March for Life

The Boston Herald and Boston Pilot are reporting how nearly 500 youth and young adults from the Archdiocese of Boston will join Cardinal Seán O’Malley for the annual March for Life this year in Washington, D.C.

According to the Pilot:

Ten buses will leave the Pastoral Center to transport the young people to the pro-life pilgrimage on Jan. 22. Participating youth and young adults will experience daily Mass, daily rosary and chaplet of Divine Mercy. During the trip there will also be an opportunity to visit the National Basilica Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the Holocaust Museum, the Lincoln Memorial, the War Memorials and Arlington National Cemetery.

“We are overjoyed this year at the tremendous response, and as a result of that the tremendous advocacy amongst our parishes and schools to bring young people,” said Father Matt Williams, director of the Office for the New Evangelization of Youth and Young Adults.

“The leaders, and the pastors, and the campus ministers have done a phenomenal job in advocating for this march, and helping young people come to be involved in issues like this,” he added

…the annual March for Life draws over 400,000 people, mostly youth and young adults.

Four years ago, the Office for the New Evangelization began partnering with the archdiocese’s Vocation Office and Pro-Life Office to organize the pro-life pilgrimage.

Of course, if history repeats itself, one person who will not be heading to the March for Life is Fr. Bryan Hehir, Secretary for Social Services and Healthcare, who just so happens to have the Pro-Life Office under his scope of responsibility. Fr. Hehir, as we saw in this post, does not like to talk about the evil of abortion or have Cardinal O’Malley talk about it because it “offends” people and stirs the pot about a problem that “will never be solved in our lifetime.”  So, Fr. Hehir lets Cardinal O’Malley “march” in Washington, DC, but that is about it in terms of public words and action opposing abortion.

For Fr. Hehir, we invite him to take the time saved by not attending the March for Life, and instead sit with his former Catholic Charities buddy, Catholic Schools fundraiser and Finance Council member, Jack Connors (who is also Chairman of Partners Healthcare, one of the largest abortion providers in Massachusetts, and who raised $2M for pro-abortion President Obama last year), to watch this powerful 33-minute video, 180 Movie. We also invite anyone to watch the video and share with people you know who may be supporters of abortion.

The documentary, produced by Christian pastor Ray Comfort, has gone viral to reach 2 million viewers in the four months since its launch in late September 2011.  It shows how asking questions about Nazi, Germany and the Holocaust can spark a powerful change of heart in people’s minds on the issue of abortion.  You can read more about the movie here. Warning, some of the video footage is graphic.

Amidst the good news about nearly 500 young people going to the March for Life, we have the bad news that the Obama administration just announced an unconscionable birth control mandate on Catholic hospitals and colleges.  More on that topic next time.

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20 Responses to March for Life

  1. jbq2 says:

    Can’t someone appeal to a “Hehir” authority?

  2. Michael says:

    Does anyone else see this as hehirpercritical on O’Malley’s part?

    O’Malley assigns Hehir to run the pro-life office and Hehir won’t let 40 Days for Life in the Archdiocese.

    O’Malley rubs elbows with Jack Connors who makes money off of the killing of innocent babies and supports politicians who guarantee that abortion “will not end in our lifetime.”

    O’Malley and other US Bishops discourage “personhood amendments” which would end abortion, if the US Bishops would get behind the efforts.

    O’Malley uses a charade — a walk in DC with Fr. “rock band manager” Matt and his army of “walkers” — to lie to young people that walking is somehow a moral behavior capable of protecting innocent life. Why don’t they do something that actually saves lives instead of lying to kids and wasting money.

  3. [...] March for Life – Boston Catholic Insider [...]

  4. David S. says:

    How many years has Cardinal O’Malley participated in the March for Life and NOTHING has changed. Pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians in Massachusetts still vote to murder babies in the womb. And when these same politicians show up at a Catholic Church they are permitted to receive the Blessed Sacrament.

    Cardinal O’Malley should forget the Walk for Life. If he really wants to do something to protect the unborn he should stay home and excommunicate all the pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians in Massachusetts. Or at the very least, enforce Canon 915.

