Our Lady of the Wayside

Our Lady of the Wayside
Protect Expectant Mothers and Their Babies


Thursday 30 September 2010

Every Abortion is the Denial of Receiving Jesus

He came not to bring the peace of this world, which is only that we don't bother each other. He came to give the peace of heart, which comes from loving - from doing good to others.

While still in the womb of the Virgin Mary, Jesus brought peace to John the Baptist who leapt for joy in the womb of Elizabeth. I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion because Jesus said: "If you receive a little child you receive me." So every abortion is the denial of receiving Jesus."

We must persuade her [the Mother] with love, and love means to give until it hurts. Jesus gave even His life to love us. So, the Mother who is thinking of abortion should be helped to love, that is, to give until it hurts, her plans, her free time, to respect the life of her child. For the child is the greatest gift of God to the family, because it has been created to love and to be loved. The father of that child however, must also give until it hurts.

So abortion just leads to more abortion.

Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching it's people to love one another, but to use any violence to get what they want. This is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion.

Mother Theresa

Wednesday 29 September 2010

Do I Need A PM like Ed With So Little Time for Children?

I am pretty much apolitical, since we don't have a party that cares whether 200,000 babies are aborted or not, though I do go and vote for anyone trying to end, or in their absence, reduce the number of abortions.
However, I cannot imagine myself being able to vote for someone who was "too busy" to put his name on his son's birth certificate.
Perhaps Ed Miliband is really pro-life despite this drastic oversight? Not likely. His voting record, according to the Christian Institute includes some such gems as:

Voted for the Sexual Orientation Regulations which restrict religious liberty
Voted against reducing the abortion limit from 24 weeks in 2008
Voted against a ban on creating saviour siblings in 2008
Voted against a ban on creating animal-human hybrid embryos in 2008
Voted against keeping the requirement to consider a child's need for a father before fertility treatment in 2008
Voted against providing information and offering counselling to women considering abortion for foetal abnormality in 2008
Voted for abolishing the blasphemy laws in England and Wales

But don't take my word for it, have a look for yourself and then pray for him and why not write to him?

Clare McCullough

Tuesday 28 September 2010

Twenty Incisive Questions For Marie Stopes International

London based Baptist Pastor, Mike Gilbart Smith has written to Marie Stopes International in response to their TV Advert and the controversy surrounding it. In a brilliant letter he asked them the 20 questions that they apparantly cannot answer, since his letter in May he received an acknowledgement and a promise of a full response, but he is still waiting as far as I can see from his blog, http://lovingchurch.blogspot.com/search?q=marie+stopes
I am printing the whole of his letter here, since sometimes readers don't/can't follow links through and anyway it really cuts to the heart of the matter.
When you have read it, and are reminded of the awfulness of what Marie Stopes and other abortionists do, don't forget to do something positive and sign yourself up for some slots with www.40daysforlife.com/london or if you are not in London, contact http://www.hgpi.co.uk/ to find your nearest abortuary vigil of prayer.
Dear Tony,
I’m writing as a pastor of a church who is going to be addressing the issue of abortion in my teaching and in some upcoming articles in the light of your recent advertising. I want to make sure that I would not be misrepresenting you in any way at all, though I should make clear to you that I do believe that abortion, and particularly providing abortion is immoral.
However, I also want to be as courteous as I can with those with whom I disagree. I do not want to assume bad motivation for what you are doing. I understand the arguments of wanting to provide “safe” (obviously for the mother and not the baby) abortion when your fear is that if “safe” abortion were not provided, then back street abortion would inevitably be sought. The compassion you show to mothers I believe to be genuine, but misplaced.
I do happen to agree with what I heard a Marie Stopes spokesperson say when she was hoping that there would be a removing of the taboo about speaking about abortion. I too hope that this taboo will be removed so that there can be an honest public debate about abortion.
To contribute to this debate I hope to write some articles about abortion and about Marie Stopes in particular. There is much information on your website, but there were some questions that I didn’t find answers to, which I would be very grateful if you’d answer.
I must also be clear that intend to distribute your answers.
If you would rather meet in person to have a face to face conversation, I would also be very glad to do that.
(I will use the term “mother” for the pregnant woman). Feel free to exchange the term for “Pregnant woman” if you would prefer that term, or to use another term of your choosing.
1) When speaking to a mother will you always make it clear exactly what help is available to mothers who decide to keep the baby.
2) What ongoing support do you offer to mothers who decide to keep the baby?
3) Do you always ask mothers if they are feeling pressurised into having abortions from others (e.g. boyfriends, husbands, parents, or the general expectations of society)?
(Several women whom I have spoken to who have had abortions have told me that they felt immense pressure that in a society where abortion is legal, there will be people telling them that having an abortion is “doing the right thing” and that it is irresponsible to have the baby.)
4) Do you always suggest to mothers that it is never irresponsible to carry a baby and give birth once they are pregnant?
5) I’ve noticed in your FAQ’s that in more than sixty questions there is a lot of information about abortion, but there is no information on the development of the foetus. Do you think that the developmental stage of the foetus should be a factor that a mother should be informed about in order to have adequate information in making a decision as to whether to have an abortion?
6) I understand that you must legally have a sonographic scan before an abortion is carried out. What details from that scan will you always communicate to the mother so that she might make a correctly informed decision?
a. Will you always tell the mother the estimated age of the foetus?
b. Will you always tell the mother what this corresponds to in terms of development?
c. Could you outline the detail that you would go into as to the development of the foetus, with the following being a suggestive rather than an exhaustive list?
i. Will you tell the mother whether there is a heartbeat?
ii. Will you tell the mother whether the child has a brain?
iii. Will you tell the mother whether the child has a limbs and fingers and fingernails?
iv. Will you tell the mother whether the child has ears eyes and a nose?
v. Will you tell the mother which internal organs of the child are functional?
vi. Will you tell the mother the gender of the foetus if that is discernable?
d. If you don’t volunteer that information do you always ask the mother if she would be interested in knowing the facts about the foetus’ development in order to help her make her decision?
7) Do you have a policy in training staff that they avoid the terms “baby” or “child” in reference to the foetus?
8) Do you have a policy encouraging staff to use the term “pregnancy” instead of “foetus” or an equivalent term that would point to the fact that there is an organism other than the mother involved in the pregnancy?
9) Do you have a position as an organisation about when a human embryo/foetus becomes a human being?
10) Do you think that it would be morally acceptable to provide abortion even if you believed the foetus was already a human being?
11) If infanticide were legalised in some country, would you offer that as a service?
12) What is the minimum time allowed for a proper counselling session to look through all possible options before going ahead with an abortion?
13) How much did the NHS pay you last year to carry out abortions?
14) Do you think that there is any conflict of interest in Marie Stopes providing advice on whether a mother should have an abortion when Marie Stopes is paid for providing abortions?
15) In order to get your email address I phoned the 0845 300 80 90 number. Will my call automatically be counted in your statistics as being from a woman who called for advice but didn’t receive an abortion?
16) If a woman calls your line twenty times, will they be “counted” on your statistics of the number of women you’ve helped once or twenty times?
17) If after an abortion, the baby (I assume we can now use this term without controversy as she is outside the womb) shows some signs of life, do you have a policy stating that the medical personnel present should act to resuscitate? Do you have a policy saying that they may not act to resuscitate?
18) Would you carry out an abortion if the stated reason given by the woman was that she wanted a boy, and this foetus is a girl?
19) If asked would you carry out a selective abortion in order to remove the healthy girl from the womb and leave the healthy boy in the womb?
20) In your five abortion clinics in China, what proportion of those who are aborted are girls?
Thank you so much for your willingness to answer these questions. In removing the taboo from conversation about abortion I trust that you are wanting honest, open and informed debate. I hope that you taking the time to answer these questions will add to the honesty and help to remove the taboo from the abortion conversation.
Perhaps if you want to add to the honesty of the debate you’d also be happy to post the answers you give on your own website?
Many thanks,
Mike Gilbart-Smith

Monday 27 September 2010

The Post Papal Visit Era

We are now in the aftermath of the Papal visit.
I was not born when Pope John Paul II came to these shores, but even now people still talk about it. I am very sure that in 30 years time I will still remember this visit. I feel it is a duty for us to remember it, to take from it all that Pope Benedict XVI came to give us. He came to call us all to be saints, to stand up for what we believe. To stop the ever incresing tide of aggressive Atheism and Secularisation of England, which is, after all, Our Lady's Dowry. When he was at Westminster Abbey he very deliberately spoke of St Thomas More who died for the faith, At Hyde Park he told us we must all follow our Vocation to sainthood and at Cofton Park he extolled the virtues of Cardinal Newman. Now I say it is time to take up the banner once and for all. To fight the persecution which is, sometimes subtly, all around us. To stop abhorrent practices such as Abortion, Euthanasia and contraception, to be united in our Faith and be proud of it.
Who's with me?
Conor Carroll

Saturday 25 September 2010

Turnarounds at Abortuary Gives Us New Hope

I have just had my first few hours at the 40 days for life prayer vigil which is outside Marie Stopes' House. I was acting as a pavement counsellor while a small group of people prayed for the girls and their unborn children who entered the Abortion Mill. As it always seems to be when I am at an abortuary the weather was horrible, raining for most of the time I was there and cold throughout. I prayed as consistently as I could, tried to speak to as many of the girls as possible and offer them whatever support I could. I was there for nearly three hours and not one Mother changed her mind. When I left I felt a bit dejected. My efforts had no apparent effort. I was wrong.

When I arrived back at our office there was a call. It was from the counsellor who had taken over from me. She was calling to bring in a Mother who had changed her mind. She is being counselled as I write this. I did not directly speak to this woman, but my prayers and small sufferings and those of the counsellor who took over from me and the group of people praying, all offering this up the God - that changed that Mother's mind and has given the possibility of life back to her child. I now feel re-invigorated to return as soon as I can to help save many more babies' lives. I really hope you will be willing to do so too. I look forward to seeing you there. For more details please see http://www.40daysforlife.com/london/

