Friday May 21, 2010

Woman Who Suffered Rape and Abortion as Teen: Thank You Cardinal Ouellet

By Thaddeus M. Baklinski and John Jalsevac

To sign a petition in support of Cardinal Ouellet, click here.

OTTAWA, May 21, 2010 ( – Angelina Steenstra may seem like one of the likeliest candidates on earth to be offended by Cardinal Marc Ouellet’s much-criticized statements, made earlier this week at a pro-life conference in Quebec City, that abortion is wrong in all cases, even in the case of rape.

As a teenager Steenstra was the victim of a traumatic date rape that resulted in an unwanted pregnancy – a situation that led her to choose an abortion.

But this week Steenstra told LifeSiteNews (LSN) that, far from joining those politicians and media who have blasted the cardinal (in the case of one journalist, even going so far as to wish a “long and painful” death on the cleric), she would like to express her gratitude to him.

Steenstra, who has come a long way since those dark days in her teenage years, is now the National Coordinator of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign. She told LSN that the cardinal’s remarks were a “wake-up call to women who are given the misinformation that abortion will solve their problems – even the problem of a child conceived by rape.”

“I wish I had heard his message when I was a teen and was raped and then aborted my daughter,” she said. “I am deeply grateful to the Cardinal for proclaiming the truth that abortion, even in the case of rape, rather than helping the victim of rape, actually adds a second victim – the unborn child.”

Angelina said that her abortion as a teenager led to a consuming self-loathing, and that eventual healing only took place after she faced the truth that the killing of her child through abortion was wrong.

“I was told abortion was no big deal. That it would solve my problem,” she said. “Finally I caved into my fears and made the phone call that would end the life of my child and begin a lifetime of suffering and regret.

“The saleswoman on the other end of the phone skillfully confirmed all my fears. The fear of being ridiculed, rejected, a bad example to my siblings, of losing the love of my immediate and extended family, of being a single mother, of my inability to care for another, of not finishing school. She told me to find some friends to lend me 250 dollars and to drive me to the abortuary.”

However, Angelina soon realized that what she had done had not solved her problems, but made them worse.

“Abortion did not fix anything. It killed my daughter Sarah Elizabeth and killed a part of me,” she said. “Abortion did not liberate me. It enslaved me to a living hell.”

Healing began when she faced the truth about the death of her child. “Honesty is what brought me relief from the years of suffering,” Steenstra said. “When I confessed my sin to a priest my journey of healing and integration began.”

Angelina said, “I just want the Cardinal to know that he is truly being a shepherd and a herald of the truth, the truth given in love, because it is the truth that sets us free. I want Cardinal Ouelett to know just how healing it is when priests and religious speak the truth. It may be hard to take, but like a surgery, it hurts, but then it liberates, and then healing can come.”

Campaign Life Coalition (CLC), Canada’s largest pro-life organization, has launched a petition in support of Cardinal Ouellet. The petition allows signers to include a message that they would like to send to the cardinal.

CLC is encouraging pro-lifers to pass on the link to the petition to as many of their friends and family as possible. The organization said that it will run the petition until it gathers a sizable number of signatures and messages, which it will then pass on to the cardinal.

To sign the petition in support of Cardinal Ouellet, click here.

Silent No More Awareness Campaign is an international organization that raises awareness about the aftermath of abortion, reaches out to people who are hurting after an abortion, and invites post-abortive men and women, who are ready to share personal testimony, to break their silence.

Please visit the Silent No More Awareness Campaign website here for more information.