Monday, February 28, 2011
Listening to various New York City Councilmembers spew pro-abortion rhetoric from their mouths at a Planned Parenthood rally, I heard the sponsors of Bill 371 state that they were invincible. Bill 371 may become law, and remain law for decades to come.
When it comes to God's justice--and mercy--we see but the tip of the iceberg. This mob of angry pro-abort activists are on a sinking ship, whether they choose to acknowledge God or not.
that regulated pregnancy centers' freedom of speech in an unconstitutional manner. The advertisement pictured on this blog provides Baltimore's bus riders with phone numbers for the area's pregnancy resource centers. It clearly states that these centers provide alternatives to abortion. The law that was struck down was, like New York City Council's Bill 371, designed to prevent pregnancy centers from providing vital assistance to expecting mothers, without inhibiting the abortion clinics' ability to deceive their clients in any way, shape, or form.
In hindsight, those in Baltimore who helped pass that ridiculous legislation into law were wasting a lot of taxpayer dollars. Had it been a beneficial and constitutional piece of legislation, it would have been worth supporting. It was, like New York City Council's Bill 371, neither beneficial nor constitutional. Those NYC Councilmembers who plan on voting in favor of Bill 371 will not only be wasting taxpayer dollars. They will be showing their disregard for human life.
A mother walked towards the throng of excited pro-choice activists. There were hundreds, if not thousands of signs present, but her son was not interested in any of them. His curiousity was fixed on the banner that Chris Slattery and I held. It was a simple banner, reading, "Vote Pro-Life," with an American Flag unfurled in the background. The boy pulled his mother towards the banner, inquiring as to the meaning of the sign. As she dragged him away, his face showed that his curiousity had not been satisfied. His mother had bought the lies peddled by the abortion industry, and he was probably fortunate enough to be the wanted, planned child.
My heart was broken for this child. I prayed that he would not buy the lies that surrounded him at this Planned Parenthood rally- not now, not ever. He was old enough to read. Without making a sound, every ounce of my being cried out, "Put the morphemes together, kid! Ask the tough questions! Don't stop seeking the truth!" I prayed that he would be able to understand the most basic meaning of the term, "Pro-Life," and that he would question why his mother was not at all interested in being "in favor of life."
Kid, may God lead you, and keep you questioning until you glorify your Creator, and lead your mother to an understanding of the truth as well. From the moment of conception, before the pregnancy test could even detect your presence, you were made in the image of God.
Ignore the crowds, kid. Seek God.
A bit confused she asked a few more questions and we scheduled an appointment. She was excited that an organization exists that provides free services for pregnant women.
Before finishing our conversation she asked me if she could ask a 'strange' question. "Of course," I said.
"What do you get out of this?" After a few clarifying questions I came to know that she meant how and why does our organization exist if all we do is provide free services. I gladly explained to her that we exists to give real options to women facing a difficult pregnancy because we want to help them - not take their money, and that people will donate to our organization because they like the good work we do.
There will be a lot less of these types of phone calls if City Council Bill 371 passes. Warning signs on all of our advertisements will make it less likely that women will call.
She hung up delighted and relieved that their exists an organization that could actually help her. We have the right to truthfully advertise (like we do) without the government imposing an unconstitutional mandate on us - and if they succeed, not only are our rights violated, but women and their families will be hurt. Badly.
I was standing outside of Dr. Emily's abortion clinic with a few other pro life people. Standing there with my pamphlets, ready to sidewalk counsel a girl going in, I found myself caught in the middle of a conversation with some of our pro life people and the director of the abortion clinic.
They were conversing back and forth about a young teenage girl standing outside of the clinic with her mom. Her mom was forcing her get an abortion, telling her that she's too young to have a child. The girl was crying. She didn't want to get the abortion.
The director and a security guard were both standing out there trying to distract what we were saying to the girl. At one point, I was totally taken back by what the director said.
She accused one of my colleagues that he was a "deadbeat". He responded. Then she yelled, literally raised her voice as loud as possible and kept hollering "DEADBEAT! DEADBEAT! DEADBEAT! DEADBEAT!"
I wasn't really in shock. I just was curious. Where does she stand in her own conviction of what she does, that she feels that it's normal to yell as loud as she can across the parking lot to a person she doesn't even know, an insult over and and over and over again?
I'm really curious. I don't know the answer. It's a question that's been lingering in my mind ever since it happened.
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Bill 371 is not an attempt to uphold the constitution. Bill 371 is an attempt to silence Expectant Mother Care and other pregnancy centers in New York City. Bill 371 will only result in more people perishing in New York City.
