Melissa Ohden, Survivor

On Sunday at the March for Life Chicago, I had the privilege of meeting Melissa Ohden. In fact Melissa was the reason I traveled from St. Louis for the March. You see, 38 years ago Melissa survived an abortionists attempt on her life.

 
I came to honor her for her undeserved suffering as well as for her faithful witness to the Gospel of Life.

 
I came for one other reason. To apologize to Melissa for my failure to protect her. To be there for her the day she was attacked. In fact we all owe her an apology.

 
It was an extremely moving expedience. For both of us. It’s hard to explain what it’s like to look into the eyes of such a survivor. Knowing I had failed her. We had failed her. Abandoned her.
I spent the first 5 years post-Roe and Doe focused on political action and education, leaving Melissa and her peers to fend for themselves. Following the lead of the movement. It was unconscionable. Predictably, the movement eventually became an end in itself. We should have known better.

 
I did know better.

 
But it would be almost 2 more years before I would follow the lead of the John Cavanaugh O’Keefe’s, Harry Hand’s, Sam Lee’s, and Joan Andrew’s of the Rescue movement and place my body between the abortionists and his intended victims. To attempt to rescue Melissa’s peers. To at least honor them with my
My opportunity to speak to Melissa came as the March ended last Sunday. I saw her standing at the back of the stage. She kindly agreed to give me a few minutes of her time. It was surreal as we stood inches apart: music blaring in the background, Generation Life youth dancing about us in the -20 degree wind chill, media packing up its gear. I choked back tears, reaching out to beg her forgiveness, apologizing for my failure to protect her.

 
Without missing a beat Melissa wordlessly acknowledged my apology, immediately identifying her own struggle with “Why I lived and so many died. 57 million!” She tearfully described her own survivor’s guilt. It was heartbreaking to see the pain in her eyes. She explained “All I know is to do this.” Neither of us could speak any further. Here I was apologizing for my failure to protect her and Melissa was apologizing for being alive. The abortionists attempt on her life further victimizes her. Surviving trauma will do that to you.
 

Luke 17: 12-19)As he was entering a village, ten lepers met [him]. They stood at a    distance from him and raised their voice, saying, “Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!”f And when he saw them, he said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.”* As they were going they were cleansed. And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan. Jesus said in reply, “Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?” Then he said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has saved you.”

 
Melissa, you are the “one”.

 
You miraculously survived the un-survivable. But like the one you returned and continue to return every time you speak “glorify(ing) God in a loud voice” thanking Him by witnessing to the Gospel of Life. Telling your story to honor Him and those who did not survive. You show great courage in your willingness to re-experience the pain of your survival in order to honor those who did not survive. In fact your very presence honors God, and is the unspoken argument against every justification for what an abortionist does to a human being.

 
There is no doubt that, now that there are survivors of the abortion holocaust,  for any pro-life event to fail to feature the Survivors is a travesty of justice: are you listening National March for Life? For their very presence challenges us to face our failures and provides us the perspective for all of our decisions.

 

Care for the moms? You bet. Been doing that for decades. But we march first and foremost for the intended victims of the abortionists. To rescue those being dragged to the slaughter. To do less is to resign ourselves to another 43 years of marching and bloodletting.

 
And finally a word to the other Survivors of the abortion holocaust- all of those who read this and are under the age of 43. The fact is that a third or more of your peers lost their lives to an abortionist. That you come from a generation that was decimated by this holocaust. That you are a survivor. Christ in His distressing disguise as an unborn child  asks you “Where are the other nine?” Look Melissa in the eyes and explain where you have been. Yes there is a price to being “the one”. But is well past time that you honor Melissa and all your peers victimized by abortionists by showing up on the front lines. Perhaps then we will actually end the horror of abortion.

 
To do less is………unconscionable.

