Not Your Ordinary Class Project

Students from a Massachusetts school took a trip to Boston recently. Nothing unusual in that. This wasn’t for the Freedom Trail or a museum visit, though. The students were making a short and provocative film about life and violence, about why some deaths seem more bothersome than others, about the response to the 2013 marathon bombing compared to the response to everyday deaths at a local business.

They were accompanied by Catherine Adair, whose daughter was on the trip. For Catherine, this was no ordinary drive into Boston. It was her first time back to the Planned Parenthood facility where she used to work. She came there to lend a voice to the film that no student could provide. Ironically, standing just behind her in the video is a facility “escort,” doing a job with which Catherine was once all too familiar.

“The horror that goes on here takes place behind closed doors. Nobody, except the workers, has to see the carnage….The world is silent, oblivious to what goes on here. But I know from firsthand experience. I used to work in this very building for two years.”

This ten-minute video by the students of Immaculate Heart of Mary School in Still River, Massachusetts makes comparisons that some may find troubling or even infuriating. Don’t let that keep you from watching. These are young women and men of courage, and I find in their work great cause for gratitude.

(Related post: Catherine Adair’s “Dear Clinic Escort,” from 2013.)

This week by the numbers: 4/22/2013

Happy Monday! Here are some things to keep in mind as you fill in your calendar for the week and charge up your laptop or smartphone. This will become a weekly feature on Leaven. I welcome your suggestions for events to add in the weeks to come.

Three people to follow on Twitter:

  • @ovideAUL. New Hampshire’s Ovide Lamontagne will take on his new job next month as General Counsel for Americans United for Life, and this will be the way to follow his projects.
  • @alvedaking. Dr. Alveda King is live-tweeting from the Gosnell trial this week.
  • @jimgeraghty. Jim Geraghty is a writer for National Review, and while is beat is national politics, he always hits the mark when he addresses the life issues. I look forward to his Morning Jolt email every weekday.

Two events for your consideration:

  • At 2:50 today, join people from Boston and beyond in a moment of silence and prayer to observe the one-week mark following the atrocity committed at April 15’s Boston Marathon. Please, not “tragedy.” This is what an atrocity looks like, folks. 
  • Thursday at Planned Parenthood in Manchester (Pennacook Street, a block east of Elm), there will be a prayer vigil from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. This is a weekly event, in view of the fact that Thursday is surgical abortion day at the facility. You are welcome to join this absolutely peaceful prayer witness for any length of time. See the Pray for Life Center Facebook page for ongoing information about this recurring event.

One site to bookmark:  This one is basic. If you aren’t already familiar with this portal to state government, spend some time checking it out. The legislative link alone makes it a treasure, but there’s much more. Look up bills, check the date of hearings, see what our governor is up to. This is a tool for anyone keeping an eye on New Hampshire political developments in any area, not just pro-life issues.

One volunteer opportunity: This is a shameless plug for a project near and dear to me. Give blood. You can find blood drives in our area through the Red Cross blood services web site. Last Monday’s Boston bombings brought the ongoing need for blood donations into sharp relief. Most of the people relying on these donations will never make the news, but trust me, they’re our neighbors. I’m a coward with needles, but seeing people I love benefit from blood donations helped me get over that. This is pro-life work below the radar, and it’s essential work.

More next week. Keep me posted if there’s an event in your area that’s helping to build a culture of life.