Public policy in the aftermath of the Dr. Klopfer revelations

Sep 19, 2019 | 0 Comments
Ulrich George Klopfer

Ulrich George KlopferYou read about Ulrich George Klopfer this week. He’s the abortion doctor who just died, and his family discovered the remains of 2,246 aborted fetuses in his home, reminiscent of the Kermit Gosnell story.

Dr. Ulrich George Klopfer

Pro-life supporters are repulsed by the macabre need for some abortionists to preserve “trophies” of their victims. Even folks who tend to be wishy-washy on the subject nonetheless find their consciences shocked by such extravagant, indulgent disregard for human dignity, while abortion-rights supporters just want to change the subject and talk about “safe,” legal, abortions.

This grisly story has many levels of meaning in terms of public policy. A compassionate society needs to honestly address the issues if it is sincere in creating vibrant, healthy communities. Let’s consider three legitimate issues a just society should consider, whether one’s views are pro-choice or pro-life.

Should licensing requirements for abortionists be more or less restrictive?

Dr. Klopfer lost his medical license for being incompetent and ignoring the law. He performed an abortion on a ten year old child and did not report the rapist, the girl’s uncle, to the authorities.

He performed abortions on thirteen year-old girls without fulfilling the three day reporting period required by Indiana law.

And yet at a national level, in states like Maine, New York, and California, Democrats are pushing to dumb-down licensing requirements by allowing lower-salaried midwives, nurses, and physician assistants to perform abortion surgeries.

Lawsuits targeting physician-only laws have proliferated in recent years, which is ironic since the medical risks of ‘back alley’ abortions is what drove the movement to legalize human abortion in the first place. Apparently, Big Abortion wants to bring the back alley into their clinics with lower-skilled, cheaper help that increases their profit margins.

As a just society, will women be better off with less-qualified abortionists performing these invasive procedures on their bodies? That is the public-policy decision we are facing, and Dr. Klopfer’s death reminds us that we need to address it quickly.

Do women need more or fewer reproductive healthcare options?

Dr. Klopfer plied his trade in West Bend, Indiana, where presidential candidate, Pete Buttigieg, is mayor. As we wrote last month, Mayor Pete blocked the construction of an authentic women’s reproductive healthcare center because it would compete with a nearby abortion clinic.

In other words, he came down on the side of Big Abortion, not women’s health, putting the profitability of political supporters ahead of his constituents’ health.

It took the mayor awhile to respond to the Dr. Klopfer revelations, but when he finally did, here is what Mayor Pete said:

Mayor Pete Buttigieg

“Like everyone, I find the news out of Illinois extremely disturbing, and I think it’s important that it be fully investigated. I also hope it doesn’t get caught up in politics at a time when women need access to healthcare. There’s no question that what happened is disturbing. It’s unacceptable. And it needs to be looked into fully.”

One can’t help but question the mayor’s veracity on his concern for “access to healthcare” in light of his actions to block a pro-life clinic.

As a side note, isn’t it fair to ask the mayor and those of a like mind:

Why were Dr. Klopfer’s actions disturbing? Is it really better to throw the bodies of aborted babies in the dumpster rather than preserving them in jars in the abortionist’s family room?

Dr. Klopfer forces us to face the issue that little human beings are being killed by human abortion.

Should a compassionate society mandate respectful treatment of fetal remains?

In 2015, the Center for Medical Progress revealed Planned Parenthood’s willingness to sell fetal body parts and tissues for profit.

Is this practice acceptable to a compassionate society?

Dr. Kermit Gosnell as well as Dr. Klopfer stored fetal parts in formaldehyde in their homes and offices.

Is this practice acceptable to a compassionate society?

Dr. Gosnell and Dr. Klopfer have lifted the veil that obscures the reality of abortion: abortion is violence directed against little human beings. In response, states like Mayor Pete’s home state, Indiana, have passed laws requiring that abortion clinics either bury or cremate fetal remains following abortion procedures.

