All articles from January 7, 2019


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Former Ohio state Rep. Christina Hagan is jeered by pro-abortion supporters at the Ohio Statehouse in December.
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Pro-aborts curse, flip off Ohio heartbeat bill sponsor as she pushes her twins in a stroller

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By Lisa Bourne

COLUMBUS, Ohio, January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) -- Pro-abortion zealots cursed, jeered and screamed at former Ohio state Rep. Christina Hagan and her twin babies as they approached the Ohio House floor in late December for Hagan to cast her vote on the state’s Heartbeat bill veto override.

A photo circulating social media shows Hagan pushing her infant sons in a stroller in the Ohio statehouse as the shouting abortion extremists lined her path, one in close proximity flipping her off.

“A picture is worth a thousand words,” pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List said in a Facebook post regarding the atrocious display. SBA List encouraged followers to send a message of support to Hagan.

Hagan, 30, the mother of three -- a young daughter in addition to her baby sons -- began serving in the Ohio House of Representatives in 2012.

She ran for Congress unsuccessfully last year and did not seek re-election in the Ohio House. Hagan was the youngest woman to have ever served in Ohio's legislature and had been the second youngest Republican female state representative in the United States.

She sponsored House Bill 258, which would have prohibited abortion on any Ohio baby with a detectable heartbeat except in cases of a physical threat to the mother. The state’s legislature passed the bill between November and December, but it was then be vetoed by Republican Gov. John Kasich just before Christmas.

The House got 61 votes to override the veto, but the Senate fell one vote short of the 20 necessary to save the pro-life law.

The Heartbeat bill was reintroduced last week by Hagan’s former joint sponsors on the bill, Rep. Ron Hood and Rep Candice Keller.

Hagan had worked previously in her tenure in the Ohio House to advance heartbeat legislation.

In addition to SBA List, other pro-life organizations shared the photo and expressed dismay at the radical abortion vitriol directed at Hagan as she arrived with her babies to vote on Heartbeat bill veto override.

Live Action called the display “heartbreaking,” and Life News termed it “terrible.”

Hagan commented in a number of posts, remarking in one on the collision between a culture of life and a culture of death.

Expressing gratitude to a Canadian pro-life group having commended her, Hagan said, “Thank you for your kindness. Empowered women empower women. The abortion industry only tells women that they can’t while the life movement reminds and reaffirms women that they can!”

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Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin Patrick Craine / LifeSiteNews
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Irish archbishop criticizes pro-lifers fighting abortion

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By Martin Barillas

DUBLIN, Ireland, January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – An Irish archbishop criticized pro-life activists’ peaceful efforts to save unborn babies under the country’s new abortion regime.

“I’m not a person personally for protest, what the Church should be doing is strengthening its resolve to help women in crisis and to educate people,” Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin said in an RTE Radio One interview on Sunday.

“I would be particularly cautious about protesting against GPs (general practitioners) because everybody is going there, and people go there for all sorts of reasons,” he said.

As for creating exclusion zones around abortion facilities, the archbishop said that he agreed that they should be allowed, but within limits. "Protests can be legitimate, but you can't absolutize. It's up to the government to ensure that the various rights of people are protected." He may have been referring to a recent call by Irish Health Minister Simon Harris, who recently put a priority on creating "safe access zones" to halt pro-life protests.

As of New Year’s Day, abortion has been legal in the Irish Republic after a landslide referendum vote in 2018 that struck down previous prohibitions.

Archbishop Martin said in the interview that he does believe physicians who “clash with the law” by refusing to refer patients to abortion services should not be subjected to professional sanctions. Saying the government should protect conscientious objection, he said, "We have a constitution which protects freedom of expression. Everybody has a right to make a protest."

"Respecting the rights of conscience of individuals, even where they may come to clash with the law, is a very important thing in any democracy," he said, adding, "Where you begin to trample the rights of conscience then you're moving into a very different form of government."

While the archbishop said he does not believe that the issue of abortion will probably not come up in the near future, he said the Catholic Church should seek to ensure that abortions are rare.

"One of the things in government policy that was constantly stressed is that abortion should be rare,” said Martin. “We have to do something to help people to make sure that that is the case, and that people who want to keep their child can do it, and can do it with dignity."

Archbishop Martin is 73 years old and approximately two years from the usual retirement for Catholic bishops who reach age 75. Other personnel changes are afoot: Dublin’s two auxiliary bishops are due to turn 75 this year. During the interview, when asked whether he is ready to retire, he answered, "It would be good, not just that I retire, but that there would be a different leadership in the Church, a younger one, because we are facing very different challenges."

Following peaceful pro-life protests in Galway, Amnesty International executive director for Ireland Colm O’Gorman tweeted his approval of legislation to be introduced this month that will create exclusion zones around abortion facilities. He wrote: “Well, that didn’t take long. Legislation to impose exclusion zones to prevent obstruction and harassment is due this month. It must be progressed.”

According to the Irish Sun, Irish Health Minister Simon Harris says exclusion zones at abortion facilities to restrict free speech are a priority for the next legislative term. A spokesperson told the Sun that Harris proposes to ensure that abortion providers and persons seeking abortion will have free access to abortion services without having to see or hear appeals from pro-life advocates. The spokesperson told the paper that Harris wants to ensure that abortion “service users and staff” are not subject to “unnecessary intimidation or duress.”

Louise O’Reilly of the leftist Sinn Fein told the Sun that her party wanted “buffer zones” included in December’s abortion legislation. Saying Sinn Fein had raised the issue with Harris before, O’Reilly said he told the party that he would “ deal with it himself and bring forward his own legislation. He should have accepted the opposition amendments at the time which would have included buffer zones.”

