Saturday, September 8, 2012

A fourth trimester fetus

peaceful prayer
On a lonely Friday night during my freshman year of college, my across-the-hall neighbor and I decided that we would brave the impending snow storm and corresponding freezing weather to join other students in prayer at an abortion clinic in Pittsburgh the next morning. Katie and I had never prayed at an abortion clinic before.

Five A.M. came early. We staggered to the chapel for Mass and then sheepishly got into the car with some upperclassmen for the 45 minute drive. We arrived on the streets of Pittsburgh about 6:30 am, rosaries in hand. We thought we were ready to witness the scene, but the gruesome scene of a crime isn't something you can prepare for.

misguided compassion
The first woman walked up, visibly upset about her "choice," boyfriend in hand.

The memory is over 10 years old; most of the details have slipped away. All I remember is breaking down in tears and praying, "O, God..."

Katie and I were numb-- in heart as well as body-- by the end of the several-hour vigil. Many women walked in that morning. Many compassionate pro-lifers attempted to reach out to them with parenting and adoption resources. I don't remember if any woman accepted it.

a fourth trimester fetus?
What I do remember were the yellow-smocked clinic escorts who prevented the women from receiving the information. One was about our age. He had a cynical look on his face. The other escorts were mostly women -- college-aged through middle-aged-- with the occasional middle-aged male. This young escort really stuck out.

As Katie and I became regulars to this macabre scene, we noticed him every week. He had dedication I wish that more people had for doing good.

One morning, a pro-lifer arrived to pray with us with small children in tow. One child was reclining in a stroller. As Mom and children passed the young clinic escort, he retorted:
Hey! It's a fourth trimester fetus! Can we kill that one too?
I gasped in disbelief. I couldn't help but recall his hateful words when I read 11-year-old Zoe Griffin's experience during a DNC protest-- a display of 3,300 carnations to represent the children killed daily in America by abortion.

In Zoe's words:
"The pro-abortionists turned to us and started pointing at different people, saying, "You're a person! You're a person! Fetuses are not!" Then the [pro-abortion] woman saw me crying and said," You are making this girl cry with your bull____". I couldn't stand any more of those lies. They pushed it too far. In the highest-pitched voice I have ever spoken in, I screamed, "THEY ARE NOT THE ONES MAKING ME CRY! YOU ARE! WITH YOUR DARK HEARTS, YOUR DARK MINDS TURNED AGAINST GOD!"

Who made Zoe cry?
(Photo by Anthony Perlas, for

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