Vice President Mike Pence as Governor of Indiana signed the bill into law.

The Supreme Court upheld the law.

A contradiction

The law exposes the contradiction a compassionate society has to deal with, as Indiana Right to Life President, Mike Fichter, clearly expresses:

“Here we now have a troubling dichotomy that cannot stand: on one hand we recognize aborted children have dignity and are not garbage, on the other hand the court refuses the inherent, God-given dignity of each unborn child by recognizing their civil rights. This once again places Roe (v. Wade) on a collision course with itself.”

The ACLU and abortion rights groups oppose respectful internment of aborted babies. ACLU’s Director of Reproductive Freedom Project, Jennifer Davlin, is concerned that the law will drive up costs and make abortions less affordable:

“Laws like Indiana’s are part of an nationwide strategy to stigmatize abortion and push it out of reach.”

Writing in Slate Magazine, abortion rights advocate, Jane Maienschein, builds on this theme:

“And medical facilities will be required to find ways to carry out expensive burials and cremations as well as places to accept the material, and then presumably pass all those costs on to patients.”

Profit is king

It always seems to come back to dollars and cents with Big Abortion.

The Dr. Klopfer revelations are simply the latest chapter of a lurid tale of the powerful preying on the weak for the sake of profits.

Pro-life health clinics are blocked because they will cut into Big Abortion’s profits.

Licensing requirements are being weakened to boost Big Abortion’s profit margins.

Humane disposal of human remains is opposed because Big Abortion’s profit margins will be impacted.

In light of these revelations, a just society should simply end the practice of human abortion. Human dignity is human dignity.

Democrats continue to block no-brainer pro-life bill

Sep 12, 2019 | 0 Comments
Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act

Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection ActIFL is a non-partisan pro-life group. However, if you’re looking for a single reason to vote against Democratic candidates, it would be their intractable opposition to the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

Republicans crafted the legislation earlier this year. It is response to the admission by Virginia Governor, Ralph Northam, that babies that survive an abortion could be left to die.

The bill does the following:

  • Creates criminal penalties for doctors who withhold medical care to babies who survive an abortion attempt.
  • Mandates that these survivors be transported from the abortion clinic to a real hospital for medical treatment.
  • Mandates that these health-care practitioners report violations.
  • Grants women cause for action against her abortionist.
  • Protects mothers from prosecution.

Democrats assert that the law would “unnecessarily restrict doctors from making case-by-case decisions about what is best for infants and mothers,” which is nonsense.

The bill prevents discrimination

The language of the bill explicitly refutes the assertion, simply requiring doctors to …

“exercise the same degree of professional skill, care, and diligence to preserve the life and health of the child as a reasonably diligent and conscientious health care practitioner would render to any other child born alive at the same gestational age.”

In other words, the bill doesn’t allow doctors to discriminate on the basis of whether the baby is wanted or unwanted.

Democrats have turned the bill into a partisan issue. House Republicans held a hearing on Tuesday this week with a panel of experts detailing the need for the law.

Among Iowan Representatives, only Steve King supports these common-sense protections.

In the Senate, 44 Democrats have blocked the bill from coming to a vote.

More dishonesty from politicians

A Democrat from California, Judy Chu, expressed her party’s position with the sort of dishonesty that so taints the public’s perception of politicians:

“This bill is a solution in search of a problem. It’s unnecessary, redundant, and part of a broader attack on women’s health and reproductive health from the chamber and the Trump administration.”

It is none of these as we explained in an earlier blogpost.

Among the Democrat’s presidential contenders, all oppose any regulation on human abortion, but one. Tulsi Gabbard slightly, very slightly, moderated her position to oppose third-trimester abortions. Nonetheless, she has not signed a discharge petition which would bring the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act to a vote in the Senate.

The Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act is the absolute least we should be doing as a humane country to protect the most vulnerable among us. That the Democratic Party with near-unanimity opposes it is a singular reason for conscientious voters to vote against them.

[Don’t miss our upcoming fundraising banquet on October 3rd. Our pro-life outreach depends on it!]

Pro life writers needed immediately

Aug 28, 2019 | 0 Comments

Get ready for Iowans for LIFE’s “Pro-Life Apologetics Tool Kit!” We are writing concise responses to twenty common pro-abortion arguments.

Can you help?

We’ve already written some really compelling comebacks you’re going to love. However, IFL has some very smart, articulate supporters who read our blogposts religiously. You may have even better responses than we’ve crafted.

pro-life apologetics tool kitWe’ve posted the pro-abortion arguments below. Do you have a good response of 100 WORDS or LESS for any of these?

If yes, e-mail your response back to IFL Board President, Tom Quiner, at: TomQuiner@gmail.com by Tuesday, September 3rd.

Send us a response for one, two … or all twenty, if you’re motivated.

Remember, limit the response to 100 words or less.

We want original material, not something you’ve found elsewhere.

An IFL panel will select the best responses to use in our groundbreaking “Pro-Life Apologetics Tool Kit.”

Here are the pro-abortion arguments. How would YOU respond?

“I’m personally against abortion, but I can’t impose my religion on someone else.”

“Abortion is but one of many important issues. I refuse to be a single issue voter.”

“A man can’t tell a woman what to do with her own body.”

“Well, what about rape? Would YOU force a woman to have her rapist’s baby?!!”

“Women are going to have abortions whether they’re legal or not. If you pro-lifers have your way, there will be more back alley abortions than ever, putting women’s lives at risk.”

“If abortion isn’t legal, women will be forced to get them from untrained back alley abortionists. Is that what you really want?”

“A fetus isn’t a person.”

“A fetus isn’t a person until viability.”

“If you don’t like abortion, don’t have one. It’s that simple.”

“Why don’t you pro-lifers care about the baby after it’s born?”

“What about the 14 year old girl who becomes pregnant?”

“My candidate is pro choice, but they support all of the other important social justice issues.”

“The right to abortion is vital for gender equality.”

“The right to abortion is vital for women to attain their full potential.”

“Women need a right to abortion in order to have the same freedoms as men.”

“Abortion rights are fundamental to a woman’s reproductive health concerns.”

“It’s not fair to bring a child into the world that is going to be unwanted.”

“Children born into bad situations are being set up for a life of poverty and social pathology.”

“It’s not fair to bring a child into this world with serious defects.”

“Even if a fetus was alive, the “right to life” doesn’t imply a right to use somebody else’s body. People have the right to refuse to donate their organs, for example, even if doing so would save somebody else’s life.”

***

What do you think? Do you have a really good comeback? Email your response to TomQuiner@gmail.com by next Tuesday, September 3rd. Thank-you!

Pete Buttigieg blocked pro-life pregnancy center

Aug 27, 2019 | 0 Comments
Pete Buttigieg

Pete ButtigiegBig Abortion opposes authentic women’s reproductive healthcare. Democratic presidential candidate, Pete Buttigieg, made that clear when put to the test as mayor of South Bend, Indiana.

As mayor, he single-handedly blocked an authentic women’s healthcare center from locating in a prime location in South Bend.  The pro-life Women’s Care Center (WCC) wanted to locate a new clinic next to the Whole Women’s Health clinic, an abortion clinic. WCC believes in offering women a ‘choice.’

The mayor denied the choice. The tie-breaking vote came down to him, and he voted no to the free, life-affirming services offered to South Bend women by WCC. These services include:

  • free pregnancy tests
  • ultrasounds
  • counseling
  • referrals for prenatal care
  • parenting classes
  • children clothing, diapers and toys (helping moms AFTER the baby is born)

He said YES to abortion (no need for the clothing, diapers, and toys, because the child is dead).

