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Pro-abortion campaigners will launch counter-protest to 40 Days for Life

By on Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Pro-abortion campaigners are to hold a counter-protest outside the British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinic in central London on March 30.

The demonstration, organised by Abortion Rights, is timed to coincide with the arrival of Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster Alan Hopes in support of the 40 Days for Life campaign.

The counter-demonstration, similar to the tactics used by pro-abortionists in the US, is the latest sign that the pro-life campaign has been having an impact.

Bishop Alan Hopes of Westminster said: “Together with Catholics, priests and laymen, and with other Christians, I will be offering my prayers for those women who are considering an abortion and I will also be praying that our society will come to respect the sanctity of the life of the unborn child.

“Many priests and lay people have already spent time in prayer outside the BPAS clinic and I am glad to be able to join them for what is a principled and peaceful statement of opposition to our society’s ‘culture of death’.”

Campaigners accused 40 Days for Life of “haranguing and intimidating” women seeking abortions, with the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) calling it a “new era” of protests.

BPAS also said there was “no moral justification” for bishops to get involved in such a campaign.

Robert Colquhoun, a spokesman for 40 Days for Life, rejected the criticisms and said that the group’s presence outside the clinic was “peaceful, prayerful and within the law”.

He said: “Since our campaign started in September 2010, we estimate that more than 30 women have chosen life for their unborn children as a result of our campaign through prayer and also through an offer of love, help and support during a difficult time.”

Contrary to reports, he said that members never filmed women going into the clinic and only filmed themselves for protection, often facing threats and profanities from members of the public.

Mr Colquhoun said that the media campaign against 40 Days for Life was a sign that the abortion industry was “rattled”.

  • Anonymous

    I think they must be rattled.  Up to now the main tactic of pro-abortionists has been to try to shut down debate and censor any image of the unborn child as “controversial”. By mounting this demo and getting into public debate I believe they are entering a battle that they can only lose, as long as we pro-lifers focus the debate on the humanity of the unborn.

  • Anonymous

    I take part in 40 days for life (not in London). The vigil is totally peaceful. All I have ever done is pray. I haven’t even spoken to anyone. The campaign’s spirit is totally peaceful and the idea that it is in any way intimidatory or aggressive is ridiculous. There is no lie to which the anti-life lobby will not stoop to reinforce their own position and paint us in an unfavourable light.

  • The Moz

    Why don’t we extend the right to choose into the first 3 months after birth? I just don’t understand the pro-choice logic.

    Is anyone else reminded of the carousel from Logan’s Run?

  • Lucy

    Thank God for men like Bishop Alan Hopes who will be leading the vigil alongside the Diocesan Youth Chaplain, Fr David Reilly.  It is good that we have people like these two in our Church.  Now we need as many people as possible to turn up and show the gutter abortion press also known as ‘The Guardian’ that us Christians are no push over, we will simply not be intimidated by their lies.

  • Honeybadger

    Two members of my family (I was at school at the time) were part of a March of Silence against Abortion in London many years ago, at which a recorded message from Mother Teresa of Calcutta was played to them.

    I’ll never forget my family members’ expressing shock and disgust at the filthy language, name calling and horrible insults screamed at them by the pro-abortion crowd.

    I’m talking about many years ago. Things have not changed since then, as far as the pro-choice people are concerned.

    My prayers and my spirit are with Bishop Alan and the vigil.

    Indeed, Lucy, we Christians are no pushover and for people to think we are …. they are seriously mistaken.

  • Honeybadger

    All this pro-abortion stuff is not about their pretend ‘concern’ for the welfare of their customers.

    It is purely a money-making, twisted, evil business.

    Planned Parenthood in the United States is a prime example. The Obama administration is hell-bent on peddling and shoving its abortion/contraception agenda down the throats of those who are vehemently against it… and the Roman Catholic Church in the US is rising up against it big style!

    The pro-choice shoer will try their damnedest to disrupt the peacefulness of your gathering.

    Read my post in reply to Lucy.

