February chills were forgotten on the eve of St. Valentine's Day at a stunning Wine and Cheese reception at Vincenza Restiano's beautiful Westchester home . The highlight of this charming gathering was Damon Owens, introduced as the new official spokesman of the Children First Foundation in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.
Damon Owens is a well-known, sought-after speaker on chastity, marriage and the family, and a frequent guest host on EWTN. He is founder of the Joy Filled Marriage Program. He is also a Theology of the Body Institute speaker and trainer. Welcome, Damon!
If you have not yet purchased a "Choose Life" plate or plate cover, go to their website at www.fund-adoption.org/ or www.childrenfirstfoundation.com/. The Children First Foundation's program helps support "every Pregnancy Resource Center, Maternity Home and non-profit Baby Safe Haven Program located within the Tri-State Area, according to the state in which the plate is purchased." CFF was one of the first organizations to join the "Choose Life" movement begun in Flordia in 2000. It now boasts 26 states on board and counting. New Jersey's plate was approved on December 8, 2010. At this posting we await word any day now on the infamous New York "Choose Life" plate that shut down the NY Motor Vehicle Specialty Plate division. The plate with two smiling children and its message to support adoption and life was deemed "patently offensive". Only in New York!
Below Dr. Elizabeth Rex stands with Damon and his beautiful family; his wife Michelle and six daughters and their recently adopted little girl and boy. Here, the youngest family member and only boy seems to be pondering what life will be like with all those sisters! Dad is smiling to have someone on his team finally!
Dr. Nancy Copolla of Program Reach, Inc. and Healthy Respect spoke to the many who gathered. This included the Rev. Fernando Cabrera and several Yonkers candidates and politicans including Liam McLaughlin, Richard Martinelli, John Murtagh, Joe Kenner, Rosemarie Jarosz, Michael Breen, and Steven Cerrato.
Program Reach has won a 6 million dollar grant to further its character-based abstinence education program in grades 4 through 11. The school-based program also includes parent/guardian informational round tables. Find more information at www.healthrespect.org.
Christopher Slattery of Expectant Mother Care Frontline Pregnancy Centers (below with Damon Owens) brought everyone up to date with the New York City Council Bill 371.
This bill has since passed (39-9-1) with a majority of the Council voting yea, as expected. Check out http://www.savethelifecenters.com/ for more information on the soon-to-follow law suits in the face of this outragerous legislation that defies the First Amendment and punishes pregnancy care centers that exist to help mothers who seek to make life-affirming choices when facing a crisis pregnancy.
Go to these websites and take action in some way to help defend life and protect the most vulnerable women and children.
PP, which proudly promotes sexual activity by minors and aborts more than 300,000 Americans annually, has been on the federal dole since 1965. Last year, the figure was about $350 million. This is the first time our annual tribute to America's biggest abortion business has been seriously threatened. The Continuing Resolution passed by the House doesn't include a dime for PP.
This is a bad time for the abortion movement: Polls show that most Americans identify themselves as pro-life. Most are probably more worried about a bankrupt U.S. government than about half-million-dollar-a-year executives at PP having to cut back on lattés.
But if you think the abortion movement is in trouble simply because the political winds have shifted right, you would be wrong. It is happening because the industry's decades of lies and corruption have been coming to light.
The funeral Mass for Bernard Nathanson on Monday at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan was a celebration and thanksgiving for mercy and love.
Nathanson was the infamous co-founder of the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws and director of the largest abortion clinic in the world who turned pro-life activist. Dr. Nathanson died last week at age 84.
Inescapable, too, as pro-life leaders and activists joined his family and friends, was an overwhelming sense of the work yet to do. His courage both nudges and inspires. If he could reverse himself so publicly and dramatically, working to undo his foundational work in our current culture of death, surely we can each do our part – whatever our role – in prayer and sacrifice, and labor. Speaking the truth with love. Living our lives as beacons of life and love and truth.
Despite massive opposition from pro-life advocates and supporters of centers helping pregnant women, the New York City council passed a bill today attacking pregnancy centers.
On a 39-9-1 vote, council members approved an ordinance that would place stringent limits on the advertising pregnancy centers use and require them to post signs designed to dissuade women from seeking their abortion alternatives services.
Queens Councilman Dan Halloran opposed the measure, according to a NY1 report.
“It is time for the left to realize that if you want true choice, it means two sides to an equation,” he said. “That’s what we’re here for and that’s what my colleagues and I will stand up against. And believe me, this will not end here today. I have no delusion that the speaker has lined up sufficient votes to make this happen. But the courts will speak tomorrow, and the courts will say, this is not constitutional. This is an abridgement of our First Amendment rights, and we’re not going to stand for it.”
Responding to the vote, Melinda Delahoyde, the vice president of CareNet, a network of more than 1,100 pregnancy centers nationwide, told LifeNews.com that it “sends an alarming signal that abortion rates in New York City could skyrocket even further.”
“According to recent CDC reports, 41 percent of pregnancies in New York City end in abortion, with the highest impact on African American and Hispanic communities,” she noted. “Somewhere along the way members of the City Council lost sight of the beauty of human life and the importance of welcoming and supporting each new member of this city into life with open arms.”
As I was gathering my thoughts for today, a line from Psalm 89 came back to me again and again: [Lord,] make us know the shortness of our life that we may gain wisdom of heart. That’s an odd way to begin a prolife discussion, isn’t it – reminding everybody in the room that we don’t have a lot of time.
But I think it’s exactly the right place to start. The time we have in this world is brief. God is good, and the life he gives us is filled not just with problems and sorrow, but with beauty and joy and love and hope and nobility – and these things are worth fighting for. What we do in the world matters. How we use our time matters. And therefore the choices we make matter – precisely because we come this way only once, and the world will be better or worse for our passing.
So our presence here together today has a meaning much larger than a nice meal and a good conversation about shared values. It’s an opportunity to remember that God put us here for a purpose. He’s asking us to turn our hearts to building the kind of world that embodies his love and honors the sanctity of the human children he created.