By the same token, Planned Parenthood just rejected Title X funding, which are government monies that provide healthcare services to young and poor women. Planned Parenthood took a pass because abortion services are no longer covered by Title X under the Trump administration.

Planned Parenthood thrives on the profits generated by human abortion. The windfall they receive from Title X won’t cover the money they’d lose by giving up their abortion business. And make no mistake, abortion is big business.

That’s why Big Abortion donates so prolifically to politicians like Pete Buttigieg. Do those donations have anything to do with his decision to block a pro-life crisis pregnancy like Women’s Care Center? 

We can learn three things from this little story:

  1. Abortion is all about the money.
  2. Abortion-supporting politicians aren’t really concerned with women’s reproductive health.
  3. Nor do they care about the baby after she’s born.

Abortion increases the risk of suicide

Aug 26, 2019 | 0 Comments
abortion increases the risk of suicide

abortion increases the risk of suicideCalifornia is a mecca for Big Abortion. They have always ‘led’ other states in coming up with new ways to spread the advance of human abortion. They legalized human abortion six years before Roe v Wade.

California Right to Life recaps their legislative history as it relates to abortion:

  • Any pregnant female who cannot afford to pay for an abortion can request Medi-Cal services, thereby requiring taxpayers to subsidize her decision.
  • Public schools are allowed to arrange for an abortion and transport a minor to an off-campus site for the procedure without parental notification or permission.
  • Since the 20th week provision of the Therapeutic Abortion Act was invalidated by both Roe and Doe, a woman can get an abortion at any time during her pregnancy by invoking Roe and claiming a threat to her life or health.
  • There is no requirement to keep statistics on the numbers of abortions performed, the ethnicity of the women, the number of repeat clients, and most importantly, the number and types of complications.
  • There is no requirement to provide a female contemplating an abortion with medical and biological facts, with statistics regarding possible complications and health risks, or with alternatives such as adoption.
  • There is no mandated waiting period between requesting and receiving an abortion.
  • Two bills passed in 2013, include  AB 154 which allows non-physicians such as nurses, physicians assistants, and certified midwives to perform abortions, while  AB 980 de-regulated the abortion industry.
  • In June 2014, the Democrat-controlled California state legislature passed and Governor Brown signed the state budget, which increased abortion funding Medi-Cal reimbursement rates by 40%, while cutting other Medi-Cal services by 10%.

Now they want taxpayers to pay for “free” abortion pills for college coeds via the “College Student Right to Access Act.”

All of this is touted in the name of ‘healthcare.’ What dishonesty.

Human abortion is harmful to moms as well as the baby who is killed by abortion. As the meme above states:

“A study of California Medicaid patients found that the risks of suicide increase by 154% for women after they have an abortion.”

Abortion is poison for Californians, Iowans, and humanity.

The case for life when a woman is raped

Aug 23, 2019 | 0 Comments
The case for life when a woman is raped

Iowans for LIFE agrees that every human being, born or unborn, is made in the image of God and innocent of the crimes of his or her parents. No child should be killed because his or her father is a rapist.

We further believe that mothers deserve our special care, concern, and help, and that the perpetrators of evil crimes like rape or incest should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

That’s why IFL applauds the testimonies of Rebecca Kiessling and others, whose very lives prove the twisted ignorance of advocating for the execution of unborn children conceived in rape or incest. No baby can be killed without grave injustice. The case for life when a woman is raped is overwhelming.

If a woman is raped, it is horrible. It becomes more traumatic if she becomes pregnant from her rapist. Here is the life-altering question for rape victims: to abort or not to abort?

A website called Life Dynamics addresses the issue and reveals a viewpoint the mainstream media never covers: women who were raped, who gave birth, and were glad they chose life.

Conceived through rape

The site gives voice to women conceived through rape who thank their mothers for allowing them to live. You can watch a quick clip above and follow the link to hear more.

