Helping Women (May, Mother’s Day & the Focus of ProLife) (May 2021 Newsletter)

by Frank Tinari, Ph.D., Life Education Council Board of Trustees

Mary & Mother’s Day

When we call Mary our own mother it doesn’t belittle or replace our relationship with our biological mother, just as it doesn’t take away from our relationship with Jesus. By devoting ourselves to Mary’s motherly care we are more disposed to see the beauty of every mom’s love. We see just how much moms do & care for us. We see how much joy and peace they bring to our lives. So too does a devotion to Mary help us see how compassionate Jesus is. For Mary’s glory is only a reflection of her son.

And to all mothers reading this, thank you for reflecting the very love of God and Mary! Saint
John Paul II said: “Mary is the sure path to our meeting with Christ. Devotion to the Mother of the Lord, when it is genuine, is always to a life guided by the spirit and values of the Gospel.”

Media Use by Kids

Despite all the evidence showing how media saturation is connected to sleep disorders, aggressive behavior and obesity, the American Academy of Pediatrics (www.aap.org) says children are growing up in a world surrounded by media that are portable and instantly accessible. Parents and pediatricians may find it hard to keep up with the vast amount of content and new features constantly being introduced. Children and adolescents need guidance to make good choices in their media consumption.

The AAP says media use should be discouraged for children under 18 months old, except for video chatting (e.g., Skype or FaceTime). Parents of children 18-24 months who want to introduce digital media should choose high-quality programming and watch it together. For children 2-5 years, media use should be limited to one hour a day to ensure they have enough time to engage in other activities.

For older kids, parents should be wary about providing smart phones too early. And it may not be helpful to have a TV and/or a computer in a child’s bedroom. Studies reveal that media usage by children 8 to 17 is very heavy. Most kids have cell phones and nearly all send text messages. Yet many parents don’t talk to their children about the dangers and long-term repercussions of activities such as sharing photos & pornography. In short, parents need to pay close attention to what the outside world is feeding their kids.

Blood Clots: Covid Vaccine vs. the Pill

The J&J covid vaccine was temporarily halted due to women getting blood clots. According to the CDC, there were 8 blood clot incidents from over 6.8 million vaccine doses. Though worrisome, the incidence of about one in a million is rare. Now for the shocker: according to the National Blood Clot Alliance, for women who take hormonal contraceptives, i.e., The Pill, the equivalent of over 3,000 blood clot events occur for every million.

An Ob-Gyn doctor reports that medical school training is heavily influenced by the pharmaceutical industry that promotes the Pill, and never even mentions NaPro Technology, the main alternative
to chemical contraception. Instead of covering up a woman’s reproductive patterns and possible ob-gyn problems, Natural Procreative Technology allows doctors and patients to understand each woman’s particular fertility, monitor health conditions and develop corrective solutions. “Birth control pills are a band-aid, never solve any health issue, are not 100% effective and pose potential health risks,” says Dr. Monique Ruberu. “We are much too cavalier about women’s well-being in this country. Natural family technology deals directly & naturally with the root of a woman’s health problems.” Visit https://femmhealth.org

“It’s such a beautiful thing to work with your spouse on such an intimate level in planning your family. It actually strengthens one’s marriage. And it is in line with the life-affirming teachings of the Church that strongly counsels against artificial contraception.” [Dr. Monique Ruberu, EWTN Pro-Life
Weekly, 4/22/21]

Book review: Fighting for Life

[interview of Lila Rose by Patti Maguire Armstrong]
As a teen, I read and saw for the first time what abortion does to a baby. In the first trimester, in the humanity of that baby, I saw this beautiful little child, with arms & legs. You could see faces. I saw what a first-trimester abortion does to destroy that developing child. My heart was really touched by that & grieved.

Then I remembered the death toll at that time – 3,000 abortions daily in America – that I had learned about, and I thought, “This is it. This is the cause of the day, the greatest human-rights cause, and I can’t just pretend like it’s not happening. I have to get involved.”

We’ve experienced social media censorship such as having abortionists serve as fact-checkers on our content and being completely banned on Pinterest. Despite the resistance that we have faced over the last 10 years, we’ve built the largest following for the global pro-life movement: over 5 million people strong. What is more powerful than the obstacles is the passion and determination of many pro-life Americans who want to stand up for what’s right.

The mainstream culture sees having sex before marriage as a virtue or something very normalized, but getting pregnant after having sex is seen as a terrible thing. That is so unfair and misleading for young people — instead of saying sex is beautiful and good in a lifelong, sacred relationship — a marriage — and it’s good to bring life into the world.

