Matt C. Abbott
Examples of outstanding Christian women
By Matt C. Abbott
April 24, 2012

God bless all the outstanding pro-life, pro-family Christian women among us. You know who you are!

Don't worry — I'm not forgetting about all the outstanding pro-life, pro-family Christian men among us. It's just that this particular column is about the women. :)

To wit: Outstanding pro-life, pro-family Christian woman Arlene Sawicki writes the following:
    The Project Love Committee presented their Caritas Award to two very deserving recipients at their 4th annual Rise and Dine Benefit Breakfast on Sunday, April 22. Project Love is the charitable division of Illinois Citizens for Life, based in Downers Grove, Ill. It was founded by the late Mary Bliss in 1996. ICL's mission is to help pregnant women and new mothers in a financial crisis. They receive applications for grants from pregnancy centers all over the state of Illinois. Grants go to the woman's creditor (e.g. her landlord or utility company), and they also send her a note of encouragement to let her know that they care about her and her children at a difficult time in her life. Project Love has given almost 1000 grants in their 16-year history.

    2012 Caritas Award to Mary Anne Hackett for her outstanding service to the pro-life movement for over 38 years. Her degree in business administration has made her well suited to serve on the board of directors of Illinois Right to Life Committee for 22 years, and she had been its president for 20 years until her recent retirement from the board. She is also founder and current president of Catholic Citizens of Illinois, a lay organization seeking to educate Catholics in their faith. She is also a founding member and current chairman of the board of the Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer. In addition, Mary Anne has served as a volunteer in church and community affairs for 17 years. Well-known as a pro-life speaker on radio and TV in the Chicago area, Mary Anne has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Chicago Tonight with John Callaway and with Phil Ponce, City Desk, and several other TV and radio shows. She has also participated in debates and discussion at Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism and at the University of Illinois Medical School. When not speaking to the media, Mary Anne is busy presenting the pro-life facts on abortion and euthanasia to students from junior high level to college and beyond. Mary Anne is the wife of Dr. John N. Hackett and the mother of five children and grandmother of 18. She and John have received the Illinois Citizens for Life Distinguished Service Award for dedicated work in the pro-life movement. This is only one of many awards and distinctions given to this truly dedicated pro-life warrior.

    2012 Caritas Award to CareNet Pregnancy Services of DuPage for over 30 years of outstanding service to women with unplanned pregnancies. Diane Schroeder received the award on behalf of this organization. She reported that 500 babies were saved last year through CareNet's work. CareNet is a multi-faceted ministry with counselors, a medical team and educators serving thousands of men and women annually. It has four offices located in Downers Grove, Glen Ellyn, Naperville and Wood Dale. Through the years, CareNet's mission has remained steadfastly the same. It is committed to serving Christ by working to love women and save the lives of their babies. It does this by presenting the Gospel in both word and deed; by providing accurate and complete information, emotional support and practical assistance to the women it serves. It does not refer for or recommend abortion. Instead, it presents adoption as one alternative to abortion. In recent years, CareNet has added abstinence education, ultrasound and parenting support services to better serve its clients. CareNet is a very special place where a young woman can find someone who cares, and loves her without fear of being judged. She can have her questions answered, receive referrals to other community services, and know that she has a support system at a very difficult time in her life. CareNet is truly a precious resource for young pregnant women and their families.

On a somber note, please pray for Agata, a 34-year-old mother of two young girls (12 and 7) who is battling an incurable brain cancer. Thank you.

© 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 MSNBC, Bill Martinez Live, WOSU Radio in Ohio, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's 'Unsolved' podcast, WLS-TV (ABC) in Chicago, WMTV (NBC) and WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, Wis., and has been quoted in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, and other media outlets. In 2005 and 2006, he was among the first writers to expose former cardinal Theodore McCarrick's abuse of power with and sexual harassment of seminarians. He can be reached at

(Note: I welcome thoughtful feedback and story ideas. If you want our correspondence to remain confidential, please specify as such in your initial email to me. However, I reserve the right to forward and/or publish emails that are accusatory, insulting or threatening in nature, even if they're marked confidential. Also, if you give me permission to publish a quote of yours, please do not contact me at a later time to request that I delete your name. Only in limited circumstances will I quote anonymous sources. Thank you and God bless!)


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