Saturday, July 17, 2010

Confirmation Candidates in Connecticut - Retreat Opportunity

(Check out all the info at the top of the blog sidebar.) Our Conference this year is also a fantastic retreat opportunity for Confirmation candidates.  You may be thinking that pro-life work is all about the evil of abortion and we have even heard a priest say, "I would really like to see more pro-life groups focus on the death penalty and the injustice of war."  A lot of folks think we ignore the more standard peace and justice ministries, and this is simply not the case.

Take Dr. Theresa Krankowski, founder of St. Gerard's Center for Life.  In ministering to abortion-minded women, she, and the St. Gerard volunteers, often-times end up clothing the naked, feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty, sheltering the homeless, visiting the prisoner and visiting the sick.  Ironically, when it is time to bury the dead of this terrible wholesale killing of the unborn, most of the time their little bodies cannot be found, so Dr. Theresa works in the spiritual realm and comforts the sorrowful mothers. She and her volunteers also instruct the ignorant, admonish sinners, counsel the doubtful, bear wrongs patiently, forgive injuries and pray for the living and the dead.  And Dr. Theresa is just one of many who work tirelessly in the pro-life movement to stand up to the culture of death with truth and love.  Just so you know.  Her ministry doesn't play well in, say, The Hartford Courant or People Magazine or The New York Times.  The secular culture likes food drives, cure walkathons and vigils outside of prisons (all of which are good things).  But there is also lots of sympathetic coverage for "the right to choose" when you will not find any kind of truthful coverage regarding the difficult work of helping abortion-minded women in any way imaginable.  This help is still there even if the baby is aborted, because these mothers suffer the most. This is a fight against the death penalty and war at its most fundamental level, put most eloquently by Bl. Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa):"The greatest destroyer of peace is abortion because if a mother can kill her own child, what is left for me to kill you and you to kill me? There is nothing between."

The sessions at the Conference that will be given by Fr. Tad Pacholczyk will be geared toward our attendees and will provide not just information, but truth regarding the buzz around stem cell research and reproductive technologies..  Truth is sadly lacking in the information the culture at large provides to young people, because the intrinsic dignity of the human person is denied due to legal shenanigans that have rendered the pre-born in this country an unprotected class of human being.  If we can't go out armed with truth, how can we be a force for good or change or anything that God has put us here on earth to do.  The Conference also includes Mass and a Holy Hour with an opportunity for confession, so as far as a retreat opportunity is concerned, you have the whole package ... Mass alone makes it a retreat par excellence.

Talk to your pastor or your DRE or the person in charge of your Confirmation class.  We would love to have you attend the Conference, and there are opportunities for group rates and scholarships.  It promises to be a day that will assist you in being the kind of Christian who can speak the truth in love.  See you on October 16th!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sponsor an Ad or Sentiment in Our Conference Booklet!

Once again we are publishing our Conference Booklet and are looking for parishes, businesses, civic groups and the like to sponsor an ad or sentiment.  We have choices for any budget, and your kind donations help to offset scholarships to the Conference.  Plus, any money left over will go toward one of our many life-affirming projects.  In the past, we've raised money for the St. Gerard Center Ultrasound Fund, the elderly and infirm Felician Sisters, disabled and elderly veterans in the community in need of groceries or small construction projects (wheelchair ramps and accessible bathrooms), and recently many Y-Lifers worked in conjunction with the St. Therese Respect Life Group of St. Therese Parish in Granby, CT to raise over $2000 for Northern Connecticut Catholic Prison Ministry run by Fr. Bruno.

Click on the form for donating.  It's linked to this post, AND appears in the sidebar of this blog under Forms for 2010 Conference.  Also, do not hesitate to email us at:
with any questions, concerns, glitches, comments or glowing praise.  We would love to hear from you and if you can .... please sponsor an ad or sentiment!  God will not be outdone in generosity and will bless you abundantly.

Remember ... the Conference is October 16, 2010.  All the information you need is here (or you can click on Conference Flyer under Forms for 2010 Conference on the sidebar. 

Thanks, Louis R., for getting all the forms up for us!

Monday, July 12, 2010

INSTALLMENT 5 (Last Installment): Why the Supreme Court Decision in Roe Versus Wade Was Legally Incorrect and Unconstitutional

If you have not read the earlier installments, here's Installment 1, here's Installment 2 , here's Installment 3 and here is Installment 4.

Throughout the years, many court decisions have held that the 14th Amendment contains a right to privacy by an individual over his or her actions, though it is disputed just how far this extends.  In Roe versus Wade, the Supreme Court held that this right to privacy was broad enough to encompass a woman’s right to terminate her pregnancy if she so chose.  However, in all the cases the Court cited as evidence of this right, only a few came close to having anything to do with abortion and it becomes obvious, with only a little explanation, that they were a bad fit for the 1973 case.  Most were cases completely unrelated to abortion and involved phone taps, the right of parents to direct the education of their children, minors selling goods, and other things that only established the existence of a right to privacy, but proved nothing about the right to the termination of a pregnancy being contained therein.  However, while the Court failed to convincingly prove its position, there is definite evidence that an unborn child’s right to life had recognized preference over the right to privacy.  In the Union Pacific Railway Company v. Botsford case (1891), the question at hand was whether a court could “order a woman suing a railway company for injuries she suffered to submit to a surgical examination”.  The Court held that such an intrusion of privacy was forbidden, except “to ascertain whether a woman convicted of a capital crime was quick with child…in order to guard against the taking of the life of an unborn child for the crime of the mother”. In conclusion, the Court ignored the clear evidence of the right of a child to life, and was forced, because of lack of proof for its position, to present information that was not even related to the point it was trying to make.

