Matt C. Abbott
Pavone (pro-life) vs. Galantino (pro-life?)
By Matt C. Abbott
May 24, 2014

On May 14, reported:
    An Italian bishop has angered pro-life advocates at home and abroad after he told an interviewer May 12 that he has little time for the kind of pro-lifer who prays the Rosary outside abortion facilities.

    'I do not identify with the expressionless faces of those who recite the Rosary outside the clinics who practice interruption of pregnancy, ['l'interruzione della gravidanza'] but with those young people who are opposed to this practice and strive for the quality of life of the people, for their right to health, to work,' said Bishop Nunzio Galantino, secretary-general of the Italian bishops' conference (CEI)....
I asked Father Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, to comment on Bishop Galantino's remarks.

Father Pavone's response is as follows:
    I do not know Bishop Galantino, and therefore I do not know how he expresses himself, or tries to make a point that may seem exaggerated.

    But when somebody says that the Church has 'concentrated too much on abortion and euthanasia,' I take it as a compliment for the success of ministries like Priests for Life, which have called and will call upon the clergy, and indeed the entire Church, to sound the alarm about these atrocities more loudly and clearly than ever. Nor will we stop calling for that until the killing stops.

    Moreover, the bishop says that there should be open conversation about homosexuality, married priests, and Communion for the divorced. I conclude, therefore, that he would not be opposed to open conversation about the scandal of silence in the face of the greatest holocaust the world has ever known – that of abortion.

    In the annals of history, any failures of the institutional Church in regard to the sex abuse crisis – and those failures are not to be minimized – will nevertheless pale in comparison to the failure to stand up, preach vigorously, and mobilize courageously to end child-killing in the womb.

    Indeed, we are called to give our very lives for the unborn.

    The first Christians learned how to love, because the source of love, the Christ who sacrificed himself, was personally known to them. They saw and touched him.

      That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched – this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it... (1 John:1:1-2).

      And when commanded not to speak about Jesus, they replied, 'We cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.' (Acts 4:20).

    This contact with the humanity of Christ speaks to us of what we are to do now for the unborn. It is the contact with the human reality of their lives, and the human tragedy of their deaths, that is to impel us in our self-sacrificing love for them.

    It is not endless, taboo-less conversations that impel self-sacrificing, life-giving action. It is contact with the humanity we serve. It is facing the injustice that oppresses human lives, and then making a human response to it that springs from the depths of our own humanity, grounded in the God who gave that humanity to us.

    That is why we need to look at the pictures of the victims of abortion; not simply at the pictures of the living baby in the womb, but the pictures of what abortion does to that baby (see both at

    And that is also why we need to go to the places where they are being slaughtered: the abortion mills.

    In his homily on July 3, Pope Francis said,

      'We find Jesus' wounds in carrying out works of mercy, giving to our body – the body – the soul too, but – I stress – the body of your wounded brother, because he is hungry, because he is thirsty, because he is naked, because he is humiliated, because he is a slave, because he's in jail because he is in the hospital...Those are the wounds of Jesus today. ...We need to touch the wounds of Jesus, we must caress the wounds of Jesus, we need to bind the wounds of Jesus with tenderness, we have to kiss the wounds of Jesus, and this literally. Just think of what happened to St. Francis, when he embraced the leper? The same thing that happened to Thomas: his life changed. '

    Let us touch the sufferings of the babies who are in danger of abortion. Let us identify with them and with those who defend them. Let us be changed into fearless warriors for them.
© 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

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