Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

Caring about the Most Vulnerable

March 23rd, 2013, Promulgated by Diane Harris

On February 4th, I did a post which railed against the actions of the Diocesan Public Policy Committee in prioritizing that NYS should annually spend about $300 million for what is essentially baby sitting money to low income families, when the lives of babies were being threatened by Cuomo’s so-called “Reproductive Health Act,” (misleading naming as is the case for much legislative activity which should never see the light of day).  The following weekend (Feb. 9-10) those signatures were collected during Masses, and many people dutifully signed what they were handed.

However, the Festival for Freedom Committee (chaired by Deacon Claude Lester), which held a 2-week  USCCB-requested Fortnight for Freedom event last summer,  wanted to go further.   So, on the weekend of Feb. 16-17th, and for two weeks thereafter, signatures were collected in opposition to Gov. Cuomo’s attempts to recklessly expand abortion in NYS.   About 2.5x as many signatures were collected in that petitioning as had been collected for the “baby-sitting” money issue; i.e. a welcome contrast to recognizing that intrinsic evils are a much greater cause for timely opposition than merely distributing taxpayers’ monies on issues of prudential judgment.

In order that people could see they are not working in isolation, or become discouraged, the 879 names on the petition against Cuomo’s “Reproductive Health Act,”  have been posted inside St. Mary’s and St. Bridget’s Churches (i.e. St. Benedict’s Parish.)  Here is a picture of the display:


petitions NYS 001 bright

We do not stand alone in the Body of Christ; we stand together.  And there is no place for toleration of intrinsic evils, or for permitting Cuomo’s pending legislation to destroy life.  I do believe that Catholics need to see more of this kind of mutual support (including from their pastors and bishops) that we all stand together in support of Catholic Teaching.  Kudos to Bishop Cunningham who, it was reported, joined a recent trip to Albany!

It is good to know which of our brothers and sisters in the faith we can count on, and that is why such a display of names is important.  Committee members are hoping more of our churches will make this kind of effort.  There is no issue which should have more spiritual solidarity than the faithful speaking out and acting on behalf of the weakest and most vulnerable, the infant in the womb.  When the governor of a state (or the president of a country) threatens to enact more laws that will further lead to destruction of the most vulnerable human beings, it will not be surprising to see future legislation extended to such abominations as infanticide up to 2 years old, forced abortions especially of ‘less than perfect’ humans, forced sterilization, forced euthanasia, refusal of necessary medical treatment to avoid premature death, and worse.  Much worse.  And, make no mistake, anyone who can permit the killing of a baby in the womb most assuredly is capable of doing much worse.

We are blessed to still have opportunities to ACT.  The sooner people stand together in opposition to atrocities, the more likely they can postpone or avoid having to deal with the next atrocity bound to come.  The next action is a CandleLight Vigil in Albany on April 15th to oppose legislators who

  • so devalue life that they are willing to extend abortion right up to the time of delivery!
  • are so lacking in respect for the mother carrying the child that they are willing to let any old “health care provider” do the dirty work (as more doctors, remembering their oath, decline to do so.)
  • who are so disrespectful of parental rights that children who can’t go on a school bustrip without parental permission can nevertheless have an abortion without a parent’s knowledge or consent!
  • And who willingly undermine the conscience rights of everyone and erode the very essence of the Bill of Rights!

NYS under Andrew Cuomo, is already the Abortion Capital of the U.S.   Abortion up until delivery would make it the Infanticide Capital as well!

Deacon Claude Lester is coordinating the diocesan-wide bus convoy to Albany.  Buses will leave Monday morning, April 15th,   from various points in the 12-county Rochester Diocese, and return that evening.  Cost is $25 for adults, $15 for students.  At about 2:30 PM there will be a visit to legislators, delivering  petitions, showing widespread resistance to the Cuomo catastrophic legislation, followed by CandleLight Vigil and prayer.  Contacts: or phone 585-750-7524.   Reservations and  payment  (Visa or Mastercard or checks sent to Festival for Freedom, PO Box 196, Canandaigua, NY 14424) must be received by Thursday, April 11, 2013.  See also

It is better to light one candle at the Albany Vigil

than to curse the darkness when the lights of life go out.

candles cropped


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2 Responses to “Caring about the Most Vulnerable”

  1. Jim says:

    Thanks, Diane, for bringing this very important issue to “light”

  2. annonymouse says:

    A tale of two deacons –

    On the one hand, the post below highlights Deacon Sciolino, a self-proclaimed “progressive Catholic” (meaning, I assume, one who calls himself Catholic without subscribing to all that Holy Mother Church teaches and believes), wasting his time criticizing our brand new Holy Father based on groundless accusations from 30 years ago, and looking like a horse’s…colt in the process. On the other hand, we have deacon Claude Lester, spending his time defending the most vulnerable among us, the unborn.

    Both ordained to the deaconate by Bishop Clark, presumably.

    Thank you, Deacon Claude. Deacon Sciolino, I am praying for you.

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