At the Iowa legislature last year, Jennifer Brierly flew in and testified on her experience on behalf of legislators weighing the Heartbeat Bill.

Mrs. Brierly supported the Heartbeat Bill as a woman who was beaten, tortured, and raped, her body dumped in a stairwell to die.

She lived.

She suffered brain trauma which affects her to this day. And her rapist impregnated her. Despite all of this, she stands up publicly to protect the innocent victims of the crime, the unborn person in the womb, for whose eradication society cries out.

Watch her testimony below, every second of it.

How do rape victims find peace?

Here is what is amazing: rape victims who give birth to their rapist’s child are more at peace than those who aborted the child.

The source for this finding comes from a book called Victims and Victors: Speaking Out About Their Pregnancies, Abortions, and Children Resulting from Sexual Assault, edited by Dr. David C. Reardon, Julie Makimaa and Amy Sobie.

They surveyed rape victims to accumulate some raw data. But even more, far more, they listened to their stories.

IFL didn’t expect these results. Here’s what Dr. Reardon learned:

“Many of the women in our sample aborted only because they were pressured to do so, and most reported that the abortion only increased their experience of grief and trauma. In contrast, none of the women who carried to term said they wished they had not given birth or that they had chosen abortion instead. Many of these women said that their children had brought peace and healing to their lives.”

Abortion increases the woman’s sense of isolation and shame

Irrational, isn’t it? A baby should be a symbol of hate, not love, for victims of rape. That is what our intuition says. That is what our culture says. An entire political party bases their human abortion platform on this premise.

Dr. Reardon learned from victims themselves that the opposite was true:

“Abortion increases the woman’s sense of isolation and shame by allowing others to pretend the problem doesn’t exist. By getting rid of the pregnancy, which is a reminder of the sexual assault, it allows other people to ignore the woman’s need for understanding and honest exploration and resolution of what she has been through.”

Here’s what hits us like a ton of bricks. Advocates of abortion “rights” club us over the head with the need for abortion on behalf of victims of rape and incest. Dr. Reardon’s research reveals that they’re just plain wrong.

By the way, his study includes victims of incest.

Love trumps hate

Somehow, love for human life is ultimately more therapeutic, more powerful, than hate for the rapist.

Love trumps hate, something Jesus always said.

Dr. Reardon gives us a cautionary warning:

“Population controllers have exploited people’s compassion for rape and incest victims to weaken abortion laws and gain acceptance for abortion on demand. It’s time to give these women a chance to speak out for themselves and let the truth be known.”

Life Dynamics does just that.

In the very brief video below, you hear another important perspective: that of a woman who was conceived in rape prior to Roe V Wade. Rebecca Kiessling said her heroes are the pro life legislators who wouldn’t allow human abortion, even in the case of rape.

To the victims of rape and incest, those of us at Iowans for LIFE can simply say we are so very sorry for your pain.

We pray that this post serves a purpose. The case for life when a woman is raped is overwhelming.

[If this blogpost spoke to you, SHARE it on social media. And donate to Iowans for Life. IFL is 100% dependent on donations from pro life supporters.]


 

An intense Iowa State Fair experience

Aug 22, 2019 | 0 Comments
Iowa State Fair

2019 Iowa State FairIowans for LIFE’s experience at the 2019 Iowa State Fair was volatile compared to recent years.

We shared space in the Varied Industries with our allies from Iowa Right to Life. One night one of our signs was vandalized. That’s never happened before.

Although the overwhelming majority of people we encountered were typically decent Iowans, the anger level of Planned Parenthood supporters was certainly ratcheted up this year.

Abortion supporter spits on us

Most disturbingly, an outraged abortion supporter spit on a woman working in our booth.

It’s a sign of the times. Pro life states continue to put life-affirming regulations in place at the same time abortion-minded states eliminate all regulations to safeguard mothers and their babies.

The country is being torn apart by abortion.