  • amator Dei

    What amazes me is what makes Catholics think they have any right to parade their supposed superior morality in public like this when the Catholic Church has been shown to be riddled with the corruption of child abuse and the equally revolting cover-up by its leaders. Clearly they would never have done anything about it unless forced to by secular law and justice. This hypocrisy is sickening. The demonstrators should be hanging their heads in shame for the evil at the heart of the Church rather than standing in judgment on others. They deserve all the brickbats they get.

  • Anonymous

     As citizens of this country, Catholics have the right to assemble and voice their point of view in pubic same as any other citizen.  My guess is that your comments have more to do with your apparent revulsion of the Catholic Church, more than your revulsion of child abuse.  When’s the last time you worked up a good lather and posted a comment on child abuse/cover ups in the state school systems, foster care programs, orphanages, other religious groups, etc (all of these institutions and pillars of trust in the community).  And to be fair, should you choose to comment, make sure you go back 100 years and consider every instance of abuse and coverup occurring in said institutions. 

  • amator Dei

    I am appalled by child abuse wherever it takes place, but as a Catholic I am especially appalled by the abuse that has taken place in my church. The fact that it is found elsewhere is no excuse. It is shameful that Catholics use that excuse to avoid taking proper responsibility for what has happened in their church: we may be bad, but so is everyone else. If it is what it claims to be the Catholic Church should be heaps better than everyone else. The fact that it isn’t, if we take that seriously, should lead us to be much more humble and less inclined to sit in judgment on the failings of others.

  • Phil Steinacker

    Here in the states the U.S. Dept of Education released a major 2005 study which was under-reported by the press. The study showed clearly and convincingly that the sexual abuse among children in Protestant churches, Jewish synagogues, and – even far worse – public schools far outstripped any such crimes committed by a much smaller number of Catholic priests.

    The lead researcher said in an interview that, in fact, the incidence of sexual abuse by teachers, coaches, admin folks, and others in the American public school system outnumbered those which occurred in the Catholic Church by a factor of 100 – 1.

    Yes, you read it correctly: one hundred to one.

    A commenter above has suggested the situation in Europe is similar – no surprise. After all, it makes sense that the offending homosexual perpretrators (yes, over 90% of the reported instances are male/male, with the average age of the victim as 15) would also gravitate to all positions offering easy access to their targets. The Catholic Church is hardly the only institution which provides predators to masquerade as trusted persons while seeking to commit such crimes of opportunity by betraying that trust. An honest accounting of all such career “opportunities” must not only include priests, of course, but also teachers, coaches, school principals, ministers, rabbis, scout leaders (or the UK version of same), and others similarly positioned to damage our kids.

    Any fair-minded and morally-principled person must ask why the focus on the Catholic Church to the exclusion of tha above list of even far more likely and significant perpetrators? The answer is to service an important agenda – to bring down the Catholic Church, which stands as the largest obstacle to the further moral decline of the West.

    To continue, the list of such crimes in the Catholic Churches are all very old. Despite damning pronouncements by anti-Catholic critics like yourself, the reality is that reforms taken by the Church over the last decade have shut down contemporary occurance of these abuses so that the cases in the press are pretty much all dated to a couple of decades ago.

    Also, the Church, in a misguided belief that it would be uncharitable to challenge any of these accusers in court to provide some corroberation of their abuse, has almost always chosen to pay a settlement award. This is despite the very real instances where cracks have formed in original testimony of a number of cases, providing hope to a number of priests railroaded by those seeking to avail themselves of riches at the expense of the faithful supporting the Church. It is only common sense that this is the case, given the consistent “line” formed by charlatans in many other unrelated categories of phony lawsuits over the decades.

    At best, I’d say you are woefully uninformed. At worst, you are a vicious, lying anti-Catholic bigot spewing your vituperative bile all over the Internet. Either way, you carelessly toss out accustations you can’t possibly document – no matter what you viscerally believe.

    Such arguments as you present (as pathetic as they are) indicate intense resentment of the Church’s teachings against what you probably hold dear, and joins with the bigotry of others to use whatever ammuntion available to undermine the Church in opposing an immoral agenda.

  • Anonymous

    And how is praying outside an abortion clinic sitting in judgment on the failings of others? 