Conor Carroll

Thursday 23 September 2010

Advertising Standards Authority: Don't call Pro-life Help Real Help

Despite rejecting more than 5,000 complaints against Marie Stopes International for promoting abortion on TV, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has gone on to bowdlerise a Pro-Life advertisement on the London Underground.
The Good Counsel Network recently placed an advert in London tube stations to reach women in crisis pregnancies and offer them help, as part of their Maria Stops Abortion Campaign. But once the advert copy was submitted to the company who deals with much of the advertising on the Tube, they referred it to the Advertising Standards Authority’s Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) to ensure that it didn’t breach the Advertising Standards Code.
CAP’s first response warned that the use of the name “Maria Stops Abortion” could mean that the poster was seen as denigrating Marie Stopes International. Phrases in the Pro-life ad such as “Find Real Help” and “We really can help” were read as attacking Marie Stopes' failure to provide help. The Good Counsel Network immediately agreed to remove this text from the ad. We felt it was better to get the ad up quickly than to spend months wrangling about the text Maria Stops Abortion being in it or not.
CAP had stated that:
“Because the [ad] mentions ‘Find real help’ and ‘we really can help’ in relation to the Maria Stops Abortion copy [this] would be seen as a claim that a competitor cannot help. We would advise removing the relevant words ‘real’ help/ we ‘really’ can help. They could say ‘find help’ and ‘we can help’ in order to position their service in a less critical manner.”
I then phoned CAP and assured them that “Maria Stops Abortion” was being removed from the advert. I was suprised to find that CAP officials, however, continued to claim that Marie Stopes was still being denigrated by the ad, even though it no longer mentioned them at all!
Tom Marshall, a copy advisor with CAP said that their concerns about the terms, "Find real help" and "We really can help" remained the same as before. He insisted that we were clearly criticising Marie Stopes. Actually, as I pointed out, nothing in the advert referred to Marie Stopes at all. But Mr Marshall replied, "They are your main competitor".
Why should our ad be seen as having a go at MS not for example BPAS or another abortion provider? He replied that due to recent events such as the Marie Stopes TV ad and the furore it caused, people would assume that Marie Stopes were being criticised for a failure to provide genuine help to women in crisis pregnancies.”

Why they were so protective of Marie Stopes I did not know, but a quick look at the ASA's adjudication on the Marie Stopes TV ad helped me to understand. It shows that they have passed that ad accepting Marie Stopes' claim that:
"The ad did not encourage, promote or advocate abortion, but raised awareness about MSIs 24-hour Advice Line, which provided information about sexual health and all pregnancy choices, including, but not limited to, abortion."

The ASA adjudication states:
"We understood that MSI was a Pregnancy Advice Bureau (PAB) regulated by the Department of Health and, as a provider of services on behalf of the NHS, were obliged to offer a range of advice on all the options available to pregnant women."
and again:
"We also noted that many complainants regarded the advertisers as advocates of abortion and therefore interpreted the ad as a promotion of abortion. However, the ad was for an advice service for women dealing with an unplanned pregnancy, and stated that MSI could help women who were "pregnant and not sure what to do". We understood that MSI provided a wide range of advisory and health services and advised on all options during consultations with clients. We noted that the ad did not focus on any one particular service offered by MSI and did not mention abortion. We therefore considered it was an ad for a general pregnancy advice service for women who wished to learn about and discuss their options, which might include, but were not limited to, abortion."
Unfortunately, several recent calls I made to MSI's Helpline (sic) have shown that their operators were unable to provide the number of even one UK based pregnancy help centre. I was given the name of Sidelines (a USA pregnancy centre) but then told "Oh sorry that's not in this country". On another call though I stressed that I was calling for a woman who was under pressure to abort and had serious money problems, the operator repeatedly tried to send me to the Family Planning Association, Brooks Advisory Centre or Connexions. Presumably because these agents of death were the only people she had numbers for.
Understandably enough, for as Our Lord said:
Every kingdom divided against itself, shall be brought to desolation, and house upon house shall fall. And if Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? (Luke 11:17-18)
See the ASA Adjudication on Marie Stopes here
Despite their own and the Advertising Standards Authorities assurances to the contrary, Marie Stopes International were totally unable to refer me for any help when I requested help for a woman wanting to keep her baby in the face of homelessness, pressure from others or debts.
It seems ridiculous that the ASA considers it’s role in this case to protect Marie Stopes against any imagined attack on it. Once the text Maria Stops Abortion was removed from our ad there was no reason for anyone to take any thing in the ad as an attack on Marie Stopes. The emphasis on REAL help was aimed at women who have real practical needs such as financial problems or nowhere to live. In our experience these women expect that they will be offered tea and sympathy but no concrete help.
We hope we have still managed to get this across despite the censorship.

You can see the text of the advert before and after censorship below. Changes have been highlighted in bold.

The Original Text of the Advert:
Find real help and support in a crisis pregnancy, today. Whatever the problem is, we really can help
The Good Counsel Network is a Catholic, Pro-Life group based in London. We provide friendship, creative solutions, real practical help and support to women in crisis pregnancies and afterwards, regardless of their beliefs, nationality, legal status etc.
This advert is part of the Maria Stops Abortion Campaign

The Bowdlerised Version
Find the help and support you may need in a crisis pregnancy today. Whatever the problem is, we can help.
The Good Counsel Network is a Catholic, Pro-Life group based in London. We provide
friendship, creative solutions, practical help and support to women in crisis
pregnancies and afterwards, regardless of their beliefs, nationality, legal status etc.
Blessed Virgin Mary, Pray for us!

