TOP STORIES

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    May 28, 2015

    New pastoral looks at Catholics' identity, today's challenges to faith

    By Mark Zimmermann
    Catholic News Service
    (CNS file photo/Paul Haring)

    WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Washington Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl (right) has issued a new pastoral letter "about who we are as Catholics."

  • 2 of 4


    May 28, 2015

    Polish leaders hope Pope Francis visits Auschwitz when he comes in 2016


    (CNS photo/Stanislaus Rozpedzik, EPA)

    By Jonathan Luxmoore, Catholic News Service
    OXFORD, England (CNS) -- Although no date has been set, church leaders in Poland hope Pope Francis will visit the former Nazi concentration camp of Auschwitz during a July 2016 visit to Poland for World Youth Day.

  • 3 of 4


    May 28, 2015

    UPDATED: Nebraska bishops welcome override of veto of bill ending death penalty


    (CNS file photo/Lisa Maxson, Catholic Voice) 

    By Catholic News Service
    LINCOLN, Neb. (CNS) -- Nebraska state senators overrode Gov. Pete Ricketts' veto of a bill repealing capital punishment that had been supported by the state's Catholic bishops.

  • 4 of 4


    May 27, 2015

    Patten: Vatican media must be professional, but reform won't be pillage

    By Simon Caldwell
    Catholic News Service
    (CNS file photo)

    LONDON (CNS) -- The Vatican must stop running its media operation from silos, said the leader of papal commission set up to advise how the Vatican can better communicate with the church and the world.


Jan 29, 2013

MCFL's Assembly for Life marks 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade


 

REGIONAL


(Photos by Ed Boylan)

By Christine M. Williams

BOSTON – More than 350 Massachusetts residents came to Faneuil Hall on Jan. 27 for Massachusetts Citizens for Life’s (MCFL) annual Assembly for Life, held this year days after the 40th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion in the U.S.

Jaymie Stewart Wolfe, a music minister, children’s book editor and columnist for The Pilot, the Archdiocese of Boston’s newspaper, served as the assembly’s emcee and encouraged those gathered to visit Boston’s New England Holocaust Memorial. She said the site serves as a reminder that ours is not the only society in history to make humanity selective.

Then, she played the theme song from the Holocaust film “Schlinder’s List” on her violin in memory of the 55 million children legally aborted since 1973.

The program also included the tolling of hand bells by the Blackstone Valley Catholic Youth Choir for deceased pro-lifers, songs sung by the choir, “Amazing Grace” played on the bagpipes and the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”

The assembly’s featured speaker, Abby Johnson, a post-abortive woman and former Planned Parenthood director turned pro-life activist, was unable to attend due to illness. In her place, another post-abortive woman, Lynn, Mass. native Cori Connor-Morse, shared her story. She recalled every detail of the day in 1983 that her son, whom she later named Patrick, was aborted. The mundane facts of what she wore, what she ate and what time she awoke that morning are still with her.

Connor-Morse (pictured in photo at right) said that the day “I killed the only child I would ever conceive,” marked the beginning of depression, panic attacks and suicide attempts. Her survival depended on denial and even her counselors told her that the abortion was not her problem.

It was not until the love of her current husband, Steve, began to heal her emotional wounds that she made an appointment with a priest. Twenty-six years after her abortion, the priest told her that what she had done was wrong, listened to her sob for two hours and sent her to Project Rachel, the ministry for post-abortive women.

Connor-Morse said she learned through the ministry that “abortion was wrong for all of us.” Since her “long process” of healing from abortion began, she has sought to pay forward the help she received. She often prays outside the abortion clinic in Lynn, and last February, she was present when an abortion-minded couple decided to keep their daughter, Eleanor.

“All babies are wanted by someone,” she said. “All mothers should be told.”

David Franks, chairman of the MCFL board and theology professor at St. John’s Seminary in Brighton, Mass., said that now is the time for Massachusetts pro-lifers to recommit themselves to the struggle and recover their passion.

He encouraged everyone to invite others to join MCFL and to build up its regional chapters. Doing so is the first step toward converting the state legislature to a pro-life body and for Massachusetts again to lead the way to freedom, Franks said.

Franks quoted the Declaration of Independence that “all men are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, including the right to life.” He spoke about the freedom discussed in Faneuil Hall at the country’s founding and Massachusetts’ role in bringing an end to legalized slavery.

“We can convert this Commonwealth. We can make it consistent with the ideals that were debated in this hall,” he said. “We helped break the slave power, and we will break the abortion power too.”