OTTAWA, May 30, 2013 ( – As you've most likely heard, Dr. Henry Morgentaler died on Wednesday from a heart attack at age 90. Immediately, pro-abortion advocates starting lauding him, as pro-lifers continued to pray for him. Some pro-lifers prayed “may he rest in peace,” to the chagrin of some others.


I can understand how people would be outraged at Dr. Morgentaler, who was infamously considered the “father of abortion” in Canada. However, after my lifetime of arms-length experience with Dr. Morgentaler, it is my hope that after his tumultuous and brutal life, that somewhere he may find peace.

I was a young, eight-year-old girl when I first heard the name “Henry Morgentaler.” My family later explained that he was a doctor who killed babies, an abortionist. I was told to pray for his conversion every day during the family Rosary, and so I did. Later on in life, when I was fortunate enough to work within the pro-life movement here in Canada, I recall learning more about this Morgentaler. The more I read, the more I felt sorry for the man. He just didn't look like a man who was at peace.

When I looked at a news photo of Morgentaler, what I saw was a man who looked hardened. From what I read, it seems that Henry Morgentaler spent most of his life fighting. He had a tough childhood. He was imprisoned in Dachau during WWII. He fought for “abortion rights” for most of his professional life, and fought the unborn in their mother's womb for his living.


He was a kingpin in championing death in Canada. He was always fighting something or someone.

When I was in grade 10, I made a class presentation on abortion, and in doing the research I further delved into the subject and Morgentaler. I couldn't fathom how a man who killed babies and profited off their deaths could have a peaceful life. How does he sleep at night? How does a doctor who takes the Hippocratic Oath, which expressly condemns abortion, turn around, break his promise, and start killing babies? How awful is your life that you must champion abortion and make a living killing defenseless, innocent babies?

Perhaps, one could say, I was having a Justin Trudeau moment as I wanted to know what would cause a man to want to make a living killing babies. What were the “root causes?” In the end I knew better; it doesn't matter why he killed, it matters that he did kill. And kill many he did.

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In my twenties, I was horrified to learn that my alma mater was giving an honourary doctorate to Dr. Morgentaler. I took the day off work to go to the university and peacefully protest the ceremony. I was ashamed of my school, and someone needed to represent the victims of Morgentaler's “honourable” career. My sister took a public stance as a university Senator and demanded the university listen to its students and not award Morgentaler. When the university ignored her and the student populace, she resigned her seat in protest.


When Canada bestowed on Morgentaler its highest civilian honour, the Order of Canada, I was again ashamed. Many previous honourees returned their medals to the government in protest.

I suppose you could say I was hoping Dr. Morgentaler would turn out like Dr. Bernard Nathanson, and have a radical conversion from abortionist to pro-life champion. It didn't happen. However, I found comfort in reading the Campaign Life Coalition press release about how Dr. Morgentaler softened his pro-abortion stance and voiced opposition to late-term abortions.

Perhaps all those prayers were taking effect.

I know this is a departure from my usual pieces, but a man has died. He died with a lot of blood on his hands, and as far as I know, without making a confession. I can't help but feel overwhelmingly sick and uneasy about that.

I believe in the Final Judgment, and somehow Morgentaler missed the memo about murder being an atrocious thing.

I will continue to pray for Henry Morgentaler. I hope that wherever he is, he now realizes that the babies he killed were real humans who just wanted the chance to live and breathe just as he did. I hope he realizes that just as he was discriminated against during Holocaust in the concentration camps, he too discriminated against a class of human beings – the unborn. I hope he realizes that we are all accountable for our actions, and every action has a consequence. 

I hope that after his brutal and violent life, Henry Morgentaler may finally find peace in some capacity.

Tanya Granic Allen is a Canadian writer, blogger and spokeswoman. Primarily focusing on issues affecting women and the family, Tanya also provides commentary on Canadian and American politics and current affairs. She has over 20 years experience in politics at the local, national and international level. You can read her blog at and follow her on twitter @TGranicAllen.