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August 17, 2017

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Trump set to end Obama’s rule requiring employers to pay for abortion: report

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By Fr. Mark Hodges

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — The Wall Street Journal reported that President Trump is about to eliminate what pro-lifers call the most offensive portion in Obamacare.  

The Journal says the Trump administration is “poised” to issue an executive order to take back the Health and Human Services (HHS) mandate that all employers pay for abortifacients, sterilization, and contraception insurance.

The HHS mandate has been the subject of lawsuits from church groups and Christian employers since it was implemented in 2011 by then-HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, the former Kansas governor and Planned Parenthood-funded abortion activist. The president wanted to guarantee contraception — including abortifacient “morning-after” drugs — as a basic right for all citizens.

“Federal health officials are expected to finalize a regulation that would allow employers with religious or moral objections … to omit coverage,” WSJ reported.  

“We applaud the Trump administration for rolling back the contraception mandate,” Students for Life of America’s Kristan Hawkins wrote in a press release today. “No person or group should be forced to pay for something that goes against their religious or moral beliefs by bureaucrats in Washington, especially drugs that have been proven to harm women and potentially end the life of an early human being.”

Trump’s anticipated order will allow employers with religious objections to opt out of covering contraception or abortion in their employees’ insurance plans. Employees may privately pay for such coverage.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) assistant counsel Hillary Byrnes told WSJ that Trump’s expected rule “would go a very long way to restoring religious freedom and conscience rights.”

Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-California, characterized the potential order as a “sickening plan to roll back women’s access to contraception.”

Getting rid of Obamacare’s forced abortion coverage mandate was a major campaign promise of the president. “We are glad President Trump is following through with his pro-life, pro-religious freedom promises,” Hawkins added.

Christian Evangelicals, Catholic hospitals, Christian universities, and the USCCB have publicly pushed for the “choking” mandate to be rescinded.  

Pro-lifers said it makes employers personally complicit in sin. New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan stated that “religious freedom is under attack, and we will not cease our struggle to protect it.”

This is “about religious freedom, the sacred right of any Church to define its own teaching and ministry,” Dolan wrote.  

“Never before has the federal government forced individuals and organizations to go out into the marketplace and buy a product that violates their conscience,” the cardinal explained in another letter. “This shouldn’t happen in a land where free exercise of religion ranks first in the Bill of Rights.”

In reaction to public outcry, Obama issued “an accommodation” but wound up keeping the mandate as indirectly paid by religious employers. The USCCB noted that this was no change; the mandate still requires Christians to violate their consciences.

One of the lawsuits was brought by Little Sisters of the Poor. Under the Obamacare mandate, nuns practicing chastity would be forced to pay for abortion drugs, hysterectomy surgery, and birth control devices. In 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court indirectly supported the sisters, telling lower courts to seek ways the government can distribute contraception without forcing religious groups’ involvement.

Another of the dozens of lawsuits was brought by the craft store chain Hobby Lobby, owned by the devoted Christian family of David and Barbara Green. In 2014, the Supreme Court decided in favor of the Greens, ruling that “closely held” corporations could be exempt from the HHS mandate if there is another way to fulfill the law’s goal.  

Burwell v. Hobby Lobby was a landmark case, but it was decided not on the grounds of religious freedom but on the grounds that the forced abortion coverage mandate was not the “least restrictive” method of implementing the Obama administration’s intent.

Pro-abortion organizations have vowed to sue if Trump issues any such executive order.

WSJ reported abortion activists as saying a Trump order could qualify as sex discrimination because it disproportionately affects women. They also turn the religious liberty issue around against Christian employers, claiming that a Trump order would infringe on the beliefs of employees.

"If the rule says any employer can withhold this benefit from employees, then … the government is enabling employers to impose their beliefs on others,” the American Civil Liberties Union’s Louise Melling told WSJ.

The anticipated executive order will take effect as soon as it is published in the Federal Register. An earlier draft of the promised order, leaked in May, was never issued.  

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Glasgow Archbishop Philip Tartaglia
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Catholics ‘wishy-washy’ in professing their faith: Scottish archbishop

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By Lisa Bourne

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania, August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – Catholics are too weak in standing up for the faith, a Scottish bishop said.

Too many have become fixed on avoiding secular criticism instead of taking it on, he said, in part because of groveling to those who dominate the culture and by giving in to political correctness.

“We accommodate. We compromise,” Glasgow Archbishop Philip Tartaglia said.

“We avoid conflict — even when conflict is the only proper course. We are too wishy-washy, as we would say in Scotland.”

“Once upon a time, Catholics longed for and worked for the conversion of others, including a nation’s cultural elites,” the Scottish archbishop continued. “Now many of our Catholic leaders, intellectuals and academic institutions bend over backwards to assure the gatekeepers of culture and prestige that they’re just as right-thinking as they are.”

Archbishop Tartaglia addressed the Convocation of Priests of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in May and his lecture was adapted for an August 8 CRUX article.

In his address, he compared the state of the Catholic Church in the U.S. to the UK, saying the U.S. church was stronger but that both share some challenges.

Citing a prevailing decline in the UK in church participation, the archbishop said there has been a collapse of the basic Christian beliefs and Christian culture that had been adopted and formed identities of most individuals there for centuries, and that religious identity has been replaced by skepticism, consumer appetite and political intolerance.

“It masks itself with progressive vocabulary,” Archbishop Tartaglia said, “but its targets tend to be practicing Christians.”

Atheists and secularists in the 1960s and 1970s were happy to simply ignore or mock the Catholic Church, he continued. And while previous signs of anti-Catholic sentiment may have faded, the archbishop said, “today many see her as the single most formidable threat to their notions of justice and equality, particularly when it comes to matters of human sexuality.”

The hostility is evident in differing ways between the States and the UK, but those in the U.S. should expect some versions to head their way, and the Church should also expect persecution for doing the right thing.

“The chief errors of our time are anthropological, and when a culture becomes global, so do its problems,” the archbishop stated. “If the Church dissents from today’s new rulebook for the human person — and she must — then she should expect rough treatment.”

Archbishop Tartaglia cited Scottish philosopher John Haldane in detailing ways to address current weaknesses in the Church.

First, he pointed to a separation from God and the awareness of His grace, as well as reducing Christ to a moral archetype.

“Too many believers no longer talk about Jesus winning salvation for the sinful but instead point to him as a moral ideal of what humans should strive for,” the archbishop said.

Archbishop Tartaglia also used the philosopher to illustrate current departure from a moral foundation in favor of emotion, saying Haldane “sees a chronic sentimentalism in how we deal with moral matters that demand clear, exacting thought.”

