Friday, 1 May 2015

DUP leader's stance against abortion welcomed by SPUC

Peter Robinson
Campaigners for the right to life of unborn children have welcomed comments by Peter Robinson, the First Minister of Northern Ireland, that his Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) will oppose moves within the Province to legalise abortion for babies diagnosed with serious disabilities.

Liam Gibson, SPUC's Northern Ireland development officer, told the media earlier today:
"Children in the womb are perhaps the most vulnerable group in society and this is particularly true of babies who are disabled or seriously ill. The pro-life people of Northern Ireland, therefore, will be pleased to hear that attempts to introduce abortion on the grounds of foetal disability are now destined to be thrown out by the government in Belfast."

By describing plans to liberalise the law as "doomed to failure", Mr Gibson said that the First Minister was acknowledging that the majority of people in Northern Ireland are firmly opposed to the idea that disabled babies should be denied the same rights as other children.
"When the Justice Department carried out a public consultation on its proposals earlier this year, over 99 percent of responses, tens of thousands of people, were opposed to a change in the law.

The deliberate killing of even one child because he or she is disabled can never be justified. It is clear, however, that this was only the first stage in a plan to introduce widespread abortion into Northern Ireland. The First Minister, and all the politicians across the political divide who have rejected this proposal deserved to be congratulated for defending the lives of disabled babies.

What we need now is more support for mothers and better perinatal care for babies with life-limiting conditions. That support - unlike abortion - will provide a genuinely compassionate response to a tragic situation."
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Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Vatican endorsement of UN development goals threatens unborn children

un-logo
The international pro-life pro-family coalition Voice of the Family, which is managed by SPUC, has today published the following important report. 

A statement signed by the heads of both the Pontifical Academy of Science and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences has endorsed the United Nation’s proposed creation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) despite current drafts reflecting a strong pro-abortion agenda.

The endorsement comes after a workshop held at the Vatican yesterday on climate change and sustainable development entitled “Protect the Earth, Dignify Humanity. The Moral Dimensions of Climate Change and Sustainable Development.”

In his contribution to the workshop UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, connected the upcoming papal encyclical on the environment with the proposed SDGs. He said:

This year, with the upcoming encyclical, the Sustainable Development Goals Summit in September, and a global climate agreement, we have an unprecedented opportunity to articulate –and create – a more sustainable future and a life of dignity for all.

Tragically, far from ensuring “a life of dignity for all”, the draft SDGs constitute a concerted attack on the right to life of unborn children and the rights of parents as the primary educators and protectors of the their children.

Thre are currently three draft sets of sustainable development goals and it is anticipated that final agreement will be reached at the end of July this year.

In a statement delivered yesterday on behalf of Voice of the Family Patrick Buckley of the Society for the Protection of Unborn outlined some of the grave moral problems associated with the SDGs as currently proposed by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Buckley said:

Goal 4 is to “achieve gender equality, social inclusion, and human rights for all”. The call for an end to preventable deaths of infants and children under the age of 5 excludes unborn children, despite the fact that the Convention on the Rights of the Child in its preamble recognises that “The child by reason of his physical and mental immaturity, needs special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection, before as well as after birth.”

Goal 4d, which states “Ensure universal sexual and reproductive health and rights” is completely unacceptable. Such language is routinely used by the international pro-abortion and population control lobby to refer to the legalization of abortion on demand and access for children, without parental knowledge or consent, to abortion and birth control drugs and devices in countries throughout the world.

Goal 5, “Achieve Health and Wellbeing at all ages”, also includes a reference to sexual and reproductive health and family planning.

Today (29th April 2015) saw the publication of a paper entitled “A Statement of the Problem and the Demand for Transformative Solutions”, which strongly endorses the creation of SDGs. The authors of this document include Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, Chancellor of the the PAS, Professor Margaret Archer, President of the PASS, and leading abortion and population control advocate Professor Jeremy Sachs. Sachs is one of the architects of the Millennium Development Goals and a member of the Executive Board of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, which drafted the proposed Sustainable Development Goals referred to above.

The document states:

The UN Member States have announced their determination to place Sustainable Development at the center of global cooperation, building a holistic cooperative strategy on the pillars of economic progress, social inclusion and environmental sustainability. This would involve the adoption of new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to help guide global cooperation during the course of future generations. All people of good will should encourage their governments to undertake these commitments to action.

It concluded:

In view of the persistence of poverty, the widening of economic and social inequalities, and the continued destruction of the environment, we support and endorse the call for the adoption by 2015 of new universal goals, to be called Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to guide planetary scale actions after 2015

Only through the empowerment and education of women and children throughout the world will we be able to attain a world that is both just and sustainable. We have a clear moral obligation to do this, and will benefit greatly by succeeding in this goal.

This is not the first time that the PAS has co-operated with the United Nations to promote Sustainable Development Goals.