Well that didn’t take long. Legislation to impose exclusion zones to prevent obstruction and harassment is due this month. It must be progressed. #ItsTime #SheDecides https://t.co/x9AwUiwGAX

After abortion’s approval in Ireland’s legislature in December, it has become legal for any reason up to 12 weeks of gestation and up to six months in a variety of circumstances. Irish taxpayers are on the hook for the procedures, and Catholic hospitals are compelled to provide abortions.

Conscience protections for medical personnel are strictly limited. Physicians and nurses fear that they will be forced to terminate the lives of unborn babies or face job termination. Hospitals are not ready to undertake abortions because of a lack of enough trained staff, clinical guidelines, and ultrasound machines.

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Brazil’s new president declares ‘God above all,’ vows to fight gender ideology

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By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman

January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Brazil’s new president Jair Bolsonaro was sworn in to office on the first of January, and wasted no time in expressing his intention to lead the country in accordance with “Judeo-Christian” principles and to defend the institution of the family against “destructive” gender ideology and “political correctness.”

In his address to Brazil’s National Congress, Bolsonaro promised that “we are going to unite the people, value the family, respect religions and our Judeo-Christian tradition, combat gender ideology, conserving our values.”

“Brazil will return to being a country free of the chains of ideology,” added Bolsonaro. “My electoral campaign listened to the call of the streets and forged a commitment to place Brazil first and God above all.”

Promises to restore Brazil from collapse in moral values

The country’s new president noted the catastrophic effects of the collapse of moral values that had occurred in recent decades in Brazil under socialist rule. Brazil has seen a massive surge in crime in recent years and homosexuality and gender ideology has been on display in government-funded parades and in public school indoctrination.

“Irresponsibility has brought us to the greatest ethical, moral, and economic crisis in our history,” lamented Bolsonaro in his address to the congress. “Today we begin an arduous task to begin for Brazil a new chapter in our history, a chapter in which Brazil will be seen as a strong, powerful, confident, and bold.”

“I place myself before the whole nation, on this day, as the day in which the people began to liberate itself from socialism, from the inversion of values, from big government, and from political correctness,” he later told a crowd in front of the country’s presidential palace, where he will carry out his duties.

“We cannot allow destructive ideologies to divide the Brazilian people, ideologies that destroy our values and traditions, destroy our families, which are the foundation of our society.  And I invite everyone to begin a movement in this sense,” said Bolsonaro in the same speech. “We can – I, you, and our families, all of us together – reestablish ethical and moral standards that will transform our Brazil.”

Thanks God for saving him from an assassination attempt

Bolsonaro thanked God for saving him from an assassination attempt by a mentally disturbed leftist that almost cost him his life during the campaign. After he was stabbed and then saved from bleeding to death through a “miraculous operation” by doctors at a local hospital, Bolsonaro’s already-leading candidacy soared in popularity, leading to his victory in the elections.

“First, I wish to thank God for the fact that I am alive, that a truly miraculous operation was done (on me) by the hands of the professionals of the Holy House of Juiz de Fora (hospital). Thank you, my God,” Bolsonaro said in his speech to the National Congress.

“When the enemies of the country, of order, and of liberty, tried to put an end to my life, millions of Brazilians went to the streets,” noted Bolsonaro. “An electoral campaign was transformed into a civic movement, covered itself in green and yellow, became spontaneous, strong, and indestructible, and brought us here.”

New human rights minister strongly pro-life, opposed to LGBT indoctrination

Bolsonaro’s new minister for Women, the Family, and Human Rights, Damares Alves, also made it clear that her Christian values will inform her leadership of the ministry, rather than political correctness. Her stance has already led to death threats against her, which she says were the reason that she did not allow her daughter to attend her assumption of the ministry.

Alves says that she wants to make the right to life a fundamental principle of her administration of the ministry. “When I talk about life, I’m talking about life from conception,” she told the media. “I wanted our ministry to be called the ‘Ministry of Life and of Joy,’ but that wasn’t possible.  

“If it depends on this ministry, innocent blood will no longer be shed,” she added, referring to the killing of the unborn through abortion, which is illegal in most circumstances in Brazil.

She also made it clear that the indoctrination of gender ideology in the nation’s public schools would no longer be government policy. “In this government, a girl will be a princess and a boy will be a prince. No one is going to impede us from calling girls princesses and boys princes. We are going to do away with the abuse of ideological indoctrination.”

Alves addressed the related issue of child sex abuse by pedophile “sex tourists,” a major problem facing Brazil under its previous gay-friendly government. “Attention pedophiles: the fun is over, Bolsonaro is president,” she told the press.

Regarding her Christian faith, Alves recognized that “the government is secular, but this minister is terribly Christian. I believe in the ways of God.”

Brazilian media noted that LGBT “rights” had been removed from the tasks assigned by Bolsonaro to be overseen by Alves. However, Alves told the media that her administration would continue to protect such rights as they were previously recognized in Brazilian law.

Read more extended quotes from Jair Bolonaro’s two inaugural speeches

Quotes from address to the National Congress:

“First, I wish to thank God for the fact that I am alive, that a truly miraculous operation was done (on me) by the hands of the professionals of the Holy House of Juiz de Fora (hospital). Thank you, my God. I return with humility to this House where, for 28 years, I worked to serve the Brazilian nation, fighting great battles, and I accumulated experiences and training that gave me the opportunity to grow and to mature.”