“There were problems with scholasticism and the old moral manuals,” the archbishop said, “but we used to preach on morals from training in rigorous moral argument.”

Regarding Catholics being wishy-washy on the faith and kowtowing to cultural elites, he said Haldane noted that this results in “the displacement of Catholic faith and sacramental practice understood in terms of a rigorous theology of grace and salvation, and their substitution by good works, identified and sustained typically through emotive rhetoric … ”

Of this approbation seeking, Archbishop Tartaglia said, “It’s a kind of virtue-signaling.”

The Church in the U.S. is still doing exceptionally well, however, and he said Christians still matter in the nation’s political, economic and social life. Further, he said the U.S. Church has “the resources, organization, freedom under the law, and breadth of imagination that exist almost nowhere else in the Christian world.”

“In America, Christianity is still a living force,” he said. “It can be attacked, but it can’t be ignored.”

Just as in Europe, the U.S. church will face some very serious challenges in the coming 20 years, Archbishop Tartaglia concluded. But the American church’s strengths and energies “give it a unique ability to influence the life of the Catholic Church in a deeply positive way and on a much wider level.”

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George Soros spending more than ever to push his liberal agenda worldwide

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By Fr. Mark Hodges

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — One of the world’s wealthiest men is investing even more of his money into global political influence.

The Washington Free Beacon reports that billionaire George Soros is doubling his spending on lobbying Congress through his “Open Society Policy Center” (OSPC).  

Soros’ OSPC group will spend approximately $9.2 million this year for a total of $41.6 million since 2013 —  twice as much as he spent in the past 10 years combined ($19.1 million).  

OSPC utilizes full-time, in-house lobbyists working the U.S. Senate, House of Representatives, National Security Council, Defense Department, and State Department.

Soros is using his considerable wealth to lobby for favorable legislation and push a liberal agenda around the world in the name of “democracy.”  

Soros’ “non-profit” promotes abortion and euthanasia, overpopulation, homosexuality, atheism and feminism, same-sex “marriage,” and transgenderism worldwide.

The billionaire activist uses a well-developed network of Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) to advance revolutions around the world, the war on police, Black Lives Matter riots, Occupy Wall Street, globalism, and other hallmarks of liberalism.  

Soros also lobbies through other “charities” such as his “Open Society Foundation” (OSF), which is separate from OSPC. OSF funds more than 60 NGOs in his native Hungary alone.

Soros’ liberal influence on Hungary became so prevalent that the Hungarian Parliament passed a law reigning in foreign NGOs seeking to change the Hungarian pro-life, pro-family, and pro-marriage culture.

Besides political and cultural dominance, Soros also financially wields economic power globally. He is currently embroiled in a $10 billion lawsuit for allegedly orchestrating the African country of Guinea’s freezing of Israeli iron ore mining contracts.

Last fall, DC Leaks released emails from 2011 revealing Soros asked for and got Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to intervene in the Albanian upheaval resulting from exposed political corruption.

Former Department of Justice Attorney J. Christian Adams warned, “Americans do not understand the extent to which Soros fuels this anti-constitutional, anti-American agenda.”

Domestically, Soros’ organizations  work to influence elections, legislation, and policy, including the Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons Act and the National Defense Authorization Act.

Soros’ efforts were particularly successful in the Democratic Party. Adams told Fox News that Soros was “instrumental in shaping Department of Justice policy under the Obama administration.”

It is also alleged that Soros-funded groups were behind anti-Trump mobs that blocked streets, set fires, injured police officers, and destroyed property the day after the November 8 national election.

Wealth and power may have gone to Soros’ head. In numerous interviews, he has admitted to fantasizing that he is “a god.”

“I admit that I have always harbored an exaggerated view of self-importance — to put it bluntly, I fancied myself as some kind of god,” he wrote in 1987.

He confessed to The Independent in 1993, “It is a sort of disease when you consider yourself some kind of god, the creator of everything, but I feel comfortable about it now since I began to live it out.”

He told British television, “Next to my fantasies about being God, I also have very strong fantasies of being mad.”

In 2002, Soros was convicted by a French court of insider trading.

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Pro-life witnesses Linda Gibbons, Mary Wagner, centre, and American Joan Andrews-Bell outside Toronto court. The three women have spent a total of some 18 years in jail for peaceful attempts to save women and children from the violence of abortion.
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Pro-life activist facing 18 months prison for helping women inside abortion facility

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By Lianne Laurence

TORONTO, August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Pro-life activist Mary Wagner is facing a possible jail sentence of 18 months after an Ontario judge found her guilty on Tuesday of mischief and breach of probation.

Justice Rick Libman of the Ontario Court of Justice convicted Wagner on charges arising from her December 12, 2016, arrest at the Bloor West Village Women’s Clinic, where she had tried to persuade women to choose life for their unborn children.

After delivering his verdict, Libman deferred sentencing Wagner to September 12, so she can prepare.

He told the 43-year-old Wagner, who is representing herself, that she can submit evidence on her behalf at the sentencing hearing, such as character references.

“I intend to seek some reference letters, not just for my own character but in support of the unborn,” Wagner told LifeSiteNews.

She wants to “open it up to the larger community” to submit letters “that can speak to the fact that it’s not just one person in court, one person, so to speak, breaking the law, but many people who support justice for the unborn.”

Wagner’s trial began May 25 and proceeded intermittently until closing arguments on June 2. It was complicated and delayed because the Crown brought an extraordinary application for a media publication ban.

Trial judge Libman ruled on the ban June 9, but Superior Court Justice Ian Nordheimer subsequently granted an interim ban on June 12, on a purported emergency basis.  

Nordheimer's ban prohibits the publication of the names of three abortion center personnel who testified against Wagner. LifeSiteNews is fighting the ban, which is expected to be argued on September 18.

 In delivering his verdict on Tuesday, Libman said Wagner testified on her own behalf that she wanted to offer alternatives to abortion to women in the abortion centre.

"She wished to reach out in love, support them,” and let them know they would have help if they brought a child into the world, Libman related.

“In her thoughtful comments to me,” Wagner pointed out the Crown’s argument that she was interfering with a business presupposed the abortion center was a “legitimate business,” added the trial judge.

“However, in her view,” the business of the abortion facility “is to take the life of an unborn child,” and “there can be no greater injustice than that.”

Wagner also “believed she was upholding the law in the manner in which she acted,” Libman said.

She referred to Thomas Aquinas — a 12th-century philosopher and doctor of the Catholic Church — who stated “if a law is unjust, it is not a law," Libman noted. “What could be more unjust, in her view, than an attack on a helpless human being?”

