Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut
Tuesday, April 25, 2017
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Persecuted Christians often choose strategy of survival, says study
Daniel Philpott, professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame, listens to a speaker during an April 20 forum at the National Press Club in Washington. Speakers at the forum released ...

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Make persecution 'difficult for others to ignore,' cardinal says
Washington Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl speaks during an April 20 forum to release the findings of a study on responses to Christian persecution. (CNS photo/Bob Roller) WASHINGTON (CNS) -- With religiou...

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Living Stations of the Cross draws crowd
Written by Administrator
Archbishop Leonard P. Blair leads the living Stations of the Cross with Msgr. Daniel J. Plocharczyk at Sacred Heart Parish in New Britain on April 14, Good Friday.

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Pope to canonize Fatima seers May 13; October date for other saints
Portuguese shepherd children Lucia dos Santos, center, and her cousins, Jacinta and Francisco Marto, are seen in a file photo taken around the time of the 1917 apparitions of Mary at Fatima. (CNS phot...

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Theater review: 'Come from Away'
NEW YORK – “Come from Away," the musical now at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre on West 45th Street, looks back at that harrowing day in our history, Sept. 11, 2001, and shows us how the tragedy of th...

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Pope Benedict celebrates birthday with Bavarian guests, beer, pretzels
Retired Pope Benedict XVI makes a toast during celebrations marking his 88th birthday in 2015 at the Vatican. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano) VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A bit of Bavaria, including German ...

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Persecuted Christians often choose strategy of survival, says study
Persecuted Christians often choose strategy of survival, says study
Make persecution 'difficult for others to ignore,' cardinal says
Make persecution 'difficult for others to ignore,' cardinal says
Living Stations of the Cross draws crowd
Living Stations of the Cross draws crowd
Pope to canonize Fatima seers May 13; October date for other saints
Pope to canonize Fatima seers May 13; October date for other saints
Theater review: 'Come from Away'
Theater review: 'Come from Away'
Pope Benedict celebrates birthday with Bavarian guests, beer, pretzels
Pope Benedict celebrates birthday with Bavarian guests, beer, pretzels

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MERIDEN – Compassion and understanding go a long way when it comes to helping people who have had abortions.

David C. Reardon, known as an expert in the after-effects of abortion, told more than 150 people at Holy Angels Parish center that advocates for life must reach out with love to women and men who are suffering after an abortion.

Dr. Reardon was the keynote speaker at the seventh annual St. Gerard’s Center for Life Mothers’ Banquet. He is the director of the Elliot Institute, based in Springfield, Ill., which describes its mission as postabortion research, education and advocacy.

Dr. Reardon, who has a doctorate in biomedical ethics from Pacific Western University, has written books and articles about the mental health effects associated with abortion.

He said that in one survey, 78 percent of women say they "would rather have their baby if they had loved ones who were supportive." He cited another survey saying that 68 percent of women are pushed toward abortion by other people. He called the pressure "social abortion."

After having an abortion, he said, women hear such comments as "that life didn’t matter; your grief isn’t real," he said, which makes them experience what he called "forbidden grief." For such a woman, he added, advocates for life should "wear compassion on our sleeve [and] not throw stones at her for having had an abortion."

After having an abortion, women who want to begin to heal feel trapped, he said, and afraid of condemnation.

Men also can suffer negative effects, he said, which can manifest themselves as self-destructive behavior, failed relationships, addictions to cover past pain, depression and suicide.

"We want to give them a hug and cry with them," he said. "We need to recognize that shame is a dangerous weapon. It closes doors on people who need help. Messages of hope counteract messages of despair."

Advocates for life should deal with the minds, hearts and hope of men and women dealing with the pain of abortion, he said.

Dr. Theresa Krankowski, director of St. Gerard’s Center for Life in Hartford, introduced a few of the mothers whose babies were saved through the intervention of the people at St. Gerard’s.

Dr. Krankowski said that the work at St. Gerard’s now is aided by a new ultrasound machine, which is operated by volunteer nurses. The machine was acquired through funds from the Knights of Columbus.

She said that St. Gerard’s has served 3,000 mothers and their children in the seven years of the center’s existence. In addition, she said, "400 babies were saved who otherwise would’ve died from abortion."

She outlined other programs as well. Dr. Krankowski noted, "We’re committed to the truth. We have 116 women in our chastity program. Every week, those girls are there for the message [that] your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit." St. Gerard’s also provides post-abortion healing and baptism preparation programs, she said.

"We are committed to helping mothers with all they need," said Dr. Krankowski. "This is the message of true love."

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