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December 15, 2001   250Words

St. Anthony Messenger Examines Pro-life Issues, From Conception to Capital Punishment

CINCINNATI— In the 29 years since abortion was legalized in this country, the Catholic Church has stressed that respect for life begins at the moment of conception. But this respect must continue through every successive stage of life until natural death. That means opposition to capital punishment as well as abortion. The late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin referred to this consistent ethic of life as the “seamless garment.”

The January issue of  St. Anthony Messenger examines a selection of pro-life topics in a special issue, “Protecting Life at All Stages.” Thomas A. Shannon conveys respect for the unborn in his article about the Church’s teaching on stem-cell research. Vicki Thorn explains why Project Rachel, the post-abortion healing ministry she founded, is pro-life. Jeannie Hannemann describes how Elizabeth Ministry, a support system she developed, helps mothers during their childbearing years.

Two other articles concentrate on different aspects of capital punishment. Page  McKean Zyromski explains why 400 members of Murder Victims’ Families for Reconciliation met at Boston College at a “victims’ summit” called “Healing the Wounds of Murder.” This summit was held during the four days preceding Timothy McVeigh’s execution in Terre Haute, Indiana, on June 11, 2001.

In a related article, John and Lauren McBride, who live in Terre Haute, describe the media event that surrounded McVeigh’s execution and explain why they oppose the death penalty.

Additional information about this special issue of the award-winning national Catholic magazine can be found by searching


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