Nevertheless, the trial judge accepted witness testimony that Wagner “entered the clinic through a subterfuge,” and that once in the abortion facility, “declined” to leave, and “was removed by force.”

“In my opinion, this intentional and deliberate conduct of Miss Wagner clearly amounts to the offence of mischief,” Libman concluded.

He also found Wagner guilty of breaching the condition in both the 2012 probation order of Justice Mavis Wong and 2015 order of Justice Katrina Mulligan that she keep the peace and be of good behaviour.

Crown counsel Craig Power told the Court the Crown wants Wagner sentenced to 18 months in jail.

Wagner has already served 180 days in jail while awaiting trial because she refused to sign bail conditions requiring her to stay away from abortion centres.

But when her trial was delayed because LifeSiteNews contested the Crown’s publication ban application, LifeSiteNews lawyer Phil Horgan asked Libman June 9 to release Wagner on the sole condition she return for the remainder of her trial. Crown lawyer Power agreed to this.

Wagner has spent a total five years in jail to date for her peaceful attempts to save women and children from the violence of abortion.

Linda Gibbons, whom Wagner described as an inspiration to her, has spent 11 years in jail for her pro-life witness. Gibbons was among the 30 or so Wagner supporters in the courtroom on Tuesday to hear Libman’s verdict.

Wagner’s September 12 sentencing hearing will be at Old City Hall Courthouse at 10 a.m., Room 112.

Wagner said anyone who wants to submit a letter on her behalf attesting to her character, but more important, advocating for the unborn child, should address the letter to Honorable Justice Eric (Rick) N. Libman.

The letters should be in English, brief, signed with contact information included, and either typed or in legible handwriting, she told LifeSiteNews.

Wagner asked that letters be sent to the address below no later than September 8. She will read all before including as evidence at her sentencing hearing.

The letters, while written to Libman, should be sent to: Mary Wagner, ℅ Campaign Life Coalition, Suite 300, 104 Bond Street, Toronto, ON, M5B 1X9.


Canada ‘no better than Nazi Germany’: Pro-lifer arrested for protest in abortion clinic tells court

Judge bans pro-life media from exposing abortion workers

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This list of ‘hate groups’ inspired a terrorist attack on pro-lifers. Today, CNN published it

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By Claire Chretien

August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – Today, CNN published a left-wing organization's list of "hate groups" that inspired the first incident of armed domestic terrorism in Washington, D.C. five years ago against a pro-life group. 

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), the activists behind the "hate" list, lumps Christian lobby groups like the Family Research Council (FRC) and the legal giant Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), which has argued and won numerous cases in the U.S. Supreme Court, in with the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis.

Its infamous "hate list" directed Floyd Lee Corkins to FRC's Washington office, where he shot a security guard and planned to massacre the group's staff. He told police he targeted FRC because the SPLC labeled them "anti-gay." 

"This is CNN going utterly insane. They are serving as a platform for a radical left-wing hate group that exists solely to bash conservatives," Dan Gainor, Vice President of Business and Culture at the Media Research Center, told LifeSiteNews. "The CNN report has zero legitimacy. But it does serve to falsely label millions of conservatives as haters and may put them at risk as well."

"CNN and most if not all of the mainstream media are now doing what William Randolph [Hearst] did in the 1800s," Catherine Davis, Founder and President of The Restoration Project, told LifeSiteNews. "They are a propaganda machine operating to take America down from within. Like Hearst they are starting a war based a false narrative of race baiting and hate. This time, however, the war may destroy America if their yellow journalism is not stopped. We must resist this propaganda maneuver lest America fail."

The man who shot and severely wounded Rep. Steve Scalise, R-LA, in June "liked" the SPLC on Facebook. The SPLC put out a statement denouncing him after this was revealed.

"The CNN report has zero legitimacy. But it does serve to falsely label millions of conservatives as haters and may put them at risk as well."

FRC advocates for "a culture in which all human life is valued, families flourish, and religious liberty thrives." It defends a Christian view of marriage and opposes abortion and gender ideology.

The CNN article warned that the SPLC says there are 917 "hate groups operating in the US." 

The CNN article equated "anti-LGBT groups" with racists. But many of the supposedly "anti-LGBT groups" it lists are mainstream pro-life and pro-family groups who advocate against abortion and in support of marriage.

Also smeared were the American College of Pediatricians, the Center for Family and Human Rights (CFAM), Traditional Values Coalition, Liberty Counsel, Americans for Truth about Homosexuality, the World Congress of Families, traditional Catholic newspaper The Remnant, Catholic religious order Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Catholic Family News, and the American Family Association.

These groups were listed alongside Holocaust deniers, the "Aryan strikeforce," the "Supreme White Alliance," and the American Nazi Party.

The American College of Pediatricians is "a national organization of pediatricians and other healthcare professionals dedicated to the health and well-being of children." It opposes transgendering young children and assisted suicide.

CFAM lobbies for the pro-life cause at the United Nations. Liberty Counsel is a Christian legal ministry. 

"We believe every person is created in the image of God and should be treated with dignity and respect. We believe that discourse should be civil and respectful," Liberty Counsel's website explains. "We condemn violence and do not support any person or group that advocates or promotes violence. Some who disagree with the religious and moral values of Liberty Counsel have falsely called Liberty Counsel a so-called 'hate group.' This is false, defamatory, and dangerous. Liberty Counsel is not a 'hate group' and does not support or advocate 'hate' of any kind."

On Thursday afternoon, CNN changed its headline from "Here are all the active hate groups where you live" to "The Southern Poverty Law Center's list of hate groups."

"The headline on this story has been changed to more closely align with the content of the piece, which clearly indicates that the data on hate groups is from the Southern Poverty Law Center," an editor's note at the bottom says. "This story has also been updated to provide direct links to the full list from the SPLC as opposed to publishing the entire list here."

Marriage scholar Dr. Ryan T. Anderson blasted CNN for its "slander." The March for Life's Tom McClusky, who formerly worked for FRC, noted that the map CNN published is the same one that led to Corkins attempting to murder him and his co-workers.

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Texas banned taxpayer funding of abortion and liberals are freaking out

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By Fr. Mark Hodges

AUSTIN, Texas, August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Reaction poured in from backers and detractors over Texas House Bill 214, which cuts state taxpayer funding for abortions and was signed into law by Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday.

Supportive legislators were clear.

“What we’re saying here is: If you want to buy this coverage, you can buy it,” Republican Rep. John Smithee said during House debate. “This isn’t about who can get an abortion. It is about who is forced to pay for an abortion.”

Legislators who opposed the bill were vehement.

“By signing HB 214 into law, Governor Abbott has told women and parents they must pay extra for what is tantamount to ‘rape insurance,’“ Democratic Rep. Chris Turner charged.