    • BobofNewtn says:

      I agree with you, David but don’t hold your breath. Cardinal O’Malley knows that, at best, he speaks only for the 15-16% of Catholics who go to Church. The remaining 85% could care less about what he says, else they would go to Church on a regular basis! I think he knows that all he would get if he excommunicated any politician for respecting a woman’s right to choose would be universal condemnation from the citizens of this Commonwealth and he is not ready to risk that. Bottom line, he plays along by doing symbolic marches but knows full well that a woman’s right to choose will be protected by legislatures, the Courts and the electorate. He is aware that abortions are carried out routinely in every non-Catholic hospital in Massachusetts and that most have some Catholic Board of Directors members. He is pragmatic and does not want to start a fight he cannot win. We have to understand and appreciate why he does what he does. And BTW, was the prior Cardinal any different? And how about the one before him?

      • Mary Reilly says:

        BobofNewtn, I notice you used the expression “a woman’s right to choose” twice in your comment. Are you pro-life, or pro-abortion (aka “pro-choice” in your vernacular)?

        It sounds like you’re a supporter of relativism, in which case you would say that all points of view on abortion are OK, and there’s no absolute truth or reality that abortion is evil.

        So what if Cardinal O’Malley faces universal condemnation from secular society for fighting the good fight?! The Catholic Church already faces criticism from politicians and the rest of society for advancing moral views different from the rest of society. To not fight is to assuredly lose.

        Who cares what any prior Cardinal did or didn’t do? If they had told the Kennedys and other pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians they could not receive Communion for the past 20-30 years, maybe we wouldn’t have had 50M+ abortions since Roe vs Wade!!

        I agree with David and Michael that Cardinal O’Malley should quit wasting time with symbolism and do sometihng real about the problem!

      • Bob,

        BCI is also confused by your comment and has a suggestion for you.

        In one sentence you said you agreed with David that Cardinal O’Malley should skip the Walk for Life and instead stay home and excommunicate the pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians in Massachusetts. Yet you then used the expression “respecting a woman’s right to choose” as observed by reader, Mary Reilly, which is an odd way to describe opposition to abortion.

        Which is really your viewpoint?

        If you have not watched the 180 Movie, now would be a good time to check it out. If you indeed “respect a woman’s right to choose” as suggested by your comments, then you would be in the same company with a number of the people interviewed at the beginning of the 33-minute movie. After a few minutes of dialogue in the movie, you will see an interesting series of changes as the people are presented with logical arguments.

        Please let us know AFTER you have watched the movie. BCI would be very pleased to hear what you think of the movie and the arguments presented.

      • Michael says:

        Tell your explanation of O’Malley’s pragmatism (i.e., abdication of his responsibility as leader of the Church in Boston) to the baby who is next in line to be murdered. I’m sure he or she will understand that O’Malley is simply being pragmatic. And this is especially justifiable when you can back it up with the precedent of O’Malley’s predecessors.

  5. Lazarus' Table says:

    I continue to be inspired and edified by the growing number of our young people (high school+) who are very openly and vocally pro-life. Today, a busload of them goes to Washington to rally, to march and especially, to pray. Today is ONE of their ways of giving public witness to their reverence for life. Please pray they remain resolute in their conviction that all life –including their own– is a precious, sacred gift from God.

  6. Anni says:

    The RCAB is fiddling while “Rome” burns…

    Two “facts”:

    1. Two days ago the Obama Administration and the “self-identified” Catholic Secretary Sebelius issued their edict that will require Catholic hospitals, schools, social service agencies, etc. to provide insurance coverage that includes FREE contraceptive drugs and devices, FREE sterilization, and FREE drugs that under many conditions will induce abortion. The “self-identified” Secretary Sebelius’ concession to people of faith is that they get an extra year to contemplate whether they violate their consciences or cease providing health insurance to their employees.
    The so-called “exemption” is a farce. The only employers who will be exempt are those that provide services ONLY to members of their own faith. So Churches themselves may be exempt, but not any of the schools or social service agencies and hospitals that have, as their mission in Christ, outreach to people in need regardless of their faith or creed. Has Secretary Sebelius ever heard of Mother Teresa or St. Vincent de Paul or any of the other holy men and women who ministered to ALL people in need regardless of their religion?

