The following testimony is self-explanatory. It is one of the most eloquent statements on the critical issue of abortion made in recent years, and it deserves the largest audience possible.
The presentation was given in Dirksen Senate Hearing Room #106 on January 22, 2002 at the 8th Annual National Memorial for the Preborn
The author can be reached at “Alpha-Omega Life,” 7228 Baptist Rd. #188, Bethel Park, PA 15102, tel: 412-851-9310.
Hello. My name is Vera Faith Lord. I am the Director of Alpha Omega Life, Orthodox Christian Pro-Life Outreach. I have with me today the Chairman of my Board of Directors, Father George Livanos, Fr. Theodore Petrides, Fr. Jerry Hall, Fr. Frank Milanese, Fr. John Touloumes, Fr. Kosta Petrogeorge, and Mother Abbess Christophora.
Today as I speak to you, I have the honor of representing millions of my sisters. Our sisterhood is not a happy one. We are post-abortive mothers, and I am here to tell you our story. Society tells us only one thing: “It’s your body, and your right to choose.” No one tells us what will happen to us after we make that choice and our child is dead. Come with me now, through the looking glass, and into the land beyond abortion.
Nineteen years ago, my precious baby son, Gabriel, was kicking and sucking his thumb, and doing all the things that babies do at 21 weeks, pre-born. He never reached 22 weeks. He died.
For seventeen years after my baby’s death, I was not allowed to grieve, to mourn, or even to acknowledge that he had died. Indeed, while living with the agony of his death, I was not even allowed to admit that he had ever lived. This awful sentence was imposed upon me by myself and by our politically correct society. Because, you see, I was there when Gabriel died. I paid to have him killed.
The maternal instinct is stronger than survival. There are thousands of accounts of mothers sacrificing themselves to save their children. Well, that maternal instinct—the strongest, most compelling one known to humanity—is alive and well in all of us who are female, whether we want it or nor. What we believe or do not believe simply does not matter. At some point after the abortion, that maternal instinct appears in full force. There is one moment, one horrible moment when everything in us knows exactly what we have done. No matter what politically correct name we have called it, no matter what euphemism we’ve hidden behind, in that moment we know that we have gone against God and all of nature, and killed our own offspring. It’s like putting your hand into fire. Every part of you wants to recoil and run away. And that’s what we do. We run away….
Some of us spend the rest of our lives running away. It’s called Post-Abortion Syndrome, and it is the worst feeling on the planet. If only we could run away, it would be almost easy. But we can’t. And the reason that we can’t is that we have a dead baby. Exactly the same as the woman whose baby dies in the crib of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. The fact that we participated in the killing does not make our baby any less dead. If anyone close to you dies, especially a baby, and you cannot acknowledge the death and mourn, you are in serious psychological trouble. And that serious trouble is Post-Abortion Syndrome.
The “Silent Scream” is a video of a baby dying in an actual abortion. You can’t hear him screaming, as he slowly dies in agony. We are post-abortive mothers, and we are in agony too. Only we’re not just silent, we’re invisible. And some of us are doubly invisible because we seem to be doing so well. All of us reluctantly chose abortion, for a thousand seemingly good reasons, so that our lives would not have to change. And here’s the irony: since the instant that the baby died, our lives in a thousand ways have never ever been the same.
We are everywhere. We are all around you. We are 43% of all the women forty-five years and under in the United States today. We’re your mothers, your sisters, your daughters, your wives, your associates, and your friends. There are many of us right here today. You know someone who has had an abortion—and statistics say you probably know more than one person. If you think you don’t know someone who has had an abortion, it’s just because you don’t know who it is yet.
When someone is sentenced to life in prison, the fact that they are in prison changes everything forever—for them and for everyone close to them. Everyone who “chooses” to go against nature and kill her own offspring is sentencing herself to life in the solitary confinement “cell” of Post-Abortion Syndrome. Denying that she’s in prison will not make the bars melt away.
There is a way out—a healing process that can finally set us free. One of the most important steps in the post-abortive healing process is to name the baby who had died and to finally be able to mourn their death. I named my son Gabriel, and I will spend the rest of my life telling the world about him, and about me, and the millions like us.
About a year after my own healing process began, I saw a young woman carrying a baby boy, about a year old, through a doorway. She walked too close to the door, and the baby bumped his head and began to cry. She set him down on his feet, got down in front of him, and rubbed his head as she hugged him, saying “Oh, Mommy’s sorry you bumped your head”—and he immediately stopped crying. I thought nothing of it at the time, but it had registered on me. About eight hours later, I found myself on my knees on the floor in my apartment, rocking back and forth and sobbing, and talking to my son, and saying, “Gabriel, Mommy is sorry—Mommy is so sorry….” You have no idea what it feels like.
So now you know the dirty little secret behind the door called “choice”: the baby is not the only one who dies. Big parts of the mother’s soul die right along with her child.
It may look as though I’m standing here alone today. Well, I’m not. If you look with your heart, you’ll see that there’s a tall, handsome, nineteen year old young man standing right here with me. His name is Gabriel, and he is the young man my son would have become, if only his mother had allowed him to live. This memorial is for him, and it is given by his mother, who will love him for eternity.