The new law applies to “elective” abortions and specifically includes an exemption for cases of medical emergency to save the mother’s life. It does not include rape or incest exemptions.

Pro-abortion media quickly responded after the governor signed the bill. Their talking points followed Turner’s lead in dubbing the law “rape insurance.”

U.S. News and World Report ran the headline, “Rape Insurance’ Abortion Coverage Becomes Texas Law.”

“This legislation is part of an agenda to shame, bully, and punish people seeking abortion,” Amanda Williams of the Lilith Fund for Reproductive Equity claimed.

Some abortionists dismissed the law as a moot point. Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas medical director Sealy Massingill noted that insurance companies already only cover “medically necessary” abortions, so the law “serves no purpose whatsoever, except to make the Republican primary voter happy.”

Nevertheless, most Democrats decried just the opposite, saying the law will have a “huge impact” on women who “need” abortions. Heather Busby of NARAL Pro-Choice Texas said the law “will impact people who have coverage and will now be denied services.”

Others admitted it won’t affect many women but still opposed the law. “This will end up affecting a small number of people currently,” Daniel Grossman of Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health said, “but will have an effect to further stigmatize abortion care and separate it from the rest of healthcare.”

Pro-life media praised Gov. Greg Abbott and the Texas legislature.

“We applaud Governor Abbott and the work of Texas Right to Life for enacting legislation echoing the sentiment that the killing of unborn children is NOT healthcare,” National Right to Life Committee state legislative director Ingrid Duran told LifeSiteNews. “Mothers and their babies deserve better than abortion.”

“BOOYAH!  Life wins!” Twitchy proclaimed. “Taxpayers shouldn’t be burdened with knowing their monies are going to infanticide. God bless Texas.”

“The Texas Legislature and Governor have gone the extra mile to make sure its citizens aren’t being forced to fund the killing of unborn babies through healthcare,” Life Issues Institute President Brad Mattes told LifeSiteNews. “It makes me want to move to the Lone Star State!”

“It’s ironic that as Texas moved to protect its citizens from funding abortion through insurance, Oregon’s governor forced its residents to fully fund abortion with no co-pay,” Mattes added. “It makes a world of difference who you vote for in an election.”

Talk show host Chris Salcedo approved and added, “Tax money should now be denied to the USA’s #1 abortion mill, The Butcher Shop, Planned Parenthood (PPFA).”

The Reagan Battalion agreed, “Life Wins!”

Red State senior contributing editor Kimberly Ross tweeted:

Thank you, @GregAbbott_TX. Taxpayers don't need to support abortion through their insurance plans.

— Kimberly Ross (@SouthernKeeks) August 15, 2017

The Daily Wire subhead dubbed the effect of the Texas law as “Cleansing the blood money.”

Perhaps the snidest lead-in was from The Daily Caller: “As abortion enthusiasts prefer to phrase it, you’re being ‘denied access.’ Y’know, like expecting people to go to CVS to buy their own birth control is ‘denying access.’ Expecting people to deal with the consequences of their own choices is ‘denying access,’” the popular online news outlet reported.  

“So if you’re one of those Nazis who doesn’t think it’s right to kill babies, you won’t be forced to foot the bill for other people who want to kill their babies.”

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Pastor Steve Massey preaching at Hayden Bible Church
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Pastor: We need to offer compassion, not acceptance, to transgender kids

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By Lianne Laurence

SPOKANE, Washington, August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — A Christian pastor and columnist for a local paper reportedly inflamed its readership when he wrote that gender-confused kids need compassion, not acceptance.

“Transgenderism is neither normative nor acceptable. To insist otherwise is dangerous and lacks true compassion for those struggling with gender identity,” asserted Steve Massey in last Saturday’s Spokesman-Review.

“This good news – the gospel – does not condemn those who embrace transgenderism. Instead, it lovingly offers to them and all of us sinners the freedom to forsake the disordered desires that seek to rule us,” wrote Massey, the senior pastor of non-denominational Hayden Bible Church.

He was riled by an Associated Press article he’d seen entitled “How to tell if your child is transgender.”

The question “is as destructive as it is provocative,” wrote Massey, a regular faith contributor to the Spokesman-Review, where he was once a reporter and editor.

“Why? Because a mainstream news purveyor is now peddling the premise that today’s transgender phenomenon is somehow normative and acceptable.”

It’s neither, observed Massey, noting parenthetically that “a staggering 41 percent of trans or gender nonconforming people surveyed have attempted suicide.”

Rather, transgenderism “is simply an attempt by people to create their own reality, perhaps to deal with deep emotional pain,” he wrote.

“That parents would assist their own precious, vulnerable kids in this is unconscionable.”

God’s Word on the matter “is simply this: ‘From the beginning of the creation, God made them male and female,’” noted Massey, adding a person can’t change his sex physiologically simply by how he feels.

“Christians approaching today’s transgender issue must balance this truth with compassion,” he observed.

“We best help a person struggling with gender dysphoria not by helping them ‘reassign’ gender outwardly, but by encouraging them to gladly accept the person God made them to be at their very core,” Massey wrote.

“For us to deny that we are someone other than who God has made us to be is an offense to our Creator, and a destructive fantasy.”

The fact is “all of us have desires that don’t match reality,” he noted.

The Bible “simply calls such disordered desires sin. And the good news is that God has a better way than you and me creating our own reality. God invites us to embrace who he has made us to be.”

All of this so inflamed the Spokesman-Review’s readership that editor Bob Curley ran an editorial with Massey’s column in the online edition, admitting he was “shocked” when he first read it.

“I even had regrets,” Curley wrote. “It’s just that I didn’t regret that we published it.”

Curley maintained that unpopular views and convictions should be published “Unfiltered. Unedited. Uncensored” to compel others to decide where they stand on such issues.

But he apologized “for not giving the column the right context and discussion that it deserved.”

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Conservatives slam story on ‘eliminating’ people with Down syndrome through abortion

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By Claire Chretien

August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – Pro-life advocates and conservatives criticized CBS News this week for a report that seemed to legitimize the eugenic extermination of Down syndrome babies through abortion.

The report claimed Iceland is on track to "eliminate Down syndrome."

Abortion has "almost completely eliminated Down syndrome births since the test began in the early 2000s," Elaine Quijano of CBS explained in the report.

The report featured an abortion counselor who denied the humanity of babies in the womb. She said aborting babies with Down syndrome prevents suffering and that not every child with the disability is a "nice cute one."

"CBS News should be ashamed," MRC Culture Associate Editor Katie Yoder told LifeSiteNews. "The network packaged their report by claiming that Iceland was 'eliminating' Down syndrome. But there was a bigger story inside that package. Down syndrome isn’t 'disappearing,' but unborn babies with the genetic disorder are."

