By Hilary White

NEW YORK, April 10, 2008 ( – Fr. Frank Pavone, the well-known head of the US organization, Priests for Life, has recently posted two videos to the internet video website YouTube in which he demonstrates in graphic detail exactly what happens to a child in a surgical abortion. Using a plastic model of a child at 18 weeks gestation, a common age for surgical abortions, Fr. Pavone holds up a pair of forceps and demonstrates the procedure of dismemberment.

He says dispassionately, “The forceps are used to grab one of the extremities of the child…and to pull them off. Literally it is a dismemberment abortion. The legs are pulled off the child; the arms are pulled off; the rest of the body is taken out piece by piece and then the head is crushed and the contents of the head come out as well.”

He quotes an abortionist describing the procedure, who says, “We know the foetus is still alive either because we can feel it move or we actually see a heart beat as we’re starting the procedure.”

Fr. Pavone says that this blunt clinical description of the standard surgical procedure is “not about religion” but about making explicitly clear exactly what happens in an abortion procedure.

“Some people think that because I’m a priest saying these things that this is all just religious belief….If I take off my collar and describe to you what abortion is, I will be saying exactly what I just said.”

“If we’re going to talk about abortion in this country, let’s make sure we know what we’re talking about and let’s work to bring it to an end.”

In a second video, Fr. Pavone describes a suction abortion, normally carried out on a slightly younger child. For this he uses a plastic model of a child at 12 weeks, and a plastic tube called a cannula. “The hollow tube is inserted into the uterus. It is connected to a vacuum pump the vacuum pump is turned on and the abortionist moves the cannula around the child and the force of the suction either breaks the baby’s body apart and sucks it through the tube or if the baby is small enough, the baby goes through the tube intact.”

He quotes an abortionist, Dr. Martin Haskell, who says that sometimes the child’s heart is still beating as it goes down the tube into the collection jar.

A stream of thought in the pro-life movement holds that graphic descriptions of this kind, or graphic images of aborted children, serve only to put people off the pro-life message. But those advocating such forthright depictions of abortion argue that a ‘softer,’ more palatable approach fails to convey the urgency of the problem and serves only to justify complacency.
  The two videos are part of a set that have been posted to YouTube. The video on the suction abortion has been viewed 9,308 times since being posted on March 29. The two videos are part of a set of 34 informational videos being posted by Fr. Pavone as part of Priests for Life internet education work.

Other videos posted to the page include advice on voting, the Catholic Church’s position on abortion and related life issues and how to refute standard pro-abortion assertions. Some of them feature other speakers, including Dr. Alveda King, the daughter of Martin Luther King Jr. who has dedicated herself to pro-life advocacy.
  To visit Priests for Life YouTube page: