they won't enforce the laws against the killing of children.”
Police arrested 13 of the demonstrators on charges of obstruction. In the protest, Terry had led the group to a security entrance outside the Pepsi Centre, where they sat down when police denied them entrance. After asking them three times to move, police arrested them.
Also on Tuesday, activists unfurled a giant sign on a mesa west of Denver that could be seen as much as ten miles away. The three-line message read, “Destroys uNborn Children” with the DNC lined up vertically. The sign was made of approximately 2,000 queen size sheets.
Placed there by Denver-based American Right to Life Action, 50 members made the trek up the mountain, but the activity was physically exhausting for some. Police who had been dispatched to the scene aided the group with food and water.
The sign was visible for three hours before taken down by the group at the request of authorities. American Right to Life Action president Steve Curtis told the Associated Press that the volunteers in twelve states made the sign in pieces that were then sewn together over a four-week period at the gymnasium in a suburban Denver community.
A fleet of “Truth Trucks,” sponsored by Operation Rescue, has also been driving the streets of Denver. One reporter on the scene noted that these trucks were seen by Michelle Obama as she was traveling to the Pepsi Center for the second day of activities.
Many other activities also took place at various locations around the city of Denver. If you are following the convention on television you won’t see much coverage, but the pro-life presence can’t be missed by those attending in person.
Tuesday was also a day of clarification as the Catholic Bishops took serious issue with remarks made by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on Sunday’s “Meet the Press” on NBC. In addition to stating that she misrepresented the official position of the Catholic Church, several bishops have made strong statements concerning the false statements she made concerning both the history and doctrines of the Church.
During the on-the-air discussion, anchor Tom Brokaw reminded the Speaker that Catholic Church doctrine stated that human life began at conception. To this the speaker replied the church had only come at that conclusion within the past fifty years.
Calling herself as "an ardent, practicing Catholic," she remarked that, around 400 A.D., St. Augustine had said that the fetus receives a soul at three month. "We don't know. The point is, is that it shouldn't have an impact on the woman's right to choose."
The official statement of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops was signed by Cardinal Justin F. Rigali, chairman of the bishops' Committee on Pro-Life Activities, and Bishop William E. Lori, chairman of the bishops Committee on Doctrine. The USCCB stated that Augustine's guesswork was irrelevant because “the Church’s moral teaching never justified or permitted abortion at any stage of development.” “Direct abortion,” they said, quoting the church's catechism, “is gravely contrary to the moral law.”
Concerning the position of Augustine , the statement said, “uninformed and inadequate theories about embryology” during that period of time had led “some theologians to speculate that specifically human life capable of receiving an immortal soul may not exist until a few weeks into pregnancy. While in canon law these theories led to a distinction in penalties between very early and later abortions, the Church's moral teaching never justified or permitted abortion at any stage of development.”
Pelosi has not backed down on her statements. On Tuesday, Brendan Daly, a spokesman for Pelosi, read a statement from the Speaker, which said that she “fully appreciates the sanctity of family.” She has based her position on conception from the views of Saint Augustine, who said: “... the law does not provide that the act (abortion) pertains to homicide, for there cannot yet be said to be a live soul in a body that lacks sensation...”
The Pro-life presence in Denver, as Rodney Dangerfield used to say, got no respect. One blogger, Larry Anderson of the American Thinker, put is this way. “The most visible and vocal protestors demonstrating at the Democratic National Convention are the advocates for the unborn. Virtually ignored by the media, they are everywhere and in the faces of delegates. Undaunted by the heat, the ridicule, and the tight restrictions placed on them by the city (and ignored by the main stream media) these soldiers for life battle on.”
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
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