A Statement from our Pastor on the grievous statements of Virginia Governor Ralph Northam

February 5, 2019

A Statement From Father Frederick Edlefsen, Pastor

Dear St. Agnes Parishioners,

As you know, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam made grievous statements regarding human life. He did so when asked about Virginia Delegate Kathy Tran's comments favoring lifting restrictions on third trimester abortions, in which she indicated her bill would permit an abortion even when a mother is giving birth.

Governor Northam said "this is why decisions such as this should be made by providers, physicians, and the mothers and fathers that are involved. When we talk about third trimester abortions, these are done with the consent of obviously the mother, with consent of the physician, more than one physician by the way, and it's done in cases where there may be severe deformities or there may be a fetus that's not viable. So, in this particular example, if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen," he said on WTOP. "The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated, if that's what the mother and the family desired. And then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother."

The Governor is suggesting infanticide. This is reprehensible. It's repugnant to any basic level of human decency, and citizens should vigorously oppose this.

These statements come on the heels of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signing the Reproductive Health Act into law on the 46th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, a law he suggested become a national precedent.

It's a fundamental duty of ministers of state to protect and promote civil rights. This doesn't only mean that human rights should be protected in the order of good judgment and the administration of social affairs. It most directly pertains to the most fundamental right: The Right to Life. At fertilization, a new human life begins. It's neither the life of the mother nor the life of the father. It's a new life. And it's the same species as both the mother and the father. That's neither a religious, ideological or philosophical conviction. It's an indisputable fact. Laws sanctioning abortion - not to mention infanticide - sanction homicide.

Nonetheless, Governor Northam's statements and Governor Cuomo's law go beyond the so-called "question" regarding "when life begins," despite the fact that we know the answer to that "question." This regards something nakedly obvious and visually repugnant: killing a child right up until the moment of birth and shortly after. The horror of destroying a child shortly before birth is not only obviously cruel, but it's a sin that cries to heaven. Public officials who unrepentantly continue to support legalizing such actions will have an account to render.

Please pray for the conversion of heart of our public officials.

In Christ and Mary,

Fr. Frederick Edlefsen


*Click here for the statement by Bishop Burbidge.