Friday, 14 March 2014

Summary and photos of SPUC's greatly successful youth conference


Last weekend's SPUC 7th International Pro-Life Youth and Student conference was a great success. For a full report, read "Want to see how good the 2014 SPUC youth conference was?" on SPUC's youth blog "Why I am Pro-Life". You can also see a full slideshow of photos on SPUC's new Flickr photostream. Below is a summary of all the talks taken from SPUC's live Twitter feed of the conference. We hope to post videos of all the talks and other parts of the conference on SPUC's YouTube channel in the near future.

7 March:

Opening and introduction:
    Dan Blackman
  • 7th SPUC Int'l Pro-Life Youth conference, starting this eve in Telford and concluding Sun, is fully-booked. Live tweets of conf to follow.
  • Good evening from start of the 7th SPUC International Pro-life Youth conference, Telford, England. Great venue, nice dinner & now 1st talk.
  • SPUC's Anthony McCarthy introducing our youth conference. Conference serves youth, to educate them & help advance cause of truth. #prolife
  • Robin Haig, SPUC's chairman, encouraging dialogue & networking between #prolife youth. New ideas, new friendships will result.
  • Dan Blackman, SPUC youth officer, encourages #prolife youth to train as SPUC speakers in schools, using our modern presentation.
SPUC School's talk, given by Huda Alfardus:
    Huda Alfardus
  • Huda Alfardus, Nottingham student, now giving SPUC schools presentation. Slavery precursor of abortion: unborn deemed non-persons.
  • Human beings genetically complete at conception (fertilisation); separate, unique, human. Heart, spine, limbs, brain etc forms very rapidly.
  • "Foetus", medical term for unborn child at 9 weeks, is Latin for "little one". Movement in womb, taste, hair etc all develop quickly now.
  • Facts from Langman's Medical Embryology, 2004. Despite these moving facts, 200k abortions in UK p.a. Abortion methods chilling.
  • RU486 chemical abortion designed to kill baby & expel his/her body. Mother involved in whole process, which is very traumatic, admit makers.
  • Abortion in Britain allowed in law up to birth since 1990, including of disabled babies. #discrimination
  • Morning-after pill can cause early abortions. Makers say 1 mode of action is to prevent implantation, thus killing newly-conceived embryos.
  • Mother's health & wellbeing harmed by abortion. Possible risks may incl. blood loss, infertility, breast cancer, emotional harm→suicide.
  • Over 500 abortions every day in Britain. We never judge women who have abortions, but give them truth, support, alternatives. #LoveThemBoth
  • Huda is Princeton-educated geneticist. Young, brave, educated #prolife woman.
Bumper Pro-Life Quiz
Now Bumper #Prolife Pub Quiz! Heavyweight speakers tomorrow.

8 March:

Good morning from 2nd day of 7th SPUC Int'l Pro-life Youth Conference, Telford, England. Great pub quiz last night and top breakfast!