 

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IT’S A WONERFUL LIFE

Things are not wrong because the Church says they are wrong. They are wrong because they are wrong, the Church recognizes that fact and speaks to the wrongness of those actions. The wrongness does not change by personal opinion, culture, some “good” that is expected from such wrong behavior, nor even by the culpability of the actor.

So slavery is wrong no matter what the culture, mindset of the owner, or benefit to the economy (say cotton production in the South in the first half of the 19th century).

Same with stealing.

Walking up to a complete stranger and punching them in the nose.

We would all agree that beheading an innocent human being is always wrong.

We don’t have to dig out our Catechism or climb some mountain in Tibet to get an opinion on that.

And yet many (most?) people make all kind of allowances for bad behavior. Would even claim it to be “good” based on the actors’ conscience.

Hear it all the time at abortion mills. “You have your ‘god’, I have mine.” This is a mindset that creates its own god and them shapes him to their needs.

And not just at abortion mills.

When the Church spoke out about the evil of embryonic stem cell human experimentation (aka “research”), the Church didn’t make it wrong. It is always and everywhere wrong to experiment (without the participants’ permission mind you) on an innocent human being with the expressed intent to kill that human being either in the process of the experiment or as the last act of that experiment.

How is it that if we think of that human being as the complete stranger someone walks up to and punches in the nose EVERYONE reading this would agree THAT’S wrong, but if we “walk up to” a complete stranger and without their consent experiment on them and then kill them we say “it’s complicated”?

The ONLY way that happens is to look past that human being (as if they don’t really exist- which of course they do or we wouldn’t “have them” to experiment on in the first place) and focus on some “good” end (cure for cancer, election to political office, etc).

But if it’s wrong, it’s wrong.

Period.

Here’s perhaps the ultimate irony: in the research lab, that ostensibly exists to find a cure for cancer through a process that ALWAYS kills its subjects- there’s a good chance they killed the human being who was one day going to find that cure.

Unless of course the moral of the story in “It’s A Wonderful Life” was for George to “have never been born.”?

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1010792-its_a_wonderful_life/

Protecting Children and Their Mothers From Abortionists

I’ve mentioned before that I love the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life.” As you read the following, ask yourself how this might have turned out had any of the players not been on the scene. And how many children die, as did George’s brother or the men on that military transport in the movie, because those who should have been there for them were themselves killed- or for that matter survived the abortion holocaust but did nothing for those who remain at risk.

Today at Planned Barrenhood in St. Louis, the Holy Spirit was  nothing if not persistent:

didn’t let the weather dictate the fate of Andrea’s child;
prodded Coalition to be on the front lines;
pushed my car up our steep ice covered street on the third attempt to allow me to even be  there;
guided my collaboration with the Coalition team which led me to hop in my car so
long after Andrea left the mill in the hopes that I might be able to find her;
and nudged Andrea to accept our offer of help.

To back up a bit. St. Louis woke up this morning to the remnants of an ice storm. As a result many who normally would be at the mill were not. So I soloed, jogging between the entrance and “working the fence” as parents arrived to do the unthinkable. Most waved me off, a couple using only one finger. Several took the information I offered: on their child, what an abortionist does to a human being and help that’s available. Information they would not receive inside the mill, as an informed mother is a threat to an abortionist’s bottom line.

As the morning wore on a couple of Coalition for Life activists arrived and took over at the entrance. I continued to work the fence- reminding parents it was not too late, cautioning them that abortionists only offer them a problem they don’t already have (the unthinkable), and confirming the help that we offer. As those who have done this work know, it is physically, psychologically and spiritually exhausting.

Later, as one of the youths from the weekly Generation Life Rosary group left for the day, he made mention that a mom was turned away at the gate by the Coalition team. Great news! I went back to work. Several minutes later it dawned on me that Coalition might not have know that (because of the weather)  Thrive was not open. I hurried over to the entrance and confirmed they had unwittingly sent the mom to the closed center.  I decided I would drive over to Thrive and see if I could find the mom. It was a long-shot. To say the least. For by then quite a bit of time had elapsed. But something told me to go. So off I went.

