Here are a few interesting articles, in print and off the net, for your perusal.
First, the Journal de Montréal provides three articles on the topic of sexually transmitted infections among Quebecers. All written by Héloise Archambault, these are:
- « Infectons sexuelles explosion des cas » – Nov. 20, 2012
- « Des cours exigés » - Nov. 20, 2012
- « Une Facture de Plus de $88 million » – Nov. 21, 2012
Culled from a report entitled "Rapport intégré: épidémiologie des infections transmissibles sexuellement et par le sang au Québec." the articles present a stark picture of the behaviour of Quebecers.
- The number of cases of Chlamydia and Gonorrhea have tripled over a 15-year period – from 6436 to 19165 for the former and from 555 to 1883 for the latter; and
- The number of cases of Syphilis, thought to be eradicated in the early 90s, has seen a rise up to 636 cases from 9 in 1997.
Also troublesome is that these figures may be an underestimate. Many of these illnesses go undetected as carriers of a disease or infection may not experience any symptom.
Even more troublesome is the absence in these articles of the many other STIs. Five were discussed; in addition to the three already mentioned, both Hepatitis C and HIV were noted. Yet, Wikipedia notes another twelve.
Finally, so goes the number of cases, so goes the teatment costs. Over the past five years, the figures have gone from $61 million to over $88 million.
And as responsible stewards, what are we doing to alleviate the physical pain and reduce the costs? The articles mentioned that several solutions are being considered, though only one was cited – education. Seemingly, the high school sex-ed course discontinued in 2001 is being reconsidered for implimentation.
I pray that abstinence will be part of the new education.
Contraception – Bayer’s Mirena IUD
Another article concerning our sexual mores comes from Stephen Mosher's blog at the Population Research Institute.
"The Mirena IUD is Becoming More Popular - and the Lawsuits are Piling Up" is about the difficulties that the pharmaceutical Bayer is having with its contraception unit. An IUD – intrauterine device, functions in various ways, thwarting the gestational process, including aborting a newly conceived child. Mosher does well in explaining the three ways in which this may occur.
Afterwards, Mosher gets into the business of the lawsuits. He writes: “You know a contraceptive drug or device is in trouble when the lawsuits begin to multiply.”
He lists the many side effects associated with using the device: amenorrhea, intermenstrual bleeding and spotting, abdominal pain, pelvic pain, ovarian cysts, headache, migraines, acne, depression, and mood swings.
He provides a link to a website - The Truth About Mirena, that contains hundreds of testimonies by women who have written detailed accounts of the side effects.
Adoptions in Quebec
For the last article that caught my attention, I return to the Journal de Montréal. In today’s edition the topic of adoption comes up, a topic of much interest to us who often encourage women to give their child up for adoption rather than abort it.
“L’étau se resserre à l’international” graphically presents, the trend among Quebecers who adopt internationally. A bar chart spanning twenty-two years illustrates the diminishment in foreign adoptions by Quebecers - from a high of 977 in 1996 to a low of 339 in 2011.
More revealing, I find, about this downward trend is the following listing of five-year averages:
- 1992 = 718 cases of foreign adoptions
- 1995 = 852
- 1998 = 848
- 2001 = 810
- 2004 = 734
- 2007 = 500
- 2010 = 461
While reading this I couldn’t help but wonder at the similar statistics for adoptions within the province.
These figures were culled from the section within the provincial Ministry of Health and Social Services called Secrétariat à l’adoption internationale.Be the first to comment.
A faithful pro-lifer sends me the following note:
Enclosed is an interesting review on abortion and mental health.
I am sure the general public do not know the very high incidence of suicide intentions of women who underwent abortion.
Here's the subject review:Be the first to comment.
A friend emailed me the following excerpt from an article written by Jonathon van Maren entitled "The Reformed Case for Pro-Life Action." The full blog appears here.
It seems that there is an increasingly prevalent attitude among Christians that it is somehow wrong to ‘offend’ people, and that since pro-life activism will inevitably offend people, it should therefore be avoided.
First, I must point out that a message that involves telling the culture at large that they are murdering their children isn’t going to be popular. If it was, we wouldn’t have the problem.
