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TORONTO, June 18, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) — On Friday June 15th, former TV sportscaster Damian Goddard gave an inspiring speech at the CLC Pro-Life Forum in Toronto, emphasizing personal courage and trust in God. Commenting on today’s sexual culture, he observed that “the word ‘No’ can be an act of great love.”

In part 1 of the LifeSiteNews video of his speech, Goddard relates how he was suddenly fired from his job with Rogers Sportsnet in 2011 “after tweeting in defense of marriage” (see previous coverage). He told the pro-life Forum audience, “I was floored, winded - but I was not knocked out” and since his “life has taken that dramatic turn” he has been doing “a little internalization.”

Goddard applauded Pope Paul VI’s Humanae Vitae, the encyclical reaffirming the Church’s position on marriage and parenthood and expressly forbidding contraception (HV 14-16). 

Goddard said that Humanae Vitae “rocked the world” with its clarity on human sexual inclinations and identity. He compared the encyclical’s proscriptions with a loving parent who will not give way to a child’s whims.

“In that basic message of: ‘you cannot have that cookie before dinner’…we come to realize that the word ‘no’ can be a word, an act, of great love,” Goddard said.

When a parent tells a child ‘no’, Goddard continued, the child knows “deep within its soul… that that parent loves them… Humanae Vitae—it was responsible, it was based on reason, it was scientific, it was love.”

Goddard described the publication of Humanae Vitae as an “earth-shattering moment” in our history. “We look back now at that moment in time and… are inclined to say ‘if only we really knew then what we know now!’” said Goddard, adding that, in fact, we did know. “We knew,” he declared, “as much as a parent looks at its child and says ‘If you eat too much candy, your stomach will be upset.’”

At the end of Part 1 Goddard begins his story about the impact on his thinking from the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York on 9/11. Calling that incident “the greatest moment of my lifetime” that caused him to look again at his faith life, Goddard states he immediately understood the attack was “an act of war” that would lead to increased hostility towards Christianity within America.

See Part II report and video