I was told it was a black car and that the mother said she “wasn’t from around here.” Not much to go on. Thrive is only three blocks away but I knew I was racing against time. When I got there I noticed several cars parked at the curb. One of the black cars caught my attention. It had a single occupant as well as Illinois plates.

The Holy Spirit prodded me to approach. I caught the attention of the woman inside the car. I leaned down on the passenger’s side. As she opened the window I knelt alongside the car. I  spotted a Thrive card lying in her lap. A quick prayer. She confirmed she was Andrea.  I apologized that we sent her to a closed center, noting that the weather had wreaked havoc on our support system. I told her that Mary, who has been doing sidewalk counseling for decades, was also trapped by the weather but was working from home. I gave her Mary’s card. Andrea was reluctant to call.  I assured her that Mary was there for her. It didn’t take much prodding and she agreed to call. It was actually at that point that I first learned her name and assured Andrea that we would be praying for her by name (so please do!).
On my way home I got a call from Mary who said Andrea had called. Mary was upbeat. She confirmed Andrea was abortion minded so Mary had much work to do on the call. Mary was compassionate enough to tell Andrea the truth. And to offer to help her in any way she could. Not the false “compassion” of those who would claim the same for mom but ignore the fate of her child.
Mary noted there was some back and forth between her and Andrea. Unless you’ve been in such a conversation, you can’t imagine the strain, aware with every word you speak that a child’s life hangs in the balance. Andrea told Mary she had done research on line and was uneasy about her own safety at the hands of an abortionist. Mary validated those concerns and steadily guided Andrea to the point that she accepted an appointment on Monday with one of our doctors.

Mary could do that on the spot because our doctors get it.
You see Dr. Dixon works with us on the front lines and understands that situations such as this need to be triaged to the front of the line. A human being is in imminent danger. No time to be on the list that is his packed clinic schedule. It is not hyperbole to say these doctors are the MASH Unit of the abortion holocaust. They hover close to the front lines and are always available to provide the medical care such mothers and their children need when we are able to “evacuate” them from the middle of the battle.

So a day that started with an ice storm that shut down the two St. Louis area alternative pregnancy centers, crippled our Thrive van, cancelled the Archdiocese’s monthly Intercessors of the Lamb witness at the mill, stranded Mary seemingly in a place where she would be unable to make a difference, and very nearly left me stranded 30 miles from the front; ended up with the Holy Spirit taking charge (as usual) such that a rag tag team of broken vessels were each exactly where we needed to be at just the right time.

It is indeed A Wonderful Life.

“Abortion” is in the Pews

Life News reported yesterday on the autopsy findings of a mother who was killed in 2013 by the abortionist she hired to kill her child (story below). This tragedy hits closer to home than most would know for this mother(Jennifer) was Catholic.

And we know from HER obituary the daughter she brought to be killed that day was named Madison (Of course no mention in the Obit of how Madison died, nor did Madison get her own obit).

Jennifer’s family members, who drove her 258 miles to find an abortionist who would kill their 33 week old family member, were described in the obituary as: “her adoring parents”….”her cherished sister”… and Madison’s father TJ: “the love of her (Jennifer’s) life” . Jennifer and Madison were failed that day by Madison’s maternal grandparents, father, and aunt. But perhaps by more.

One can only hope and pray that her parish, Holy Name of Jesus in New Rochelle did not fail her as well. That prior to this tragedy they at least prayed as a parish family at every Mass about what an abortionist does to a human being. That Jennifer and TJ heard many homilies about the abortion holocaust and the awesome gift of life. That they heard frequently from the pulpit that we can never, ever, ever kill an innocent human being.

Of course we all know from our own experiences the odds were that none of this happened at her parish. So Jennifer and Madison were likely failed by more than just their immediate family that day.