Actress Patricia Heaton made a similar point.

The March for Life's Jeanne Mancini called the story "sickening" and challenged CBS to "air a segment about the happiness and benefits Down Syndrome children bring to families."

"CBS got it backwards. Instead of treating the disorder, Iceland is removing the patient," Yoder continued. "It’s sickening that the network advertised human persons as disposable. Every life is precious. The liberal media routinely advertise abortion as 'women's healthcare,' but one person always dies. Healthcare is supposed to protect life, not champion death."

Kristan Hawkins, the President of Students for Life of America (SFLA) and the mother of children with genetic disabilities, said the story was heartbreaking.

SFLA released a video of Autumn Lindsey, a pro-life teenager, blasting the report.

"They have not eradicated Down syndrome. They have simply killed those with Down syndrome," she said.

"This is not something to be celebrated. Note how CBS uses the term 'eradicate' as in 'eradicate polio' or 'eradicate malaria.' People with Down syndrome are not diseases. You can eradicate a disease, but you cannot eradicate people," Autumn continued. "They have not eradicated Down syndrome. They have simply killed those with Down syndrome." 

Autumn said she doesn't want to live in a non-inclusive society that seeks to eliminate disabled people.

"The CBS report is scary," she said. "We should seek to value all human beings, not kill off those we deem 'less worthy.'"

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Stephen Kokx


Cardinal: No Communion, funeral for Catholic politicians who support abortion

Stephen Kokx

CHILE, August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — A retired cardinal has told Catholic politicians who voted to legalize abortion in Chile that they cannot receive the sacraments until they show public signs of repentance.

The 90-year-old former bishop of Valparaiso, Cardinal Jorge Medina Estevez, sent a letter dated August 8 to the El Mercurio newspaper reiterating the Church's teaching on denying Communion to Catholic politicians who support abortion and other grave evils.

Canon 915 of the Church’s Code of Canon Law states that persons “obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion.”

A grave sin

In his letter, Medina describes Chile’s decision to decriminalize abortion as an “atrocity.” Previously, the two-thirds Catholic country had some of the most pro-life laws in the world. With the bill’s passage, women will be allowed to have an abortion if their health is believed to be in peril, if they were raped, and, as the law states, “when the fetus is unviable.”

Cardinal Medina noted that the use of the term ‘decriminalization’ by pro-abortionists is in reality a euphemism that hides the “atrocious reality of legalized murder of an innocent [baby].”

He added that politicians who supported the law are accomplices to that atrocity and “should not receive the vote of any Christian.” Only when the politician publicly expresses regret before the next election could a Christian think of voting for them again.

Citing Canon Law, Medina, who in 2004 published a book defending marriage, pointed out that Catholic politicians who voted for the bill committed a grave sin. Therefore, they are “not able to receive the sacraments of the Church, unless they have repented and have expressed also publicly their repentance.”

If these politicians die without having shown clear signs of repentance, he added, they will not be granted a Catholic funeral. Public repentance is “indispensable for their eternal salvation.”

Liberals complain

Cardinal Medina’s charitable admonition was swiftly denounced by left-wing priests. Fr. Felipe Berrios, a Jesuit known for his social activism, decried the letter as “heartless” and an example of “pastoral terrorism,” InfoVaticano reported.

“The Congress takes [an] oath to vote their conscience and we must respect that conscience. It is sacred,” Berrio argued.

Fr. Percival Cowley, the former chaplain of Chile’s Presidential Palace, echoed Fr. Berrios' position. In a response to Cardinal Medina on the pages of El Mercurio, Cowley said, “We must say no to the right to freely have an abortion, but at the same time learn to trust in the mature consciences of our brethren.”

Cowley then suggested the Cardinal should focus his attention on the negative effects of unjust wages and unfair labor practices.

Chilean politics

It is widely understood that outgoing socialist President Michelle Bachelet is using her remaining months in office to ram through the pro-abortion bill. According to The New York Times, her time in office has been dogged by political scandals and corruption charges.

The only obstacle that stands in the way of the legislation becoming official law is the Chilean Constitutional Tribunal, which will decide in the coming days whether the bill is constitutional.

Chile’s lower chamber first voted to legalize abortion in March 2016. Months later, the famous 33 trapped Chilean miners wrote an open letter opposing the government’s abortion push. In March 2017, 10,000 pro-lifers marched down the main street of Santiago to celebrate unborn children.

Jonathan Abbamonte, a research analyst with the Population Research Institute, remarked in 2016 that the new law would set “a dangerous precedent for restricting the religious freedom and conscience rights of healthcare workers,” as it essentially “makes all surgeons into abortionists.” It also “lacks any mechanism for verifying the claim of rape.”

Rome connection

Despite her pro-abortion views, Bachelet is scheduled to speak at the Vatican in November.

She, alongside population control advocate Jeffrey Sachs, California Governor Jerry Brown, as well as other radical environmentalists, will be talking at the “Health of People and Planet” conference hosted by the notoriously progressive Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences. Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin will deliver the opening address at the three-day meeting.

Before her election in 2014, Bachelet served as the first executive director of UN Women, an agency founded in 2011 that seeks to impose abortion across the globe. The organization also goes by the name The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women.

In 2006, during her first tenure as president of Chile, she tried to force taxpayers to pay for the morning-after pill. The law was overturned two years later by the Chilean Constitutional Tribunal.

Bachelet has at various times in the past described herself as an atheist and as an agnostic.

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Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments
Cardinal Robert Sarah


Cardinal Sarah: ‘We are called today to witness, which means martyrdom’

Cardinal Robert Sarah

EDITOR'S NOTE: Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, gave the following homily at a Mass on August 12 at France’s historical theme park, the Puy-du-Fou. Read about his visit here.

August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — This evening, we offer the sacrifice of the Mass for the repose of the souls of all of the volunteers of the Puy-du-Fou who have died since the beginnings of this beautiful work, 40 years ago.

Every night, all of you who are gathered here, awaken the memory of this place through your work. The castle of the Puy-du-Fou, with its hurting ruins, abandoned by man, seems to rise like a cry towards Heaven. Its ripped entrails remind the world that faced with the hatred of the Faith, a people stood up: the people of the Vendée!

My dear friends, by giving life to these ruins every night, you are giving their life back to the dead! You are giving life to all these people of the Vendée who died for their faith, for their churches and for their priests.

Your work arises from this earth like a chant that carries the remembrance of the martyrs of the Vendée!

You give life to these 300.000 men, women and children who fell victims to the Reign of Terror”!