  • amator Dei

    If you know nothing about what has brought women to the clinic, the terrible dilemmas and situations in their lives they are wrestling with, you are implicitly making a judgment on them. If we want to combat abortion, we need first to show Christlike compassion to people in the problems of their lives, rather than just praying at them.

  • amator Dei

    The same old excuse. Others are much worse than we are, so the Catholic Church is basically all right, in fact a beacon of moral truth. You should discharge your vituperative bile at the victims of abusing priests and see what it gets you.

  • Veronica Connolly

    Did you know Virgin are raising funds for thr abortion mills that have the 40 days for life people outside. At least we know where they stand.Ishall be dropping them.

  • TheBlueWarrior

    Why do you choose to frame compassion and prayer as mutually exclusive actions?  If you are a practicing Roman Catholic, you display a distinct lack of understanding regarding prayer.  We pray to God, for people; we don’t pray ‘at’ people.  There are plenty of testimonies on the internet of women who are thankful for the Christian Witness that gave them the courage to keep their babies rather than cave in to the pressures of boyfriends, parents, etc. 

  • Honeybadger

    Virgin, as in Richard Branson Virgin, Veronica C?

    He had the polished brass neck to criticise the RCC in an interview with Gay Byrne not so long ago.

    If it is the same Virgin, they are busy wasting precious paper (which ends up in my recycling bin) trying to get me to change my current provider to theirs.

    Before you enlightened us with that fact, I was already resolute that I will not change my provider to them if they were the only ones in the UK!

    Their latest wheeze/sick joke is to put their cr&ppy sales bumph into the kind of buff coloured envelopes that are similar to those that you get from the JobCentre Plus or the Council Tax!

    So, you can imagine people on the receiving end of the Government’s welfare reform getting one of these!

    So, you come down the stairs when the postie has been (and the dog has stopped barking), you pick up your mail and see this envelope which makes your solar plexus lurch with forboding at the best of times.

    Yes, Veronica, drop these barstewards like hot bricks!

  • Honeybadger

    And what amazes me is your hypocrisy, your hysteria and your ill-judged comment!

    So, you think we deserve all the brickbats we get???

    Har, har! Look who’s talking!

    We’ve had more brickbats from supercilious twits like you down the centuries - and a whole lot WORSE - than you’ve had hot cross buns, bub!

    And you make your case by tarring ALL Roman Catholics with the same nasty toilet brush i.e. clerical sex abuse that you lot enjoy hitting us with time and time and time again!

    You nasty piece of work, you!

    It is YOU who should hang your head – and everything else – in shame!

    Vigils held outside abortion clinics are not there for the good of the participant’s health, you know.

    It has frog-all to do with superior morality.

    It is to do with respect for and saving innocent lives from a fate that you lot underestimate i.e. as in the sheer, sickening horror and revulsion that is abortion.

    These misguided women who do go through with it are not in to remove a malignant tumour or a rotten tooth! They are there to remove a LIFE!!!

    The sooner you WAKE UP and SMELL THE STEAMING BREW, the better!

    No, we don’t.

  • Honeybadger

    In a word: EXACTLY! Spot on!

  • Honeybadger

    What the Roman Catholics are doing at these prayer vigils is to please with these women that there is AN ALTERNATIVE to destruction of a life.

  • Honeybadger

    Excuse me, er, Catholic?

    Are you going to remain ‘appalled’ at the Roman Catholic Church or are you going to support efforts made by the Church to tackle these problems?


    If you remain appalled, then you are forgetting why Christ died on the cross.

  • Honeybadger

    I couldn’t understand that statement either!

  • Honeybadger

    So, attacking THE FACTS is your defense, is it?

    Just wind your neck in and take your spew elsewhere and sit in it until you see sense.

  • Honeybadger

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for your post.

    Well done! Someone talking sense…AT LAST!!

  • buckingham88

     Perhaps from a reading of the press there were enclaves of child abuse in the catholic church institutions and this is all there is to this, but unfortunately it does not come from there or end there with better controls.When the press attacks were strongest a few years ago I had a school reunion and the topic came up “how many had been abused?’ In ten years at school none of us had.The enquiry got wider,yes there was one case twenty years after we left that was recycled over and over again and everyone heard about it,but that was it.It came to light that two of us had been attacked on a train,probably by the same person,but that was it.In the suburban community I live in other cases came along.There was the young father who said he was going to Africa to plant trees,so would be away for a while,but was out on sentence and heading to jail,and the old man whose nieces would no longer visit,and the rumours of boat trips and unusual behaviour that all went away suddenly for lack of evidence or formal complaint and allegations against another married man.
    The truth is that the corruption of child abuse is all around us,hidden in families and extended families.As far as state institutions go,two years ago there were more than 350 teachers on a ‘watch’ list in New South Wales.When it comes to judgement the Catholic priest is far more likely to fess up than most in society and at the same time attracts the most odium as he has broken his vows of celibacy and broken trust.
    The situation in Ireland does not reflect the whole of the catholic world, nor the great strides that the church is making in the Christianisation of families.I am yet to be convinced that secular laws, however necessary, can be relied upon to change the inner heart and wipe out child exploitation at every level, be it abuse of minors or their death in utero.What all children share,apart from common humanity, is vulnerability.The church is the only institution that ,despite its failings,upholds the rights of children from their beginning,while most vulnerable.If it is to fail, where else is there to turn.

  • buckingham88

     Just in from The Telegraph ‘Australian Police raided more than a dozen properties across the countryover the past week after a tip off by Interpol, which linked the men to a child exploitation network in Germany. ……..According to police,850 people have been arrested in Australia over the past seven years on charges relating to online sexual exploitation.The recent arrests include 14 men including fathers.
    Nothing to be proud about.

  • amator Dei

    You are certainly well named. I gather the honey badger has a thick skin, fights ferociously when cornered and can emit a noxious odour from its back passage to suffocate its victims. But then it is only an animal. What is your excuse for being a vicious angry deranged fundamentalist bigot with not one ounce of genuine concern for God, people or life?

  • Titusoates

    If Bishop Hope does not approve of our politics he should return to Rome where he belongs, as should all his Papist fifth columnist allies. You are guests in this country, and as long as you owe allegiance to a foreign prince rather than to Great Britain you should not presume to get involved in our politics.

  • Diane

    If only I knew then what I know now ……abortion kills an innocent little lamb and it mames the woman’s soul forever ……I have begged for forgiveness in my prayers everyday since I allowed myself to be talked into what occured. I vowed after being blessed with my four children I would hand them back to our lord and I converted us all to Catholicism …..these women don’t get per councelling, I never. I never got advised of the inner damage it does, the nightmares the depression and ultimately the fear of my own death, I deserve all I get for my sin……..I pray to god that women face up to the reality of killing their little lamb, whether it was an unplanned pregnancy or not, even in instances sadly where a woman is raped…….give the little lamb to be adopted to good people for the love of our lord. As for rants about abuse in the church, let it go. I was abused as a child and it was an uncle, the devil tempts us and even more so priests they are so liable to attacks but they will be judged by our lord on judgment day just as you who judge will be judged……pedophiles are in every walk of life sadly, and more so within families so to attack the church is a lame lame cheap shot. May the lord be with you all for all the days of your lives. And I pray that during the vigil that more women are strong enough and have trust I our lord, take what god has planned for their life’s and have their baby…..don’t send the lambs to the slaughter don’t …….

  • jess

    I think it’s important to mention that there are very few people who are pro abortion. There are lots of people who are pro choice and that means all choices.
    I’ve never met a single person that has had an abortion on a whim, and perhaps if pro life campaigners respected that decision, because not everyone thinks the way you do, we’d have a more tolerable society as a whole.
    Instead of focusing all your energy on hating people for doing something you see as wrong, why don’t you support those women who are struggling with an unwanted pregnancy that they’ve chosen to continue, in a non judgemental fashion.
    Preferably without preaching your world view, because we don’t all share the same beliefs.
    And that’s not a bad thing, it’s just different.
    If you think abortion is wrong, don’t have one.
    But let women who have to make a difficult choice do so without pushing your beliefs at them.

