Matt C. Abbott
Priest: peacefully blocking abortion mill access 'entirely justified'
By Matt C. Abbott
May 31, 2017

On May 13, ten people were arrested for blocking the entrance to a Louisville abortion mill. Click here for the story.

I asked Father Shenan J. Boquet (pictured below), president of Human Life International, to comment on this development. His response is as follows:
    Mr. Thomas and his colleagues are entirely justified in peacefully blocking access to an abortion mill. A nonviolent response such as this to the extreme and absolutely immoral violence of abortion is very Christian, and very necessary. We applaud their efforts and hope this event attracts the attention it deserves.

    I see this as a valid part of the overall pro-life effort, which includes prayerful witness outside of abortion mills, political engagement in law and policy, public demonstrations such as marches, providing care and support for expectant mothers in need, and engaging the culture at the intellectual and popular levels, identifying and training leaders who can carry the baton for life and family further out into the world. This is the work that HLI's missionaries are engaged in every day.

    Romans Chapter 12 is our guide in prayerfully discerning how each of us can serve. If we are teachers, let us teach about the value of each life. If we are called to exhort, let us exhort. Those who are called to nonviolent resistance must stand in the breach to defend the defenseless, and must be prepared for the consequences of the unjust laws that protect the gruesome injustice of abortion. Each must serve in this battle according to his gifts and what he is called to do in his own place and time.

    We must remember, however, that in our zeal we must still maintain love and prudence, as we are called by Christ – even those who participate in the evil of abortion. In this case, one can love them by at least trying to stop them from their participation in evil, and by witnessing peacefully to them. And do not forget prudence – for example, those with families must ensure that their families are cared for, which may mean you find other ways to support this or other pro-life efforts.
Monica Migliorino Miller, Ph.D. (pictured below), director of the Michigan-based Citizens for a Pro-Life Society, echoes Father Boquet's assertion about nonviolent human blockades. She wrote the following in her recent e-newsletter:
    Some of you [supporters of CPLS] may be aware that your CPLS director was a leader of the rescue movement from 1978 through 1995. Marriage came and then three children – but I have always believed that nonviolent direct action to defend the unborn is a true response to the plight of human beings scheduled to be executed.
© Matt C. Abbott


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Matt C. Abbott

Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic commentator with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication, media and theatre from Northeastern Illinois University. He also has an Associate in Applied Science degree in business management from Triton College. Abbott has been interviewed on HLN, MSNBC, Bill Martinez Live, WOSU Radio in Ohio, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's 2019 ‘Unsolved’ podcast about the unsolved murder of Father Alfred Kunz, Alex Shuman's 'Smoke Screen: Fake Priest' podcast, WLS-TV (ABC) in Chicago, WMTV (NBC) and WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, Wisconsin. He’s been quoted in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune and other media outlets. He’s mentioned in the 2020 Report on the Holy See's Institutional Knowledge and Decision-Making Related to Former Cardinal Theodore Edgar McCarrick (1930 to 2017), which can be found on the Vatican's website. He can be reached at

(Note: I welcome and appreciate thoughtful feedback. Insults will be ignored. Only in very select cases will I honor a request to have a telephone conversation about a topic in my column. Email is much preferred. God bless you and please keep me in your prayers!)


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