Second, it is an extremely un-Christian and un-Reformed idea that just because our message of truth might not be welcomed by the world, and thus persecution may result, that we should avoid it. If Christians are so at peace with those who believe that killing unborn children is permissible that offending them is “un-Reformed”, it is perhaps necessary to take a second look at this unholy alliance and consider whether or not it is right in the eyes of God who values all life created in His image.
If churches are indeed the consciences of nations, and those consciences have fallen silent, we can scarcely be surprised that things have gone horribly wrong.
The Bible demands that we protect our unborn neighbours.
Our Reformed heritage shows us that our forbearers did not feel that it was in any way sinful to oppose evil in the public square.
Abortion is the greatest evil in our society, an evil where the innocent blood of millions cries out for justice. We cannot withdraw ourselves from our biblical mandate laid out with such clarity in Scripture to protect unborn children with weak excuses that ignore the demands of Scripture and the examples and writings of our forefathers. Hence, Christian pro-life advocates should not have to defend their action. Apathetic Christians should have to defend their inactionBe the first to comment.
Friday, November 9, 2012
Dear Friends of Life,
I trust this letter finds you well.
As for me, I am experiencing mixed feelings. On the one hand, President Obama re-election has me worried about the fate of the unborn, both south of the border and wherever U.S. policies extend. On the other hand, my faith assures me that I am on the right side as the following passage from the book of Proverbs asserts:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths. (Pv. 3)
On the first point, Lila Rose outlines five points about which the President has failed to safeguard protection for the unborn.
- President Obama voted against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act four times, horrifyingly voting against protecting babies who survived abortion and voting in favor of leaving them to die. A vote against this legislation was a vote for infanticide.
- On his third day in office, President Obama repealed the pro-life “Mexico City Policy.” By doing this, President Obama made groups that perform and promote abortion eligible for U.S. foreign aid funds.
- Planned Parenthood’s funding jumped from 33% publicly-funded to nearly 50% – over $487 million in taxpayer funding now goes to the abortion giant (under Obama and his administration). This is almost half a billion dollars that American families are forced to pay in tax dollars to the nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood.
- President Obama refused to sign an emergency budget, putting funding the military at risk, until Planned Parenthood funding was included in the budget. This was following Live Action’s Sex Trafficking Operation, showing Planned Parenthood aiding and abetting the sex-traffickers of underage girls.
- The president has pushed for his “pet legislation,” The Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare), which would help fund “community health centers” (Planned Parenthood is their prime target). Additionally, the HHS mandate would force all Americans to fund abortion and contraception, with no exceptions for religious institutions or religious individuals who are vehemently against abortion and contraception.
Hence, my worry is not unwarranted.
Yet, as Susan Michele Tyrrell adroitly put it in a post-election commentary, we are called to put our trust in our Lord and not in men.
Though pro-lifers are disappointed, grieved and even angry, we must remember that our call to LIFE and prayer has never changed. This isn’t a time to spew negativity or fight with natural weapons. Never have we needed to pray as we do in this critical hour. No man is our answer apart from Jesus, and He wasn’t the least bit surprised. Before the foundation of the world, He knew we’d re-elect President Obama tonight. We absolutely cannot forget the word of the Lord in Romans which says:
13 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same.
And so we continue in faith. We believe that the unborn child has value and deserves to be protected. This cause has permitted us to hold eight 40-day prayer vigils in one of the most liberal area of Montreal if not Canada. Faith spurs us on to defend life at of its stages, from conception until natural death. Faith sustains us as we continue to build via organizing conferences, helping pregnant women, comforting those who have experienced an abortion. We believe that we can change hearts.
Thank you for supporting us on this journey, both spiritually and financially.
Yours in Christ Jesus
Quebec Life CoalitionBe the first to comment.
Two Saved Babies.
It is with jubilation that I share that two Montreal mothers are carrying through with their pregnancies.
