Friday, 16 December 2016

SPUC makes submission to Ireland's "Citizens' Assembly"

SPUC representatives in Ireland have today made a submission to the Citizens' Assembly - a body of 99 Irish citizens, selected by a polling agency - where the Eighth Amendment  is being discussed. You can read the full press release on the SPUC website.


SPUC has also released a video, calling on Irish people throughout the world to rally to the defence of the nation’s unborn children. In Ireland children in the womb are currently protected from abortion by the pro-life Eighth Amendment of the Irish Constitution.

In this video, leading pro-life campaigners in Ireland, and from the Irish diaspora worldwide, explain why the Eighth Amendment must be preserved and defended. 

Speakers include former presidential candidate Dana Rosemary Scallon, internationally renowned pro-life speaker Rebecca Kiessling, and former MEP and disability rights campaigner Kathy Sinnott. The video also features Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, a leading Catholic figure in the pro-life movement. I urge you all to watch and share this video and take action to defend the children of Ireland.

About the amendment

This Eighth Amendment, passed in 1983, reads:

“The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.”

This amendment, which is estimated to have saved more than 100,000 lives since its introduction in 1983, is under sustained attack from international pro-abortion campaigners. The Irish government convened a Citizen’s Assembly to discuss proposals to repeal the Eighth Amendment and thus overturn constitutional protection for unborn children. The Citizen’s Assembly consists of 99 Irish citizens, selected by a polling agency, which has convened under the chairmanship of Justice Mary Laffoy. It is widely expected that the assembly will recommend that a referendum be held on the repeal of the amendment. This will probably be held early in 2018, though it is possible that it may be held during 2017.

Despite false claims, the Eighth Amendment simply recognises that unborn babies have a right to life equal to that of their mothers. Ireland's maternal health record, among the best in the world, also reflects the fact that Irish doctors are trained to treat a mother and her unborn child as two equal patients. 

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Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Dowager Marchioness of Salisbury, former SPUC Executive Committee member, dies

The whole of SPUC team and I are saddened to learn of the death of the Dowager Marchioness of Salisbury, who served on the Society's Executive Committee in the early 70s.

Lady Salisbury has been a consistent champion of the right to life of unborn children since the passage of the Abortion Act almost five decades ago. She served on SPUC's executive committee and was always a strong supporter of the Society's work.

In October, 2008, Lady Salisbury organised a Choose Life service of prayer and worship to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Abortion Act. The service took place at the Memorial to Innocent Victims built into the pavement area immediately outside the West Door of the Abbey (the photo shows me talking to her at that event). In recent years, Lady Salisbury has been a leading opponent of euthanasia.

We give thanks for her life and her witness and our members and supporters will be praying for her family at this sad time.

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