Clare McCullough

Wednesday 22 September 2010

40 Days for Life Starts in London Today

I like reading the SPUC Blog by John Smeaton. My heart was uplifted one evening recently when via the SPUC blog I accessed Robert Colquhoun's blog, called 'Love Undefiled' In my opinion what is on there should be taught to young people gradually at appropriate ages regarding sex education. For example there is a powerpoint presentation on chastity, information on the theology of the body etc. What a contrast to what our young people are bombarded with daily, by the media, family planning and abortion clinics, clinics treating sexually transmitted diseases, infertility etc.
'Love Undefiled' is a fantastic resource, so if you do access it spread the word. In addition Robert Colquhoun is the organiser of a 40 day prayerful, peaceful vigil aiming to end abortion and due to commence today in London - Wednesday 22nd September. Thank God for Robert and all those other young people who have faith, hope and charity and who are relying on God's grace and the power of prayer to fight for life against the culture of death.
Ronni O' Gara

Monday 20 September 2010

Just What You've Been Waiting For?

Good Counsel Stall, T-Shirt and Banner and Pope Benedict XVI at the Hyde Park Vigil.

Thanks Malvenu for a new comment on our post "The Good Shepherd Provides Good Shepherds":
Thank you too for the young lady who was giving out Good Counsel Network flyers just inside the 'arena' at Hyde Park. I was so busy sorting myself out after having gone through the briefest of bag checks on the way in that I took the leaflet and didn't see what it was until I'd sat down about half a mile away! I definitely would have commended her on her afternoon's work if I had looked at the flyer straight away. I haven't filled it in or responded to it yet, but I will and I hope lots of others come to support your work as well. It most definitely is, Just what we've been waiting for...

Good Counsel Photos by Declan Carroll and Annette Ignatowicz

Woad-Painted Savage Meets the Pope in London

Boris Johnson describes his feelings on the "honour and privilege" of being asked to meet the Pope at Heathrow:
"I felt like a woad-painted savage suddenly confronted by an effulgent vision from Rome and called upon to explain the religious back-sliding of the tribe. "
I think that just about sums up the moral situation of London society in 2010.
As Frodo found out when he sat down to eat with Captain Faramir, real holiness in another brings out the sense of the barbarian in oneself. Some will be moved to conversion by this realisation. We could pray Boris (baptised a Roman Catholic) is one of them.

Saturday 18 September 2010

The Good Shepherd Provides Good Shepherds

A tale of three shepherds.

The first is Canon James Morrow, RIP, who died this morning. A great pro-life Priest who would probably have been willing to lay down his life for the Pope. And maybe he did, since he began his calvary as the Pope arrived in Scotland to media vitriol. Please pray for the repose of his soul.

The second is Fr Stephen Langridge, Parish Priest Extraordinaire who has distributed is it 6,000, is it 9,000(?) tickets for Hyde Park. An island of sanity in a mad beaurocratic nightmare, whatever the figures we reckon he and his team responsible for about 10%of the Hyde PArk Vigil attendees being able to get tickets. Fr Langridge for Bishop.

The third is Pope Benedict XVI. He has won over the most vitriolic commentators and silenced many others. Not through a "charm offensive" just through courage, truth and love.

Thanks be to God for so many good shepherds in a world of wolves.

Friday 17 September 2010

Pope Arrives to Great Joy and the Media Struggle to Find the Nay-Sayers

The poor BBC. They do their best to find someone, anyone, who doesn't appreciate the Pope's teaching on moral issues or who wants to protest against his visit. But time after time they find Catholics who are just delighted he is here and happy to accept his words. My favourite is the mother of baby Maria who Pope Benedict kissed. "What does this mean to you?" asked the reporter. "It means I have to make changes in my life. It means she has been blessed by the Pope and now I must have her Christened." The reporter probes further, asking if as a young catholic Marzena finds it difficult to accept the Pope's teaching on moral issues. No she relies if something is good he says so, if something is bad he says so. He makes things very clear.

Oh well, here's wishing you worse luck next time BBC. Cheers!

Clare McCullough

Thursday 16 September 2010

Fr Morrow's Condition Worsens, Prayers Please.

Please keep the great pro-life priest, Fr James Morrow, in your prayers. He has developed complications of his stroke and pneumonia. Close friends and family believe he may be very close to death today.
How strange that today, as the Holy Father visits Scotland, Fr Morrow should lie in hospital with his life hanging in the balance. He would no doubt love, if in better health, to be watching the beautiful mission of the Holy Father unfold there today.
Fr Morrow, who was always totally peaceful in his approach, was one of the first priests here to get involved with witnesses outside abortuaries which earned him spells in prison but also the contempt of other catholics, even priests and the hostility even of some bishops, sadly.
The many aborted babies whose lives he fought for and prayed for will surely be praying for him today. Please join them.
Clare McCullough

Sanctimonious Chatter When Lives Are Treated As Rubbish Every Day

I was horrified reading the news reports on the baby who was abandoned on board a flight from Bahrain. The little boy was discovered when airplane staff saw a rubbish bag moving. He was found in the rubbish bag wrapped in tissue. He has since been named George and doctors say he is in good health despite the trauma of being discarded by his mum.