Our culture calls evil good and often good evil. It’s totally upside down. This confusion costs us dearly; it’s the reason we have a death toll of nearly a million abortions a year. If you don’t know the truth, if you believe the lies, you are going to make the wrong choices, and those bring serious hurt to yourself and others. So we must expose the evil, speak the truth, rehumanize the child, remind people of their dignity, of morality and God and who God is. [National Catholic Register,
www.ncregister.com, 4/21/21]

How you act depends on what you believe about God, the universe, the meaning and value of life, what a human being actually is. Mothers and fathers who trust in God no matter the circumstances, who live out the Golden Rule even at great cost, and who sacrifice time, money, and comfort to give of themselves in service to the Kingdom of God, are living a grand philosophy without perhaps ever even knowing the meaning of words like “metaphysics” and “ethics.”
[Philip Martin, www.crisismagazine.com, 4/22/21]

Helping Women Who’ve Had Abortions

Rachel’s Vineyard weekends are a beautiful opportunity for those struggling with the emotional or spiritual pain of abortion. For those considering the need to reconcile their abortion, the retreat is a wonderful gift to yourself to experience the sadness, grief & shame in the company of other women and men feeling very much the same. You will turn pain into hope with the help of nurturing counselors, and are given time to reflect & become open to the healing process. “Through participating in Rachel’s Vineyard, I was finally able to forgive myself. I know that God has given me a peaceful mind, cleansed my heart and has washed away my guilt.” For more information, log onto Rachel’s Vineyard at https://www.rachelsvineyard.org.

Helping Teens is Pro-Life

The majority of pre-teens and teenagers attend public schools where “health” class ignores Christian values and promotes a secular lifestyle. So parents who want their kids to make truly healthy choices need to use other resources. For example, Tan Books provides a comprehensive program called LoveEd: Raising Kids That Are Strong, Smart & Pure (https://tanbooks.com). Organizations like LifeNet provide in-person programs such as Authentic Love & Sexual Integrity; Helping Teens Make Healthy Choices; and Teen Purity (www.lifeneteducation.org).

The chastity/abstinence presentation for teens and young adults covers the risks of sex outside marriage including pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, & emotional and spiritual consequences. For parents, the Helping Teens program helps reduce children’s risk-taking behavior (sex, drugs, alcohol, etc.) and explains why teens need their parents to talk to them often about the meaning of the gift of sex and the importance of saving themselves for marriage.

Another comprehensive source is the Chastity Project (https://chastity.com) that addresses dating, birth control, pornography, STDs, how far is too far, emotional virtue, and other topics of interest to teens. Their team also travels the country giving life presentations, so parents should check their website for current schedules.

The Future of Marriage

(book review excerpt)

In Poland, Justyna believes strongly in Christian marriage, is engaged to be married but is living with her boyfriend for the past two years to save money for a big wedding. She resents her priest’s warning that this is sinful and unwise. Justyna is conflicted. Young Christians all over the world are wrestling with similar challenges, and we get to meet many of them in sociologist Mark Regnerus’s newest book, The Future of Christian Marriage.

Young Christians, like their less religious peers, are marrying later & less frequently, with less disapproval of fornication & cohabitation. Their families are smaller; they largely reject traditional gender roles. They see beauty and wisdom in Christian teachings, but they share the outlook of less devout contemporaries. They ask: How can they avoid a sexual landscape that prioritizes pleasure over long-term fulfillment? What to expect from a potential spouse? How much should a person be willing to sacrifice for marriage? How to establish a secure social & financial foundation for family life? Culture and tradition used to provide more guidance. As marriage-supportive customs erode, the up-front costs & sacrifices increase, while the visible benefits become more elusive. [See Rachel Lu’s full book review at www.nationalreview.com]

This free monthly newsletter is used by dozens of churches as a bulletin insert, and has had over 30,000 readers. To receive a copy in your inbox, email Frank Tinari, Ph.D. at tinarifr@shu.edu

Covid Vaccines, Easter and Life (Apr. 2021 Newsletter)

by Frank Tinari, Ph.D., Life Education Council Board of Trustees

COVID-19 Ethics are Complicated

Amidst continuing controversy and differences of opinion, Bishop Thomas Daly (Spokane, WA) summarized three guiding principles of decades-long Church teaching on vaccines:

  1. We may morally receive the currently available Covid-19 vaccines
  2. We’re not morally obliged to take a Covid vaccine
  3. We should advocate for more ethical research & pharmaceutical development

The first principle takes into account that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was produced with tainted aborted fetal cell lines, and that Catholics are encouraged to get a different vaccine. The second principle reflects the concerns that some have about the new vaccines and that one’s conscience must be used in a morally responsible way. The third principle urges all Catholics to communicate their ethical concerns to vaccine producers. For example, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone (San Francisco) plans to launch a letter-writing campaign to urge pharmaceutical giants to produce ethical vaccines. [COVID-19 Vaccine Ethics, National Catholic Register, 3/28/21]

Are Catholics “Hung Up” on Abortion?

[by Timothy Cardinal Dolan]

Actually, we’re obsessed with the dignity of the human person, the sacredness of all human life including the helpless life of the baby in the womb, the death row prisoner, the immigrant, the fragile elderly, the poor & sick. Concern over an abortion culture is not a uniquely Catholic issue but one of human rights. We didn’t learn that abortion was horrible from religion class but in biology and, regarding inalienable rights, in American history.

How can we sustain a culture that recoils at violence, exclusion, suicide, racism, injustice and callousness toward those in need, if we applaud, allow, pay for, and promote the destruction of the most helpless, the baby in the womb? As Pope Francis observes: “We defend and promote all legitimate human rights. But what use are they if the right of the baby to be born is violated?”

