Fr. Pavone on Tiller Killing

May 31, 2009

STATEN ISLAND, NY (MetroCatholic) - Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, issued the following statement upon hearing this morning of the killing of abortionist George Tiller:
“I am saddened to hear of the killing of George Tiller this morning. At this point, we do not know the motives of this act, or who is behind it, whether an angry post-abortive man or woman, or a misguided activist, or an enemy within the abortion industry, or a political enemy frustrated with the way Tiller has escaped prosecution. We should not jump to conclusions or rush to judgment.
“But whatever the motives, we at Priests for Life continue to insist on a culture in which violence is never seen as the solution to any problem. Every life has to be protected, without regard to their age or views or actions.”
Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit

A.L.L. Statement on George Tiller Killing

May 31, 2009

WASHINGTON, DC (MetroCatholic) - The following is a statement from Shaun Kenney, executive director of American Life League, on the killing of abortionist George Tiller.

“Leaders within the pro-life movement often discuss justice in connection with our mission to end the tragedy of abortion. Today, Dr. George Tiller’s life ended in an act defying those principles.

With genuine sorrow, we reflect on today’s events in prayer. Justice for all human beings includes the lives of those with whom we fundamentally disagree as well as the victims of abortion. We firmly hope the perpetrators of this act are apprehended, that the facts be made known, and that justice according to the law is preserved and dispensed.

Today’s actions were tragic, and serve as another reminder that all human life is sacred. Pro-lifers by our nature and commitment to human rights reject violence as a means of resistance. Our thoughts and prayers indeed extend to the Tiller family and the community at Reformation Lutheran Church.”

American Life League was cofounded in 1979 by Judie Brown. It is the largest grassroots Catholic pro-life organization in the United States and is committed to the protection of all innocent human beings from the moment of creation to natural death. For more information or press inquiries, please contact Katie Walker at 540.907.5826.

Susan B. Anthony List Statement on Death of George Tiller

May 31, 2009

WASHINGTON, DC (MetroCatholic) - Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser offered the following statement in response to the death of abortionist George Tiller from an unidentified gunman today:

“The Susan B. Anthony List condemns this anti-life act in the strongest of terms. The heart of the pro-life movement is one founded in love. Without this driving powerful center no justice can possibly be achieved. Authentic progress in women’s rights has always encompassed the protection of human rights of every person across the board. The rights of one human being can never be honored by diminishing or ignoring the rights of another. This week as we gather for our annual June Tea event, themed Love Lets Live, we will lift up George Tiller’s loved ones in prayer.”

George Tiller was shot and killed by an unidentified assailant shortly after 10 a.m. at Reformation Lutheran Church (ELCA) in Wichita, Kansas this morning. The 67-year-old was one of the few U.S. physicians who still performed late-term abortions. He had previously survived a 1993 shooting outside his clinic. Law enforcement officials are searching for an unidentified assailant who fled in a powder-blue Ford Taurus.

The Susan B. Anthony List is a nationwide network of Americans, over 158,000 residing in all 50 states, dedicated to mobilizing, advancing, and representing pro-life women in politics. Its connected Candidate Fund increases the percentage of pro-life women in the political process.

You Cannot Murder People and Call it Pro-Life — ‘Stand True’ Denounces the Murder of Abortionist George Tiller

May 31, 2009

TROY, OH (MetroCatholic) - Stand True denounces the murder of abortionist George Tiller this morning in Wichita, KS. “We cannot kill people in the name of pro-life.” said Bryan Kemper, President of Stand True. “Answering the violence of abortion with more violence will not serve the babies or help the pro-life movement in any way.”
While Stand True is committed to ending the killing of innocent children through abortion, we are committed to non-violent, peaceful action. The pro-life movement cannot take the law into their own hands and turn to vigilantly justice.
We are praying for the family of George Tiller and those in his church while he was shot. We know that healing can come through Jesus and pray those involved in the abortion industry will turn to Christ.
Bryan Kemper, President of Stand True is available for comment – 540-538-2581
Stand True is a Christ centered youth pro-life organization committed to educating, activating and equipping this generation to stand for life –

Operation Rescue Denounces the Killing of Abortionist Tiller

May 31, 2009

WICHITA, KS (MetroCatholic) -  It has been learned today that George Tiller was shot and killed while entering his church on Sunday morning, May 31.
Operation Rescue releases the following statement attributable to Troy Newman, President: 
We are shocked at this morning’s disturbing news that Mr. Tiller was gunned down. Operation Rescue has worked for years through peaceful, legal means, and through the proper channels to see him brought to justice. We denounce vigilantism and the cowardly act that took place this morning. We pray for Mr. Tiller’s family that they will find comfort and healing that can only be found in Jesus Christ.
Operation Rescue is one of the leading pro-life Christian activist organizations in the nation. Operation Rescue recently made headlines when it bought and closed an abortion clinic in Wichita, Kansas and has become the voice of the pro-life activist movement in America. Its activities are on the cutting edge of the abortion issue, taking direct action to restore legal personhood to the pre-born and stop abortion in obedience to biblical mandates.