    2. In November, the voters of Massachusetts will be faced with a ballot question that asks us to authorize our physicians to give us drugs that will kill us. The proponents of this question are painting it as “compassion” and control over our lives.

    Has anyone seen any information on these events in their parish bulletins? Or heard a priest mention these issues from the pulpit? Maybe it’s too early for “fact 1″, but, from my vantage point, they are all sleeping on “fact 2″.

    When I was young, about 30-40 years ago, I went to the March for Life on several occasions. It was uplifting to see the ocean of people all affirming the most basic right of all. I graduated from college the year before Roe v. Wade, but I saw what was coming when NY legalized abortion in 1970, when I was a college student. During one of my forays to the March I snuck into “Representative” Drinan’s office and inscribed “Jeremiah 1:5″ in his guest book. I figured I’d at least get him to look it up and maybe reflect on the deeper meaning. Those were heady times and we had a lot of hope. I protested the war in Vietnam and I protested the war on the unborn… I was sure that we would win.

    And here we are, with our priests and pastors not even giving lip service to the assault on human life. At Mass this morning there wasn’t even mention of protecting human life in the Prayers of the Faithful. Never mind praying for an end to abortion – I would have been satisfied with a prayer to protect life! Not at my parish. Yes, we will have a Holy Hour for Life this afternoon, presided at by our Deacon. Our pastor will not be there. Guaranteed. He doesn’t allow mention of Pro-Life Sunday in October, so we shouldn’t expect any mention of today’s dismal anniversary. He made no mention of the Prayers for Life tomorrow. The Holy Hour for life WAS announced in today’s bulletin, but it was not in the bulletin last week. Those of us who didn’t see it in the Pilot found out about today’s Holy Hour at Masses THIS weekend. No time to plan… Of course there is some sort of football game this afternoon, but I will be at Holy Hour. “This kind you can only drive out with prayer.”

    • RR says:

      St. Catherine in Norwood had a very clear message on issue number 2 quite a while ago, during the signature-gathering effort for this ballot initiative. The pastor’s message was quite strong against this issue.

      • Paul says:

        Which is amazing since the pastor also refuses to use the word “abortion” in the bulletin and goes so far as to change the mission of Project Rachel from a ministry for post-abortive women to one for women who have suffered “any pregnancy loss”. So a woman visiting St. Catherine’s who may need such help would never know Project Rachel is anything more than a support group for women who have had miscarriages.

        That said the Monsignor did do a good job in the bulletin on issue number two. But if one is cynical it could leave the impression that it is his attempt to show some pro-life credentials given his refusal to call an evil what it is, and to distort the mission of an official pro-life ministry of the Church.

        Saint Catherine of Siena needs all of your prayers – particularly the children of the parish and school. Make no mistake, they have a dissident pastor who has no regard for the expressed concerns of his parishoners – particularly the parents. His slippery “pro-life” views are just the tip of the iceberg. He dissents from the Church’s teaching on homosexuality (forcing the parents to use his provocative mission statement to have a “teachable moment” with their kids when they ask what “sexual orientation” means) and the ordination of women.

        He has also taken some actions in the parish that can easily be interpreted as very vindictive towards the families who dared express their concerns to him. For example an entire section of pews was removed and replaced with the piano for “better” accoustics. It just so happens that many of those same families happened to sit in those very pews (close access to the bathroom and lots of kids).

        It is ironic that he will not mention abortion in the bulletin. But he will introduce something as controversial as human sexuality (sexual orientation) into the mission statement in the bulletin. This is a parish that has an elementary and middle school. Hundreds of children are now being introduced to the very idea of sexuality by their pastor via the weekly church bulletin. I thought protecting children was a priority for the Church, particularly the Archdiocese. But at Saint Catherine’s the destruction of the unborn is whitewashed and the sexualization of children is a priority.

        I am glad he is against euthanasia. I guess that is a start. Please pray for him and for the protection of the innocence of children of that parish.

        Sorry to deviate from the express topic. But I am among many concerned neighbors. And the whitewashing of the pro-life issue, as it relates to abortion specifically, by this priest needed addressing.