Yes, we’re still ‘hung up’ about human life and pray that a respect for the sacredness of all life & the dignity of the human person will be revived, and that the sanctuary of the womb will be off-limits to violent invasion.[1/13/21, www.cny.org]

The use of human embryos or fetuses as an object of experimentation constitutes a crime against their dignity as human beings who have a right to the same respect owed to a child once born, just as to every person. Pope St. John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae (65).

Easter Is Life

“Christianity … is peace; it is joy; it is love; it is life that is always renewed, like the secret pulsing of nature at the beginning of spring. The source of this joy is in the Risen Christ, who frees men from the slavery of sin, and invites them to be with him a new creature, waiting for blessed eternity.” (St. John XXIII, 1959)

Easter is the “Feast of feasts” because it is the single greatest feast of the entire liturgical year and “fills the year with its brilliance.” (Catechism of the
Catholic Church, 1168) The 50 days from Easter Sunday to Pentecost are celebrated in joyful exultation as one great Easter season.

Catechumens receive three sacraments of initiation (Baptism, Eucharist and Confirmation) as they enter the Church during the Easter vigil, but all the faithful have the opportunity to strengthen their own sacramental life by renewing their baptismal promises during the Easter liturgy.

“In Western history it was the arrival of Christianity that brought the notion of the sacredness of each person into the world. In pre-Christian Rome, if for any reason a newborn baby was rejected by his or her father (this happened much more often with female babies), out the baby went to the forest for a quick end …. The whole crazy notion that each human life has inherent value – that human lives matter – was what inspired early Christians to set up orphanages, hospitals, and other institutions for the needy, the impaired, and the others who had always been treated with contempt by society.” [George McKenna, On Physical and Moral Plagues,
Human Life Review, Winter 2021]

Recommended New Movie

Starting April 2, the movie Roe v. Wade is available for streaming on both Amazon Prime and Apple TV. The film tells the untold conspiracy that led to one of the most famous and controversial court cases in history. Catholic League President Bill Donohue, an associate producer of the
movie, said: “As assaults on the right to life continue to mount across the country, it is important to understand how we got here.” In May, the film will be made available on DVD.

Big Tech Censors Religion

So far this year, religious groups and figures have been silenced by tech companies at a rate of about one a week. In February, the YouTube channel of LifeSiteNews, a popular religious news website, was permanently banned by Google which delisted all of its videos. The tech giant flagged LSN for a video of an American Catholic bishop criticizing vaccines developed with fetal cells. LSN’s editor said “our best guess is that the channel was taken down for our frank and factual discussion of the controversy around abortion-tainted medicines and vaccines.”

In December, Twitter blocked a post from the Daily Citizen, run by Focus on the Family, an evangelical Christian non-profit. It suspended its account for a tweet that respectfully challenged the underlying premise of transgenderism. Twitter made a similar move against Catholic World Report, though it later recanted. Ryan T. Anderson of the Ethics and Public Policy Center saw Amazon ban his book criticizing transgenderism, When Harry Became Sally.

Facebook banned Paul Kangor’s anticommunist tract, The Devil and Karl Marx, and Carrie Gress’s book on rescuing the culture from toxic femininity. Facebook also banned ads for Kimberly Cook’s
book, Motherhood Redeemed, that challenges feminism in the modern world.

Religious groups and individuals likely will face mounting threats from tech companies. Their views on marriage, sexuality, life and other moral issues are unpopular with tech elites. Some religious groups have fought back and have been reinstated. Religious groups should refuse to silence themselves or otherwise back down. Censorship is a symptom of a national collapse in civic culture. Curing the deeper disease will take all the courage and conviction we can muster. [Josh Holdenried, VP & Exec. Director, Napa Legal Institute, Wall Street Journal, 3/29/21]

Teen Brains Affected by Drugs &Alcohol

According to Jessica Lahey, author of The Addiction Inoculation, adolescence is the second of two incredible periods of growth and maturation of the brain. From birth to age two and then puberty to the early to mid-20s. [Ed. Note: past issues of this newsletter have highlighted research regarding the benefits of moms staying home with their newborns for the first two years of life.] The environment has for better or worse a really big impact on the brain.

So teen use of stimulants really needs to be delayed. You not only protect their brain, you also lower a kid’s risk that they will develop a lifetime substance-use disorder. Ninety percent of those people report they started using drugs and alcohol before they were 18. Parents who are strict and say “Just say no” end up with healthier kids.

Risk factors that make it more likely that a teen will abuse alcohol or drugs include genetics (50% to 60% of the risk) plus: childhood violence in the home, death of a parent, separation and divorce. These affect a teen’s overall mental and physical health, including academic failure.