May 31, 2009

VATICAN CITY, 29 MAY 2009 (VIS) - Today in the Vatican, the Holy Father received the Letters of Credence of eight new ambassadors to the Holy See: Danzannorov Boldbaatar of Mongolia; Chitra Narayanan of India; Charles Borromee Todjinou of Benin, Robert Carey Moore-Jones of New Zealand; George Johannes of South Africa; Beyon Luc Adolphe Tiao of Burkina Faso; Neville Melvin Gertze of Namibia, and Rolf Trolle Andersen of Norway. The Holy Father first addressed the diplomats as a group, then gave each of them a speech in written form concerning issues specific to his or her own country.

The Pope began his remarks by assuring the ambassadors that the Catholic communities in their respective nations “wish to collaborate fraternally in national development by making the best contribution they can, a contribution rooted in the Gospel”.

“A commitment to serving peace and the consolidation of fraternal relations among nations constitutes the core of your diplomatic mission”, said the Pope. “Today, in the midst of a worldwide social and economic crisis, people must regain an awareness of the need to struggle … in order to establish true peace, with the aim of constructing a more just and prosperous world. Injustices, often so manifest, among or within nations, like all processes that contribute to dividing or marginalising peoples, represent attacks against peace and create a grave risk of conflict”.

Peace, the Holy Father went on, “cannot be built but by intervening firmly to eliminate the inequality engendered by unjust systems, and so allowing everyone a standard of living that enables them to live a dignified and prosperous existence. Such inequalities have become even more evident because of the current financial and economic crisis which has also had various repercussions on low-income countries”. Among these, the Pope mentioned “the tailing off of foreign investment, the fall in demand for raw materials and the tendency for international aid to diminish”, as well as “the drop in remittances of emigrants, likewise victims of the recession which also affects their host countries”.

“The crisis could become a catastrophe for the inhabitants of weaker countries”, warned Benedict XVI, highlighting how economic woes also have another effect, because “the desperation they bring forces some people to anguished efforts to seek solutions that enable them to survive from day to day. Unfortunately, such efforts are often accompanied by individual or collective acts of violence that can further destabilise already-weakened societies”, he said.

The Holy Father then explained how some States, in the face of the crisis, “rather than diminishing aid to the most defenceless nations, have suggested increasing it. Other developed countries should follow this example so that the neediest countries are able to sustain their economies and consolidate social measures designed to protect the most needy sectors of the population”. He also launched an appeal for “greater fraternity and solidarity, and real global generosity”, and for “developed countries to rediscover a sense of proportion and sobriety in their economies and lifestyles”.

“You must not ignore”, the Pope told the ambassadors, “new forms of violence that have arisen over recent years and that, alas, seek support from the Name of God to justify dangerous acts. … This had sometimes led to the view that religions are a threat to societies, and they have been attacked and discredited by claiming that they are not agents for peace. Religious leaders have the duty to accompany and enlighten believers so as to ensure they become increasingly saintly and interpret divine words in the light of truth”.

“It is necessary favour the resurgence of world in which religions and societies can open to one another, thanks to the openness that religions practice within and among themselves. This will be an authentic testimony to life. This will create a space for positive and necessary dialogue. By making her contribution to the world, the Catholic Church wishes to bear witness to her positive vision of man’s future”, the Holy Father concluded.

In the written address delivered to the ambassador from India, the Holy Father speaks of his deep concern for Christians who have suffered from outbreaks of violence in some areas within your borders” and appeals “to all to show respect for human dignity by rejecting hatred and renouncing violence in all its forms”.

To the South African representative, Benedict XVI expresses the hope “that in the current struggle against poverty and corruption, courage and wisdom will again prevail”, the courage and wisdom shown by the people of South Africa in facing past injustices. Referring then to HIV/AIDS, he gives assurances that “the Church takes seriously her part in the campaign against the spread of [the disease] by emphasising fidelity within marriage and abstinence outside of it. At the same time she already offers much assistance on a practical level to people suffering from this affliction on your continent and throughout the world”.