“I take advantage of this solemn moment and call on each one of the members of Congress to aid me in the mission of restoring and rebuilding our country, liberating it definitively from the yoke of corruption, criminality, economic irresponsibility and ideological submission. We have before us a unique opportunity to reconstruct our country and to rescue the hope of our compatriots.”

“Therefore, when the enemies of the country, of order, and of liberty, tried to put an end to my life, millions of Brazilians went to the streets. An electoral campaign was transformed into a civic movement, covered itself in green and yellow, became spontaneous, strong, and indestructible, and brought us here. None of this would have happened without the effort and the commitment of every Brazilian who went to the streets to preserve our liberty and democracy. I reaffirm my commitment to construct a society without discrimination or division.”

“I am certain that we will confront enormous challenges, but if we have the wisdom to listen to the voice of the people, we will achieve success in our objectives and by our example and our work we will bring future generations to follow us in our glorious task. We are going to unite the people, value the family, respect religions and our Judeo-Christian tradition, combat gender ideology, conserving our values. Brazil will return to being a country free of the chains of ideology . . . My electoral campaign listened to the call of the streets and forged a commitment to place Brazil first and God above everything.”

“Irresponsibility has brought us to the greatest ethical, moral, and economic crisis in our history. Today we begin an arduous task to begin for Brazil a new chapter in our history, a chapter in which Brazil will be seen as a strong, powerful, confident, and bold. Foreign policy will reassume its role in the defense of sovereignty, in the construction of greatness and in promoting the development of Brazil.”

Quotes from address at the Presidential Palace (Palacio do Planalto):

“It is with humility and honor that I address you all as President of Brazil. And I place myself before the whole nation, on this day, as the day in which the people began to liberate itself from socialism, from the inversion of values, from big government, and from political correctness.”

“We cannot allow destructive ideologies to divide the Brazilian people, ideologies that destroy our values and traditions, destroy our families, which are the foundation of our society.  And I invite everyone to begin a movement in this sense. We can – I, you, and our families, all of us together – reestablish ethical and moral standards that will transform our Brazil.”

“We face the great challenge of confronting the effects of the economic crisis, of record unemployment, of the ideological indoctrination of our children, of the corruption of human rights, of the deconstruction of the family. We will propose and implement the necessary reforms. We will increase the infrastructure, reduce bureaucracy, simplify, and eliminate the distrust and the weight of the government over those who work and produce.”

“It is also urgent to do away with the ideology that defends thugs and criminalizes the police, that has made Brazil experience an increase in levels of violence and in the power of organized crime, that takes away the lives of innocent people, destroys families and brings insecurity everywhere. Our preoccupation will be with the safety of people of good will and the guarantee of the right of property and of legitimate defense, and our commitment is to value and support the work of all of the security forces.”

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Andrew Cuomo
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New York governor vows massive abortion expansion by next month

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By Lisa Bourne

ALBANY, New York, January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Pro-life advocates in New York State have a big challenge before them in the new legislative session as pro-abortion Democrats are expected to leverage newly acquired power to advance legislation posing significant assaults on life.

Democrats took control of the New York State Senate last fall. They won eight Republican-held seats by unseating five Republican incumbents and winning three open seats.

Rabidly pro-abortion New York Governor Andrew Cuomo also won a third term, promising “the most progressive agenda this state have ever seen – period.”

For the first time the New York legislature has a super-majority of Democrats, and minus meaningful opposition the pro-abortion Dems are expected to pass two bills hazardous to life this month.

One bill would deregulate abortion and elevate the procedure to the level of a “human right,” creating a major threat to the work of pro-lifers.

The Reproductive Health Act (RHA) has been publicized as simply “codifying” Roe v. Wade in state law. It’s been pushed for passage in New York over years, previously passing in the Assembly but then been blocked in the Senate.

New York state abortion law precedes Roe v. Wade by three years, legalizing abortion in 1970. But New York's law has abortion in the criminal code, and presently does not allow non-physicians to perform abortion.

Now with President Donald Trump in office and the resulting changes in the United States Supreme Court, pro-aborts are pushing for the procedure to be codified into state law. 

However beyond establishing a so-called right to abortion in New York law, pro-life supporters say, pro-aborts seek through the Act to raise abortion to the same or greater level than the freedom of religion and speech they rely upon to offer life-saving assistance to mothers in crisis pregnancy and their unborn children.

The RHA is expected to put the religious liberty of medical providers at risk, as well as quash parental rights, allow non-doctors to perform abortions, increase tax money spent on abortions, permit abortion through all nine months of pregnancy, threaten closure of hospitals and clinics refusing to refer for abortion, decriminalize botched abortions and reduce penalties for violent crimes committed against pregnant women.

Because the law would also put the existence of medical providers who refuse to refer for abortion in jeopardy, pro-lifers say, it would have detrimental effect on the quality of medical care for women experiencing unplanned pregnancy.

Cuomo, who had said in the past that pro-life supporters have no place in New York, pledged passage of the RHA in the first 30 days of the session.  

The other proposed legislation, Assembly Bill 11150, was introduced in June of last year, and would target pregnancy centers for legislative investigation.

Local pro-life advocates see it as laying the groundwork to regulate them out of existence.  

The bill would provide for taxpayer-funded investigation of pregnancy centers by the state’s Consumer Protection Division, presuming the guilt of pregnancy centers and thus overthrowing due process.

Other aspects of A11150 are its assumption that abortion is medical standard of care, and the claim that pregnancy centers are dangerous and guilty of deceptive advertising.

“At crisis pregnancy centers, pregnant people are misled, shamed, and pressured to not seek prenatal care or abortion services,” it states.