I also hope and pray that while Madison’s fate was swept under the rug in the obituary, Holy Name of Jesus parish insisted that Madison not be denied in death the dignity she was denied in life. That what happened to Madison was openly acknowledged at the funeral Mass and not pawned off as “a miscarriage”. For if there is any healing possible for all those involved in the deaths of Madison and her mother, it can only come by first laying it before God for what it was. And begging His forgiveness.

Please pray for Madison and all those involved in her violent and painful death including her mother, father, maternal grandparents and maternal aunt as well as all others who failed Madison and Jennifer that day by what they did and what they failed to do, including those of us who failed to put an end to this state-sanctioned horror.

We have to end this madness.

http://www.lifenews.com/…/young-woman-who-died-from-botche…/

The Maryland Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has released the autopsy report on the death of Jennifer Morbelli, which again confirms the young woman died o
lifenews.com

The 2015 March for Life As Seen by Abortionists’ Victims and Generation Life Survivors

The 2015 March for Life is now history. 42 years and counting for “the largest pro-life event in the world” as reported on its impressive web site. The Rose Dinner. Awards. Conference and Expo. Speeches. Social media. Youth rallies. I was one of a half a million marchers who filled the streets around our Nation’s Capitol. By all reports, another successful March. And no doubt planning for the 2016 March for Life is already underway. End of story…….or is it?

By the time we were on our way back to St. Louis, white knuckling it in the dark through the snowy mountains of West Virginia, we had learned that the “pro-life”House failed on its promise to pass a pain (torture) protection act for at least some human beings threatened by abortionists. I was livid and later wrote about it on this blog.

Once home I leaned that one the most prominent Congresswoman on the dais at the March for Life Rally actually engineered the 11th hour sabotage of the pain protection act. Featured ImageSadly this image (Congresswoman Wolorski is waving to the crowd) says a lot about the pro-life “movement”. And explains how 42 years into this holocaust the “movement” claims victories while millions of innocent and defenseless human beings continue to be murdered.

I’ve tried a half a million ways to find an explanation for how this could happen. Not the turncoat “pro-life” Representatives: that’s been going on for decades. But how leadership allowed this charade to take place. We’ve been bending over backwards for politicians ever since we made the mistake of turning the March into one giant lobbying event. We should have instead followed the lead of Dr. King who, with a third of the crowd the March for Life generates, brought this country to its knees: where all people of good will belong in the midst of such an injustice.

Generation Life pay attention. If you are sincere in your determination to be the generation that ends abortion, and I believe you are: it’s not going to happen this way. What’s wrong with his picture is what’s wrong with “the movement”. Look to Dr. King’s example if you truly want to end abortion. Come to Washington? Absolutely. But are you willing to create the necessary kind of tension that King did? Where is it written that we only march on Washington once a year? Or even that we march when we get there? How about we begin where hundreds of your peers were drawn this year: to the abortion mills of D.C. After all, we’re not there to oppose an idea. We’re there to prevent an act which takes place at the mills of D.C. Perhaps you’ll decide to end abortion one child at a time. Imagine if tens of thousands of you show up at each of the DC area mills. It would be gridlock. And if abortion-minded moms can’t make it to the mills because of the chaos, you will have peacefully protected another human being from such torture. And by the way, your decision to be peaceful will not necessarily mean that you are protected from violence. But the child will be. Perhaps Generation Life will call us to return in the Summer. A Summer of Mercy in our nation’s Capitol? Or monthly? Perhaps we will be led by Kristan Hawkins (http://studentsforlife.org/ ), who had the presence of mind to challenge Congresswoman Wolanski as she left the stage. Will Generation Life decide to occupy DC? Refuse to leave until Congress acts? Even if they manage to jail the survivors of the abortion holocaust, wonder what it would look like for a half a million of us to be in jail? While it wouldn’t be our goal, do you seriously think the media would ignore that story? Or Congress?

No torture protection? Are you kidding me? That horrible image of the Jordanian pilot, trapped in that cage and burning to death at the hands of ISIS comes to mind. And yet our “pro-life” Congress refused to extend protection from such torture to our fellow human beings. Take a good look at this picture, see the unborn child who is in the same position and tell me I’m overreacting.