  • Kerrenty

    I don’t understand why anyone else thinks they have a right to decide other women’s future.  I made the rational and for me and my family the best choice, which was to have an abortion. I have never regretted it.  Why do you think you should have a right to try and intervene with these difficult decisions?  My private life is my life – I would never criticise you for believing in a god( particularly one which oversees poverty, family violence, priests who abuse children, huge Vatican  riches ..)..  so why should you feel you have the right to judge my choice of how to live?

  • Emily

    Why do people not have abortions on whims? Is it because it’s a bad thing? It is because it kills a child? Why would it be so difficult to decide on if it wasn’t intrinsically wrong?

    Pro-life advocates are not there because they hate women. I hate abortion because I believe that it enslaves women. Why is pregnancy suddenly an illness? What happened to make society tell women constantly that we have something ‘wrong’ with us, something that needs to be fixed firstly through pills, and possibly through surgery? There is NOTHING wrong with being fertile, it’s perfectly natural and part of being a woman. And somehow we think it’s shameful to conceive a child, that we’ve done something wrong that needs fixing, that needs controlling. Liberation for women? I don’t think so.

    “we don’t all share the same beliefs”. Every functioning society does share core beliefs. For example, that murder is wrong, that killing someone is wrong. Therefore, protesting against abortion acually goes with pretty much every society’s core beliefs.

    I respect that the women who do commit abortions do so under great pressure most of the time, either from themselves, their family, their boyfriend/spouse, society ect. However, just because I know that they’re in a difficult situation, doesn’t mean that I should let that excuse killing someone defenseless. I won’t judge what has happened or what they’ve done, I will help them get through it.

    The pro-life movement DOES support those women who choose to have their children, even in difficult circumstances. The pro-life people help women with accommodation, with money, with food, with legal aid, with protection, with clothes and items for the baby if need be. They are also amazing at helping those who choose to have the baby, but put him or her up for adoption. Don’t ever question what the pro-life movement does for those women, because we are already helping those women. We’d like to help more women avoid killing their children too, which is why we have vigils and peaceful protests.

    A note on “all” choices: do you support aborting on the basis of sex? For example, a woman already has two girls, and she really doesn’t want another, but the latest scan said it was going to be another girl, which her husband also really doesn’t want. Is abortion still ok then? Most people say no, and most get really riled that abortion based on gender happens so frequently, and most often to girls.

    “if you think abortion is bad, don’t have one.’ – That is exactly the same as saying ‘if you don’t like slavery, don’t own a slave.’ All it takes for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing. Turning a blind eye does not make the problem go away. And abortion is a problem.

  • Ruby lescott

    I am an old woman. I became pregnant before abortion was made legal, and chose to have a backstreet abortion. Horrible though it was, I felt nothing but relief afterwards and have never regretted my decision. The same is true of many of my friends. I should perhaps point out that rich women did not have to resort to the back street practioner – there were clinics in London where, if you had the money, you could terminate your pregnancy in safety. (This is of course, also true today for Irish women who travel to England for a termination – it would seem that the catholic church is unable to dissuade them from this choice.)
     We will never know how many illegal abortions took place before the act came into being.
    The campaign to illegalise abortion will NOT reduce the number of abortions that take place; women will simply take the illegal, dangerous route to the backstreet version, as they have always done.  

  • katcat32

    But I’d bet that fewer took that route out because of the more dangerous aspect.  This will reduce the number of abortions taking place.  Also just because something is legal doesn’t make it right, hence the fact that we’re trying to make it illegal.
    Think of drug use, imagine if it were legal to use any and all drugs no matter how bad they are for you, the results would be unbelievable.  Making drugs illegal hasn’t stopped people taking and dealing in them, but it has reduced the number of people doing so, which is a good thing.

    No, making abortion illegal will not stop all women having them.  But it will stop many.  Man-slaughter is wrong whether you’re a baby in a womb or 50years old.  If a woman is so determined not to have a baby for whatever reason, why not just give it up for adoption after birth.

  • scary goat

     Priests are people. Bishops are people.  Some of them have done disgraceful things, we know that, they have let down their Church…..but how does that make the Church herself less good as a whole? If some have betrayed their own Church why does that stop others from trying to teach what the Church teaches?