Updated 07/03/13 at 11:43 am EST – added interview with Abby Johnson

AUSTIN, TX, July 3, 2013 ( – Pro-abortion and pro-life activists crowded into the Texas Capitol yesterday to show their colors in the ongoing and increasingly heated battle over the state’s late-term abortion ban.

The first version of that ban was blocked last week by Sen. Wendy Davis's now-famous 11-hour filibuster and a mob of shouting abortion supporters who successfully delayed the vote past the midnight deadline.  However, Texas Governor Rick Perry called a special session, which began yesterday, to ensure passage of the bill.

At one point during yesterday's chaotic proceedings, pro-life activists gathered in the rotunda and started singing a rendition of “Amazing Grace,” only to be drowned out by an angry crowd of pro-abortion counter protesters, some of whom repeatedly shouted “Hail Satan!”

The bizarre and chilling episode was captured on camera. 

Former Planned Parenthood clinic director turned pro-life activist Abby Johnson was present in the rotunda at the time. She told in a telephone interview that the bulk of the protesters were shouting the common leftist slogan, “Not the Church, not the state, women must decide their fate.” However, a smaller group of them were clearly shouting, “Hail Satan!” 

“It was bizarre,” she said. 

She also added while she has felt regret and remorse over her past involvement in the abortion industry, the behavior of the pro-abortion protesters at the Texas Capitol over the past week has made her feel “embarrassed” for the first time.  

“Standing there yesterday and last week, I just felt embarrassed,” she said. “I felt embarrassed for myself for ever being a part of that. I felt embarrassed for them and their behavior.”

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“It would be unfair to say that all pro-abortion supporters would support this obscenity, and indeed most would not,” said Bill Donohue of the Catholic League in a statement in response to the episode. However, he added, “Among hardcore activists, though, there are no doubt more than just a few who feel comfortable with invoking Satan’s name in behalf of their cause.” 

“There are writers and activists who support more than abortion rights—they hail it as a positive good,” he said. “For example, the book by women’s studies professor Patricia Lunneborg, Abortion: A Positive Decision, boasts how abortion liberates women. The volume Abortion is a Blessing by militant atheist Anne Nicol Gaylor, sees abortion as a sacred right. So does French author Ginette Paris: her book The Sacrament of Abortion tells us exactly where she is coming from.” 

“Catholics reach out to young pregnant women who have made the wrong decision, and indeed the Catholic Church has a program, ‘Project Rachel,’ that serves them in many ways. Moreover, when someone in the pro-life community acts in an offensive way, he is quickly condemned,” he said. “By contrast, there are pro-abortion fanatics who draw their inspiration from Satanic forces. Worse, many of those in the pro-abortion community are quite content to stay silent about such offenses.”