Parents are urged to model healthy behaviors themselves. If your 8th-grader says that everybody is drinking, tell them the truth: only 24% of young kids are doing so. But don’t wait for middle school. Have conversations about drugs and alcohol with your young children and repeat as they get older. [Andrea Petersen, Wall Street Journal, 3/23/21]

For Married Couples Facing Difficulties

The Retrouvaille Program is for married couples facing difficult challenges in their relationship. The marriage program helps couples restore their marriage and rebuild a loving relationship. It is a Christian marriage program, Catholic in origin, where couples of all faiths or no faith background are encouraged to attend. Its major focus is to improve communication & help couples reconnect. Presenters are couples sharing their personal stories of marital struggles and the tools they used to rediscover their love. More information is available at its website. [www.helpourmarriage.org]

Treatment of Impaired People

How do we view physically and cognitively challenged individuals? Hitler adopted a forced-sterilization program in the 1930s that morphed into euthanasia. More than 200,000 people deemed mentally & physically unfit to live were systematically murdered. To defend their actions, some Nazis at the Nuremberg trials quoted Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes’ statement justifying sterilization, “three generations of imbeciles are enough,” & the American government’s own sterilization programs. So, today, whom do we think is not fit to live? Our religious beliefs should be put forth to answer: everyone has human dignity that should be respected until natural death.

Life is Precious

In 1994 my aunt had unsuccessful brain surgery and became terminally ill. My parents appreciated the compassionate hospice care provided to her by a local hospital. After several months, my aunt slipped into a coma. Our parish assistant pastor told us that because she had an irreversible condition, that she could be allowed to die. [Tim Donovan, letter to Our Sunday Visitor, 3/21/21]

This free monthly newsletter is used by dozens of churches as a bulletin insert, and has had over 30,000 readers. To receive a copy in your inbox, email Frank Tinari, Ph.D. at tinarifr@shu.edu

Silence is Consent (Mar. 2021 Newsletter)

by Frank Tinari, Ph.D., Life Education Council Board of Trustees

Phooey on the Hype

American voters seem to be able to see through the hype and euphemisms used by pro-abortion advocates and many in the news media. “Despite being vastly outspent by pro-abortion organizations such as Planned Parenthood and Emily’s List, pro-life candidates in November won by significant margins. There were 58 races in which a candidate supported by National Right to Life was running against a candidate supported by the pro-abortion PAC Emily’s List. Forty-one (or 71%) of the NRLC-supported candidates won.” [NRLC, The State of Abortion in the U.S., Jan. 2021]

Speaking Out Against The So-Called
‘Equality Act’

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops recently said the proposed Equality Act “would discriminate against people of faith.” The Catholic League and many other civil rights and religious organizations have also sounded the alarm. The Act’s two goals are: amend the 1964 Civil Rights Act to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the definition of sex; override the existing Religious Freedom Restoration Act by allowing gay rights to trump religious rights.

The expansion of rights to transgender women, really biological males who identify as female, has come at the expense of rights for biological females. Boys and men would be allowed to compete in sports with girls and women, thus unfairly altering women’s athletics. Females would also lose their privacy rights. These biological males could use the locker rooms, restrooms and shower facilities that have always been reserved for females.

This bill would grant men the right to sue if they were denied equal access to women’s private spaces such as showers, bathrooms, and nursing rooms. These men could also have access to women’s prisons and shelters. Mothers would have no say in their child’s healthcare decisions if that child asks for hormone treatments or sex-reassignment surgery. Even a woman choosing a female doctor because of religious or personal preference would be considered discriminatory. None of this has anything to do with why the 1964 Civil Rights Act was passed. [William Donohue, Catholic League, 2/22/21; and Eagle Forum Engage, 2/22/21]

If the Equality Act were passed, Catholic foster care programs would be shut down. They would either have to agree to allow two men to adopt children—a clear violation of Church teachings—or lose federal funding. Currently, Catholic hospitals can legally refuse to perform abortions. Under the Equality Act, they would either lose federal funding or be forced to get into the abortion business. That is because refusing abortion services would be declared “pregnancy” discrimination.

The “abortion as health care” campaign advanced by the Equality Act effectively defines the unborn child out of existence. It treats the child as merely a “physical condition” of the mother that health professionals are called on to address through corrective treatment. It also defines Americans who object to such taking of innocent human life as bigots who must be forced to comply. The Act does not promote equality: it further demeans vulnerable human beings who already have few rights, and denies the right of pro-life Americans, who make up about half the U.S. population, to live by their fundamental convictions. In no way should its enactment be the goal of a “presidency for all Americans.” [Richard Doerflinger, Charlotte Lozier Institute, Feb. 2021]

Ed. note: Contact your elected representatives if the bill is still under consideration when you read this.

“Disability should never be a ground or justification to end someone’s life directly or indirectly.” United Nations human rights experts’ joint statement, 1/25/21

Lent and Life

During Lent we try to walk with Jesus in prayer, charity to others, and self-denial, just as He did. Thomas a Kempis wrote: “Jesus has many lovers of His heavenly kingdom, but few bearers of His Cross. He finds many companions of His table, but few of His fasting, Many are astonished at His miracles, few follow after the shame of His Cross.”

We know that there is no way we can outdo God’s generosity; the least we can do during this Lenten season is to give to the One who gave everything for us. There is so much suffering and injustice in the world. Let’s try to make a difference where we live.

One way of doing your share in Lent is to participate a few hours a week in the 40 Days for Life project. This international campaign with 567 locations offers us the opportunity to sacrifice some of our time in reparation for the sin of abortion, by praying outside an abortion mill in our own area. Go to www.40DaysforLife.com and click on “Find a Vigil” which takes you to the locations and contact information near you.