The day before yesterday I received a phone call from Jennifer (pseudoname), a mother of five who shared a story with me about her neighbour. The latter is twenty-two weeks pregnant and ultrasound revealed a fetal deformity - a missing hand. This was confirmed with a second ultrasound. The father was adamant about aborting this "imperfect" child, the mother sadly acquiescing. No conversation, email, from Frances or from another neighbour could dissuade the father. What prevailed eventually to save the life of this unborn was the protective instinct of the mother. She had wished to recover the aborted child and give it a proper burial. Yet as she soon learned aborted bodies are not returned to the parents and the child is dismembered prior to extracting. On hearing the latter, the mother seemed to awake from her slumber and became defensive toward the life budding inside of her. In short, no abortion.
The second saved concerns a foreign national carrying a 19-week old infant. Financial woes and immediate family pressures – parents and grand-mother, to abort wreaked havoc on her. She visited the abortion mill outside of which we are hosting the 40D4L prayer vigil for medical advice and see the infant inside of her. She left more frustrated than anything else and came to speak with us. We directed to various people in our aid network and now mother, father, and child are being accompanied along. Praise God.
Please keep these in your prayers as the wiles of the evil one are never too far off.Be the first to comment.
Sunday October 28 Highlights: Families and especially the children, a couple visiting from Guelph, and the weather.
I was particularly touched at day's end. Several vigilers had brought their children to the vigil location. And as many of us were in prayer, I glanced around to spot them absorped in games. Their energy and enthousiasm was heart-warming.
I was also delighted to welcome Mike and his wife to the prayer site. They were driving back to their home in Guelph, ON, and decided to join us for an hour of prayer, despite the dark and ominous autumn clouds.
Finally, I felt deeply blessed at one point during the afternoon. It dawned on me how truly blessed I was to be privileged to have hearts revealed to me. In fact, I felt deeply humbled that persons, either for or against our cause, are willing to share with me something deep and personal. Some are joy-filled, radiating a beautiful smile as they pass me by. Others are hurt, frowning or doing worse as we make eye contact - feelings of hurt, sadness, and anger.
Yet God in his goodness and mercy has blessed me and them for what is often a very brief moment - two hearts exchanging on a matter so fundamental to our existence, the fate of the unborn.
Lord, may I always be charitable to all of these.Be the first to comment.
Saturday, October 27, Day 32. This past week we crossed the three-quarter mark of our 40-day prayer for the end of abortion. On average, slightly more than twenty persons came out to the site spending about 45 hours of prayer time, each day.
I'm inspired by the numerous exchanges that spontaneously take place on the subject of life and abortion and related themes. Either with passersby or the pro-choice crowd that gathers next to us, many vigilers share their views. Special thanks to Mr. Lecomte, John & Celeste, Carole, and Barbara.
End of Our Banner - More Signs
On Thursday, I was visited by an officer with the local police force. It seems that our banner is violating a municipal by-law. Yes, we have had it since 2009 – i.e., seven other 40-day campaigns, and yet only now has it been deemed not permitted. The officer showed me the law which dates back to 2001. Hence, as of Monday, I will be compelled to take it down, else pay a fine.
We will continue for the final week of the vigil with signs.
The loss of the banner entails a loss of visibility, which we will try to compensate for in two ways. First, we can continue using our signs. Our current inventory displays the same message as the banner – "Pray for the End of Abortion." Also, we will reveal two new signs – one with the image of the 20-week old fetus and the other with the help-line number.
Second, in effort to have some visibility, I suspect that we will be parading more along the wakways in Lahaie Park.
Please keep us in your prayers during this last week of the vigil.
The vigil ends this coming Sunday, November 4thBe the first to comment.
Saturday, October 20 - On day 26 of our vigil for the end of abortion, I was reminded, again, that God is in charge and is intervening during this vigil. Let me explain.
Heading to the vigil for my afternoon shift, I felt morose. Georges had opened the site and covered the first half with Charlotte. I would cover the second and as the schedule was void of any name except my own, I felt sad at the prospect of being on my own. However, I learned God had other plans.
On arrival, I was stunned and elated by what I saw. Families! Miguel, from Lanoraie, accompanied by his wife Monica, was standing next to the banner reciting prayers and proudly showing off the youngest of their clan – a six month old. Then in the distance, I spotted Maria with her husband Pierre and their 3 year-old Marie-Camilla speaking with a young woman. And this was only the beginning.