Top Catholic academic Dr William Newton on 'Contraception and Abortion: Humanae Vitae and Evangelium Vitae".
    Dr William Newton
  • Fact: Big increase in contraceptive use was paralled by big increase in abortion in Spain, Turkey etc.
  • Contraceptive mentality is: more sex, no kids. Leads to unplanned kids being seen as unwanted, thus leveraging abortion.
  • Contraception not practical solution to abortion, let alone moral solution.
  • Contraception is a game-changer in how society thinks about sex, human life, the person, science and morality.
  • Contraception trivialises sex by removing the profound aspect of it, which is procreation.
  • Contraception leads to people taking risks with sex, and sleeping with people they wouldn't want to have children with. More teen pregnancy
  • Contraception enculturates mentality that pregnancy is like a disease. If "drug" of contraception fails, one kills the "disease" (unborn)
  • Contraception treats humans as if they are animals e.g. sterilising them if they breed too much. Tells people they can't control themselves
  • Science increasingly uninterested in question of its relationship with common good. Contraception wants power to neuter (not aid) nature.
  • In teaching of moral theology in most Catholic colleges, contraception is core issue which has corrupted thinking about moral absolutes.
  • Connection of the virtues: Lack of temperance inherent in contraception leads to selfishness, removes motivation to be sexually selfless.
  • Moral blindness caused by selfishness of contraceptive (i.e. loveless) sex, porn etc leads to failure to recognise humanity of the unborn.
  • Deep logical links between contraception and abortion.
Dr Helen Watt of Anscombe Bioethics Centre on "Cooperation with evil: how to think about the issue"
    Dr Helen Watt
  • Pro-lifers must remember: ends don't justify means. All our intentions must be good, not just some. One area of concern: abortion law reform
  • Regulation of legal abortion (as distinct from selective banning of some abortions) inevitably involves formal cooperation in evil. Wrong to tell women how to prepare for abortion, says Dr Watt
  • Material (as distinct from formal) cooperation in evil often (but not always) wrong. Depends on how close and on goods/harms at stake.
  • Avoiding scandal (e.g. giving impression of weak/absent opposition to abortion) requires prudence. Again, can depend on closeness/remoteness
  • Matters what type of people we become through our actions. Aim to follow our vocation w/out wrongful cooperation in evil, concludes Dr Watt.
Q&A with Dr Newton and Dr Watt:
  • Natural family planning (NFP) differs from contraception because NFP is open to life, simply making use of infertile part of cycle.
  • Extra-marital sex endemic in today's world, partly due to contraception. Illicit sex common in some eras, but esp. rampant today.
  • Contraception leads to dualistic view of human person, denying essential unity of soul and body.
  • Contraceptive sex doesn't give full soul-body union to sexual partner. Also, gift of fertility to spouse different to other gifts to others.
  • Dr Helen Watt: Men have everything to do with abortion because they have everything to do with how women get pregnant.
  • Very important to provide emotional support to women considering abortion or post-abortion, says Dr Helen Watt.
RT @CCFather: Bernie reports from @spucprolife youth conference: excellent morning, esp William Newton.

Robin Haig, SPUC chairman, ex-chairman of Association of Lawyers in Defence of the Unborn (ALDU), dispelling myths re British abortion law:
    Robin Haig
  • Myths: all abortion banned before '67, when abortion legalised. Facts: some abortion allowed '40s - '60s, abortion still crime in law.
  • Children of women who considered but didn't choose abortion have thanked SPUC for saving their lives. SPUC gave support, love. U can too.
Dr Thomas Ward on "Parents, the first pro-life teachers":
    Dr Thomas Ward
  • Pays tribute to SPUC as unrivalled in Europe in importance for pro-life
  • UN Declaration of Human Rights upholds parents' rights as primary educators as safeguard vs child indoctrination e.g. Nazi schooling.
  • Saul Alinsky was anti-family radical who dedicated book to Satan. Obama, Hillary Clinton are Alinsky's disciples.
  • Other anti-family radicals: Karl Marx, Lady Helen Brook. Agenda: take away children from parents' influence and give them to State instead.
  • Enemies of pro-life know that parents as 1st educators are bulwarks vs abortion agenda. Pro-life movement slow to catch-up with this fact.
  • Unlike pro-aborts, pro-lifers slow to realise that culture of death is underlined by contraception and homosexuality as well as abortion
  • Dr Tom Ward to young pro-lifers: don't make same mistakes of previous generations in ignoring role of parents.
  • Apart from a few brave bishops past & present, most bishops have failed to protect parents, thus damaging individual families, says Dr Ward.
  • In Germany, home-schooling families arrested, children taken away, forced into exile. Good parents just protecting their kids from bad ideas
  • Parents will become victims of the very ideas which they treat with indifference. John Paul II: all policies for the family, not at its cost
RT @spucscotland: Project Truth stall @ the SPUC Youth Conference
    Project Truth stall
John-Henry Westen, co-founder & editor-in-chief of, on "Sexuality: Communicating the truth with love"
    John-Henry Westen
  • Pro-abortion and anti-family movements have long been cooperating. Media totally misrepresenting prayer vigils as angry, condemnatory.
  • Young pro-lifers called to be heroic, just like good people during the Holocaust. Abortion holocaust: 10s of millions killed every year.
  • Both founders of used to live pro-abortion, sexually liberal lifestyle.Soon realised it was a narrow hell.
  • Pro-life message of love for both mother and child is having beautiful effect.
  • Women like have found love, healing, hope in #prolife cause. Pro-lifers using love to move beyond standard debates
  • Pro-family movement is movement of love, though unpopular; gets false accusations of "hatred", "bigotry"; also anti-faith hostility.
  • Satan attacks married love cos God has made married love the exemplar of Heaven.
  • Cardinal Ratzinger told US bishops: pro-abortion politicians must be denied Holy Communion, out of love for their souls and truth re life.
  • Love is the easiest way for pro-lifers to get through to our opponents, esp. those hurt by harmful lifestyles (abortion, homosexuality etc)
  • Printers, sports presenters et al. in Canada being sacked for not going along with gay agenda. Some Catholic bishops complicit in agenda.
RT @crismunozbe: Around 140 young adults attending the Youth Prolife Conference at Telford,England cc @spucprolife