Should Roe actually be overturned, pro-life advocates expect New York’s increasingly radical abortion laws would make the state an abortion tourism destination since most states would continue to limit the practice. 

New York’s legislative session opens January 9.

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Pro-abortion Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg misses court arguments for first time

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By Martin Barillas

Tell the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. Sign the petition here.

WASHINGTON. January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) -- Speculation is afoot in Washington because liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg missed arguments at the Supreme Court for the first time in more than 25 years.

According to a statement from the high court, Ginsburg did not sit on the bench while her colleagues gathered on Monday to hear arguments.

The 85-year-old justice was discharged on December 25 from a New York hospital after surgeons removed two cancerous growths from her left lung earlier in the month.

It was not clear from the statement when Ginsburg may return to the court, which is due to hear cases on Tuesday and Wednesday, and again next week.

In the courtroom on Monday, Chief Justice John Roberts said that Ginsburg would decide on the arguments “on the basis of the briefs and transcripts of oral arguments.”

Despite earlier health issues, including cancer surgeries in 1999 and 2009, Ginsburg rallied and did not fail to participate in court sessions. In 2009, for instance, Ginsburg returned to work at the court for arguments just 18 days after surgery for pancreatic cancer. And after sustaining a fall in November, she broke two ribs but spoke at the naturalization ceremony for new citizens, asked questions at high court arguments, and participated in interviews about the biopic that is dedicated to her, “On the Basis of Sex.”

After a pulmonary lobectomy at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York in December, physicians announced that they had not found “evidence of any remaining disease” in her lung. Because imagery captured before her surgery showed no cancerous growths elsewhere in Ginsburg’s body, no additional treatment is currently planned, said the court.

Ginsburg has hired clerks for the court term that extends into 2020, thus giving evidence that she does not plan to retire. She dismissed suggestions from liberals that she should retire during Barack Obama’s second presidential term, when Democrats controlled the Senate and could have confirmed her successor.

Since taking office, President Donald Trump has nominated two justices who are believed to by sympathetic to the pro-life cause. Should Ginsburg resign, Trump would have an opportunity to name her successor. However, on December 21, the president tweeted wishes for Ginsburg’s  “full and speedy recovery!” from surgery.

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Andrea Pearson (left) and daughter Madeline of Leesburg, VA, stand in front of the Supreme Court awaiting the procession from the 2017 March for Life. Andrea had three abortions beginning as a teenager. Peter LaBarbera / LifeSiteNews
Fr. Frank Pavone

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Personal abortion testimonies make powerful impact at marches

Fr. Frank Pavone
By Fr. Frank Pavone

January 7, 2019 (Priests for Life) -- Among the many events surrounding the upcoming March for Life in Washington and the Walk for Life West Coast in San Francisco are the Silent No More Gatherings that occur in close connection to both events.

The Silent No More Awareness Campaign (www.SilentNoMore.com), a joint project of Priests for Life and Anglicans for Life, is the world’s largest mobilization of moms, dads and other family members who mourn the loss of their children to abortion.

At the conclusion of the March for Life, dozens of these brave men and women share, at the steps of the Supreme Court, the stories of their abortions and of the healing mercy they found in Jesus Christ. Likewise, just prior to the main rally at the Walk for Life West Coast, the testimonies are also given.

Let's reflect for a moment on the key importance of this.

"We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us” (1 Jn. 1:3). With these words, John spells out the basis on which the Gospel was announced to the world: personal testimony. Peter proclaimed, “We are witnesses of everything he did …God raised him from the dead …and caused him to be seen … by witnesses whom God had already chosen -- by us who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one whom God appointed … ” (Acts 10:39-42).

God takes personal testimony seriously. It’s the way he has spread his word from the beginning. He intervenes in the lives of his people, and then he empowers his people to spread the good news about God’s intervention, so that they can experience it too!

The Old Testament Patriarchs encountered God in a variety of surprising ways, and the advancement of salvation history depended upon their sharing that witness, starting with Abraham’s sharing of the encounter by which God told him to relocate his family and trust in a promise of fruitfulness that seemed impossible. The prophets likewise, through words and symbolic actions, told the people what God spoke to them. And the central event of the Old Testament, the Exodus, comes to us through generations of personal testimony to the mighty intervention of God.

Jesus Christ himself is the testimony of the Father. “I am telling you what I have seen in the Father’s presence,” Jesus explained (John 8:38). “For this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth” (John 18:37).

Paul’s conversion experience on the road to Damascus is one of the most famous testimonies in Christianity. And it does not stop with the Bible. Whether it’s through the Confessions of St. Augustine, or the writings of Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, or Ignatius of Loyola, this much is clear: personal testimony is an essential tool of evangelization.

It’s not surprising, therefore, the Silent No More Awareness Campaign is one of today’s most powerful pro-life developments. The voices of moms, dads, and other relatives and friends who have been impacted by the abortion of a child and speak out about their pain and healing bring truth where there was deception and bring hope where there was despair.

The experience of the Campaign has shown that when these testimonies are shared in churches, in the media, and in public rallies around the world, people are converted from support of abortion, pregnant moms find the strength to choose life, and those hurting from a past abortion are moved to seek the forgiveness and peace of which they have been deprived for years.

These testimonies both reveal the hidden horror of abortion, and proclaim that for those alienated by sin – whether abortion or not -- there is a Savior.

It’s time for the Church and for each of us to hear and spread the testimonies of this campaign. Let's make this January the biggest success ever in Washington, D.C. and in San Francisco by meeting the courage of these Silent No More witnesses with our own courage to share their stories with as many as we can!