DR. BERNARD NATHANSON—R.I.P. How The Hand of God worked on a former abortion Doctor who became my friend.
DR. BERNARD NATHANSON—R.I.P. How The Hand of God worked on a former abortion Doctor who became my friend
By Chris Slattery, EMC Frontline Pregnancy Care Monday, February 21st, 2011
My wife Eileen and I mourn the death of our dear friend and mentor, Dr. Bernard Nathanson. I met Bernie in late 1970s, when I was a young salesman in the magazine industry. after he'd published his first book, Aborting America.
I got to know him at talks at Human Life International, before he released his first, earth-shaking film, The Silent Scream. He explained the sinister and deceptive way in which abortion had been legalized by lies and manipulation. I could see how much difference one man could make. He got me angry, and motivated me to dedicate my life to this cause.
When Bernie and his partners founded NARAL--the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws--and set out to legalize abortion, they were lionized at first by the media. They coddled the press with lies and exaggerations. In 1972, the year before Roe vs. Wade, the Centers for Disease Control reported that there were 39 deaths from illegal abortions. But Bernie simply made up the figure of "5,000 to 10,000 per year," and the press bought it.
He estimated that through the abortion clinic he and his partners founded in Manhattan, the Center for Reproductive and Sexual Health (CRASH), he was responsible for the deaths of 60,000 children. But with the development of ultrasound in the 1970s, Bernie began to realize what he had been doing. He changed his mind about abortion and set out to do whatever he could, by speaking, writing, and making films, to right the wrong he had done. The same media and opinion-makers who had praised him now attacked him as an opportunist, a quack, and an eccentric.
He wouldn't be stopped. His three books and three films became the primary tools of many pro-life activists. I can tell you that over the years, his films alone had a huge impact on expectant mothers, and saved the lives of tens of thousands of children in our EMC FrontLine Pregnancy Centers and elsewhere.
He went back to school, getting a degree in bioethics from Vanderbilt University in 1996. He became an expert witness before legislatures and juries, using his authoritative voice to teach the uninformed about the reality of life in the womb and the deceptions of the abortion industry. He is a featured speaker in the current film about that industry, Blood Money.
He became a consultant to us when we opened our first pregnancy center in Manhattan on East 23rd Street and he helped provide pre-natal care to our moms, and he did a fund-raiser for us in his townhouse in Chelsea, and spoke for us elsewhere. He also helped with my wife's own pre-natal care when Eileen had a difficult pregnancy with our third child, Brigid.
After he renounced abortion, Bernie was still not a religious man. He described it as a seminal moment in his awakening when he and I next to each were among hundreds of pro-lifers dragged away from the doorways of Planned Parenthood on E 22nd Street, and Second Avenue in Manhattan. On that cold January morning in 1989, with Operation Rescue we helped shut down seven abortion mills in New York. Planned Parenthood, his former ally, sued us and about 6 other rescue leaders in Federal court.
Bernie carried a very heavy burden of guilt for his crimes. He began talking with Fr. C. John McCloskey of the Prelature of Opus Dei, and read a great many excellent spiritual books at his suggestion. Then the man who in the 1960s had fought to destroy the reputation and influence of the Church now asked to be baptized a Catholic. He had a wholehearted conversion, praying for forgiveness and God's mercy.
In 1996, in the crypt under St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York, pro-life heroine Joan Andrews Bell acted as Bernie's godmother. I was his Confirmation sponsor. And John Cardinal O'Connor said Mass and administered First Holy Communion to Bernard Nathanson.
It's with great sorrow that we lose our movement's most famous defector from the abortion industry. Like St. Paul, he struggled against the Light, but came to his senses a new man and became the Truth's champion.
Bernie fought the good fight, and has finished the race.
God bless you, Dr. Nathanson, and may you rest in peace.
Saturday, February 26, 2011
Many of you have heard of the polarizing videos from Live Action undercover at Planned Parenthood. Actors posed as Sex Traffickers of under aged girls "14 and 15 years old" and while soliciting services from Planned Parenthood, disclosed this information to the mandatory reporters. The world was shocked and horrified as Planned Parenthood Staffers from different clinics in several states went above and beyond in an attempt to aid and abet these purported "sex traffickers".
Friday, February 25, 2011
The sidewalk in front of Dr. Emily's Abortion facility in the South Bronx is a very intimidating place for me. All my fear, anxiety and insecurity seem to flood into my soul each and every time that I go to the sidewalk. Often I feel spiritually attacked and it can be overwhelming.