We witnessed it first hand at the 2019 Iowa State Fair. Iowans for LIFE, as always, was on hand promoting a peaceful message of life. We connected with thousands of young and old Iowans with literature and conversation that upholds the dignity of the human person from fertilization to natural death.

Many who visited our booth were ambivalent on the abortion issue. We listened and armed them with factual information to help reset their thinking, which was so-often skewed by the steady stream of misinformation and disinformation fed them by Big Abortion.

The 2019 Iowa State Fair: intense, but productive.

[Our participation at the Iowa State Fair is a significant budget item for IFL. You can help us in this outreach by joining us at our 9th Annual Fundraising Banquet on October 3rd. Register today!]

One Child Nation

Aug 9, 2019 | 0 Comments
population control

Excessive mankind is a ‘weed’ that requires state-run population control. Draconian measures that trample on human dignity and decency in the name of this ‘greater good’ are not just welcome, they are mandated.

This is the message of a new documentary, “One Child Nation.” The film is a must-see for Americans being seduced by politicians selling a similar product, repackaged under the banner of ‘women’s reproductive healthcare.’

The impact of population control

“One Child Nation” describes the impact of China’s one child policy implemented on their citizens from 1979 to 2015, as reviewed by the Wall Street Journal’s Joe Morgenstern. It imposed forced sterilizations and abortions on their women. Similar policies have been proposed by the American Left off and on over the past century.

One midwife shudders at her state-coerced culpability in the carnage. She aborted or sterilized over 50,000 women, with many of the fetuses nearly full term:

“Many I induced alive, and killed. My hands trembled while I did it. I was the executioner. The state gave the order but I carried it out. I killed those babies.”

Another midwife is proud of her abortion work:

“If I could go back in time, I would do this work again,” rationalizing that without state-coerced abortion, cannibalism was inevitable.

A timely film

“One Child Nation” is immediately relevant in light of a stampede of leftist presidential candidates campaigning on a platform of ‘Medicare for All.’

What most Americans don’t realize is that ‘Medicare for All’ calls for taxpayer-funded abortions for all, through all nine months of a pregnancy. It supersedes all abortion regulations democratically legislated at the state level. And it removes all conscience protections.

In other words, the state would coerce Catholic doctors, nurses, and hospitals to participate in grave evil, just as China did to their doctors, nurses, and hospitals.

In China, you had no choice, but in the U.S., you could give up your livelihood, shutter the doors, get out of the business, and go on welfare. At least for now.

As history as shown, leftists are demanding. It is only a matter of time until they resort to more aggressive tactics to compel women and men of faith to violate their consciences.

[Rotten Tomatoes gives “One Child Nation” a 97% rating, about as good as it gets. It is not available for screening in Des Moines at this time. Check back with this blog for updates on when it is available to stream.]

“I have had sex, and honestly, Jesus still loves me”

Aug 1, 2019 | 0 Comments
stigma against chastity

Bachelor embraces chastity

A young Christian man said he believes sexual intimacy should be saved for marriage.

His televised remarks came on the ABC show, “The Bachelorette,” and it created an online furor, as an angry mob called him “evil,” “pathological,” “a psychopath,” and a “misogynist.”

Whew! You can watch a recap of the story above.

Bachelorette rejects chastity

The bachelorette on the same show also claims Christianity as her religion. Unlike her paramour described above, she rejects chastity and admitted on national television that she had sex four times with yet another man she had just met on the show.

His parents applauded, hers beamed, the culture exulted. She proudly explained,

“I have had sex, and honestly, Jesus still loves me.”

And what does Jesus say on this subject?

“… but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

His disciple, St. Paul, who was taught by Christ Himself, built on this theme in 1 Corinthians 6:18-20:

“Avoid immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the immoral person sins against his own body. Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been purchased at a price. Therefore, glorify God in your body.”