Ed. Note: Your editor & his wife devote two hours weekly to our local vigil where we pray the rosary & hold Love Life signs in front of a Planned Parenthood facility. It’s not much, but it is something. We encourage readers to do your share.

“Silence is Consent”

Henry Louis Gates Jr.’s new book, The Black Church, argues that religious appeals gave slaves “the moral authority to turn the mirror of religion back on their masters and to indict the nation for its original sin of allowing their enslavement….”

Pro-lifers believe that our contemporary concern for human rights can serve the same purpose in indicting our nation’s support of abortion and a culture of death.

Episcopal Bishop Michael Curry told Gates: “The teachings of Jesus are just as clear that Christian folk and Christian leaders cannot abide or countenance anybody’s supremacy over anybody else, white or anything, and cannot remain silent. Silence is consent.” We would hope that the Bishop would speak out against abortion’s legal supremacy over unborn black and white babies.

Just as the Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision was rightly condemned in the 19th century for not recognizing a class of human beings, black people, so we condemn the Roe v Wade decision of the 20th century for not recognizing a class of human beings, unborn developing people. We continue to speak out and pray for changed hearts in our country.

Costco Chickens? How About Humans?

Recently, Nicholas Kristof wrote in the New York Times (The Ugly Secrets Behind the Costco Chicken, 2/7/21) about the terrible treatment of chickens that Costco buys for their delicious rotisserie chickens. “Future generations will look back at our mistreatment of livestock and poultry with pain and bafflement. They will wonder how we in the early 21st century could have been so oblivious to the cruelties….”

Has Kristof ever said how future generations will look at us and our horrific treatment of preborn developing human beings who have been killed? He says he agrees with Jeremy Bentham’s 1789 statement on the treatment of animals: “The question is not, Can they reason?, nor Can they talk? but, Can they suffer?” Mr. Kristof, many preborn babies feel pain during an abortion. Are you sympathetic to them, too? If so, we want to hear about it from you.

Policy Debate on Family Support

Should parents be provided direct financial support for raising children? Or should parents be given child-care vouchers so they can go out and work? Or should Congress expand the Child Tax Credit? How will all of these benefits be funded? The debate was started recently by the introduction of Senator Mitt Romney’s family plan that would include monthly payments to families of up to $350 per child. Your editor encourages a close watch on these developments, and looks forward to Christian commentary on the matter.

“Catholic View for Women” Program

Though Covid delayed taping, co-hosts of this EWTN program recently kicked off the show’s 13th season. Viewers have gotten used to the show tackling hot-button issues and this new season is no exception. The hosts will address the dangers to women of the resurgent Equal Rights Amendment, gender dysphoria and the transgender craze, the physical and spiritual benefits of fasting, so-called same-sex marriage, how social media harms teens, domestic violence, and the dangers of in vitro fertilization. The shows should begin airing in late spring 2021.

“Not only is the number of Christians rapidly declining in this country, the number of ‘religiously unaffiliated’ is on the rise. This abandonment of Christ has led to a free-fall from objective truth to the point where we can no longer agree even that humans are either biologically male or female. Indeed, it is becoming increasingly dangerous simply to write those words, lest we be accused of hate speech.” [Editorial, Our Sunday Visitor, 2/14/21]

Your Taxpayer Funds for Abortion

The new administration in Washington DC recently canceled the “Protect Life Rule” that banned taxpayer funds from being used to promote or provide abortion in family planning programs. Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, chairman of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, responded: “By rescinding this rule, the administration will be forcing abortion into a pre-pregnancy program specifically designed to exclude abortion, a move which is immoral, impractical and may also be unlawful.” Days earlier, Archbishop Jose H. Gomez, president of the USCCB, wrote that while he looked forward to working with our new president, “he has pledged to pursue certain policies that would advance moral evils and threaten human life and dignity.” [Our Sunday Visitor, 2/7 & 2/14/21]

This free monthly newsletter is used by dozens of
churches as a bulletin insert, and has had over
30,000 readers. To receive a copy in your inbox,
email Frank Tinari, Ph.D. at tinarifr@shu.edu

“We Have Not Nor Will We Ever Give Up” (Feb. 2021 Newsletter)

by Frank Tinari, Ph.D., Life Education Council Board of Trustees

Full-Page Display in Wall Street Journ.

Under a sonogram photo of a developing baby, on Jan. 22nd National Right to Life wrote:

“We don’t see a potential life….
We see a life with potential”

The full-page display was placed by the group because: “An unborn baby’s heart is beating until she dies from abortion. Her brain waves can be recorded as early as six weeks. If you believe a life with the potential to laugh, to love, and to do great things is worth saving, please join with us.” [www.facts.nrlc.org]

Guess the Leadership’s Religion

1. Force the Little Sisters of the Poor to provide contraceptives & abortifacients to their employees
2. Have taxpayer money fund abortion in the U.S. and in our foreign aid to other nations
3. Promote euthanasia & physician-assisted suicide
4. Eliminate federal regulations that protect the conscience rights of Catholic doctors, nurses and health-care workers

In other words, deliberately facilitate what the Gospel & the Church teach are grave moral evils & injustices. [George Weigel, The Beacon, 1/21/21]

Until Every Unborn Child is Protected

On the 48th anniversary of Roe v. Wade decision, we recall the late great Fr. Richard John
Neuhaus. “We shall not weary, we shall not rest,” he declared at the 2008 National Right to Life Convention, “until every unborn child is protected in law and welcomed in life.”