You give a voice to all those the “Terreur” wanted to silence, because they refused the lie of atheistic ideology!

You honor those whom it wanted to drown in oblivion, because they would not allow the liberty to believe and to offer Mass to be stripped from them!

I say this to you solemnly: your work is just and necessary!

Through your art, your chants, your technological prowess, you are at last offering a worthy grave to all these martyrs whom revolutionary hatred would leave without burial, abandoned to the dogs and the crows!

And so your work is much more than a mere human accomplishment. It is much like a work of the Church.

Your work is necessary! For our times seem to have been numbed! As we face the dictatorship of relativism, as we face a new thought terrorism that once again seeks to rip God from the hearts of children, we need to rediscover the freshness of mind, the joyful and fervent simplicity of these saints and these martyrs.

When the Revolution sought to deprive the Vendéens of their priests, a whole people stood up. Faced with cannons, these poor people only had their staffs! Faced with rifles, they had only their scythes! Faced with the hatred of the terrorist columns, they had only their rosaries, their prayer, and the Sacred Heart sewn on their breast!

My brothers, the people of the Vendée simply put into practice that which the readings of today teach us. God is not in thunder and lightning, He is not in the power and the clamor of arms. He is hidden in murmur of the breeze!

Faced with the planned and methodical onslaught of the “Terreur”, the Vendéens knew full well that they would be crushed. Nevertheless they offered their sacrifice to the Lord, chanting. They were that murmuring breeze, a breeze that appeared to be swept away by the powerful storm of the infernal columns.

But God was there. His power revealed itself in their weakness!

History – true history – knows that deep down, the peasants of the Vendée were victorious.

Through their sacrifice, they stopped the lie of ideology from reigning supreme. Thanks to the Vendéens, the Revolution was forced to drop its mask and to reveal its true face: its hatred of God and the faith. Thanks to the Vendéens, priests did not become the servile slaves of a totalitarian State, they would remain free servitors of Christ and of the Church.

The Vendéens heard the call Christ makes in today’s Gospel: “Courage! It is I, be not afraid!” When the storm raged, when their boat took on water from all sides, they were not afraid: such was their certainty that beyond death, the Heart of Jesus would be their sole homeland!

My friends, we Christians need this spirit of people of Vendée! We need their example! Like them, we must needs leave our sowing and harvesting, leaving there our furrows, in order to wage battle, not for the interests of men, but for God!

Who shall stand up today for God? Who shall dare to confront the modern persecutors of the Church? Who shall have the courage to arise, armed only with the rosary and the Sacred Heart, to face the columns of death of our times, as are relativism, indifferentism and the contempt of God? Who shall tell this world that the only liberty worth dying for is the liberty to believe?

My brothers, just like our Vendéen brothers of old, we are called today to witness, which means martyrdom!

Today in the East, in Pakistan, in Africa, our Christian brothers are dying for their faith, crushed by the columns of persecuting Islamism.

And you, people of France, people of the Vendée, when will you at last stand up with the peaceful weapons of prayer and charity to defend your faith?

My friends, the blood of martyrs runs through your veins, be faithful to it!

Spiritually, we are all sons of the martyred Vendée! Even we Africans who have received so many missionaries from the Vendée, who came to die in our lands in order to proclaim Christ!

We owe it to ourselves to be faithful to their heritage!

The soul of these martyrs surrounds us in this place. What are they telling us? What do they want to pass on to us?

First of all, their courage! When it comes to God, there can be no compromise! The honor of God is not open to discussion! And it must start with our personal life of prayer and adoration. It is time, my friends, for us to revolt against the practical atheism that is stifling our lives! Let us pray as families, let us leave the first place to God! A family that prays is a family that is alive! A Christian who does not pray, who does not leave room for God through silence and adoration, will end up dying!

From the example of the Vendéens we must also learn to love the priesthood. It is because their “good priests” were threatened that they went into revolt.

As to you, the younger ones, if you want to be faithful to the example of your elders, love your priests, love the priesthood! You must ask yourselves the question: as to me, am I also called to be a priest, following the footsteps of all these good priests who were martyred by the Revolution? Will I also have the courage to give my whole life for Christ and for my brothers?

The martyrs of the Vendée also teach us the sense of forgiveness and mercy. Faced with persecution and with hatred, they kept alive in their hearts the care for peace and forgiveness. Remember how their chief, Bonchamp, ordered 5,000 prisoners to be released a few minutes before dying. Let us be able to confront hatred without resentment and without bitterness. We are the army of the Heart of Jesus, and as He, we want to be full of sweetness!

Finally, we must learn from the martyrs of the Vendée a sense of generosity and of gratuitous giving.

Your ancestors did not fight for their interests. They had nothing to gain.

Today, they give us a lesson in humanity.

We are living in a world marked by the dictatorship of money, of benefits, of riches. The joy of gratuitous giving is everywhere despised and trampled.

But only love that is generous, the disinterested gift of one’s own life can vanquish the hatred of God and of men that is the matrix of all revolutions. The Vendéens have taught us to resist against all these revolutions. They have shown us that facing the infernal columns, as when facing the Nazi extermination camps and the communist Gulag, facing the barbarity of Islamism, there is only one answer: the gift of self, of one’s whole life. Love only conquers the powers of death!

Even now, perhaps more than ever, the ideologues of the revolution want to annihilate the natural place for gift of self, of joyful generosity and of love! I am speaking of the family!

Gender ideology, the contempt of fruitfulness and of fidelity are the new slogans of this revolution. Families have become the new Vendées to exterminate. Their disappearance is being methodically planned, as was that of the Vendée in the past.

These new revolutionaries are worried by the generosity of large families. They mock Christian families, because these embody everything that they hate. They are ready to attack Africa with new infernal columns in order to pressure on families and to force on them sterilization, abortion and contraception. Africa, like the Vendée, will resist! Families everywhere must be the joyous spearheads of revolt against this new dictatorship of egoism!

Is is now in the heart of every family, of every Christian, of every man of goodwill that an interior Vendée must arise!

Every Christian is, spiritually, a Vendéen!

Let us not allow generous and gratuitous giving be stifled within us. Let us learn, as the martyrs of the Vendée, to draw this gift from its source: in the Heart of Jesus.

Let us pray that a powerful and joyful interior Vendée may arise in the Church and in the world!


Cardinal Robert Sarah

Homily for the Anticipated Mass for Sunday, August 12, at the Puy-du-Fou, Vendée, France

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Guinean Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Vatican's Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments
Jeanne Smits, Paris correspondent

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Vatican liturgy chief calls for ‘revolt’ to defend traditional family values

Jeanne Smits, Paris correspondent
By Jeanne Smits

August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Faced with gender ideology and the deliberate and methodical plan to destroy the traditional family, an “interior Vendée must arise in the heart of every family, of every Christian, of every man of good will!”