Panel discussion on male & female perspectives on abortion. Fiorella Nash, John-Henry Westen, Robin Haig, Anthony Ozimic (chair)
    Anthony Ozimic
  • Many men hurt, angry, emasculated by partner's abortion. Women patronised by abortion lobby, as incapable of responsible motherhood.
  • Abortion providers doling out operations, pills, drugs, devices which give men cover, excuses to abuse women further. Women deserve better.
Dr Helen Watt and Anthony McCarthy, mock debate on "Is abortion always wrong?":
    _MG_9237 _MG_9234
  • Dr Watt giving #prolife side. Pregnant women = mothers
  • Society must change to accommodate fertility, not make women non-mothers to fit society's perceived needs.
  • Anthony McCarthy giving (mock) pro-abortion side
  • Pro-aborts argue not all human beings are persons. Right to life not in play for unborn cos not persons.
  • Argument: direct abortions and double effect causing of miscarriage not really that different, so why not give jail time for both? Dr Helen Watt to reply
  • Distinction between killing and letting die. Legitimate choices about resource allocation not intentional homicide.
  • Mock debate now going through arguments around twinning, ensoulment. Aquinas good on soul-body but used now-outdated embryology
  • Ethical use of double-effect re abortion requires strong justification. Is pregnancy a special case?
  • Dr Helen Watt now answering question by rebutting Judith Jarvis Thompson's famous violinist scenario. Pregnancy very different situation.
  • Abortion is a violent separation of child from mother, not simply decision not to support another's life. Abortion = deliberate bodily assault on child.
  • If unborn was not a human being, it couldn't develop those capacities which are identifiably human. Mother's body welcomes human being.
  • Argument that unborn human is parasite never used by scientists to describe unborn of animal species. Shows anti-human bias.
  • Religious arguments not essential to show wrongness of abortion but can help give deeper, broader context for understanding wrongness.
Eve Farren
Now hearing from Eve Farren of the Alliance of Pro-Life Students; SPUC Scotland's Project Truth and pro-life roadshow.

SPUC's Pro-Life Chains on 27 April, anniversary of Abortion Act coming into effect. Call SPUC on 020 7091 7091 for more info.

RT @AdamCC92: SPUC conference has been absolutely amazing! They do such great work

Ceilidh (Irish dancing)

9 March:

Good morn. from SPUC's 7th Int'l Pro-Life Youth conference, Telford, England. Great dinner & dancing last nite, religious services this a.m.

