Supreme Court Affirms Religious Freedom

In the “Hobby Lobby” case, the Supreme Court today struck down the Obamacare requirement that religious owners of family-owned corporations must include no-cost contraceptive/abortifacient coverage in employee health insurance.

From The Washington Post (July 8)
A Good Day for Hobby Lobby, the Little Sisters of the Poor, and Mr. Muhammed Too

From The Becket Fund, counsel for Hobby Lobby
Supreme Court Victory for Hobby Lobby and Religious Freedom

From The Hill, Helen Alvare
After Hobby Lobby, What’s Next? (the question of the Little Sisters of the Poor and nonprofit ministries)

From National Right to Life Committee
Analysis and implications of the Hobby Lobby decision. Religious employers are hardly out of the woods yet.

Supreme Court Strikes Down Law Prohibiting Prolife Free Speech

imagesA great victory for Life and for America! In a unanimous decision today, the Supreme Court struck down a Massachusetts buffer zone law prohibiting pro-life free speech outside abortion clinics.

Mark Rienzi, professor of constitutional law at Catholic University of America’s Columbus School of Law and lead counsel for the sidewalk counselor who brought the suit stated: “Americans have the freedom to talk to whomever they please on public sidewalks. That includes peaceful pro-lifers like Eleanor McCullen, who just wants to offer information and help to women who would like it. The Supreme Court has affirmed a critical freedom that has been an essential part of American life since the nation’s founding.”  Read more here.

And don’t miss Sean Miller’s blog about what it’s like to be a sidewalk counselor.

Good News and Bad News

THE GOOD NEWS

Today, the House of Representatives passed a bill that will strip federal funding from any health plan created by Obamacare that covers abortion on demand.  It’s called the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act (H.R. 7).The vote was 227 to 188.

taxpayerfunding3Under this act, our tax dollars cannot be used to help Americans purchase insurance plans with abortion coverage. Nor can they be used  to pay for abortions in any federal program.

Unfortunately, Rockland’s representative Nita Lowey voted against this bill.

Now the bill goes to the Senate, President Obama has said he will veto it if it passes there.

For more information about this bill, click here.

THE BAD NEWS

Monday, the New York State Assembly passed the Women’s Equality Act, which makes abortion available for essentially any reason at any time.

Although the bill also contain provisions that are generally acceptable to most New Yorkers — like equal pay for women and ending sexual harassment, for example — here’s why it’s dangerous:

  • It expands abortion through all nine months of pregnancy
  • It allows  non-doctors to perform abortions
  • It has no conscience protection for medical professionals who are opposed to taking a human life.

You may remember the battle over this bill last spring, where it failed to pass by one vote. We must stop this bill in the Senate, and we need everyone to help!  Please watch this website to learn what you can do. For more information, click here.

Unfortunately, again, all the legislators in Rockland County voted for this bill:  Ellen Jaffe (representing Orangetown and parts of Ramapo), Ken Zebrowski (representing Haverstraw and Clarkstown), and James Skoufis (representing Stony Point). In the picture below, he’s the first one on the left. This is a rally of the Family Planning Advocates of New York in support of the bill. He even wore a pink tie for the occasion.

Screen shot 2014-01-28 at 9.54.39 PM

Pregnant Teen Finds Shelter and Hope

Starring Vanessa Hudgens and James Earl Jones, “Gimme Shelter” is based on the true-life story of a young woman who finds hope and healing at a shelter for pregnant, homeless teens. This film opened in theaters today, and is playing at the Palisades Center.

The home in the movie is based on the Several Sources Shelters, founded by Kathy DiFiore in Ramsey, NJ, which has provided help to thousands of needy families, pregnant teens, and homeless women.

Our website’s guest blogger, Sean Miller, saw a special screening of this movie earlier this month.  Here is his review:

Gimme Shelter

Guest blogger Sean Miller

Guest blogger Sean Miller

This captivating movie opens with a symbolic scene as a young adolescent named Apple anxiously cuts her hair in a bathroom as she plans to break away from her dire surroundings.