Perhaps, we can’t judge why his mother took this grim step, she may have panicked and did this against her instincts and better nature. People are lambasting the baby’s mother with judgmental tones, ‘How could a mother ever do such a thing?’

An ironic note was struck when one politician said "I was simply outraged, no infant should be treated that way." This is sanctimonious chatter and not true to reality. Infants are treated far more savagely every minute of the day here in Britain when they are dismembered by abortion. Often these infants are as independent as baby George in that they can survive outside the womb. But pro-abortion opponents still charge pro-lifers with this old subterfuge; ‘if there isn’t easily available abortion, more babies will be abandoned!’

Instead we should acknowledge that there will be more abortions and more babies abandoned if pregnant women cannot get practical and appropriate help. Firstly, emotional support is most essential so that they can avoid a situation where they will panic and do something rash such as aborting or abandoning their baby, which can be a panicked response. Further help in the form of medical and financial help and accommodation might be critical to save them from dire straits. But instead, in our society at large, has the irresponsible de facto policy of ‘offer abortion, don’t offer any necessary help, and so women feel cornered into an abortion.’ When women, against the odds, decide to keep their baby, society rejects them with a sigh and a mock them with, ‘they should have had an abortion’. So much for ‘choice’!

Mary O' Regan

Wednesday 15 September 2010

Prayers Please for Pro-Life Champion Canon James Morrow

Canon James Morrow has had another stroke. It's just over a decade since his last stroke, which affected his speech somewhat, but which he struggled bravely to overcome. He is currently in hospital in Scotland and is not doing brilliantly by all accounts.

If there is anyone who doesn't know who Fr Morrow is he is credited by many for making the rescue movement known here in the UK, and for taking part in Rescue missions outside various UK abortuaries. He suffered much for the unborn, and joked about his "good porridge guide" to the various prisons he spent time in occassionally in return for peacefully blocking the way in to abortuaries.

Please keep Fr Morrow in your prayers.

Clare McCullough

Tuesday 14 September 2010

Panorama and Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church or Let's Repay Slander with a Blessing!

A number of programmes and newpaper reports have been spewing forth as erroneously about sexual abuse by Catholic clergy. For a bit of clarification on the truths of this issue have a look at the excellent information posted on Ecumenical Diablog.
It's a good reminder to pray for the victims of abuse, many of them are being used and abused again by the media for their own purposes now.

And while we are getting such a drubbing in the press, let's bear this in mind:

And finally, may you all be of one mind: compassionate, loving brotherhood, merciful, meek, humble, not repaying evil with evil, nor slander with slander, but, to the contrary, repaying with blessings. For to this you have been called, so that you may possess the inheritance of a blessing. For whoever wants to love life and to see good days should restrain his tongue from evil, and his lips, so that they utter no deceit. Let him turn away from evil, and do good. Let him seek peace, and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are upon the just, and his ears are with their prayers, but the countenance of the Lord is upon those who do evil. And who is it who can harm you, if you are zealous in what is good? And yet, even when you suffer something for the sake of justice, you are blessed. So then, do not be afraid with their fear, and do not be disturbed. But sanctify Christ the Lord in your hearts, being always ready to give an explanation to all who ask you the reason for that hope which is in you. But do so with meekness and fear, having a good conscience, so that, in whatever matter they may slander you, they shall be confounded, since they falsely accuse your good behavior in Christ. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if it is the will of God, than for doing evil. For Christ also died once for our sins, the Just One on behalf of the unjust, so that he might offer us to God, having died, certainly, in the flesh, but having been enlivened by the Spirit.

1 Peter 3:8-3:15

Clare McCullough

Monday 13 September 2010

Teenage Pregnancy

Most people would think that teenagers are stroppier to talk to about their unborn babies.
Surprisingly, it is sometimes teenagers who are more pleasant and interested. Recently, ‘Beth’ a young teenager came looking for advice. She had got pregnant at the start of the summer, and was scared about going back to school pregnant. No one knew but her teenage boyfriend. She had told him she was pregnant, and he had instantly disappeared. She lives near him, and this makes things very uncomfortable.
She was quite heartbroken about this. “He sees me in the street and runs away. When I called his home, he got his mother to say that he didn’t know me.”
Beth had been told by teachers at school that if she ever got a positive test that she could have an abortion. “But I’ve no clue what that means. I’m really confused. For starters they tell me that I should have an abortion because I shouldn’t have a baby. But if I didn’t have a baby, why would I need an abortion?”
She saw pictures of unborn babies in the womb, and was amazed: “yeah, I knew that’s what the baby had to look like! He’s eight weeks, and see his lovely rib cage!” Beth was very open to seeing the pictures of the unborn baby and held the baby model close to her face. In my experience a ‘mature’ adult may react more harshly to seeing the unborn baby pictures. The worst reaction that I ever got was when a twenty five year old threw the baby model and the pictures at me.
During my time with Beth, we discussed what help we could give her, and what practical arrangements could be made for her to have the baby and stay on at school. She still felt threatened by her boyfriend's avoidance of her and by the mere idea of telling her parents. But she said, “I know that I’ll have to face World War Three, but I’m going to fight for my child.”
Mary O' Regan

Saturday 11 September 2010

Prayer For Conversion Helps to End Abortion

Picture: The Conversion of St Paul

As I have said a number of times there is no possibility of ending abortion in this country or any other without prayer and conversion.