We are called to be faithful to this mission, no matter how daunting. And, though Roe still reigns, the cause for the unborn has nevertheless made & continues to make great strides saving precious lives every day. Forty-eight years into this, there are millions of good people working at every level to protect the unborn, from the dedicated volunteers at pregnancy centers to pro-life educators, journalists, clergy, lawyers, & legislators, including 18 pro-life women who were elected to Congress in Nov. We have not nor will we ever give up.

A recent article features a fresh look at the Roe travesty. “A Case for the Revocation of Roe v. Wade,” says Editor Anne Conlon, is by Lyle Strathman, an 85-year-old retired electronics engineer. His multi-faceted argument, that legalized abortion under the guise of Roe is an aberration of human reason, of biological science, of philosophical analysis, & the U.S. Constitution, is presented with the kind of elegant economy and interlocking logic even Steve Jobs could have admired.”[https://humanlifereview.com/issue/fall-2020/]

Who Are the Sisters of Life & Why Did
Eight More Young Women Just Join?

The Catholic religious order is one of the fastest growing orders in the U.S. The photo shows the most recent group of young women who joined as postulants. Here is the order’s mission statement: “Like other Catholic religious Sisters, we’vemade a decision to leave behind what the world offers to give our whole lives to God by professing vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. What does that mean? It means we don’t personally own anything – Jesus is our treasure. We don’t get married – Jesus is our one love. And we freely surrender to lives of obedience – Jesus is our one will.

This sets us free to love in a universal way, and commit wholeheartedly to the mission Jesus entrusts as we live in community with one another.

And, as Sisters in love with life, we’ve also made another decision: We vow to protect and enhance the sacredness of every human life. Why? Because we want to uphold the dignity and worth of each person, created from and for God’s great love. Entrusting ourselves completely to the Lord of Life, we commit our lives to the protection of human life and to the promotion of new life in Christ, acknowledging the goodness of every person, and sharing the gift of God’s abundant mercy with all those we meet. In this way, we seek to help reveal to each person their own innate goodness, the particular love God has for them, and invite them to something greater: a life of truth, joy, and hope.” [https://SistersofLife.org]

Are You a Man or a Woman?

According to a new federal order, school restrooms, locker rooms, & sports can now no longer be organized on the basis of sex—or “sex-based stereotypes,” to use the current administration’s favored terminology. There has been an understandable outcry about the consequences of this, most obviously for women’s sports, where physical differences exert rather a significant influence. For example, women’s running, from the 100m to the marathon, will easily be dominated by men who identify as female. Worryingly, contact sports such
as women’s rugby will become very dangerous.

I am the faculty advisor to the women’s rugby team at Grove City College. Will it become illegal for me to refuse to allow the women to play opposite a team containing biological males who have rejected “sex-based stereotypes”? Whatever might be the legal case, I would consider it criminally irresponsible to allow such a match to take place.

What constitutes a person is now apparently nothing more than your feelings, your psychology. You feel you are a woman, despite what your body tells you? Then understand that your body has no authority here; go with your gut. Transgenderism is really just the latest, most radical expression of the notion that humans are just matter, the biology of which has no moral significance. The body has no intrinsic purpose, for it can be manipulated to serve those feelings in which we have come to invest decisive authority.

Any form of social organization that denies or challenges the identity of transgender people is by definition discriminating against them. It is not just women’s sports. It is anything that can be categorized as oppressive—be they religious organizations, traditional moral convictions, or previously unexceptionable pronouns.

Traditionally, the legitimate and the illegitimate could be distinguished on the basis of agreed-upon human ends, which all humans share and which transcend the individual. Once those ends have been abandoned in favor of personalized forms of individual happiness, an odd thing happens. With no consensus on what human beings are for, someone still has to make choices about which identities are legitimate and which are not. And thus the freedom of radical individualism ironically requires the authoritarianism of governmental decrees, with appropriate penalties
attached. [Carl R. Trueman, First Things, 1/26/21]

UN Reneges on Key Principles

The UN Declaration of Human Rights recognizes that “all members of the human family” have “inherent dignity.” The UN also claims in Article 3: “Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security
of person.” In 1959 the UN adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, and in 1989 reaffirmed it at its Convention on the Rights of the Child, declaring: “the child, by reason of his physical and mental immaturity, needs special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection, before as well as after birth.

Since then the UN has reneged on these basic principles. “Worldwide, there were 73.3 million abortions each year between 2015-2019 according to [a] Lancet study. The injustice is beyond words! In our nation, there are 862,230 precious children—with what the UN once called “inherent dignity”—that are killed by the social injustice of abortion annually.” [Ryan Bomberger, Remember When the UN Declared Unborn Babies Should be Protected?, LifeNews.com, 11/20/20]

“The right to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture, is false and illusory if the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and the condition for all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination.” Saint John Paul II, Christi Laici #38

Studies Show Girls Prefer Dolls

The toys provided by parents deliver some of the earliest gender-based messages by encouraging children to engage in activities associated with, for example, dolls and trucks.