Despite all the blunders of the Court legally and Constitutionally in Roe versus Wade, perhaps the worst was the complete lack of discussion in the critical area of natural law and what it says about abortion.  Natural law is an essential basis when dealing with any issue of morality, for it is defined by the Catholic Encyclopedia as, “the rule of conduct which is prescribed to us by the Creator". In other words, every man’s soul has been endowed with an intrinsic knowledge of what is morally right and wrong according to the eternal laws of God, so one can intuitively know what is just.  If the Court had looked at natural law, it would have understood that abortion and its decision were violating several important principles.  To begin with, natural law teaches that one does not take the life of another living human being.  Although the Court believed that life did not truly begin until birth, they were still toying, however, with the “potentiality” of life before birth and according to St. Thomas Aquinas, “if a man could be probably alive or probably dead, you can’t take the chance of burying him unless he is certainly dead. This meant that since it was questionable as to when life began, therefore the Court could not legalize the killing of the unborn because there was potential human life.  In addition to this, natural law holds that one does not interrupt a normal function of life, pregnancy, except for an extremely serious reason.  That an unborn child can be killed simply because it may not be wanted is obviously not a serious enough reason to make abortion in accord with the natural law.

 Truly, it is highly evident that the Supreme Court was not legally correct or in accord with the intentions of the Constitution in its ruling of Roe versus Wade.  Because the Court did not rule from a neutral position, but twisted facts out of context, was selective with the evidence, ignored key points of view, and knowingly evaded the clear truth, it rendered its judgment subject to intense criticism.  Had the Court honestly, critically, and thoroughly examined all sides of the issue, its decision would have been much different than it was.  Sadly, for some, the Supreme Court’s monumental decision on that fateful day in 1973 will be seen as the indisputable law of the land, but it is hoped that these articles (based on a paper I wrote for a class) have placed doubt in some minds as to the legality and fairness of the trial that the most vulnerable citizens of the United States of America received. ---- Timothy J.

INSTALLMENT 4: Why the Supreme Court Decision in Roe Versus Wade Was Legally Incorrect and Unconstitutional

FINALLY ... Installment 4 of Tim J.'s article on the infamous Roe v. Wade decision.  If you have not read the earlier installments, here's Installment 1, here's Installment 2 and here is Installment 3.  Prepare to be edified!

After blatantly skipping over the framers’ intent, the Supreme Court investigated the issue of whether the unborn were considered people according to the use of the word ‘person” in the Constitution, and ultimately decided that they were not.  Because “the Constitution does not define “person” in so many words”, the Court was forced to piece together a definition based on the many uses of the word throughout the document, a process that was doomed to failure since the Court had not bothered to discover what the original intent of the framers was.  In searching for the word “person”, the Court found most of the uses of the word in the qualifications for holding a public office, and concluded that since these uses applied only after birth, the unborn were not people according to the Constitution.  Although these qualifications for public office would ban the unborn, they also would deny any born person who could not meet the requirements for age, residency, and citizenship.  Surely, the Court would not withdraw the rights of personhood from any citizen simply for not meeting these qualifications, but yet this was exactly what the Supreme Court did in the case of the unborn.  By holding that the unborn were not people under the Constitution, the Court went against what John Marshall, a previous Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, had ruled in Gibbons versus Ogden in 1824, which was that “the terms in the Constitution must be interpreted expansively, not restrictively”.  Thus, it is only too clear that the Court’s laughable approach to the Constitutional issue of personhood was indicative of the fact that the Court had already made its decision regardless of the evidence.

When the Supreme Court examined the Constitution, it focused largely on the 14th Amendment, which has a clause that states, “…nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or happiness without the due process of law.”  After little deliberation, the Court took the position that the 14th Amendment banned the unborn child from the rights enjoyed under this amendment by people already born.  However, this stance was based only on a selective collection of previous court decisions and the Court’s own judgment, not on the all-important intent of the framers of the 14th Amendment.  Around the time of the drafting of the amendment in 1868, there were several influential facts and court cases that suggest that the unborn was indeed intended to have rights.  For instance, in the 1860’s, five U.S. territories enacted anti-abortion laws.  Since these territories were not yet states, Congress needed to approve these laws, and so, in order for them to pass, many of the Congressmen who would eventually write the 14th Amendment must have voted in their favor.  Also, in 1873, just five years after the enactment of the 14th Amendment, the District of Columbia recognized abortion as illegal.  Again, one can see that Congress must have had a pro-life mentality, for it had full jurisdiction in the area of the District of Columbia’s criminal law.  Thus, it is apparent that the Court was incorrect in their claim that the 14th Amendment barred the unborn from the basic human right to life, when the prevailing attitude of even the country’s political leaders in the 1860’s can be reasonably ascertained to have been for extending rights to a fetus.