It is also a little disheartening to stand on the sidewalk day after day and to not have any evidence of any results. But God gives me the grace to be His voice on the streets to those who are pleading to hear it. He uses the weak and small to do His will!
I was graced this week to receive proof that my compliance with God's will yielded fruit. A boyfriend left Dr. Emily's to smoke on the sidewalk. His face was troubled and though I was concerned, I gave him space to think for a while. When he finished his cigarette, I approached him.
Hey, is your girl in there?
.... yeah why?
Is she pregnant?
... I don't know. I just don't know. Why?
Well if she is pregnant, we can provide her with a free sonogram right over here, right now.
... yeah, can I have some information about that?
Here you go. And my name is Megan. I will be out here if you want to talk.
... thanks, I'll talk to her.
That simple conversation and the grace of God, was all it took to convince this couple to choose life! I had left to take a break, but another counselor was present and recounted the story. The couple left the clinic looking for Megan. They had a sonogram photo from the clinic, and decided after speaking with me and looking at the developmental facts inside of our pamphlet to parent their child! God keeps us humble by often not allowing us to see the fruits of our labors... but this time He granted me that gift and I am so thankful!
Praise God for the gift of Life!
Monday, February 21, 2011
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
The sidewalk in front of Dr. Emily's Abortion clinic in the South Bronx can be a place of great despair and turmoil. Saturday's are the worst. On these days both entrances to the clinic are guarded by volunteer clinic escorts that make the job of the side-walk counselor difficult, if not impossible.
Despair was creeping in this past Saturday in particular. I had seen countless women walk into the clinic and sadly I was only able to had out one pamphlet discussing our services and other options for women.
It was a disheartening experience. But when things are their most bleak, God has a way of bringing light to the darkness. And He did so this day through the presence of St. Jerome's youth group.
About 20 young, high school aged people came out to pray and give witness to the atrocity of abortion. They prayed a rosary in the front, but the most inspiring thing of all was when they went to the back to sing. In the face of shouting from the clinic escorts, these brave young people lifted there voices in song.
The sound of Amazing Grace and Lean on Me... filled the streets and called out to God for Mercy. Their voices transformed the side-walk from a place of death and despair... to a place of hope and promise. They cared for these women and children. They gave such an inspiring witness to the slaughter of the innocents. But to me in particular, they gave hope!
My sincere thanks to each and every young person that was there. You are all inspiring witnesses to life. Praise God for you!
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
"It takes a village to raise a child..." a client told me one day at the EMC Pregnancy Center in Brooklyn. And she is right!
Many of the clients we see lack the support that so many of us take for granted. Maybe their boyfriend is forcing and pressuring them into thinking abortion is their only option... Maybe its a mother that is stressed out and can't see any hope for her "little girl" and a new child... Whatever the circumstance, many women feel the bitterness of loneliness in their decision to parent their children.
But they have their children! They see them every time they return to our center for Prenatal care, and that gives them hope... it reminds them why it is worth it! Each time a client looks into the window of the womb, she always gains a renewed sense of purpose and motivation. They are not alone in their struggles.
These clients also have each other. It is a beautiful thing to see these girls talk, laugh, share stories and phone numbers and truly form a mini-community within our center. The older, "veteran" mothers share their wisdom with the new moms. For the women that are with out the support of their own mothers, this advice is intensely valuable and needed. Truly a Life line during this time of instability.
Mothers helping mothers... a beautiful sight!
It may in fact take a village to raise a child -- and I am honored to be a member of a village that provides help and support to these strong and inspiring women.
Last week I waited outside of Dr. Emily's abortion clinic in the Bronx for girls going out and coming in. I was able to consult with many girls this particular day that were going in the front entrance; 22 girls to be exact.
Around 10am I went to the back entrance. There I was standing right by the gate, and 3 girls came out. I had no idea what they were doing, what had happened, or where they were going.
So when they got about 10 feet away, I said, "Hey! What's up? What's going on?" They waited until they got to the gate where I was standing. Then one of them said to me, " I couldn't do it. " I said, "Do what?" She said, " I couldn't get the abortion." I said, "Why not? They didn't accept your insurance?" She said, "No. I just couldn't do it again. I couldn't go through with it.
I said "WOW. So you're going to keep your baby?" She said "Yeah. I am."
I said "Well you need a sonogram then! Hey I got you . There's a truck sitting right there. It's got our sonogram machine and sonogram technician on it. We'll give you a free sonogram right here and now."