In the current study, we measured the influence of parental socialization by assessing 5-month-old and 12 1⁄2-month-old infants’ exposure to dolls and trucks and by experimentally manipulating parents’ encouragement to play with these toys. We found that infants displayed gender-typical toy preferences at 12 1⁄2 but not 5 months, a pattern characteristic of previous studies. Further, encouragement by a parent to play with toys from each category was ineffective in altering infants’ preferences. [John L.
Boe, Rebecca J. Woods, Parents’ Influence on Infants’ Gender-Typed Toy Preferences, Springer Science-Bus. Media, https://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-017-0858-4]

“I’ve Been Kicked Out of My Home”

[Ed.’s Note: There are literally tens of thousands of support agencies and homes to help pregnant women who have been rejected by their families. This is a brief report on one of them.]

Kelly, pregnant and 19, was abandoned by the father of her child & her entire family. She searched online for “homeless programs New York New Jersey” & Good Counsel Homes popped up. That evening she was in one of its four homes, welcomed by the manager with open arms and a warm smile.

“Good Counsel, homes for mothers and babies, started by the late Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR, and me back in 1985, is here to help any pregnant and parenting mothers ‘take the next good step’ as Fr. Benedict would say. That usually means going back to school or working or both. Good Counsel offers free babysitting for a mom during the year she is in the home in order for her to take those next good steps.”

“Good Counsel has served more than 7,800 mothers and children. Last year 30 babies were born from moms living in our homes as we kept the doors open in spite of the lockdowns.” [Christopher Bell,
www.GoodCounselHomes.org]

This free monthly newsletter is used by dozens of churches as a bulletin insert, and has had over 30,000 readers. To receive a copy in your inbox, email Frank Tinari, Ph.D. at tinarifr@shu.edu

Getting Accurate Information Is Crucial (Jan. 2021 Newsletter)

by Frank Tinari, Ph.D., Life Education Council Board of Trustees

Pastors: “Shocking, Callous” Proposal

The pro-abortion governor of Massachusetts Charlie Baker has vetoed a radical pro-abortion bill after the legislature rejected his amendments.  Without them, the “ROE Act” bill would allow unborn babies to be aborted for basically any reason up to birth, end parental consent for young girls seeking abortions, weaken the state anti-infant side law, & allow non-doctors to abort the unborn.

The Mass. legislature has indicated an intent to override the veto. Doing so requires a two-thirds majority vote in both the state House and Senate.  Recently, more than 400 pastors across the state wrote to Baker slamming the bill as a “shocking and callous disregard for human life and the importance of parental involvement in the lives of children.” Another pro-abortion bill narrowly failed in New Mexico because of strong public opposition. But similar legislation did pass in New York, Illinois, Vermont and Rhode Island last year, prompting massive outrage.

A recent poll by Susan B. Anthony List found that 62% of Mass. voters oppose late-term abortions, including 49% of Democrat & 66% of independent voters. The same number, 62%, also supports the current state law requiring parental consent before a girl under 18 has an abortion. [S. Ertelt, M. Bilger, LifeNews.com, 12/23/20]

Ed.’s Note: New Jersey’s governor and legislators are hoping to push through a similar shocking bill. State residents are urged to contact their elected representatives to vote against it. 

Film: “CHOICE: Who Decides?

Inspired by the courageous efforts of people on both sides of the reproductive justice movement committed to advancing the rights of women and the unborn, this timely film explores the convictions of people fighting for reproductive freedom versus the right to life, which exposes the fears and struggles that divide our nation.

CHOICE aims to educate & inspire viewers to explore women’s rights & how our society, medical science, culture, religion & politics are shaping that conversation. No matter where you stand on the position of reproductive rights, we can all agree it is THE issue at the forefront of our emotional divide. How did we get here? What does our future of challenges look like?

Film-makers spoke to hundreds of individuals who shared their personal, professional & eye opening stories, many for the first time, making the film an unexpected investigative journey.  [https://www.choicethedocumentary.com]

Male-Female Differences 

A 2017 review reported that women outperformed men in memory and learning, while men performed better in spatial & motor tasks. Women were more likely to have a higher rate of cerebral blood flow, a higher percent of gray matter, and more connections between left and right brain hemispheres; men had a higher percentage of white matter and more connections within the left brain hemisphere. [Marri: Faith & Family, www.marripedia.org]

“We may add that it is an act of foolish injustice to pretend the sexes are the same. Justice is exercised in respectfully providing for the due needs of each.” J. Budziszewski, Prof., Univ. of Texas at Austin, author of What We Can’t Not Know: A Guide.

Super Bowl Champ Slams Abortion

Former NFL star Ben Watson criticized Georgia senate candidate Raphael Warnock last week for describing the killing of unborn babies in abortions as “reproductive justice.” Watson, a former New England Patriots tight end & Super Bowl champion, told pastor Warnock that there is nothing just about killing a son or daughter in an abortion: “JUSTICE is the equitable distribution of punishment AND protection. JUSTICE is rooted in the dignity of every human endowed by their Creator.”