With this rousing call, Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of Sacraments, has asked for a “revolt” against the new lies of the continuing revolution against God’s law. His call to prayer and action was made during a homily given during a Mass on August 12 in the foyer of the grandstand of France’s award-winning historical theme park, the Puy-du-Fou.

The Vendée is the region in Western France where an uprising took place during the Reign of Terror – the “Terreur” – in 1793 and 1794 when the leaders of the French Revolution conscripted ordinary men to serve in the revolutionary army and required Catholic priests to vow submission to the Civil Constitution of the Clergy and repudiate their commitment to obey the Pope.

For the faithful peasants of the Vendée, on whom the “missions” of Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort some 80 years back had left a profound mark, these requirements were unacceptable. They forced many nobles of the province to lead them into war with the new Republic, courageously fighting “for God and King” in an uneven battle that would culminate with the genocide of the Vendée. The Committee of Public Safety – the revolutionary government in Paris led by Robespierre – expressly ordered every man, woman and child from the province to be killed, their houses and villages to be destroyed, and the very earth of the province to be burned.

The reality of this fully-fledged genocide, truly a founding act of the French Revolution, was long negated in French politics and history books. The defeat of the Vendée would lead to its relegation in oblivion, or as French historian and specialist of the Vendée Reynald Secher puts it, to “memoricide.”

Cardinal Sarah’s visit to the diocese of Luçon in the Vendée, which this year celebrates the 700th anniversary of its founding, would not have been complete without a visit to the Puy-du-Fou theme park where Philippe de Villiers, former presidential candidate in France and visionary entrepreneur, created a profoundly original “sound and light show” 40 years ago presenting the history of a ruined castle in the form of a live cinematographic performance. Forty years later, the show has morphed into a spectacular embodiment of the history of the Vendée where several thousand volunteers act several times the week during the summer months, honoring the memory of the “Vendéens,” their forebears, especially in their uprising for their “God and King.”

The theme of the “Wars of the Vendée” is also present in the theme park that has grown into an international award-winning venture whose aim is to rekindle love for their homeland and for beauty in the hearts of the many millions of visitors who have come there over the years.

Cardinal Sarah certainly caught the spirit of the Puy-du-Fou in paying homage not only to those who have taken part in this unique cultural adventure but to the peasant warriors of the Vendée. Armed only with their “staffs, scythes, rosaries and the Sacred Heart” sewn on their coats, they stood up to fight and then, by their thousands, “died for their faith, for their churches and for their priests.”

“You give a voice to all those whom the ‘Terreu’ wanted to silence, because they refused the lie of atheistic ideology! You honor those whom it wanted to drown in oblivion, because they would not allow the liberty to believe and to offer Mass to be stripped from them!” the Cardinal said during his homily on Saturday evening.

“Your work is necessary! For our times seem to have been numbed! As we face the dictatorship of relativism, as we face a new thought terrorism that once again seeks to rip God from the hearts of children, we need to rediscover the freshness of mind, the joyful and fervent simplicity of these saints and these martyrs,” he preached, standing before the reliquary where the ring of Saint Joan of Arc reposes after having been providentially brought back from England last year by Philippe de Villiers to be honored in the Puy-du-Fou. Saint Joan’s ring had been taken to England in 1431 by Cardinal Henry Beaufort after she was burned at the stake in Rouen.

Cardinal Sarah insisted that even though death and martyrdom was the “Vendéens” lot, they were mysteriously victorious in that after the throes of the Revolution, Catholic priests in France were once again freely allowed to serve God without having to submit to the “lie of ideology” that had threatened to “reign supreme.”

He went on to speak of the present-day persecutions that stem from the atheistic “matrix” of the French Revolution, calling the all Christians and people of good will to accept and follow the heritage of the Vendée against new forms of totalitarianism.

“Even now, perhaps more than ever, the ideologues of the revolution want to annihilate the natural place for gift of self, of joyful generosity and of love! I am speaking of the family! Gender ideology, the contempt of fruitfulness and of fidelity are the new slogans of this revolution. Families have become the new Vendées to exterminate. Their disappearance is being methodically planned, as was that of the Vendée in the past,” said the African cardinal, particularly condemning modern-day attempts to force “sterilization, abortion, and contraception” on his home continent.

“These new revolutionaries are worried by the generosity of large families. They mock Christian families, because these embody everything that they hate. They are ready to attack Africa with new infernal columns in order to put pressure on families and to force on them sterilization, abortion and contraception. Africa, like the Vendée, will resist! Families everywhere must be the joyous spearheads of revolt against this new dictatorship of egoism! It is now in the heart of every family, of every Christian, of every man of goodwill that an interior Vendée must arise! Every Christian is, spiritually, a Vendéen!” said Cardinal Sarah, presenting today’s God-hating and man-hating ideology as every bit as violent and deadly as the violent killings of more than 200 years ago.

The Cardinal concluded that this uprising must be a peaceful one, founded in adoration and prayer and careful to uphold “forgiveness and mercy,” because “love only conquers the powers of death.”

The translation of the full text of his homily is available here.

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Fr. Mark Hodges Fr. Mark Hodges


Arizona taxpayers forced to give $600K to Planned Parenthood’s lawyers

Fr. Mark Hodges Fr. Mark Hodges
By Fr. Mark Hodges

PHOENIX, Arizona, August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — A federal judge awarded Planned Parenthood and other abortionists more than $600,000 over a repealed pro-life law.

U.S. District Judge Steven P. Logan, an Obama appointee, ruled that since an Arizona law requiring abortionists to inform patients about the possibility of reversing a chemical abortion was repealed, taxpayers must reimburse Planned Parenthood and other abortion businesses everything they spent on fighting the law.

Planned Parenthood of Arizona, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the Center for Reproductive Rights vigorously fought the informed consent law in the courts, claiming it was a violation of abortionists' free speech. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also opposed the pro-life law, noting that about a third of women who only took the first pill carried to term anyway.

When Arizona legislators repealed the pro-life statute in August 2016, the lawsuit was dropped.

The measure, signed by Gov. Doug Ducey in 2015, required abortionists to inform women taking the first of two RU-486 pills that it "may be possible" to reverse the drug's effects with progesterone if they acted quickly. Dr. George Delgado, medical director of San Diego's Culture of Life Family Services, championed the legislation.

"Abortion-pill reversal, in our experience, has been shown to be a safe and effective treatment," Delgado told The Atlantic. "I think the most important thing is they be aware of this option."