She said "For real?" I said "Yes mam. Let's go. "
Then we walked over to the bus. As we were walking, one of the other girls says "I'm pregnant too. Can I get a sonogram today as well?" I said, "Yes mam!"
Thank God EMC counselors like myself were able to be there at the abortion clinic right at the exact crucial time that 2 girls needed us. God provided the money for the sonograms, the money for the bus to carry the sonogram,the health for me to stand out in the cold, the tongue to communicate, everything. God was in everything. To Him be the glory forever to make these 2 lives happen once, and be rescued from death.
"Fight the good fight for the faith; take hold of eternal life, to which you were called and have made a good confession before many witnesses" -I Timothy 6:12
Monday, February 14, 2011
Currently, Expectant Mother Care Centers are being attacked by the City Council of NYC. The Bill is # 371 and would require crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) to post signs warning that the CPCs do not provide abortion services. There are many other portions to this bill, but this particular one would turn girls away from our centers.
The passing of this bill is just the start to the attempts of trying to shut our Centers down. I can understand where they are coming from. Places like Planned Parenthood work for years to get into mainly high schools where they can persuade the girls that it's totally ok to have sex with your boyfriend, just make sure you use protection. Next they say "don't have any protection? We will give it to you. Just make sure you come with cash".
The next and last thing they say to the girls is, "protection didn't work this time for whatever reason? No problem. Make an appointment with us, we'll give you an abortion. Just make sure you come with cash." Depending on the amount of abortions the girl needs to get, they could get up to 3,000 dollars and more per client. They know how to hook the girls in.
So when places like our Centers come along, and instead of encouraging an abortion, we help the woman keep her baby or make an adoption plan, Planned Parenthood is infuriated. Naturally. I understand. I wouldn't like me either if I worked for them. BUT I DON'T.
And what they are doing is wrong. Christ came so that we could have life and have it more abundantly. And in Proverbs, He talks about the 7 sins he hates the most, and "the killing of innocent blood" is one of them.
Let's fight for something that's worth more than the affirmation that we have come prepared with "cash" . There are things in this life, far greater than money.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
This adorable child is 2 years old and has the most "Sampson-like" hair of anyone child I have ever seen. Positively precious!
Getting a smile out of him was hard, but Linda- the Director of EMC Pregnancy Center in Brooklyn knew just what to say to crack the face of this little Miracle child! He is alive today by the grace of God and the work of this EMC Pregnancy center.
This family had been here about two years ago seeking options and alternatives to abortion. During that time they were counseled, loved and told that they COULD do it, and that EMC would help!
Since this time they have moved around the city quite a bit. But when they found themselves in an unexpected pregnancy.... they knew where to go!
They returned to EMC Pregnancy center because they remembered the love and support they received here and they were desperate for that again! Abortion was not an option this time due the support and knowledge provided by our EMC Pregnancy Center.
The Mother was given a sonogram to estimate the child's age and then she was invited back for prenatal care until her delivery.
What a joy it is to see that people know they are always welcomed... they are always supported and they are ALWAYS Loved!
And it is the love that brings them back!
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
A very happy example of this is shown in Heather's blog a few days ago, here:
Other days are efforts are seemingly futile. There were 300 to 400 thousand people celebrating the March for Life this year. It grows younger and more numerous every year. But would you believe that on the very next day one of my co-workers saw 18 girls enter Dr. Emily in one hour? That day, very few were even interested in taking a pamphlet.
These are the two worlds of pro-life work - the joy of seeing hundreds of thousands in support of a cause in Washington DC and the thrill of a woman choosing life, but also the pain of not being effective at changing hearts and minds on certain days.
The bad days are incredibly difficult to endure, but the good news is that we know that these two worlds: the world of the March for Life and the world where abortion is so very prevalent - cannot coexist forever. And if we believe that Jesus has already defeated death, we know which world will ultimately be victorious.
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
A woman in her mid thirties walked into the EMC Brooklyn Pregnancy Center Thursday morning looking for something...
She had undergone several abortions, had three beautiful children, and was seeking to end her new child's life. She used words like, "I can't do this... I won't have another baby... I have to have an abortion."
But in getting to know her situation better, Linda the Director of the Brooklyn Center, was able to find so much more that this woman needed. She held on her shoulders a monstrous guilt. When her oldest daughter was very young she fell from a slide at the park. She got up and was fine, but later that night she began to shake while in the bathtub. She was having a seizure and now suffers every night from similar epileptic tremors. This woman couldn't forgive herself and buried a part of her maternal instincts along with her guilt. She needed to confront this first, before she could even learn to accept the child within her womb.