Watson and his wife, Kirsten, parents of seven & passionate advocates for life, recently produced a film, “Divided Hearts of America,” to “challenge and also educate America when it comes to the issue of abortion.” They run the nonprofit One More Foundation that focuses on hunger, poverty, prison reform & other matters. [M. Bilger, www.LifeNews.com, 11/23/20]

Doctors said: “Institutionalize her”

Karen Killilea was born 3 months premature. Her parents later discovered she had cerebral palsy.  They finally found a doctor who saw that she was aware of her surroundings. With tireless medication, her family spent at least two hours every day for the next 10 years helping Karen move her limbs. By her early teens, she was walking with crutches, swimming, typing and going to school.  And she lived to be 80, dying in October 2020.

Marie Killilea told the world about her daughter in two best-selling books, which were among the first to detail the challenges of living with a severe physical disability and were an inspiration to many families in similar circumstances. Karen worked for four decades as the receptionist at the Trinity Retreat House in Larchmont NY & traveled to Italy twice, meeting semi-privately both times with Pope Paul VI. She never considered herself “handicapped” but called herself “permanently inconvenienced.”

After the books appeared, Karen & her mother answered at least 15,000 letters from around the world. Some were addressed simply to “Karen, USA” & still arrived. Many wrote to thank the family for telling their story & to say it had inspired them to become nurses, physical or occupational therapists.  Her parents began lobbying for the rights of the disabled, meeting many other parents of children with disabilities. This led to the formation of what is now Cerebral Palsy of Westchester, and eventually led to the founding of the United Cerebral Palsy Association. All this as a result of rejecting doctors’ advice to institutionalize her. [NY Times, D/20/20]

Decline a Covid Vaccine? 

Relying on cell lines from abortions to manu facture a COVID-19 vaccine provokes strong moral objections, so some will refuse the vaccines. The Church, for her part, does not require us to decline it when there is a serious reason such as an elderly person or someone with multiple health issues who faces significant risks if they were to contract the disease.

Any time we decide to receive an unethically produced vaccine, we should push back. We can do our part to apply pressure on the manufacturer, perhaps by sending an email objecting to its methods, and requesting that it reformulate the vaccine using alternative, non-abortion-related cell sources. We could write a letter to our local paper pointing out the injustice of being morally coerced to rely on these cell sources.

The chart compares different vaccine candi dates that are or may become available in the U.S., collated by the Charlotte Lozier Institute. [Fr. Tad Pacholczyk, The Beacon, 12/17/20]

“The greatest destroyer of peace today is the cry of the innocent unborn child. For if a mother can murder her own child, what is left for you and me but to kill each other?” St. Theresa of Calcutta

Euthanasia for Children? 

Legalizing euthanasia transforms healers into killers. The expansion of euthanasia laws to permit killing sick children by lethal injection is yet another symptom of the culture of death’s profound influence on law & medicine throughout the world.

Belgium extended euthanasia to children by eliminating the age limit for lethal injection. In the Netherlands, in October the Dutch government approved euthanasia for terminally ill children aged 1 to 12. Currently it is legal for babies up to a year old to be killed with parental consent.

The culture of death is spreading rapidly. Could killing people, even children, by lethal injection be legalized in the USA? When will people of every nation raise their voices and demand, “Stop! Enough!”? [Nov. 2020, https://halovoice.org]

Just for Girls/Just for Guys 2020-21

A new edition of HLA’s teen abstinence magazine completely transitions its style to engage Gen Z’rs. New articles share a positive approach to Sexual Risk Avoidance strategies that focus on how waiting to have sex fits into a successful, healthy life. Teens will read both sides of this 16-page appealing flip-magazine! Send for a copy. [https://humanlifealliance.org]

Rally for Life: Friday, January 29th

Although the Exposition of vendors is cancelled because of the pandemic, March for Life organizers are going ahead with the annual Rally & March in Washington DC, the largest pro-life event in the world. A number of well-known guest speakers have been scheduled.

As in past years, many will participate in their local state rallies. For example, the St. Augustine March is scheduled for Jan. 16th. If you live in Florida or southern Georgia, you are encouraged to take a stand for life in the nation’s oldest city.

The Oakland, CA, StandUp4Life rally will be held on Friday, Jan. 22nd. “We walk because abortion in the Black community is a form of genocide, the Civil Rights issue of our day. We walk because abortion does violence, both physically & emotionally, to men and women, to their children, and to their families.”

For Texans, “Join thousands at the Texas Rally for Life on Saturday, January 23, at the Capitol in Austin, starting at 1 pm.”

Perhaps the most unusual & ambitious event is being held throughout January by the March for Life Chicago. “This year, we know many of you can’t travel to Chicago by bus. So we’re bringing it to you in five lead-up events in a city near you!”

Information about all rallies and marches for life may be found at https://marchforlife.org.

This free monthly newsletter is used by dozens of churches as a bulletin insert, and has had over 30,000 readers. To receive a copy in your inbox, email ed. Frank Tinari, Ph.D. at tinarifr@shu.edu