Wednesday, July 30, 2008



As the fortieth anniversary of Humanae Vitae -- the Vatican's historic document on contraception and other life issues -- reverberates around the world, it is interesting to reflect upon the incredible fact that abortion is still practiced in the public square -- and in too many parts of the world, more than ever.

Clever is how the devil has caused abortion to be a "right," has relegated the unborn child as only a piece of tissue, and has invented the term "pro-choice" (as if abortion is pro anything).

It is a spiritual issue, part of a great spiritual war that has caused terrific division. Those for and against have a strong emotional attachment to their views, which was recently demonstrated when Senator Hillary Clinton -- no longer looking for primary votes -- nonetheless lashed out at President George Bush for a new plan that would define some contraceptive measures as abortion (thereby potentially limiting them). Meanwhile, Senator Clinton's former opponent, Barack Obama, who will be the Democratic candidate for U.S. president, is just as strong an advocate of abortion (okaying even late-term procedures, in certain instances). And while Senator John McCain, who will be the Republican candidate, grants pro-lifers their best option (if they wish to vote for one of the two key parties), he would allow research with human embryonic stem cells, which also involves the loss of unborn life.

It is the disorientation -- and tragedy -- of our times.

According to the Atlanta Center for Reproductive Medicine, more than a million embryonic children have been killed in the United Kingdom since 1999 as "waste" embryos from in vitro fertilization (in this nation that has only twenty percent of the U.S. population).

For decades, those opposing the atrocious act of abortion have pointed to ultra-sound photographs and even videos showing just how human a baby is, even at nine weeks old [see clip]. Others have shown facial close-ups or the famous photo of a little fetal hand grasping the finger of a surgeon during an operation on the baby's pregnant mother.

How about the photo of a seven-week-old child who seems cognizant (and nearly smiling)?

If that isn't enough, there is spiritual testimony. Abortion has been mentioned time and again by the Blessed Mother at purported sites of apparition, and many of those who have what they call near-death experiences -- in which they describe leaving their bodies upon clinical death (before they are revived) -- return with a pro-life view (warning against both abortion and suicide).

There are cases, in fact, whereby the near-death brush allegedly occurred before the person was technically born, in the womb.

Implausible as that seems, in near-death episodes, the person typically describes leaving the constraints of the earthly body and being able to actually watch those "below," or being whisked off to a place of splendor (often through a tunnel).

Has this happened with the unborn?

What might occur during abortion?

What would be the implications?

Reports of such abound in the literature, which is often penned by doctors as near-death experiences gain credibility.

One instance for discernment is that of viewer Lin Mongan in Kaukauna, Wisconsin. "I am married 41 years, mother of two, grandmother of seven, a housewife who worked part-time jobs off and on to add some extra money to our household income," she says.

"My story begins before my birth.

"Near full term in her pregnancy, my mother was losing me in the womb. The doctor informed her that the cord was wrapped around my neck, and I was fighting for my life.

"I was aware of everything going on before the doctor arrived due to the fact that I was hovering over my mother in spirit [our italics]. I recall trying to appeal to her – that I must survive! And I remember knowing she was my earthly mother, chosen for me by Our Lord God.

"I recall a near panic, in my quest to live, and repeating over and over that I had a purpose to fulfill, given to me by my heavenly Father. I watched as the doctor sat with my mother, unable to do anything other than quiet her, keep her still, and wait to see if I would make it.

"I recall en-entry into my physical body with much pain and almost a warrior approach fighting to be able to live.

"I was the first child of four. I retained this knowledge always."

[see also: Will Obama tilt table for abortion?, The Pope and the pill, Blog: priest preaches on Humanae Vitae, gets spontaneous applause, and Court clears path for Tiller abortion trial]