As I write, in the background the History Channel is runnig a program on Nazi collaborators; for a holocaust of such proportions requires such co-conspirators. After all someone had to operate the trains, pass the laws, look the other way: “sing it louder” (http://singloudermovie.com/). History was not kind to those collaborators.

The abortion holocaust has had its share of such collaborators. Everyone knows the obvious cast of characters. The Pelosi’s who lecture the Bishops. The Bishops who 42 years later continue to “dialogue” with such perpetrators, as if such dialogue is an end in itself, all amidst the carnage of almost 60 million victims. “Catholic” Supremes like Brennan (whose lone Catholic vote helped usher in the abortion holocaust). The Kennedy’s (the “Justice” as well as the politicians). Lesser known politicians in history include Missouri’s own Senator Kit Bond who in 1994 joined forces with the abortionists to enact into law specific federal protection for abortionists known as the FACE Act. And Bond had plenty of company in the 42 years that Congress failed to protect human beings from abortionists.

Of course there are many levels of collaboration.  The “counselors” who lie to parents to ensure none escape the abortionist’s intent. The “friend” who drives mom to the abortion mill. The parent who conspires with the abortionist to kill his grandchild. The deathscorts. The Joel Osteens whose prosperity gospel trumps even Christ in His distressing disguise. The priests and pastors who pass on “the topic” or do the once a year “pro-life month” fly by. In St. Louis, the first Bishop to make it to an abortion mill was in 1980 and he came…to chase away the rescuers! Afraid of lawsuits because two of his priests, in the tradition of the last civil rights movement, had joined the pro-life rescues at a St. Louis area abortion mill. Can you imagine standing at the gates of Auschwitz and chasing away Schindler? My head explodes and my heart aches when I think of all the missed opportunities and outright betrayals this “movement” has endured. It’s cost us almost 60 million dead and counting.

Generation Life says they will end abortion. Not make it rare. Or unnecessary. END IT. They understand because they are survivors of a holocaust that took the lives of their peers. They know that they too, for 9 months of their lives, were considered “property” in the tradition of the Supremes latest  Dred Scott decision. Generation life takes what an abortionist does to a human being personally. As should all of us. But if they are going to make good on their pledge they need to learn from history. Our history. I have apologized to my children and many of those I met from Generation Life at Obama’s Abortion Mill in D.C. for the abject failure of my generation to protect their generation from abortionists. January 23rd, 1973 we should have been at the “abortion mills”, not in the halls of Congress. The sense of urgency at the former if papable The latter will debate and compromise any “issue” to death. We allowed ourselves to be lulled to sleep.

The final level of collaboration hits closer to home. It’s that of the average citizen. Good people. Church people. People who know right from wrong. Us. Many, perhaps most, “oppose” what an abortionist does to a human being. But other priorities get in the way. Family responsibilities. Work. School. Play. The routine of our daily lives leaves no time for those who have no one to speak for them. Even parish/church functions crowd out a reasonable response to this holocaust. It’s our own version of “Sing it Louder”. We all know parishes/churches (most?) that rarely even pray it louder regarding the holocaust in our midst. Abortionists depend upon our passive collaboration. And just as in Germany, the perpetrators of such holocausts only have the power given them by what we who know better, do and fail to do.

I often refer to what an abortionist does to a human being and our culture’s support of that horror as “madness”. If you’ve ever been to an abortion mill and had conversations with the abortionists’ apologists, you’ll know what I mean. I have to wonder if Einstein saw into the current “future” when he defined insanity. Generation Life, we can’t keep doing the same thing over and over if we truly expect to “end abortion.” This is insane. We “YOU” can end this madness! Are you willing to pay the price?

Will Generation Life Really End Abortion?