      • Paul says:

        Clarification to my 2/24 comment regarding Project Rachel. Exact wording in the 1/22 bulletin (other examples exist in previous bulletins):

        “In the back wash of Roe v Wade, Project Rachel came into the life of our church and offers compassion, counseling and reconciliation to all who carry the burden of a lost pregnancy.”

        I saw this only after my previous comment. So my point about women not knowing Project Rachel is “anything more than a support group for women who have had miscarriages” is no longer accurate in light of this recent bulletin. It was valid in light of previous bulletins which is what i based it on.

        The point that does still stand is that Project Rachel is specifically for women who are suffering post-abortion not post-miscarriage. Monsignor’s refusal to draw the clear distinction or even use word abortion – even in a Pastor’s letter about Roe v. Wade remains disturbing.

        I am glad for the the greater specificity – at least on the anniversary of Roe. Actually he does uses the term “anti-abortion”:

        “We have progressed far beyond the anti-abortion rhetoric of the 70s and 80s…”

        It seems whenever he mentions “pro-life” he conflates it with other social justice causes or the killings in the war in Afghanistan etc. In doing so he creates a moral equivalence.

        The entire bulletin can be read here:
        http://server1.stcatherinenorwood.org/cms/uploads/File/1-22-12.pdf

  7. Jack O'Malley says:

    Mary Reilly raises an excellent point about relativism. And I too agree with David and Michael. The “march” is an empty gesture.

    It is empty because the Church Herself is pervaded with and polluted by relativism. And has been since the Relativist Council from the Relativist Sixties.

    How else but a slavishness to relativism to account for two popes’ having given communion to the prominent Protestant Taizé personality Brother Roger Schütz? For the current pontiff’s approbation of Kinky Kiko and Kooky Carmen and their relativist neocatechumenal protestantized sect? For the scandalous spectacles of relativism at Assisi? And not merely once but thrice? Where Francis was commanded by the Good Lord Himself to rebuild the Church! For the Archdiocese of Detroit’s wielding the dura lex of Canon 216 against Michael Voris and Real Catholic TV when other “Catholic” groups, the National Catholic Reporter, Catholics for a Free Choice and the CCHD pass unmolested beneath the benign and relativist gaze of the USCCB.

    Beware, Boston Catholic Insider. You too fall under Canon 216. And if Cardinal O’Malley dusts off his bell, book and candle, you will hear the sounds of weeping and gnashing of teeth. These relativist prelates are as fickle and feckless as pagan gods.

    But the doctrinally-absolutist and tradition-upholding FSSPX (SSPX) is subject to a “preamble” affirming “acceptance” of the Relativist Council of Vatican II. What has the Church become? A loyalty oath demanded of Catholics orthodox in the Faith while relativist dissenters are fêted in the apostolic palace?

    And now Dolan and Mahony (another blogging prelate) and the whole coterie of company men in the USCCB are railing against the ukase from the Catholic HHS secretary Sebelius.

    Dolan, for one, allows himself to be lectured to by the sodomite “community”, schmoozes with his state’s abortion- and queer-marriage-promoting Catholic governor and his non-Catholic concubine Ms. Semi Homemade (a tellingly ironic name for her relations with her live-in lover). Yet he now waxes wroth at the presumption of the Notre Dame blessed and beatified Obama’s requiring religious employers to pay for free birth control. He and all of them are late to the battle. The war was lost decades ago. Lost because poltroon prelates didn’t have the coglioni for combat.

    The Atellan farce is still a flourishing art form in our day as in ancient Rome.

    What will our local God-fired golden-mouthed Chrysostom preach to the “marchers” about abortion?

    Will he say, “if you have an abortion, if you procure an abortion, if you perform an abortion, if you vote for abortion, if you profit from abortion whether you are the janitor that disposes of the res derelictae on the operating room floor or the nurse who assists or the doctor who severs the spinal cord, if you are the profiteering chairman of the board of the for-profit hospital corporation, or even if you are the ordinary who fails to act to protect the church from scandal, the ordinary who consorts with the abortionist president at the “catholic” funeral of the abortionist senator he himself authorized, then you are excommunicated from the Body of Christ latae sententiae“?

    Or will he be silent? Cum tacet, clamat. In his silence, he declaims his adherence to the polluting relativism that reeks in the sanctuary itself.