The Pontifical Academy for the Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences (PASS) jointly held a workshop last May entitled “Sustainable Nature. Sustainable Humanity. Our Responsibility.

The final document of the workshop strongly endorsed the development of Sustainable Development Goals. Signatories included Peter Cardinal Turkson, the main drafter of the upcoming papal encyclical, Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, Professor Margaret Archer, President of the PASS, and Professor Jeremy Sachs.

The statement said:

In view of the persistence of poverty, the widening of economic and social inequalities, and the continued destruction of the environment, the world’s governments called for the adoption by 2015 of new universal goals, to be called Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to guide planetary-scale actions after 2015. To achieve these goals will require global cooperation, technological innovations that are within reach, and supportive economic and social policies at the national and regional levels, such as the taxation and regulation of environmental abuses, limits to the enormous power of transnational corporations and a fair redistribution of wealth. It has become abundantly clear that Humanity’s relationship with Nature needs to be undertaken by cooperative, collective action at all levels – local, regional, and global.

The technological and operational bases for a true sustainable development are available or within reach.  Extreme poverty can be ended through targeted investments in sustainable energy access, education, health, housing, social infrastructure and livelihoods for the poor.

In neither statement do the Pontifical Academies drawn any attention to the plight of the unborn children who are deliberately targeted by the proposed SDGs. While the draft SDGs may also contain laudable goals it is completely unacceptable to sacrifice the rights of unborn children in pursuit of those goals.

If the PAS and the PASS endorse the SDGs as they currently stand they will be endorsing abortion and the violation of parental rights. Voice of the Family calls on both Pontifical Academies to strongly reject the UN’s population control agenda, which is being pursued under the cover of protecting the environment.

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Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Leading global pro-abortion advocates speak at Vatican conference

Ban Ki Moon, UN Secretary General
Two of the world's leading pro-abortion advocates were addressing a Vatican workshop on the environment today.

At the same time, a press conference at the Palazzo Cesi, in Rome, organised by the Heartland Institute, was addressed by two leading SPUC officials on behalf of Voice of the Family, warning that the population control lobby was advancing its agenda by means of the workshop held today by the Pontifical Academy for Sciences.

The following statement was delivered by Patrick Buckley, UN envoy of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, who was joined in Rome by Maria Madise, SPUC's international manager and manager of Voice of the Family:
Voice of the Family statement on the workshop “Protect the Earth, Dignify Humanity. The Moral Dimensions of Climate Change and Sustainable Development” held at the Pontifical Academy for Sciences, 28th April 2015

We wish to express our grave concern at the presence of Ban Ki Moon, the UN Secretary General, and Professor Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute, at the Vatican workshop Protect the Earth, Dignify Humanity. The Moral Dimensions of Climate Change and Sustainable Development held by the Pontifical Academy for Sciences (PAS), Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and Religions for Peace on April 28th 2015 in anticipation of the new papal encyclical on the environment.

Ban Ki Moon and Professor Jeffrey Sachs are noted advocates of abortion who operate at the highest levels of the United Nations.

The Vatican workshop aims to “raise awareness and build a consensus that the values of sustainable development cohere with values of the leading religious traditions, with a special focus on the most vulnerable.”

Unfortunately, pro-life and pro-family advocates who lobby at the UN have witnessed the environmental issues become an umbrella to cover a wide spectrum of attacks on human life and the family. These attacks pose an immediate threat to the lives of the most vulnerable – the unborn, the disabled and the elderly – as well as grave violations of parental rights.

In light of the attacks on innocent human life witnessed at the UN under the guise of environmental concerns, we are troubled to note the Vatican workshop’s desire “to help build a global movement across all religions for sustainable development and climate change throughout 2015 and beyond”. This timetable exactly coincides with the negotiations of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the UN, which include strong attacks on life and family. The SDG agenda will determine the direction and financial aid for the third world countries for the next 15 years.

Understandably the population control, pro-abortion lobby must be feeling very much empowered by the influence being exercised in the Vatican by two of the culture of death’s leading figures, Ban Ki Moon and Professor Jeffrey Sachs, especially just before the publication of an encyclical on the environment.

Ban Ki-Moon, who is one of the main speakers at the workshop at the Pontifical Academy of the Sciences, has on many occasions promoted the so-called “right” to abortion worldwide. (1) He also issued a controversial new report this year on sexual violence in conflict zones, which was critical of the lack of “safe abortion” in many conflict situations. The directive openly defies the consensus at the UN that abortion is an issue that should be left to individual nations.

Dr Jeffrey Sachs, who is also addressing the meeting, is a well-known international proponent of population control and abortion. (2) Sachs is one of the architects of the millennium development goals and a member of the Executive Board of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network. The Network has proposed draft Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which contain provisions that are radically antagonistic to the right to life from conception to natural death, to the rights and dignity of the family and to the rights of parents as the primary educators of their children.