Fr. Frank Pavone leads Priests for Life, one of the world’s largest pro-life organizations. Connect with him on Twitter and Instagram at @frfrankpavone and on Facebook at FatherFrankPavone.

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Screengrab from Youtube video showing police dragging a man from St. Patrick's Cathedral in Armagh as he prays for the unborn on the eve of Ireland's new abortion regime.
K.V. Turley

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Armed police drag pro-lifer from Irish cathedral while he prays for unborn

K.V. Turley
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January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – 2018 was the year that saw the Irish Referendum on abortion passed with cheering crowds on the streets of Dublin and elsewhere.  

As the Feast of the Holy Family drew to a close on December 30, armed police at the request of the local clergy forcibly dragged an Irish pro-lifer from a Catholic cathedral. Seemingly, his crime was wanting to pray through the night in that cathedral as an act of reparation for the liberal abortion law about to be enacted in Ireland.

The cathedral in question was St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Armagh. That city is the ecclesiastical capital of Ireland. It is reputed to be the site of St. Patrick’s main church that, according to tradition, was founded there in the year 457. It is the historic centre of Christianity in the island.

As with many such incidents today, there is video footage of the man being dragged from the cathedral by armed police. On this occasion, however, the police officers involved seem only embarrassed by what they were asked to do by the cathedral authorities. In the video the detained man is peaceful and clearly intent on doing nothing more than praying for his country and the generations about to be slaughtered as a result of the Republic’s new abortion law. He says as much to the police officers. Nevertheless, he is told he is under arrest and will be taken to a nearby police station, with the inevitable court appearance soon to follow.

2018 was a dismal year for Ireland. These desperate images seem to capture that year’s tragedy anew and how some have their priorities back to front. As the year ended, and the clock ticked down to the implementation of a new abortion regime in Ireland, one would have thought that the cathedral, that for so many represents the heart of Irish Catholicism and is the see of the Primate of All Ireland, the Archbishop of Armagh, could have stayed open on this night of all nights to pray for the unborn and for the Irish nation to once more regain its moral compass. 

The cathedral is named in honour of St. Patrick. In establishing Christianity he drove out the pagan barbarism then prevalent throughout the island. Tradition has it that, each Spring, druids held their occult festival on the Hill of Slane in the centre of Ireland. It was there, that the druid fire was lit. This fire was the only one permitted in Ireland at that moment. It symbolised not just a religious order but a temporal one, too, with the druid pagan religion at its core. That fire was also a fire for human sacrifice lit to pacify the gods whom the druids and the pagan Irish worshipped.

In the teeth of druidic opposition, and like Elijah of old on Mount Carmel before the prophets of Baal, St. Patrick ascended the Hill of Slane and started a different fire. In the end, it proved to be a fire that brought the light of Truth to the Irish and, subsequently, not only converted a nation to Christianity but also ended both human slavery and the barbaric human sacrifices then practised.

However dimly, there is something in this history echoed in that poor man’s protest last Sunday night. While others were keen to get to their beds and, no doubt sleep soundly through the night, this man wanted, needed, to pray for the unborn, sensing the evil about to be unleashed once more upon the people of Ireland as they enter into a new form of slavery.

The heavy-handed approach of calling the police, meted out by church authorities to this peaceful penitential pilgrim, is alarming to say the least. Sadly, it was not altogether unexpected in light of the new fires currently being lit across Ireland and the lack of resolve on the part of some to counter these neo-pagan “bonfires”.  

If what is left of Christian Ireland does not perceive the real danger in its midst and act with all the spiritual means at its disposal to counter that threat, then in those same flames the last remnants of the faith will perish as surely as the children who are now once more to be sacrificed to demons – demons who have returned to Irish shores to be enthroned again as gods.

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The 'Peaceful Seven' carry out their pro-life witness outside an abortion facility in Galway, Ireland.
K.V. Turley

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As Irish abortions begin, gov’t makes plans to censor pro-life dissent

K.V. Turley
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GALWAY, Ireland, January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – The euphoria of the “Yes” campaign on winning the Irish abortion referendum last May is turning decidedly sour.

Not only are those who campaigned for a ‘yes’ vote complaining that the measures that have been rapidly introduced by a compliant government to kill the unborn are not enough, the same people who campaigned for freedom from the then existing restrictions on abortion now wish to restrict the rights of those morally opposed to abortion.

The strategy by which the pro-abortion side wish to silence debate on abortion is through censorship zones, similar to those deployed in the UK around abortion centers. These zones prevent peaceful witness close to abortion centers, as well as prohibiting the offer of practical and emotional support to pregnant women, and the offer of an alternative to abortion.

On January 3, 2019, a group of 7 men and women stood outside the Galvia West Medical Centre in Galway for a few hours on Thursday morning. These pro-life witnesses carried a number of placards reading  “There’s always a better option”, “Love them both,” “Say no to abortion in Galway”. The group left just before lunchtime.

One of those participating in this pro-life witness, Maria Mahoney, told LifeSite:

The demonstration was a group of local residents who were horrified to find out that the only doctor to be dispensing abortion pills in Galway City was right in the middle of their Westside shopping centre, library, and playground. My friend found out that one of the doctors in the Galvia Medical Centre was on the government abortion hotline and then told us about it and helped organise the protest. 

We wanted to make sure that anyone going in for an abortion pill knew about the help available by so many wonderful local groups, especially My Adoption Story and Gianna Care. We also wanted to send a clear message to the doctor involved that this was completely unethical and violated the Hippocratic Oath that doctors have taken for nearly 2500 years. It is terrible that the government will give a GP 450 euro [$512] to destroy an unborn baby but only hand over a pittance when a GP looks after an unborn baby.