    The Catholic Church in Boston is taking its farcical dog and pony show on the road to Washington. The only thing lacking is a pony on the altar next to the dogs. Ecclesia Catholica iam pridem canibus asinisque missa est.

  8. Bill Redmond says:

    There are 400,000 people in DC marching, but there is so much more going on. The 500 young people from Boston are part of a pro-life generation.

    • Michael says:

      Yes Bill their intentions are good … but that generation is being duped into believing that a walk will actually save lives. Imagine years ago starting a walk against the holocaust in Germany. You don’t walk to defend someone’s life. We didn’t walk against slavery. Pretty foolish. Are we all stupid? Or are we just all too selfish to risk our comfy lives to stand up and do what is right.

      Our young people are duped into moral relativistic arguments that if we only try to stop abortion then we have acted morally. So we “try” to stop abortion with half-assed attempts that actually create the legal right to abortion — laws; i.e. the “will” of the people — putting on “restrictions” that read … before you kill the baby you must jump through the following hoops. Once you jump through our hoops, then you can kill the baby. In other words, we codify the legal authority to kill babies and act like we gained some victory having done so. We say look at how many babies have been saved. Lets have a dinner. Let’s honor Mitt Romney.

      There are many, many people who have made careers out of “fighting against abortion” and “defending marriage.” But abortion is out of control and marriage is gone. In any other career, their effectiveness would have them out of a job for lack of performance.

      Who is at fault? Every one of us … but especially our bishops. Read Randall Terry’s “A Humble Plea.”

      • Bill Redmond says:

        Thanks $ichael. I’ll take a look at Randall Terry’s “A Humble Plea.”

        I just spent the weekend in DC with my family (we took a couple of friends along as well). Saturday night we went to a conference held by Students for Life. On Sunday we attended the vigil Mass at the Basilica. This morning we were at the Verizon Center for Mass. No one at these events thought walking is going to end abortion. Like I said before there is more than the March going on here.

      • Bill Redmond says:

        Ok, I was on my Blackberry yesterday (Michael, placing a $ in your name was a typo, sorry about that), but now that I have a real keyboard to work with I can make a case for the March for Life being a great event. I would agree that the act of walking on its own does not do much. But I have no doubt that the March for Life saves lives. It is full of meaning.
        My reasons for recommending the event:

        You get to see the truth come out: The anti-life people try to respond, but their response is pointless. The Students for Life event on Saturday evening had one thousand people in attendance. About 20 minutes in to the event, 15 or so demonstrators tried to disrupt the meeting. Their demonstration was met with prayer. The organizers invited them to stay if they would behave, but they choose to leave. My kids got to see the folly of the anti-life movement when even the guys were chanting ‘my body my choice’. Duh!

        The prez is paying attention: But he gets a ‘duh’ as well. When we were driving past the White House on Sunday afternoon the kids asked if the president was there. At the time I did not know if he was, but the next morning I read this bit from cnn.com (http://edition.cnn.com/2012/01/22/us/dc-abortion-protest/?hpt=us_c2). His statement says a lot: he considers abortion to a fundamental constitutional right and goes on to say that we should “reduce the need for abortion.” Even the elementary school kids can see the flaw in that logic.

        The prez is paying attention, part 2. It is not a coincidence that the HHS announcement came out on the eve of the March for Life weekend. Anyone got a copy of that first amendment handy?

        There are dozens of events going on around the march. The ones we attended only scratch the surface.

        We witnessed over seven hundred priests and seminarians process to the alter at the Basilica Mass, the procession took 40 minutes. Clear message here for the kids. Participating in Holy Mass is more important than watching a couple of football games.

        We heard about charity, chastity and constancy during Monsignor Pope’s homily at the Verizon
        Center. My 18 year old thanked me for bringing him.

        Solidarity, being part of 400k people walking down Constitution Ave has an impact!

  9. The Cardinal not talking about the evil of abortion? This is pretty Greek to me. It’s a bishop’s resposibility to constantly uphold the tenets of the Catholic Faith in his diocese, and if that includes excommunicating pro-choice people, so be it.

  10. [...] the good news about the large number of young people from Boston who went to the March for Life, the bad news is the Obama administration announced last Friday that faith-based entities like [...]

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