Catholic Fatherhood in Focus on CatholicTV Talk Show as Father’s Day Approaches

May 31, 2009

WATERTOWN, MA (MetroCatholic) - Catholic Fatherhood will be discussed on the CatholicTV talk show “This is the Day” on Tuesday, June 2nd. Patrick Kelly, former Capitol Hill attorney and current VP for the Knights of Columbus will discuss an initiative of the Knights of Columbus started solely to promote fatherhood and to assist fathers.

Also on the show will be Brian Singer-Towns. Brian is a father of 2 and has over twenty-five years of parish, diocesan, and national experience in pastoral ministry. As a member of the Editorial Staff at St. Mary’s Press Brian leads workshops for leaders around the country on biblical literacy and other youth ministry topics.

CatholicTV is a nationally-broadcasted television station headquartered near Boston.

Patrick Kelly currently serves as the Vice President for Public Policy for the Knights of Columbus. He will be on “This is the Day” talking about “Fathers For Good”. Fathers for Good defines a father as “an ordinary man who is called and equipped to do extraordinary things from day to day – work, provide, protect, pray, get involved with his family, and be there as an example for his children and faithful to his wife.” The Fathers For Good website ( offers inspiration, advice, and even an opportunity to ask questions about fatherhood and have them answered via email.

Also on the show will be Brian Singer-Towns. Brian spent fifteen years in volunteer and professional youth ministry. He is also the author of several books including “The Catholic Faith Handbook for Youth”. Brian is the General Editor of the newly released Personal Journey Bible published by Saint Mary’s Press (SMP). Since 2000, Saint Mary’s Press of Minnesota has donated Catholic Youth Bibles® to inner-city and rural disadvantaged Catholic high schools and ministries and to youth in detention centers throughout the United States. Learn more about this program at

These guests can be seen on Tuesday, June 2nd live at 10:30AM (EST) on CatholicTV where available (rebroadcast at 8PM). The show will also be streamed live at and will be available on the site’s archives starting Tuesday night.

All videos at the website are viewable in full-screen. Paste this URL into your browser in order to access the “This is the Day” video archives. Embed code is available for all archived videos at

About CatholicTV:
CatholicTV provides family-friendly, religious, news, and educational programming 24 hours daily. Founded over 50 years ago, CatholicTV is available in selected areas on cable in the United States and Canada, via Sky Angel IPTV and online via a live stream anytime, everywhere at the station’s web site Father Robert Reed, a priest of the Archdiocese of Boston, is the Director of CatholicTV. Click here to paste this into your browser to find out how to watch CatholicTV where you live:  

“This is the Day” can also be seen on demand at or downloaded via The hosts, Father Robert Reed, and Jay Fadden discuss various topics of the week and respond to viewer mail (you may email the show at [email protected].)

Couple Ordered to Stop Holding Bible Study at Home Without Permit

May 29, 2009

Pastor David Jones and his wife Mary have been told that they cannot invite friends to their San Diego, Calif. home for a Bible study — unless they are willing to pay tens of thousands of dollars to San Diego County.

Full story at,2933,522637,00.html

STU Alumnus Nominated Holy See Ambassador

May 29, 2009

MIAMI, FL (MetroCatholic) - St. Thomas University’s alumnus, Dr. Miguel Diaz, has been named ambassador to the Holy See. The White House issued the announcement of President Obama’s nomination of the Catholic theologian, now a professor of theology at St. John’s University and the College of Saint Benedict in Minnesota.

“We are proud that our University was responsible for his educational foundation, which has contributed to his global leadership role in various ways,” says Monsignor Franklyn M. Casale, St. Thomas University President. “Receiving a B.A. in History from St. Thomas University and taking various courses in religious studies and pastoral ministries here added to his expertise in theological studies. He is the kind of role model we think of as we explain St. Thomas’ mission of developing leaders for life.”

Dr. Diaz is the co-editor of the book “From the Heart of Our People: Explorations in Catholic Systematic Theology” and author of “On Being Human: U.S. Hispanic and Rahnerian Perspectives.” He sits in most prestigious Catholic theological societies and his professional background includes serving as Academic Dean at St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary in Boynton Beach, Florida.

Catholic College Commencement Scandals Increase in 2009

May 29, 2009

MANASSAS, VA (MetroCatholic) - In the Spring of 2009, at least 12 Catholic colleges and universities hosted scandalous speakers and honorees at their commencement ceremonies, according to The Cardinal Newman Society’s annual review. This marks a troubling reversal of the recent decrease of Catholic commencement scandals – merely seven took place in 2008, down from 24 in 2006.