Our concerns relate specifically to Goals 4 and 5.

Goal 4 is to “achieve gender equality, social inclusion, and human rights for all”. The call for an end to preventable deaths of infants and children under the age of 5 excludes unborn children, despite the fact that the Convention on the Rights of the Child in its preamble recognises that “The child by reason of his physical and mental immaturity, needs special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection, before as well as after birth.”

Goal 4d, which states “Ensure universal sexual and reproductive health and rights” is completely unacceptable. Such language is routinely used by the international pro-abortion and population control lobby to refer to the legalization of abortion on demand and access for children, without parental knowledge or consent, to abortion and birth control drugs and devices in countries throughout the world. (3)

Goal 5, “Achieve Health and Wellbeing at all ages”, also includes a reference to sexual and reproductive health and family planning. (4)

In the light of all that has been said, it will be clear why Catholic families all over the world are greatly concerned that Vatican institutions may embrace the language of the United Nations, which, on the surface, speaks of protecting the environment while in reality providing cover for an anti-life and anti-family agenda. Any discussion on the environment must stem from understanding that the family, defined correctly, is the key to sustainable development, particularly at this time when the Synod on the Family has been called by Pope Francis to consider problems facing the family.

The family according to article 16.3 of the Universal Declaration (1948) is the “natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State”.

Furthermore, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the post-2015 development agenda must take account of the family; this is, in fact, recognised by the UN Secretary General’s 2011 Family Report. (5)

Accordingly, Voice of the Family proposes that the SDGs should contain a goal to strengthen the family and include realistic targets in that regard.

The holding of this vitally important conference in the Vatican at this crucial time in-between the two family synods and in the lead-up to the publication of the Sustainable Development Goals, and with the participation of these leading international pro-abortion advocates, is all the more worrying in the light of the most recent statement of Hilary Clinton saying, effectively, that opposition to abortion must cease to exist, even in the teaching of the Church.

We wish to place on record our view that, in any international agreement concerning the future of the human family, it is indispensable to assert the obligation for states to provide for the legal protection of the right to life of every human being from the moment of conception until natural death and to uphold the family as the fundamental group unit of society.
Footnotes
(1) In September 2010 at the Human Rights Council in Geneva and Navanethem Pillay, the then UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, launched a report “on discrimination against women, in law and practice, and how the issue is addressed throughout the United Nations human rights system”. In that report they called for the policing of nations worldwide to “address the refusal of physicians to perform legal abortions”

(2) In his book Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet Paperback – 26 Mar 2009 which deals with “global warming, poverty, war, deforestation and mass extinctions”, Sachs argues for legalised abortion.

(3) For example, in a speech on October 12th 2009, Wellington Webb, appointed by Barack Obama as special adviser to the US mission to the United Nations, confirmed that the Obama administration will be promoting legalised abortion throughout the world, targeting adolescents in a worldwide abortion drive. The ambassador was speaking at the UN's 15th anniversary commemoration of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD). His speech expressly committed the US government to promoting "access to reproductive health commodities and services for adolescents". Webb stated: "President Obama, Secretary Clinton and Ambassador Rice have all underscored the strong support of the United States for human rights, women's rights and reproductive rights as well as universal access to reproductive health and family planning".
Hillary Clinton, Obama's appointee as US Secretary of State, had already made it clear that when the US government speaks of reproductive health, it's a term which includes access to abortion. In April, 2009, Hilary Clinton told Congressman Chris Smith at a hearing of the US Congress Foreign Affairs Committee "We happen to think that family planning is an important part of women's health and reproductive health includes access to abortion ... ”

(4) http://unsdsn.org/resources/goals-and-targets/

(5) “The majority of the Millennium Development targets, especially those relating to the reduction of poverty, education of children and reduction in maternal mortality, are difficult to attain unless the strategies to achieve them focus on the family.” (SG Family Report 2011 (A/66/62–E/2011/4)
“The stability and cohesiveness of communities and societies largely rest on the strength of the family.” (SG Family Report 2011 (A/66/62–E/2011/4)
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Monday, 27 April 2015

Birmingham's March for Life takes us back to geographical roots of the evil of abortion

On St George's Day last week, March for Life published a short piece explaining why it's most appropriate to hold the event in Birmingham:
"Birmingham has infamous historic roots with the abortion movement. The largest single abortion provider in the UK is BPAS (the British Pregnancy Advisory Service). This organisation was founded in Birmingham in 1968 and was originally known as the Birmingham Pregnancy Advisory Service. On Saturday May 16th we will be going back to the geographical roots of this evil to shower it with our witness of truth."
Check out the March for Life website for details of the event.

March for Life has also published a moving testimony to the power of God working through a person's witness to the unborn child and his or right to life at "evil's sanctuary" (what a powerful phrase!) - that is, outside an abortion clinic in a 40 Days for Life campaign.

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