Fr Tony Kiely

SPUC's Fiorella Nash on "Men and abortion".
    Fiorella Nash
  • Abortion centre staff have reported horror stories re reality of killing babies.
  • RU486 is hit-and-run abortion, leaving women to deal with the appalling trauma of delivery & disposal of dead baby.
  • Men suffering from partners' abortions of their children, mocked by pro-abortion feminists. Depression, substance abuse, helplessness.
  • "Silent No More" help both men & women after abortion experience. One Army veteran: "I still grieve for [my aborted son]." Lost chances.
  • Abortion leads to relationship breakdown, contrary to promises of abortion advocates. Denial of abortion loss common early-stage bereavement
  • How should men work to stop abortion? Live life of personal integrity, not selective morality, don't sleep around, don't abandon women
  • Be with women during crisis pregnacies; speak respectfully to and about women; be confident in giving pro-life opinion, show compassion
  • Be concerned about common good; work with others; find common ground; don't be scared
  • Be bold, be active, be compassionate, be a man.
RT @JackStukel: People like Fiorella Nash restore my faith in human sanity and compassion @spucprolife #fourthwave #feminism

Patrick Buckley on "Ireland and the Global Pro-Abortion Agenda"
    Pat Buckley (right) with Irish delegates
  • John Smeaton, SPUC's chief exec, now introducing Pat Buckley, SPUC's man in Ireland; with Peter C Smith, one of SPUC's representatives at UN
  • Nuremberg trials declared abortion (whether voluntary or forced) to be "crime against humanity", "act of extermination"
  • UN human rights declarations, conventions etc actually protect unborn children from abortion but pro-aborts at UN misrepresent them
  • John Paul II, who lived thru Nazi occupation, said pro-abortion culture of death is more insidious & evil than Nazi culture of death
  • Ruling of Euro Court of Human Rights in Tysiac v Poland case was used later in same court in A, B & C case to pressure Ireland over abortion
  • PM Enda Kenny broke pre-election promise not to legislate to allow abortion. Pro-abortion lies re Savita case increased pressure on Dail
  • New Irish abortion law allows abortion up to birth in some cases; forces medics & hospitals to be complicit in abortion.Pro-abortion, anti-family Estrela report in Euro Parliament was defeated cos it exceeded Euro Parl's competence, plus big pro-life push-back
  • Pro-abortion lobby identifies Catholic Church, esp. Holy See delegation at UN, as main roadblock to advance of global anti-life agenda
Heartfelt thanks to Pat Buckley & Peter C Smith for their sterling work at UN for SPUC & helping Holy See et al. to fight for life & family

John Smeaton, SPUC's chief executive, on "The Pro-Life Battle"
    John Smeaton
  • Thanked youth delegates from Romania, US, Scotland. Youth part of pro-life movement much more advanced 2day
  • Some pro-life orgs (incl. SPUC in past) wasted efforts arguing for wrong legislation e.g. compromise bills. Let's never make mistake again.
  • As Dr William Newton showed, contraceptive mentality is at root (not merely fruit) of culture of death e.g. abortion.
  • SPUC defended pro-life counsellors when they were spied upon & defamed by pro-abortion groups via media fellow-travellers.
  • Right that SPUC concerned re what happens in Catholic Church b/c Church incl. some great clergy gives great strength to pro-life movement
  • Obama made abortion promotion worldwide, incl. to schoolchildren thru sex ed, one of his 1st priorities. We need strong RC Church to help us
  • Pro-life orgs can't defeat culture of death on our own. We need global strength & reach of Catholic Church leadership to back us solidly
  • Theologians who dissent from Catholic teaching on abortion undermine pro-life fight. Failure of bishops to discipline them thus harms cause.
  • Youth called 2 speak truth 2 power, secular or religious. Need 4 declaration of total resistance 2 abortion. Emergency calls 4 open prayer.
  • Some courageous pro-life bishops: Davies of Shrewsbury, Egan of Portsmouth, Olmsted of Phoenix.
  • "Work with the spirit you danced with last nite in the ceilidh and you'll dance with your grandchildren", John Smeaton to SPUC prolife youth
RT @nickmurf: Fantastic weekend at @spucprolife youth conference! Met great people who are paving the road toward a pro-life society.

Nick Murphy @nickmurf

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