Dr. Delgado authored a 2012 report published in the peer-reviewed Annals of Pharmacotherapy about six women who sought to reverse their RU-486 abortions.  Despite having taken the "human pesticide," four of the women gave birth.

Delgado has reported that since then 87 women successfully reversed their RU-486 abortion and gave birth to a healthy child.  

“We know children have been born. We know women have been spared the heartache of abortion," the Center for Arizona Policy's Cathi Herrod stated at the time. "Where’s the harm in informing a woman that it could be reversible?”

The first of two RU-486 pills kills the growing baby by starving him or her of progesterone, a hormone the baby needs to grow. After two or three days, the mother is given a second, labor-inducing drug and delivers her dead baby. Essentially, the abortion is reversed by flooding the mother's bloodstream with progesterone.

Dr. Matthew Harrison is reversing abortions as well. He reports he has reversed 137 abortions successfully after RU-486 was taken. All 137 children were born without complications.  

Sara Littlefield of Abortion Pill Reversal says abortion pill reversals have been successful in 45 states and 13 countries.

There are now more than 300 medical centers that offer abortion reversal. Women may go online to, or call a 24/7 hotline (877-558-0333) to find a nearby doctor.

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Ryan Bomberger Ryan Bomberger Follow Ryan


If you want to end white supremacy, start with Planned Parenthood

Ryan Bomberger Ryan Bomberger Follow Ryan
By Ryan Bomberger

August 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – “Are you against the Confederacy?” I couldn’t help but laugh at the desperate question thrown at President Trump during Tuesday’s press conference. Really? A “journalist” is asking an American president…a New Yorker…152 years after the Confederacy…if he’s “against” the failed cause. Mainstream media, unable to pick any more meat off the carcass they made of Ferguson, is making a feast out of Charlottesville, gorging themselves on stupidity and crying “racist” between every bite.

MSM has been obsessing over daily demonizing Trump and the GOP that it’s become psychotic. I’m no fan of President Trump (forever grateful that it’s not President Hillary), but he can never seem to say the right thing, the right way, or the right amount of times. He has denounced white supremacists, repeatedly. (Former President Obama wouldn’t call out Islamic terrorism in eight years.) Trump further inflamed the Left’s sensibilities by denouncing the violence and racism on the far-Left as displayed by wannabe-communists, #BlackLivesMatter activists and Antifa.

Trump was asked by reporters, 3 days after the event, when he planned to go to visit Charlottesville. It took President Obama 16 days to visit San Bernardino after the Islamic terrorist couple, Tashfeen Malik and Syed Rizwan Farook, slaughtered 14 people and wounded 21 others. Which mainstream “journalists” and Democrat politicians demanded that he call out Islamic terrorism?

Funny. #FakeNews media will completely ignore hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers gathered in the nation’s capital, but will fixate on a handful of racist clowns craving relevance in a small college town in Virginia. The racist neo-Nazi, KKK, alt-right tiki-torch tantrum could have gone down like a tree in an empty forest, but, instead, the Left made it into a spectator sport. Timber!!! That’s the sound of civility crashing to earth as anarchists, racial activists and social justice whiners clashed, enabled by police acting as bystanders.

And one precious soul was killed. Heather Heyer shouldn’t have been a casualty. But Charlottesville, because of political reasons, was allowed to erupt with hatred and violence.

As someone who is biracial, my heart grieves that the poison of racism is treated so recklessly. After witnessing over 8 years of Barack Obama’s squandered opportunities to engage constructively on racial issues, I’m now listening to the Left’s daily obsession with calling everyone who disagrees with them a racist. That’s the liberal way to end the conversation.

It’s bizarre considering the projection that seems to be going on from the Party of Slavery and Jim Crow. Discontent with just revising history, they now want to purge it. I’m a staunch defender of the First Amendment. Even (non-violent) ignorance has the right to be voiced. If former dunce-cap-wearing David Duke wants to talk about “taking this country back” for the extremely small minority of white folks who think like he does, he’s entitled to that lunacy. He might want to listen to that folksy tune “This Land Is Your Land” again. Black, white and every hue in between. Rich, poor and every socioeconomic status in between. Legal immigrant and native-born. Republican, Democrat, Independent, or anywhere along the political spectrum. America belongs to all of us.

The gun-toting, swastika-waving, “white-pride” brigade did raise a valid First Amendment issue in the midst of the mayhem. Are all Americans entitled to free speech? Sorry, Antifa#BlackLivesMatterWorkers World Party and other leftist organizations and activists. There is no Freedom from Offense or Freedom from a Statue. Where do we possibly draw the line? Today, the Left can’t seem to purge enough from the public sphere—religious symbols (well, at least those Christian ones), sidewalk chalk, gender-specific pronouns, and Confederate anything.

Should statues of NAACP co-founder, W.E.B. Du Bois, be toppled? Du Bois was kicked out of the (now far-Left) civil rights organization because he supported segregation. He became a Communist, renounced his U.S. citizenship (became a citizen of Ghana in 1963), and praised mass murderers Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong as great leaders.

I’m no fan of the Confederate battle flag or anything from that defeated nation, but if you want to tear down present vestiges of “white supremacy”, let’s start with Planned Parenthood. Yes, the nation’s leading abortion chain birthed in eugenic racism and elitism. They seem to inject themselves into every social issue these days, using $554.6 million annual taxpayer dollars to pander, no matter what. They’ve been tweeting about Charlottesville and bringing an “end to white supremacy”. Uhhh, that would be like Penthouse wanting to bring an end to pornography or Ashley Judd wanting to bring an end to nasty faux-feminist rants.

Planned Parenthood kills over 260 unarmed black lives every day in America, yet the Left praises them. How many black deaths are attributed to neo-Nazis, KKK, or the alt-right? I hate racism. But I hate the shedding of innocent blood even more, regardless of the hue of the aborted.

We need to have honest conversations about what dehumanizes. And for a nation that is split about our present national sin of aborting 1 million innocent human lives each year, it’s hard to have any moral standing to address anything else that diminishes our humanity. In an increasingly secular culture that is hostile to Truth, the Scriptural prescription for peace gets lost: “Love the Lord God with all of your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’. There is no commandment greater than these.” Jesus spoke these words. When we fail to apply them, we get the bigotry and violence that used Charlottesville as its stage.

Healing and racial reconciliation will never come through toppling statues or shouting mantras at each other. You can take down all the Robert E. Lee statues across the nation, and it won’t change what lies in the heart. You can’t hate hate away. Racism will never end racism. Until we stop seeing ourselves as hyphenated Americans whose identities are fixed in the superficial, we’ll never experience the unity that can only happen through the supernatural.

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