Monday, December 11, 2006

Meanwhile, across the street...

Abortion site has Catholic neighbor
A pale half-moon hung in the blue sky on a cold, windy morning Saturday as about 60 Catholics prayed across the street from Tulsa's only abortion clinic.

It was a ritual that has been going on several times a week for years.

But now it is different. They were standing on land owned by the Diocese of Tulsa.

Two months ago, the diocese bought just under a half-acre empty lot across the street from the Reproductive Services of Tulsa, 6136 E. 32nd Place.

"This gives us a place where we can hold prayer, and support of life, . . . and a place to offer support for people that might otherwise choose abortion," said Tim Sullivan, executive director of Catholic Charities.

The diocese has not decided what to do with the land yet. Ideas include a memorial garden for children killed by abortion, a CPC,

The diocese wants to make the use of the land an ecumenical effort rather than purely a Catholic endeavor. A spokesman said, "We don't want this to be a place of confrontation. We would want to use the property to send a message to every woman that is going into the abortion clinic that we don't condemn them. We pray for them, and we will do anything we can to support them."
Reproductive Services executive administrator Linda Meek, who has been at the clinic for 16 years, said she had no problem with the diocese buying the land as long as they remain peaceful.

"I guess that's fine. They've been coming here for years. They're always quiet and peaceful," she said.


Barbara Santee, former executive director of Pro-Choice Oklahoma, said Catholics have been holding vigils at the clinic for years, and have always been prayerful and respectful.

Of course, there's got to be the obligatory quote from somebody who just doesn't get it:
Valerie Ackerman, president of the board of the Oklahoma Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, said she understood why the diocese wanted to buy the land.

"It makes me sad, though, because it assumes women are not morally mature enough to make their own religious and moral choices," she said.

That somebody who purports to be "religious" would object to people doing outreach and prayer for women in a difficult situation .... Prayers that Ms. Ackerman's eyes might open.

HT: Birth Story

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