"It's not your fault. You could not have known. You did the best you could. You are a good mother, " Linda, the clinic director asserted. And the walls fell down...
This strong and independent woman had been making it on her own for so long. Someone showed her love and compassion, and she was finally able to embrace the receptivity of her femininity. Her heart began to melt.
Though I have no idea what this woman has decided to do about having an abortion, I do know that she received love, support, and options while she was with us. I trust that whatever happens to her that she will remember that she is a good mother.
Monday, February 7, 2011
Sunday, February 6, 2011
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Initially she had thought that she was only 5 weeks pregnant - but our sonogram showed that she was much further - she was 14 weeks! She instantly started crying as soon as she saw her baby.
As we found out, she had earlier prayed to God to show her a sign on what she should do, and she thought that He was telling her to get an abortion. Now she and us both believe that He was leading her to us the entire time.
Who knows if the clinic would have told her how far she was - they definitely would not have shown her the ultrasound picture. As the image above shows, in the second trimester, features are even more distinct than in the first, and oftentimes mothers cannot resist realizing the reality of their motherhood when shown their baby via the window to their womb - the ultrasound machine.
After we talked with her for a while she left very happy. It is very difficult, physically, emotionally, and spiritually, to attempt to sidewalk counsel - but the rewards are far greater than any hardship can ever be.
She never imagined she would be in this situation.
She had seen it before… but never thought it would be her.
This remarkable woman had a week prior to our meeting, made an appointment to end the life of her 12 week old child. Praise God that he gave her the courage and fortitude to walk out of that clinic that day! She then went to another pregnancy clinic, and finally into the EMC South Bronx Pregnancy center.
The journey that she had taken had truly been a remarkable one. And as soon as she walked in to our counseling room she was drawn to the fetal models on the table. “Which one is mine?” she inquired. Based on her information I handed her a 12 week old fetal model. She held the baby in her hands and looked at it with all the wonder and awe of a new discovery…. a new creation… her child!
This woman was referred for an ultrasound in another location, and seemed to be leaning towards parenting her child! Her story shows me that the child in the womb is a holy and sacred person. I will never look at a fetal model the same again. They have the power to ignite the fire of a mother’s heart where once a scared girl stood.
Fetal Models save LIVES !
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Right as we were about to leave a couple came out of the clinic and I was able to hand them a brochure. Because of the time of day, I knew that most women leaving the clinic would have had an abortion, so I gave them some post-abortive help information while explaining to them I wasn't assuming anything but it's just in case they need help.
As the man and woman started to walk away we continued to pray. About twenty feet away, while she kept walking, he had turned around and signaled to me. The clinic escort who was standing right beside us and mindlessly ranting in our ears as we prayed thought he was trying to call her over.
After he made it clear to her that, no - he wanted to talk to us, I walked over and greeted him. He then told me that they had changed their mind. I could tell by the tone in his voice that he was relieved that a horrible mistake was averted. He had a sort of dignified voice that a man gets when he knows that he did something that was difficult but morally right.
I'm so flattered that the man came to us to tell us about his decision. He knew that we were there to offer help and witness for life and wanted to let me know the good news. I just had this sort of feeling that he knew we were on his team.
God only knows what role, if any, we played in the saving of that baby - which is one way He keeps us humble, but I do know that regardless of who or what was the main instrument of a woman or couple's conversion, God should always get the credit.
I was able to attend the March for Life that took place in Washington D. C. this year for the second time.
There were over 300,000 people at this march, who were all there for the same reasons: fighting for the lives of the unborn.
I saw so many different arguments. Some people wanted to argue that Planned Parenthood should be shut down for all of the trickery they put on teen girls in the district high schools, encouraging sex before marriage, and the availability to perform 1st and 2nd trimester abortions.
Others focused more on the simple issue that abortion is legal in this country. No matter what the medical center, if they perform abortions, it's wrong. They believe that life is sacred to man and to God. They believe that man should not have the power to literally take life into their own hands.
There were people there from all over the country. People from Florida, to Texas, to California, back over to Michigan, falling down from New York City that sacrificed work,money, and sleep to make it to this march. Obviously, there are some things worth making a stand for to people. For everything else, there's just paperwork.
This was definitely a physical stand. And as a good friend of mine from California once quoted to me "stand for something, or you'll fall for anything".
These people are not falling for the direction that our country's president wants to take us. Instead, they are falling back on Biblical principles and God's way of procreating life to have it lived.