I’ll let you reflect on whose theology aligns best with Christ’s: the bachelor’s or the bachelorette’s?

Chastity’s fall from grace

Chastity fell out of favor once contraception took root in our culture. From the perspective of the feminist movement, it leveled the playing field, allowing women to enjoy sex just like men with less risk of an unplanned pregnancy. And when contraception fails, as it frequently does, abortion becomes the fallback position.

[According to the Guttmacher Institute, about half the women who procure abortions were contracepting at the time.]

One of the few stigmas that remain in this culture is a stigma against chastity, which has lead to rampant promiscuity, which in turn has led to an epidemic of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). The Centers for Disease Control reveal that one out of two sexually active persons will contract an STI by the age of 25.

An epidemic of loneliness

stigma against chastity

Candace Bushnell

The sexual revolution has created another side effect: loneliness. Some liberated women who pursued sexual fulfillment at the expense of raising a family find themselves “truly alone,” to use the words of feminist icon, Candace Bushnell, authoress of “Sex in the City.”

Ms. Bushnell found herself divorced and childless at the age of sixty, and described her situation like this:

“When I was in my 30s and 40s, I didn’t think about it. Then when I got divorced and I was in my 50s, I started to see the impact of not having children and of truly being alone. I do see that people with children have an anchor in a way that people who have no kids don’t.”

Andrew Klavan reacts

Writer Andrew Klavan had an interesting reaction to Ms. Bushnell’s lament at being childless at sixty. As you can hear in the video above, he said that at its root, the feminist creed by which she has lived is ultimately a self-centered creed.

Feminists want ‘sex in the city’ without consequence. (“It’s all about me.”)

When wrinkled and old, they complain that they wish they had kids because they’re lonely and want someone to take care of them. (“It’s all about me.”)

Klavan calls the creed “materialism,” and it is rooted in selfishness. If it feels good, it is good. This creed doesn’t acknowledge that sex has a moral component.

Authentic Christianity views sex as self-giving with a noble purpose: children.

As Klavan says,

“the purpose of life is to make life.”

We have been given a gift: our lives. Sex in marriage allows us to pay the gift forward. Yes, children are hard work. They require sacrificial love, which makes us more fully alive. The fruit of this sacrifice is simply wonderful.

In this climate, young people find the pursuit of chastity challenging. Fr. Mike Schmitz said he hears from couples all the time who feel powerless in remaining pure. Let us leave you with some practical advice from Fr. Mike on how to make abstinence work in a culture that has a stigma against chastity:

The Missionary Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe comes to the IFL Banquet!

Jul 30, 2019 | 0 Comments
Our Lady of Guadalupe

By Tom Quiner

Our Lady of Guadalupe

Our Lady of Guadalupe

The mysterious tilma

The day was December 9th, 1531. It was the Feast of the Immaculate Conception in the Spanish Empire.

A peasant by the name of Juan Diego was walking and encountered the vision of a teenage girl bathed in light.

She asked the peasant to have a church built on this site in her name.

Who was she?

Juan Diego determined that it was the Virgin Mary, the Mother of Jesus, the Son of God.

Juan took the message to the Bishop who asked for a miraculous sign that would prove her identity.

When Juan returned to the hillside to convey the request, Mary told him to gather roses that would be found at the top of the hill.

In December? Roses in December?

But Juan found Castilian roses growing, which are not native to Mexico. And he found them in a spot that was normally barren.

He took them to Mary who placed them in the peasant’s tilma cloak. (Tilma is a flimsy fiber made from the cactus plant.)

So the miraculous sign was the roses, right? The bishop was going to be amazed when he saw a mound of roses this time of year in a peasant’s cloak. Right?

As the saying goes, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

Juan Diego opened his cloak before the bishop.

The roses tumbled to the ground.

What the bishop saw astounded. Imprinted on the cloak, against which the roses had been pressed, was a startling image that is now known as “Our Lady of Guadalupe,” which you can see above.