Apple lives with her mother, June, and is constantly faced with the grim realities of street life, a vicious cycle of drugs and prostitution that only leads to a dead end of despair.

To separate herself from this bleak fate, April knows that she must break away from her mother. And the hope that allows her to dream of starting a new life is enclosed in a letter she received from her biological father many, many years ago.

So Apple sets out to find her absent father who was never involved in her life, and to find answers to questions that have filled her with anger and resentment as she desperately sought to find her identity in a world that let her down.

But now, Tom, Apple’s father, has turned the chapter on his own life and is an affluent, highly successful Wall Street businessman. He lives with his wife, Stephanie, and their children in their lavish mansion – unaware that his peaceful, stable existence will soon be shaken by an unexpected visitor — Apple!  Continue reading

Jan. 22 — March On For Life

Screen shot 2014-01-22 at 10.56.45 AMToday, the  anniversary of the 1973 Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion, the National Right to Life Committee has issued a report looking at the tragic state of abortion in the U.S.

The bottom line is simple: The right-to-life movement is succeeding because even after 41 years and more than 56 million abortions, the conscience of our nations knows that killing unborn children is wrong. Click here for the report.

Sept. 25 — The Manhattan Declaration Returns Home

From Sister Lucy Marie, Sisters of Life:

Only two weeks remaining to register and space is limited! Wednesday, September 25, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the Cowin Center of Columbia University (525 West 120th Street in Manhattan).

Admission is free, but registration is required. Please contact the Archdiocese Respect Life Office: 646-794-3192.

Please join us for a very significant event — a forum to discuss the Manhattan Declaration, the ecumenical statement dedicated to defending life, marriage, and religious liberty http://manhattandeclaration.org/#1.

Cardinal Dolan will lead a prayer service, and the forum features extraordinary speakers, The event is co-sponsored by the Archdiocese of New York, Alliance Defending Freedom, DeSales Media, and the New York State Council of the Knights of Columbus.

Manhattan Dec

Remembering the Victims of Abortion

Sept. 14 — National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children

Three national prolife groups have announced the “National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children” to take place on Saturday, September 14. It is meant to honor the unborn at the grave sites where they are buried.

The Garden of Innocence at St. Mary of the Assumption Church in Haverstraw

The Garden of Innocence at St. Mary of the Assumption Church in Haverstraw

While there are no such grave sites in Rockland, there are several memorials to those who have been killed by abortion.

A service will be held at one of these sites — The Garden of Innocence — which is located on the south side of St. Mary of the Assumption Church, 46 Conklin Avenue in Haverstraw. It will begin at 5 p.m. (before the 5:30 pm Mass).

There are two other memorials in North Rockland:  at the Marian Shrine in Stony Point and at the Knights of Columbus Council 581 at 56 West Broad Street in Haverstraw.

Nationally, there are over 25 locations where babies have been buried after having been killed by abortion. Many were retrieved from trash dumpsters of abortion clinics or pathology labs where the bodies of the aborted unborn were shipped. Some graves contain hundreds of bodies.

Marian Mem2

Memorial to the Unborn at the Marian Shrine in Stony Point.

Eric Scheidler, Executive Director of the Pro-life Action League, stated, “It’s sobering to realize that grave markers for the unborn victims of abortion list only a date of burial. They have no birthdays because they were never allowed to be born. We can list no date of death, because those who killed them discarded their bodies like garbage. But they are not garbage to us. They are our brothers and sisters. That’s why we buried them, and that’s why we visit their graves to mourn for them and testify to their humanity.”

If you know of other memorials to the unborn in Rockland County, please take a picture of the site and send it to phone number 201-739-4413 or email it to RocklandRTL@optonline.net.

We’d like to publish all photos of these memorials on this website during Respect Life Month.