As the afternoon wore on, God’s handiwork was apparent. People came and went from the prayer location. The peak was about 4 p.m. when no fewer than thirteen people were on hand: Ymelda and her sister and her two children, tapers in hand, were praying, Francois and Andrew were chanting psalms by the picnic table, and finally Carole and many of her friends had rendez-vous'ed at the site and were now reciting their devotions. What a blessing I was privy to.
Lord, have mercy on me, a man of little faith.
Finally at about 5:30 p.m., the day was coming perfectly to an end as the rains had subsided, the sun came out, and a beautiful rainbow appeared in the sky.
Daily Highlights: 1. Presence of several families with their children; 2. Natalie a newcomer and fellow Christian came for a first visit; and 3. Rainbow at day’s end.Be the first to comment.
We've begun the second half of our 40-day prayer vigil for the end of abortion this past Monday and here are a few of the highlights since.
Wednesday, October-17: Spiritually Powerful Day
Day 22 was an emotion packed day: encouragement at the outset, dread and foreboding in the middle, and the sweet peace of reconciliation at the end.
During the second hour of the day, a young francophone evangelical dropped by to offer a few words of encouragement for the work we are doing. We exchanged a little about our respective faiths and then he was off.
A more powerful event came in the afternoon. At that time, I began feeling dread and foreboding and no matter how much I prayed or shared with one or two persons at the site, these feelings would not subside.
Noris was one such person I shared with. She arrived an hour or so after I first had these experiences. As I described them, she shared her particular devotion to Saint Benedict and to the Saint Benedict medal, the latter being used in instances against Satan and his minions.
We began to pray and as we did so something incredible happened: pro-choice persons began walking up to our site. First came a young man - a student of social work, then a woman pushing her child in a carriage, and finally another woman.
On arrival, they were greeted by vigilers and conversations sprung up. The young man met John and Celeste with whom he spoke for nearly ninety minutes; during this exhange, the second woman arrived and joined in. On the other hand, the woman with the stroller met Yves on arriving and the two spoke for nearly as long.
Throughout these exchanges, Noris and I prayed continuously for peaceful resolutions. I invoked the intercession of powerful saints - Dominique, John Chrysostom, Peter Chrysologus, and John the Baptist, hoping that their inspirations may provide our vigilers with the right words for their listeners to hear. Noris expressed her conviction that positive outcomes would result.
And positive outcomes did occur. On the one hand, the exchanges though intense and passionate weret not belligerent. On the hand, there was one conversion. John and Celeste introduced me to the young man who they told had become pro-life as the result of the encounter. Though the two women did not express any conversion of hearts, we trust that our witness and goodwill affect them in the time to come.
Finally, the day ended with a blessing as one vigiler was able to bring peace to a fractured relationship between two others.
Thursday and Friday, October 18 & 19 – Contrasts in Weather
Days 23 and 24 of the vigil could not have been more unalike. Thursday was sunny and balmy while the following day, rain, rain and more rain.Be the first to comment.
Sunday, October-14, Day 19.
Shortly after my arrival at mid-day, a drizzle began to fall. Only a mist at first, it progressed in intensity as the afternoon wore on. Eventually, I needed to put on my rain wear and protect our gear inside our waterproof bag.
By 5:30 p.m., a steady rain had been falling for some time. Little did those of us who were there - Andrew, Francois, and me, know that we were in store for "sunshine." Yet when God is the vigil scheduler, sunshine often occurs.
The "sun" did come in the form of welcomed company. First, it was the arrival of Christopher. Then, no sooner had greetings been exchanged that Brother Emmanuel and Mark-Anthony showed up. Finally, within thirty minutes, Maria, Pierre, and little Marie-Camilla arrived and stayed until closure.
A wonderful blessing I have experienced during this vigil time and again is the arrival of persons - whether old friends or new acquaintances, coming to spend some time at the site in prayer.
The vigil runs through until Sunday, November 4, 2012. Drop by for an hour of silent prayer or remember us and the cause of life in your own home or faith community.Be the first to comment.