The group has been dubbed the “Peaceful Seven”, and it appears to have been a restrained and dignified pro-life witness. Silently, promoting alternatives to abortion through the words on the placards that they held, these men and women passionately want to help women avoid making the wrong choice and having an abortion. In any case, in a democracy people have the right to peaceful protest. People also have the right to propagate their views within the framework of the civil society in which they live; and this includes peacefully demonstrating against laws they consider unjust.

The undemocratic nature of Ireland’s pro-abortion lobby was seen all too clearly in reaction to this small and peaceful protest in Galway. It provoked hysterical response from pro-abortionists demanding restrictions on civil rights within Irish society. The Irish Times reported that pro-abortion campaigner Ailbhe Smyth has called on the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, to introduce emergency legislation to introduce UK-style censorship zones around medical practices offering abortion services.  Of course, Harris, who is one of the most pro-abortion politicians in Ireland and who also seems determined to prove his “woke” credentials at every turn, has caved in immediately and promised to introduce legislation for such zones.

If this is not enough for Ireland’s pro-abortionists, they want these zones to be implemented immediately. The current Irish government appears to have little else to do these days than pander to the abortion lobby and execute with lightning speed its lengthening list of demands for more rapid and streamlined killing of the unborn. This state of affairs is not only a sad indictment on Ireland today but more specifically on the country’s political class who, bar a few honourable exceptions, appear to be without any sense of balance or anything approaching a measured approach when it comes to the subject of abortion.

Rushed legislation is nearly always poor legislation. The censorship zones in England – of which there are now two in the London area – may have “solved” one issue in favour of the pro-abortion lobby and their allies in local government but it has infringed basic civil and human rights. As a result, there is a lengthy and costly legal challenge still underway passing through British courts against these hastily contrived regulations. From a neutral perspective, such zones only appear to move the pro-life witness a short distance from where it was previously. So they do not stop such demonstrations. In fact, it could be argued they galvanize them.

The pro-abortionist lobby in Ireland and its many friends in the Irish Parliament are terrified of street protest on the subject of abortion. It flies in the face of their carefully crafted narrative that the Irish as a nation want abortion and are as “chilled out” about the killing of the unborn as any “modern democracy”. For them, the debate is over. All that remains to be done, in their eyes, is the censoring of any remaining opposing opinions because the latter remind anyone listening of the reality of what an abortion consists of in practice.

This same pro-abortion lobby is, however, fooling no one but itself on this score. Across North America, in the United Kingdom and throughout the continent of Europe, pro-life witness has not declined but grown in the years since liberal abortion regimes have been introduced in various jurisdictions. There is no reason why the Irish reaction to the referendum and the subsequent abortion legislation, will be any different – no matter how “progressive” Harris and his allies wish Ireland to be perceived.

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'Karen' White confessed to two counts of sexual touching during his time in a female jail. Facebook
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UK inmate seeks sex-change surgery in desperate attempt to return to women’s prison

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By Jonathon van Maren

January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) -- Some of you may remember a story I reported on last year, where a biological male calling himself “Karen White” managed to get sent to a women’s prison in the United Kingdom. Upon his arrival there, he promptly began a spree of sexual assaults, the first of which occurred within days of his incarceration. He sexually assaulted four female prisoners — who, it must be remembered, were literally locked in with him — before prison officials decided that his relocation had been a bad idea.

It turns out that Karen White — who was once, more accurately, known as David Thompson — is not a fan of his latest lodgings, the notorious HM Prison Wakefield. White, who was sent to prison for attacking a 66-year-old neighbor with a steak knife, raping several women, and sexual offenses involving children, has stated that being locked behind bars with other rapists as well as murderers “doesn’t promote positivity.” 

As a result, he’s begging friends to help him get a sex change, which will cost a cool 25,000 pounds — but will help him get back into a women’s prison. “I’m longing for the day the system sends me — more like forced to send me — to a female prison again,” he wrote. “But the only way I will achieve this is if I become a woman. Then the system will have no option but to send me to a female estate.” This surgery needs to be funded now, the 55-year-old wrote, because if he ends up on an NHS wait list it would take years and “I don’t think they would perform (it), partly because it is dangerous.”

Despite the fact that “Karen” essentially admits in this letter that he is still male (since he still has to “become a woman”), he still managed to dupe the prison system into setting him loose among a vulnerable female population, and mainstream newspapers are still dutifully referring to him as “her.” This is in addition to the fact that the court heard that White had used his “female persona” — an extremely unconvincing one to those of us who are sane, if you’ve seen his photo — to achieve access to more victims, and Judge Christopher Batty referred to White as a “highly manipulative predator.”

Karen’s letters tell what is supposed to read as a heart-rending tale. He is forced to give up his padded bras for security purposes, despite the fact that he feels they are a very important part of his identity. When he dresses as a woman, he wrote, he is mocked by other prisoners as a “freak” and a “weirdo,” which is very hurtful. “I don’t feel good, due to my surroundings and being forced to dress as a man,” said the man who raped several women, molested children, and tried to stab his neighbor.  

The Justice Department declined to comment on Karen White’s much-publicized spasm of letter-writing, which is unsurprising considering the fact that they have yet to comment on the decision to send him to a women’s prison first, or whether those who made this decision bear some responsibility for the pain of the female prisoners who were sexually assaulted by this dangerous predator, who was (and is) legally a man. Presumably, they feel that there is nothing they can say that will make them sound reasonable or sane, and thus it is better to remain quiet and hope the whole thing blows over.