On January 22, at the end of the March, I stood on the Capitol lawn with a great group of fellow believers known as Ten Good Men. We stood and prayed in the shadow of two buildings that had much to do with the greatest holocaust perpetrated in human history. It began there. A Supreme Court that harkened back to its Dred Scott roots and again claimed the authority to turn people into property. And a Congress that, even as over a half million of us gathered, once again betrayed the children we seek to protect. And we have a bloodbath of 56 million victims and counting.

42 YEARS! Which means that everyone who reads this and is under the age of 42 (Generation Life) is a survivor of this madness. A horror which took the lives of up to a third of their peers. Abortionists decimated the respective generations. Generations who say they will end the “legalized” slaughter of the innocents. Survivors have a special responsibility to speak: with their actions as well as words. And they have a right to ask my generation why we failed to protect your peers from abortionists. Are you speaking?

Perhaps one reason our success has been so incremental is that our actions have betrayed our message. That day we had over a half million pro-lifers in DC to confront this evil. Everyone, including the abortionists of our nations Capitol, knew we were coming. So what do you think the abortionists were doing just blocks away from where over a half million of us marched? They were killing children. It was “business as usual” for them. How is that possible?

Abortionists have come to expect us to toe the line and stay away. As if we have a gentlemen’s agreement. We March on our side of the city and they kill on theirs. And make no mistake about it, whittingly or not we are part of that agreement.

But What an abortionist does isn’t just to be protested…IT IS TO BE STOPPED. And stopped NOW if we ever hope to restore America. We must end this madness.

How many abortions do you think would have been committed in DC that day had all of us followed the example of TEN GOOD MEN who spent that morning occupying the sidewalk of Obama’s abortion mill just a few blocks from the White House?

We (especially Generation Life) say we want to end abortion. Yet year after year we pass on the opportunity to end abortion one child at a time. And in the case of the March for Life, one day…one city at a time. We are hundreds of thousands.

Restore America? How about all of us make a commitment right here and right now to be “never again”. And that never again will we gather for such a noble cause and abandon those threatened by the very injustice we come to confront.

Let us instead declare here and now that at least for This ONE day in this ONE city, in this ONE country: NO ONE DIES HERE. Let us fill the sidewalks and the streets around the abortion mills of DC and say with our actions..NOT HERE…NOT TODDAY…..and pray God….NEVER AGAIN.

Perhaps then the world will begin to understand that this injustice needs to end. And end NOW. And end forever. And we will begin to restore the God given goodness that used to permeate this great land of ours. To begin to restore a country on the brink.

Just 3 days before the March for Life we remembered the legacy of the great civil rights leader Dr Martin Luther King. King knew what to do when faced with an injustice of this magnitude. When he marched on Washington he didn’t march to the Capitol….or the Supreme Court. Nor even the White House. King marched to the symbol of the last great injustice in our land. He brought his March on Washington to the Lincoln Memorial. He did not beg Congress. Rather he brought WE THE PEOPLE to DC to say with their actions as well as their words: this injustice must end.

It is time we follow Kings example. When we next return to our Capitol let’s first meet at the abortion mills (all half million of us) and then, having ensured an abortion free Capitol gather en masse at the Lincoln Memorial to demand an end to the horror of what an abortionists does to a human being. We do not come to debate abortion. Or beg our Congressmen to defend life. For human rights are not to be debated. They are to be defended. And certainly not granted by Congress, a Congress that in its hubris, actually believes IT determines who shall live and who shall die. This year it was “pro-life” congresswomen who betrayed the unborn, derailing  anti torture  legislation, lest it provide protection from torture children whose fathers were rapists.

So  when We The People  next come to DC, which does not need to wait for next Jan 22nd btw, (Perhaps a Summer, or better yet “Siege of Mercy” is coming to our nation’s Capitol?), may we be there to say ” never again  BEGINS TODAY. Then the men and women who serve Us in those buildings can figure out how to restore justice and liberty under the law,  FOR ALL.

So help me God.

Can I hear an amen, Generation Life?