If you haven’t heard about Kermit Gosnell, I’d like to fill you in. After reading the entire grand jury report on his trial, it is undoubtedly something that needs to be discussed. When I first started following his story, I spent a lot of time in tears of rage and thinking this case is so terrible it had to be made up. I want to preface this post by warning that this story is graphic in nature, but I believe it’s an ugly truth that we should not shy away from.
Kermit Gosnell is currently on trial for 8 counts of murder – one count for a poor immigrant woman and seven counts for newborn babies.
The day I saw those two lines indicating a positive result, my whole world completely turned upside down. I was living every young girl’s worst nightmare. I was pregnant. At the time I found out I was pregnant, I was single, alone, and afraid. I literally felt I had no one to turn to. The weight of my own embarrassment, shame, self-hatred, and loss of self-worth was too much to bear and I never told a single soul I was pregnant and scheduled an abortion even though I knew to my very core it was wrong.
It seemed like in one moment, our sophomore year, (our whole life) was changed forever. Two minutes ago we only had to think about cute boys, classes, and our plans for spring break. Now I had to think about baby diapers, stretch marks, and helping Jessica face the possible ridicule and judgment of our peers.
How was I supposed to love and support her? The selfish part of me didn’t want to face this. But the only thing I knew was that my Catholic faith asked me to take courage and stand beside my friend, to believe that God would work it out, and to hope in His promises . . . But sometimes things don’t end as you think it should.
Check it out! We put together a fact sheet about abortion for you to download. It’s important to be aware of what’s really going on and you won’t know that until you look at the shocking numbers and data. Go ahead and print it out, pass it around, and educate yourself about this issue.
Planned Parenthood is targeting you, and especially you teen girls with the message that they’re the ones you can trust. They say they’re the ones you should go to for answers; they say they’re fighting for you. They’re fighting for your trust and support.
I want to share a video that has an powerful message of hope for those who’ve suffered through an abortion.
This is a video of a woman named Lisa who dealt with abuse, divorce, and had three abortions. She has an incredible witness about the healing she received. The beauty of being Catholic is that besides counseling, we have the Sacrament of Confession where Christ Himself forgives us. Lisa experiences peace when she stopped hiding her abortions in the dark. Her shame was wiped away.
Have you ever been in a conversation with someone who said that a woman has a right to have an abortion because it’s her body? This is one of the most common ‘defenses’ of the pro-choice position; so more than likely, you’ve heard it.
It’s hard to respond to. Here are some ways you can talk about this argument.
I asked a handful of men some questions about abortion and I was deeply moved by their answers. It convinced me that it’s not just women who are hurt by abortion. Men have strong feelings about it and want to stand up for life. They are affected too.
Read for yourself.
“11 years ago my girlfriend at the time told me she was pregnant, but because she already had one fatherless child and I was a drunk and an addict she told me she was going to abort the baby. I was not practicing my faith back then but I knew it was wrong. I fought for her to keep the baby but in the end I gave up . . . “
“It’s her body, can’t a woman have an abortion if she wants?” Brooke Burns, Education Director for Arizona Right to Life, gives us the true and Catholic answer to this argument about abortion. She reminds us that besides the woman’s body, she has the responsibility of a completely new person (with it’s own body) inside of her own. The baby isn’t a “part” of her body like a kidney or lung. It is separate and unique with it’s own rights.
“Can the baby feel anything in an abortion?” Brooke Burns, Education Director for Arizona Right to Life, gives the Catholic answer to this question about abortion. She talks about the recent laws regarding fetal pain. She also discusses whether the pain really matters when we talk about the “right” to kill a person.
“Is the fetus in the womb a baby? I’ve heard it’s just tissue.” This is something you hear a lot and Brooke Burns, Education Director for Arizona Right to Life, answers this question. She discusses how the unique DNA every fetus has from the moment of conception makes it a human baby, not just a clump of cells.
In this video, Brooke Burns, Education Director for Arizona Right to Life, answers the question: “What about if the woman is raped? Shouldn’t she be allowed to have an abortion?” She tells us that the Catholic answer to this common question about abortion is that in these situations, the last thing the woman needs is to experience more violence and pain; she needs love, support, and healing.
Have you ever heard someone say: “I agree abortion is wrong, but who am I to tell someone else not to have one?” We’ve got the Catholic answer to this question. Brooke Burns, Education Director for Arizona Right to Life, talks about how she felt this way too at one point. She challenges us to not take this “easy way out” of the abortion discussion and to stand up for something as fundamental as life.
When we attend the March for Life, we stand in the streets of our Nation’s capital to protest a law that is unjust. To take a day to gather and give a very public witness – to “shout” that we are Pro-Life, and that the law of our land is unjust. But as Catholics – as humans – we know that at the heart of the pro-life movement it is not a question of laws but of souls. The souls of babies, the souls of mothers and fathers, and the souls of those with whom we disagree.
I’ve been thinking about life a lot lately. Mostly my own, really. This past weekend I celebrated my birthday.
It was an awesome day. How could it not be great? There was a Boston Cream Pie cake, calls from all my favorite people, and Facebook notifications endlessly popping up on my phone from wall posts.
I can’t help but thank God over and over again for the gift of my life, especially at this time of year with so much talk about abortion. A lot of our generation never made it out of the womb, let alone into their 20’s. Why me?
I want you to know how much I love you even though I’m not with you anymore. I was really scared the other day, but I’m ok now.
I woke up to your crying and all of a sudden I felt a force like no other. I gripped my tiny hands into your flesh, but I was no match. I felt like I was being sucked away. And then came the pain. Mommy . . . it really hurt. The doctor tore me from your womb and placed my body like garbage on the cold table. I hoped you would hear me, but my cries were not enough. I needed you Mommy. I know that all the pain I felt yesterday is nothing compared to the pain you must feel. I’m sorry you’re hurt too . . . I love you.
I think we can agree on a lot of things that are wrong. No one is going to say that abuse of any kind is okay. Or that starving children in third world countries should remain hungry. We can all agree that school shootings are terrible. And that no person, young or old, should have to deal with the pain of cancer.
But what about abortion?
It’s confusing. Especially when you hear so many conflicting voices. It can be hard to see clearly whether it’s right or wrong. I understand it’s difficult to make that judgment. In my own mind, I know that a woman, especially in a crisis situation, deserves what is best for her. She deserves to be cared for.
But when I think about the baby, I want the baby to be loved and cared for too. What is best for both of them? Is it the same in every circumstance?