On the other hand, the Idaho prison system in the United States was recently ordered by a judge to provide a sex change to a prisoner who demanded one, and at the taxpayer’s expense. In today’s topsy-turvy gender-blender society, Karen White might just be in luck. 

Cardinal Gerhard Muller
Cardinal Gerhard Muller, prefect emeritus of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith Diane Montagna/LifeSiteNews
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Cardinal Müller: Blaming sex abuse crisis on ‘clericalism’ is an insult to victims

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By Maike Hickson

January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) -- Cardinal Gerhard Müller – the former Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith – has written, upon request from LifeSiteNews, a commentary on the sharp rejections of Cardinal Walter Brandmüller's recent statements concerning the clerical sex abuse crisis and its link to homosexuality. While Müller rejects the idea of holding all homosexuals responsible for the sexual abuse crisis, he does insist that “the fact cannot remain ignored that more than 80 percent of the (sexual abuse) victims are of the male sex.”

The German cardinal also rejects the idea that the abuse crisis has been caused by “celibacy or purported ecclesial power structures,” and points out that “the offenders have committed homosexual crimes.” Thus, these abuses are not “abuses of power,” but, rather, power is being used in order to gratify one's disordered sexual desires. Müller states: “However, when an adult or superior sexually assaults someone who is entrusted to his care, his 'power' is only the means (though also abused) for his evil deed, and not its cause.” There then is indeed “a double abuse, but one may not confuse the cause of the crime with the means and occasions for its implementation in order to unload the very personal guilt of the offender onto the circumstances or to 'the' society, or to 'the' Church.” Since there is also much sexual abuse taking place outside of the Church's structures, Cardinal Müller points out that it is actually an abuse of those victims outside of the Catholic Church when pointing to power structures as the real cause of that abuse: “To babble on here of clericalism or of Church structures as the cause (of sexual abuse), is an insult of the many victims of sexual abuse (outside the Catholic Church) by persons who have nothing to do with the Church and clergymen,” he explains.

The following is the full statement of Cardinal Gerhard Müller:

When a clergyman commits the crime of sexual abuse of an adolescent, the ideologues are not hesitant to accuse priests in general or “the” Church – as they say – in a theologically uninformed way. This is the only case where it is still permitted to generalize in a reckless way, and even to present gleefully their phantasies of a collective guilt. When an Islamicist commits an act of terror, it is exactly the same people – with their dull prejudices against celibacy and against the despised moral teaching of the Church – who acquit Islam of any complicity and who – justly so – defend the majority of peaceful Muslims.

In a similar fashion, one may not make responsible “the” foreigners for the crime of one individual, just as one may not accuse “the” priests generally for the crime of one person who also belongs to that same  profession.
Why do the ideologues not come to the simple idea that one may not, in a generalizing fashion, lay the guilt of one individual at the feet of the family, a profession, a nation, or the religious community of the criminal?

When analyzing sexual abuse of minors committed by Catholic clergymen, the fact cannot remain ignored that more than 80 percent of the victims are of the male sex. Nothing is going to be made better by denying the facts or by vaguely insinuating that “the” homosexuals – to whomever one might hereby refer – are being held accountable for all the sexual abuse, just as it is nonsense to hold accountable “the” priests for it as a group.

It also has nothing to do with celibacy or purported ecclesial power structures, but, rather, with the fact that the offenders have committed homosexual crimes. There does not exist the “homosexual” as a specific type of man, but, rather, there exist men with a same-sex attraction – independently of the moral assessment of homosexual acts.

The homosexual organizations and ideologies do not represent the interests of those people who affirm, within the Christian Faith, the Church's moral teaching in this matter. The personal witness of a concerned man, Daniel Mattson, and his highly qualified book Why I Don't Call Myself Gay (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2017), is far superior to all of the homosexual propaganda and to the self-righteous orchestration of the “progressive” Catholics. However, the arrogance with which each one of those who does not follow the homophilic ideology is being exposed to contempt, as a homophobic underling (“Untermensch”), deserves now the opposition of every just and upright man.

Sexual abuse has its foundation in the immoral exercise of the sexual instinct. The male and female sexuality is intrinsically good because it has been implanted into the bodily nature of man by the Creator and because it predisposes him to a marriage between a man and a woman. The abuse of this sexuality is called the sin against the Sixth Commandment of the Decalogue.

However, when an adult or superior sexually assaults someone who is entrusted to his care, his “power” is only the means (though also abused) for his evil deed, and not its cause. It is indeed about a double abuse, but one may not confuse the cause of the crime with the means and occasions for its implementation in order to unload the very personal guilt of the offender onto the circumstances or to “the” society, or to “the” Church.

A priest is given the spiritual authority “in order to build up, not to tear down” (2 Cor. 10:8). The offender's will for sexual gratification is the cause of the violation of the physical and emotional intimacy of a person entrusted to him. To babble on here of clericalism or of Church structures as the cause (of sexual abuse), is an insult of the many victims of sexual abuse (outside the Catholic Church) by persons who have nothing to do with the Church and clergymen. (They, too, are the victims of people using them for their own disordered sexual gratification.)

He is himself acting in an immoral manner who uses this occasion in order to hold responsible for these grave sins against God and men not the offenders themselves, but, rather, celibacy, the Catholic moral teaching and the sacramental constitution of the Church. He does so, in part, because he presents all priests and religious – who have voluntarily chosen this way of life which is in accordance with the Gospels and who, on a daily basis, give their very best in the pastoral care – as being potential sexual abusers and thus exposes them to the omnipresent suspicion and public discrimination. Just as celibacy is not the cause for its violation and defiance, marriage, too, is not responsible for the sin against it; the same applies to the Commandment to honor one's parents which may not properly be accused of being the cause of their own culpable neglect.