A nice little folk tale?

‘What a nice little folk tale’ is what you may be thinking, and I would agree if that was all there was to the story.

Let us set aside the many miracles attributed to this mysterious icon. Let us just reflect on a few scientific observations.

Tilma is a material that has a shelf life of about 30 to 40 years. The tilma bearing the image of “Our Lady” is still intact and in good condition today, 488 years later. A scientist who analyzed the material, Dr. Adolfo Orozco, offers no explanation as to the super durability of this particular tilma.

Inexplicably, UV rays didn’t break down the material

The tilma received no protection for the first 116 years of its existence, which subjected it to UV rays that break down the material over time. It was also subjected to the relentless kisses and tears of the faithful who were allowed to press their face to the icon in those early decades of its existence.

Another scientist, Dr. Aste Tonsmann, a civil engineer with a doctorate from Cornell University, was allowed to use new, sophisticated digital imagery on the eyes of the icon.

He magnified the eyes 2500 times and made a startling discovery. There is a reflection embedded in the irises of the eyes of Mary of thirteen people who were allegedly present when Juan Diego opened his tilma and let the roses fall to the ground.

What artist could have accomplished all of this?

These images are undetectable without very modern scientific instruments. They would have been impossible for an artist of the 16th century to have created them.

In 1938, another scientist tried to figure out how the icon was painted. Richard Kuhn, the 1938 Nobel Prize winner in chemistry, discovered that the image wasn’t made with natural animal or mineral colorings.

There were no synthetic colorings in 1531. He can’t explain how the image was created.

Even more, there are no brush or sketch marks present.

Now, take a look at the stars on Mary’s mantle. Another scientist analyzed their placement back in 1981 at

The stars on Mary's mantle align with constellations seen from the Mexican sky in 1531.

the Observatory Laplace Mexico City.

Dr. Hernández Illescas, a medical doctor and amateur astronomer working with Fr. Mario Rojas, performed an astronomical study of this star pattern.

They discovered the stars weren’t randomly placed. Rather, they are precisely aligned to create a stellar replication of constellations seen in a Mexican sky in the winter-morning solstice of December 12th, 1531, Saturday, at 10:26 AM.

Interesting, isn’t it?

Science raises more questions than it answers.

How come the fabric survives?

Don’t know.

How in the world was the thing painted?

Don’t know.

How could an artist have painted microscopic reflections in the irises of Mary’s eyes?

He couldn’t, it is impossible.

How could a dumb peasant have done any of this along with accurately depicting the constellations?

Maybe he didn’t.

Maybe it is just another mystery of our faith.

***

Coming to the Iowans for LIFE Banquet on October 3rd!

The image of Our Lady of Guadalupe which converted the Aztecs has been replicated and travels the United States on an explicit mission to end abortion. It is carried into Churches and it is brought in front of abortion clinics nationwide. Iowans for LIFE is proud for the opportunity to display it at our upcoming banquet on October 3rd.

The Missionary Image you see is one of four actual (4’X6’) replicas of the original Miraculous Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. They were made from a digital image of the tilma in 1999 and the digital image was blessed by Pope John Paul II, and by Monsignor Ponce, Rector of the Basilica of Guadalupe to bring conversions, reverence for life, respect for the sanctity of the family and solidarity of the Church in America. 

The images have visited every state in the U.S. and traveled around the world. Many signs, wonders, conversions, healings, reconciliations and graces have been reported. Abortions have been prevented and many abortion centers have closed after visitations by the Miraculous Image. In Iowa, since the 2012 visitation of the Missionary Image, 18 of 26 Planned Parenthood centers have closed.  You are invited to touch this important sacramental and ask our Mother to pray for you and your intentions.

[Don’t miss out at the opportunity to view and pray before the Missionary Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Register now for the IFL Banquet on October 3rd. We will be honored by the presence of our new bishop, Fr. William Joensen.]