“It is a very sad development, to see so many Catholic colleges and universities joining Notre Dame in their disrespect for Catholic morality and for the U.S. bishops,” said Patrick J. Reilly, president of The Cardinal Newman Society. “The bishops’ policy against such honors and platforms is crystal clear and is only the bare minimum expected of Catholic institutions.”

The 2009 commencement scandals occurred despite the unprecedented public opposition of 83 U.S. bishops to the University of Notre Dame’s honor for President Obama at commencement. None publicly supported Notre Dame’s action.

Most of the protesting bishops referenced the 2004 USCCB statement “Catholics in Political Life” as support for their opposition. The statement reads: “The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.”

The Cardinal Newman Society compiled the following list of Catholic colleges and universities whose commencement speakers have publicly opposed or acted against Catholic values on key moral issues:

***Creighton University (Neb.)
Christopher J. Elias, M.D., was the commencement speaker and honorary Doctor of Science degree recipient at Creighton University on May 16. Elias is the President and CEO of Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH). PATH, a nonprofit organization to address health concerns around the world, promotes abortion and contraception. PATH worked in Nepal to shift “cultural norms” toward an acceptance of abortion by means of “dialogue groups.” The organization’s website states: “This is where PATH comes in: helping address the long-held beliefs that still stand between women and safe abortion.”

***Dominican University of California
Willie L. Brown, Jr. was the commencement speaker and honorary Doctor of Laws degree recipient at Dominican University of California, where he is a board member, on May 15. Brown has served as Mayor of San Francisco and as Speaker of the California State Assembly, and he is an advocate of abortion rights and homosexual marriage. According to a review of his autobiography, Basic Brown: My Life and Our Times, “Willie Brown shows how some of the most far-reaching and socially advanced legislation in American history — like… legalized abortion, gay rights… — was carried out under his guidance and on his watch.” In 1996, Archbishop William Levada protested when San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown officially recognized 175 same-sex couples as “domestic partners” in a proceeding that was very similar to a marriage ceremony. Last year Brown publicly opposed California’s Proposition 8, which legally defined marriage as between a man and a woman.

***Fordham University (N.Y.)
Michael Bloomberg, the Mayor of New York City, delivered remarks and received an honorary degree at Fordham University’s commencement on May 16. Bloomberg is pro-abortion. reported in 2006 that Bloomberg said, “Reproductive choice is a fundamental human right, and we can never take it for granted. On this issue, you’re either with us or against us.” Reproductive choice is a euphemism for abortion. Bloomberg also supports homosexual marriage. According to New York Magazine, he has stated, “I think anybody should be allowed to marry anybody.” Charles Schumer, a U.S. Senator from New York, also spoke at the Fordham University commencement exercises, according to Catholic News Agency. Schumer has received a 100% voting record from NARAL Pro-Choice America. He has voted to expand the availability of contraceptives, voted for expanding research to more embryonic stem cell lines, voted against notifying the parents of minors who get out of state abortions, and voted against a ban on partial-birth abortion.

***University of Notre Dame (Ind.)
Barack Obama, President of the United States, was commencement speaker and honorary Doctor of Laws degree recipient at the University of Notre Dame’s commencement on May 17. Obama is vigorously pro-abortion. Before becoming president, he stated at a Planned Parenthood conference that his first act as president would be to sign into law the Freedom of Choice Act (a bill that would remove all existing restrictions on abortion); the bill has not yet passed. He also opposed a ban on partial-birth abortion. As president, Obama has worked to overturn conscience protections for healthcare workers, appointed numerous pro-abortion cabinet members (including the Secretary of Health and Human Services), dedicated federal funds to harvest embryonic stem cells, and overturned the Mexico City Policy which prevented U.S. funds from being used to promote abortion overseas. Obama reaffirmed his pro-abortion stance two weeks before the Notre Dame commencement ceremony, and again during his commencement address. More than eighty bishops have opposed Notre Dame on account of this matter.