 

Cardinal Walter Brandmüller
Cardinal Walter Brandmüller Diane Montagna/LifeSiteNews
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Dubia Cardinal: ‘Statistically proven’ that clerical sex abuse is linked to homosexuality

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By Maike Hickson

January 7, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – German Cardinal Walter Brandmüller, known of late as one of the four cardinals to sign the famous “dubia” to Pope Francis, is facing sharp criticism after linking the Church’s sex abuse crisis to the problem of homosexuality in the priesthood.

The cardinal told Deutsche Presse Agentur (DPA) on January 4 that “80% of the abuse cases in the ecclesial environment involved male adolescents, not children.” It is “statistically proven,” he said, that there exists a link between abuse and homosexuality.

Cardinal Brandmüller's remarks have been widely reported in Germany, notably by major media outlets such as Der Spiegel, Die Bild, Der Stern, and Die Welt. The German bishops' news website – Katholisch.de – also picked up on the story.

The German cardinal – who turned 90 years of age on January 5 – said that it is “hypocritical” when the larger society is indignant about the Catholic Church's abuse crisis, because “what happens with the abuse in the Catholic Church is nothing else than what happens in society in general.” Sexual abuse as such, he added, is not a specifically Catholic phenomenon, but the real scandal is that leaders of the Church are not different in this regard from the rest of society.

“It is not less far from reality to forget,” Brandmüller added, “or to elide over the fact that 80% of the abuse cases in the ecclesial environment involved male adolescents, not children.”

According to Cardinal Brandmüller, homosexuals should not become priests. “For the simple reason that it is difficult to overcome a homosexual inclination,” he explained. “In addition, a priest has to be fatherly. He who emotionally does not have the capability for normal human love and for assuming the responsibility for a family would likewise encounter difficulties as a priest.”

This DPA interview has now caused the expressed indignation of several prominent people, among them Die Welt's editor-in-chief, Ulf Poschardt. He tweeted out a Die Welt report on Brandmüller's words, calling them disgraceful. “What a disgraceful way of the Catholic Church to relativize guilt and to defame homosexuals,” Poschardt wrote on Twitter January 4. “Very poor! Cardinal sees 'link between abuse and homosexuality.'”

Father James Martin, S.J., editor-at-large of the U.S. Jesuit magazine America, himself commented as follows:

Once again, false. Neither homosexuality (nor celibacy) causes abuse. Most sexual abuse occurs in families, and no one says that heterosexuality (or marriage) causes abuse. These misinformed statements lead not to solutions, but only to more homophobia.

In another recent interview prior to his 90th birthday, the German cardinal also discussed the fact that he is one of the authors of the dubia (doubts) concerning Pope Francis' document Amoris Laetitia. Brandmüller says that he would write them again, and in the same manner. “It is about the question: is adultery under certain conditions morally justifiable?” he explained. “Are there acts which are intrinsically evil?” According to this prelate, “since the coming of modern moral theology, everything has become uncertain.” The “whole edifice of Christian and human morality” is endangered, and likely  to “crash down”; and then “one could also justify homosexuality.”

In this context, Cardinal  Brandmüller also approves of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò's own critique of Pope Francis and his personnel policy, especially in light of the McCarrick case. However, the German prelate does not agree with Viganò's call for Pope Francis to resign, something which happened the last time in the 11th century when Henry IV (1050-1106) called Pope Gregory VII (1025-1085) to resign. Such a thing is not acceptable, in Brandmüller's eyes.

In this January 1, 2019 interview, Cardinal Brandmüller also discussed the ongoing curial reform which he considers to be a “total flop.” Except for Cardinal Parolin, he added, the current council of cardinals “has no idea of the Curia.”

Moreover, Cardinal Brandmüller also explained how he got to know the then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger who later made him a cardinal. Brandmüller insists that he and Benedict XVI were not close friends – he called it a “legend” – but, rather that they had “a polite, collegial relationship.” The 90-year-old prelate still disapproves of Benedict's own resignation. He met Ratzinger first in 1970 in Rome. When discussing a book written by the dissident Catholic professor Hans Küng (Infallible?), they decided that they would both write something on this matter: Brandmüller as a historian, in order to show Küng's “numerous mistakes”; and Ratzinger as an expert in fundamental theology.

Upon being made a cardinal, Brandmüller chose as his motto “Ignis in terram” (“Fire upon the earth”), words spoken by Our Lord: “I am come to cast fire upon the earth.” As the German prelate explained, his own family name – “Firemiller” (“Brandmüller”) – means a miller who builds a mill upon burned land. But his motto, he added, indicated Christ's own proclamation. Christianity is “not a sleeping powder, but dynamite,” the cardinal added. “When Christianity is lived out, it changes the world.”

Further expressing his fiery love for the Faith and his abiding trust, the German cardinal gave LifeSiteNews permission to publish a little verse that he wrote for the New Year 2019:

Today the clouds are covering up the Star –

but they cannot extinguish It!

Be patient only –  the hour will come

when Light will break through the dark!

In Latin:

Stellae splendorem nubes non extinguunt

etsi obfuscent radios lucentes.

Veniet hora qua clarentem

orbis videbit!

In German:

Wolken verhüllen heute den Stern -

ihn auszulöschen vermögen sie nicht!

Gemach nur, die Stunde sie kommt,

da Glanz das Dunkel durchbricht!

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