In the past, at Benediction, the prayer for our separated brethren would be recited, and when one looks at the number of people who entered the church in England over the last hundred years it is clear that the recitation of this prayer bore fruit. The effects of the widespread dropping of this prayer are also clear for all to see.

We try to have Benediction every day at The Good Counsel Network’s chapel. I was quite struck while reciting this prayer a few days ago at Benediction in our chapel, as the deacon was from Africa, the server was of Irish decent and I myself am from Wales. But it mattered not. We are all perfectly aware that this country needs conversion. Be it our separated brethren in the Orthodox churches, C of E, or post-reformation secularists if we do not pray for them regularly we cannot hope to end Abortion.

Stuart McCullough

Friday 10 September 2010

He Can't Wait And Neither Can We!

I can't wait to undertake my trip to the United Kingdom in a week's time and I send heartfelt wishes to the people of Britain.
Pope Benedict XVI
Quoted in The Telegraph 9the September 2010

Novena to Cardinal Newman for Cure of a Good Counsel "Baby" and for The Papal Visit

One of our "clients", a young girl came to us about 5 years ago, 7 months pregnant. Something was wrong with the baby and she had been offered "foeticide" - a late term abortion. She chose to continue the pregnancy and delivered a baby with too much fluid around the brain, which had prevented the brain's full development. She had been told that her baby would die before birth, then that she would only live for two weeks, then two months, then six months. Finally the doctors stopped predicting impending doom and the little girl, who cannot walk or talk but who has a little sight and who can respond to love and care continued her journey in life. This little girl is now about to turn 5 years old. She has had a wonderful impact on her mum's young life. Bringing her peace, strength of character, heroic self-sacrifice and hope for the future. We recently got the sad news that the little girl now has an infection in the brain, which is once again predicted to kill her.
Please join our Novena to Cardinal John Henry Newman for the complete healing of this little girl. Please also remember to include the success of the Holy Father's visit and his protection in your intentions. Start today 10th September and the Novena will finish on the day before his beatification, 18th September. Or join in whenever you can.

Cardinal John Henry Newman Novena

God has created me to do Him some definite service; He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission – I never may know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. I am a link in a chain, a bond of connexion between persons. He has not created me for naught. I shall do good, I shall do His work; I shall be an angel of peace, a preacher of truth in my own place while not intending it, if I do but keep His commandments and serve Him in my calling.

Therefore I will trust Him. If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve Him; in perplexity, my perplexity may serve Him; if I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve Him. He does nothing in vain; He may prolong my life, He may shorten it; He knows what He is about. He may take away my friends, He may throw me among strangers, He may make me feel desolate, make my spirits sink, hide the future from me – still He knows what he is about.

Three Hail Mary's...Amen

And They'll Know We Are Christians By Our Love (Or What Has The National Secular Society Ever Done For Anyone?)

Left: A Certificate of "De-baptism" available from your local "tongue-in-cheek" Secular Society

Multiple Choice Questionnaire:

What with the Pope's visit getting nearer by the day and all, I am fed up to the back teeth of The National Secular Society and the Guardian and their ilk complaining about everything the Pope has never done(!). I have got to thinking about how I have always believed that it is worth weighing up any philosophy in terms of "what would this belief and the people attached to it do for me if I was really in trouble". Now we hear constantly about the shortcomings and failures of the Catholic Church, so I thought I would take Catholicism and some of the opposing philosophies and consider the following:

1. If you found yourself having to beg to survive, where would you go to beg?

a) The local branch of the Secular Society
b) Your local Catholic Church
c) Richard Dawkin's house

2. Who provides millions of pounds worth of healthcare to victims of Aids?

a) The National Secular Society
b) The Catholic Church
c) Peter Thatchell

3. If you lived in a third world country and couldn't afford to send your child to school, who is most likely to provide free education somewhere in your locality?

a) The British Secular Society
b) The Catholic Church
c) Christopher Hitchens

4. If you were unmarried, broke, pregnant, alone and homeless, couldn't see how to keep your baby but didn't really want to kill him or her, who would you contact for help?

a) Marie Stopes International
b) The National Secular Society
c) The Catholic Church

5. If you were being refused food and fluids in hospital and you wanted help to fight for the right to be fed, would you call:

a) Terry Pratchett
b) The National Secular Society
c) The Catholic Church

6. In the case of a national disaster, where homes and workplaces were destroyed who would you expect to provide the most help to victims?

a) The Catholic Church
b) The National Secular Society
c) The Guardian

Well I can't answer for you, but I know which of the above I would be in touch with; The Catholic Church, the largest charitable organisation in the world. A Church of sinners and of saints too. Despite our failings, millions of suffering peoples around the world benefit form the charitable works of the Church everyday ~ And they know we are Christians by our collective love, even though we individually make a hash of so many things.

Let's pray for the other sad lot, let's pray that they can rejoice instead of fearing, that the Kingdom of God has come upon them, in the form of His Vicar setting foot in the UK.