***College of the Holy Cross (Mass.)
King’s College (Pa.)
Robert Casey, Jr., a U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania, was commencement speaker and honorary degree recipient at both the College of the Holy Cross and King’s College commencement ceremonies (May 22 and 17 respectively). These went forward despite the fact that Casey’s own bishop in Scranton, Pa., Bishop Joseph Martino, has been repeatedly critical of the senator’s record in recent months. This criticism included Casey’s vote opposing an amendment to reinstate the pro-life Mexico City Policy, which prohibits federal funds to groups that promote or perform abortions. Bishop Martino also scolded Casey for his vote to confirm pro-abortion Kathleen Sebelius as Secretary of Health and Human Services. The bishop called the decision of King’s College to honor Casey “an affront to all who value the sanctity of life,” saying Sen. Casey lacks “the moral stature” to properly address the challenges faced by the graduates.

***Xavier University of Louisiana
Donna Brazile, a political commentator and activist, was commencement speaker and honorary degree recipient at Xavier University of Louisiana on May 9. Brazile supported President Obama’s reversal of the Mexico City Policy which previously barred taxpayer funding from supporting abortion services overseas. She said that “this will save lives.” In a CNN segment during the 2008 presidential campaign, Brazile suggested that public discussion of Barack Obama’s legislative support for infanticide should be diminished in light of high gas prices. Additionally, in a 2006 article, Brazile expressed her support for across-the-board availability of contraceptive services, including her support for the Prevention First Act. New Orleans Archbishop Alfred Hughes boycotted the ceremony on account of the selection of Brazile.

***St. Francis College (N.Y.)
Yvette Clarke, a U.S. Representative from New York, was the commencement speaker and honorary degree recipient at St. Francis College on May 27. In 2007, Clarke voted for the expansion of federal funding to include more research of embryonic stem cell lines. In the same year, Clarke co-sponsored a bill that would have ensured access to and federal funding of contraception.

***Saint Joseph’s University (Pa.)
Chris Matthews was commencement speaker and honorary Doctor of Communications degree recipient at Saint Joseph’s University on May 16. Matthews is the widely-recognized host of MSNBC’s Hardball, and has repeatedly and publicly supported legalized abortion. Last March, he referred to pro-life advocates opposing the nomination of pro-abortion Kathleen Sebelius as Secretary of Health and Human Services as “terrorists.” Cornel West, a Princeton University professor, also received an honorary degree at the commencement ceremony of Saint Joseph’s University. In 2006, West opposed the Federal Marriage Amendment by signing onto the public statement “Beyond Same-Sex Marriage: A New Strategic Vision For All Our Families and Relationships.” The group supporting the statement (at proposed that “Marriage is not the only worthy form of family or relationship, and it should not be legally and economically privileged above all others.” They sought to “reframe the narrow terms of the marriage debate” and advocated legal recognition of “a wide range of relationships” regardless of “conjugal status.”

***Stonehill College (Mass.)
M. Elizabeth Fini was Stonehill College’s commencement speaker. Fini currently serves as the Vice Dean for Research at the University of Southern California’s Keck School of Medicine. According to the Daily Trojan, Fini expressed enthusiasm at the prospect of utilizing embryonic stem cell lines for research at USC. “Because we got this jumpstart, it makes all the difference for us,” she said. “Our researchers are ready to go, where other schools are going to have to get this started.” As scientific director and vice chair for research at the University of Miami’s Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in 2007, Fini helped establish a partnership between Moorfields Eye Hospital in England and Bascom Palmer. According to the South Florida Business Journal, Moorfields previously received a “$7 million donation to conduct embryonic and adult stem cell research to treat macular degeneration,” and Fini intended to work with the Hospital on that project, even looking for a matching donation for Bascom Palmer.

***University of St. Francis (Ill.)
A. J. Wilhelmi, an Illinois State Senator, was commencement speaker at the University of St. Francis on May 9. In 2007, Senator Wilhelmi voted for a bill that permitted Illinois state funding for research on embryonic stem cell lines.

***University of San Francisco (Cal.)
Most Reverend Kevin Dowling, Bishop of Rustenburg, South Africa, was an honorary degree recipient and undergraduate commencement speaker at the University of San Francisco on May 22. Bishop Dowling has publicly criticized abstinence-only programs and supports condom use by those infected with or at risk of contracting HIV/AIDS. After he expressed his view regarding condoms in a 2001 interview, the South African bishops’ conference condemned his statements and has reaffirmed that condoms are “immoral” and a “misguided weapon in the fight against HIV.” The papal nuncio of South Africa has also rebuked Bishop Dowling at least twice. Kamala D. Harris was the graduate school commencement speaker at the University of San Francisco on May 23. She is the San Francisco District Attorney. According to the Bay Area Reporter, Harris has spoken at rallies against California Proposition 8. The proposition, which passed, defined marriage as between one man and one woman. Harris said that was an expression of “prejudice” and “hate.”

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