Clare McCullough

Thursday 9 September 2010

Catholicism and Abortion ~ Opposites

Catholicism leads people to know and love God throughout their lives. From the very moment of conception – Life is a gift from God, and this life will grow fuller and closer to God if we allow the love of God to increase within us. As we grow into adulthood it is a chosen direction throughout our lives.
All life comes from God, and abortion which is to name it clearly – murder – destroys life and one will be called to account for this life one day.
The Good Counsel Network helps everyone who wants to keep their baby, but has no one to help them. Thus with God’s help, which only has to be asked for, every new life can grow to fulfil God’s plan for them.

Angela Murphy

Suffering After an Abortion? Click here
Pregnant? Worried? Seek help here.

Wednesday 8 September 2010

Happy Birthday to Our Blessed Mother!

The Miraculous Image of Our Lady of Good Counsel, Genazzano, Italy.

A Great Prayer for Life is Urgently Needed

On our Fast Day (yesterday, 7th September) against the sex education bill I found this piece from Pope John Paul II's encyclical letter, Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life) on the internet when looking for inspiration from God. The day of prayer and fasting yesterday was for the failure of Chris Bryant MP's Bill which aims to introduce compulsory sex education in all schools, which will come before the House of Commons today, Our Lady's Birthday.
Evangelim Vitae says:

“a great prayer for life is urgently needed, a prayer which will rise up throughout the word. Through special initiatives and in daily prayer, may an impassioned plea rise to God, the Creator and lover of life, from every Christian community, from every group and association, from every family and from the heart of every believer. Jesus himself has shown us by his own example that prayer and fasting are the first and most effective weapons against the forces of evil (cf.Mt 4:1-11). As he taught His disciples, some demons cannot be driven out except in this way (cf.Mk 9:29). Let us therefore discover anew the humility and courage to pray and fast so that the power from on high will break down the walls of lies and deceit: the walls which conceal from the sight of so many of our brothers and sisters the evil of practices and laws which are hostile to life. May this same power turn their hearts to resolutions and goals inspired by the civilization of life and love”.
Lorraine Coyne

Missed this fast day but want to join with us in future days of prayer and fasting? Click here

Tuesday 7 September 2010

Join Us Today in Prayer and Fasting Against Sex Education Bill

It's not too late to join our day of prayer and fasting today for the failure of Chris Bryant MP's Bill to introduce compulsory sex education in all bills, which will come before the House of Commons tomorrow on Our Lady's Birthday.

See here and here for more information that has appeared in previous blogs on the subject.

In A Moral Vacuum We Can Still Pray

Recently we celebrated the feast of St. Monica and the following day, the feast of St. Augustine. St Monica is a great saint, who never wearied in praying for the conversion of her son. St. Augustine, prior to his conversion was living with his girlfriend, and fathered a child with her. He was also vehemantly anti-Catholic, and had lost his faith.
St. Monica lived in a time not so disimilar to our own, where sexual immorality was rampant. Through her prayers, her son was converted, and is now venerated as one of the great Doctors of the Church. She also converted her pagan husband.
We live in a world, which has lost its moral compass; tossed by the tide of relativism, it has adopted a moral vacuum, where lawlessness and immorality rule. Young people are tragically losing their faith, barely having recieved the Sacrament of Confirmation; cohabitation has become more prevalent than the Sacrament of Marriage, and the abortions that have resulted because of this are numerous.
It is easy for us to despair if we look at the evil in the world, or see our own children lose the Catholic Faith we have taught them. However, let's take great courage and faith from St. Monica's example, who patiently suffered and continued to pray for her son's conversion, when from a human perspective all seemed hopeless. God hears our prayers and tears for those who have lost their faith, and are not leading good Christian lives, and He forgives His prodigal sons and daughters and there is great rejoicing in Heaven.
Let's pray the rosary every day for our loved ones who have lost their faith, and for all sinners, that Our Lady will wrap them in Her Immaculate Mantle of protection, and lead them to the Most Merciful Heart of her Beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

James Coulborn

Monday 6 September 2010

Urgent Day of Prayer and Fasting Against Compulsory Sex Ed

The men of Ninivah shall rise up in judgement with this generation, and shall condemn it; because they did penance at the preaching of Jonah; and behold more than Jonas here.

St Luke XI: 32

It struck me when reading this passage the other day that Jesus is not just speaking here to the wicked generation of His day, but was in fact speaking to us, now as well. On Wednesday the 8th of September, the Feast of the Nativity of our Blessed Lady, labour MP Chris Bryant will bring forward a bill in the House of Commons, proposing that sex education is made compulsory in all schools.

For more details about the bill see here

It is vitally important that we all contact our MPs and ask them, as our public servants, to oppose this bill on our behalf, but it is equally as important that we join Good Counsel Network's extra day of Prayer and Fasting on Tuesday 7th September. To find out more information and to download a poster click here


We are being asked to fast from all food except bread and water for the day

Fast from a particular food or luxury, e.g. chocolate, alcohol, cigarettes, TV.
Fast from whatever you can given your state of health etc, but make sure it is something that involves a sacrifice to yourself.

We are asked to say a Rosary (or an extra Rosary if you say it daily already).
Offer an extra effort such as going to Mass (or an extra Mass) on the day, or going to Adoration. You can even pray before a closed tabernacle if Adoration is not available near you.

Let us not be amongst those whom the men of Ninevah shall rise up and judge.

Stuart McCullough

Saturday 4 September 2010

Pray and Fast On The Eve Before Our Lady's Birthday

The martyr St Maria Goretti's attacker Alessandro Serenelli had been reading the pornographic novels of his time before he attacked her. They wouldn't hold a candle to what we want to teach infants in our schools today.

See this blog on Monday for information on the National Day of Prayer and Fasting on 7th September against moves by Labour MP Chris Bryant in Parliament on September 8th to introduce compulsory sex education in all schools (or go to our website now).

Is it a coincidence that this is happening on Our Lady's Birthday? Well probably as far as Mr Bryant is concerned, but certainly not for the prince of this world, Our Lady's adversary, who has no doubt inspired the move.

Clare McCullough

Proof That Evil Exists; Outcry Over Cat As Hundreds of Thousands of Babies Die

I was coming home on the tube a few days ago when I saw the headlines and read the story of the lady who threw a cat into a dustbin and left him there for 15 hours. The article went on to criticise her actions, and to outline the outrage expressed by the public against the lady concerned. She even had death threats made against her.
Later in the day I opened my email to find some pictures. There was the scan of a beautiful baby girl who is not expected to make her entrance to this world until November. The delicate features of her pretty little face partly hidden by a small but perfectly formed hand was so clear. Yet she had been destined to be torn from limb to limb while being aborted. (We don't want to pretend to ourselves that this is true, much less acknowlege that the aborted baby will experience any pain or suffering.)
This little girl "should" be dead, a little tick in the abortion statistics. But her mother met one of Good Counsel's volunteers quietly praying outside an abortion clinic and handing out leaflets which outline the help we can give and which she is now receiving from Good Counsel. She will continue to receive this help while she and her baby need it.
Pro-lifers are often seen as 'crackpots' who harass women outside abortion clinics. They are seen as those who have the cheek to challenge the woman's right to choose. Of course it would not do to see the baby as the fully formed baby she or he is; Don't tell the truth. This is not a baby its only a fetus. It doesn't matter. It is just an inconvenience. Get outraged with those who try to save this child's life. If her mother wants to kill her, that choice and right must be defended at all costs.
Make sure a woman has a right to kill her own child. Threaten with death the woman who allegedly puts a cat in a dustbin. Of course she is wrong to do this, all animals are God's creatures and must be treated properly and with respect. But value a cat above a baby? Is our society mad or very evil. Evil? the Devil?! Surely we are more sophisticated than to believe they exist!!!

Don't they ???

Ronni O'Gara

Friday 3 September 2010

St John Eudes, Patron of Fallen Women

At Mass at Good Counsel Network's chapel on the 19th August the priest spoke about St John Eudes as it was his optional memorial. During Father's homily he made it clear that St John Eudes was a doubly appropriate saint for the day, as he is most well known for two works.

Firstly he was renowned for his support for priests who teach in seminaries (which was appropriate as Father himself currently teaches at Allen Hall).

Secondly he was well known for his work in evangelising/caring for fallen women, mostly prostitutes. As some of the pregnant women that we help have been living such lives it is good to have St John Eudes to intercede for us and for them.

Stuart McCullough

Thursday 2 September 2010

Prayer Can Move Mountains

In a previous job I had, a work colleague came into the room where I was working. Quite out of the blue, she asked me what I thought about abortion. Surprised by the direct question. I replied by saying "It's totally out of the question. It's wrong". Not knowing why she had asked the question, I was careful with my response to her. Not long afterwards, she explained to me that she was pregnant, and that her boyfriend was wanting her to have an abortion. She was worried that when she told her parents, they would pressure her to have an abortion also. She wanted to keep her baby, but was feeling very alone. The pressure of her boyfriend's cold response and the assumption in her mind that her parents would equally be dismissive of her desire for motherhood, was clearly confusing and distressing her greatly.

I spoke with her at some length, feeling rather out of my depth to say the least.
Fortunately, I had met people working for the Good Counsel Network at a Youth 2000 retreat, so I asked them to send me pro-life literature for her, and asked them to pray. I gave her their number, and then asked as many people as possible to pray for her. Quite a few of us prayed a novena of Memorares for her. Mother Theresa was a great advocate of praying for things through Our Lady's intercession by praying a novena of Memorares.

When I came into work the next week, she turned to me in the company of work colleagues and told me she no longer needed the phone number I gave her. Later on, she explained to me that her boyfriend had apologised to her and told her he had been scared. He was now very happy she was pregnant and that they would be parents. She told her parents, who were very happy.

A lot of women we counsel here at the Good Counsel Network, want to keep their babies, but are being pressured by boyfriends, family and financial situations into having an abortion. The slogan " a woman's right to choose" is so incorrect as the majority of women are being pressured into making the "choice of abortion". The right to life of the unborn child is not considered in the equation of pro-abortion activists.

Prayer and fasting are essential if we are to destroy the "Goliath of abortion". Even though David had only a pebble, his faith enabled him to slay the Philistine. Let's take our pebbles of prayer and fasting, and with deep humility and trust in God; through Our Lady's maternal intercession, God will end abortion.

James Coulborn

Join Us In Prayer And Fasting