The pro-life, pro-family Conference, hosted by Family Life International NZ, was an excellent opportunity for people to listen and learn from a great selection of expert speakers on topics such as abortion, marriage, euthanasia, and faith.
A number of groups actively working to promote a culture of life in their communities were given the opportunity to showcase their work to attendees. Groups that accepted the offer included Fertility Care NZ, Pregnancy Counselling Services, and Euthanasia Free NZ.
Janet Morana from Priests for Life spoke about post abortion healing and the Silent No More Awareness Campaign as well as why we must recall the bad product that is abortion.
William B May gave attendees an excellent, well thought out way forward to promoting marriage as uniting a man and woman with each other and any children born from their union. This is a positive way forward that focuses on the beauty that marriage is, and will help promote marriage as an institution that young people will want to enter into before having children. The most important point that May wanted attendees to walk away with was the importance of not referring to redefined marriage as “same-sex ‘marriage'”. He explained that the real issue was not with homosexuals being able to participate in marriage, it is in the law which is “redefining marriage in a way with consequences that have a hidden agenda”.
Fr Clovis, Family Life International’s spiritual director, spoke to a packed room about the Rejection of Humanae Vitae and the call of Fatima.
The Window to the Womb was opened by Shari Richard who is an expert obstetrical sonographer. She showed the attendees the beauty and reality of life before birth through her ultrasound images of pre-born children. One incredible fact that Shari shared with us, is that many women who are going in for early induced abortions in the United States (and therefore likely in other countries) are possibly having abortions when they will naturally miscarry. Throughout this week, Shari has been training medical professionals how to use ultrasound as a tool in informing an abortion vulnerable woman of all her options.
There were also a wide range of speakers from New Zealand including Fr Antoine Thomas who led the children present in adoration of Our Lord; Dr David Richmond spoke on euthanasia being the ultimate wolf in sheep’s clothing; and Mike Sullivan spoke about the work of Saving Downs in effecting a change in the perceptions of people all throughout the world of the targeted abortion of pre-born babies who have been diagnosed inutero as having Down syndrome.
Attracting a lot of attention, the youth took their faith to the streets on Saturday afternoon in a procession down to Takapuna Beach. Singing with joyful excitement of the love of God, the young people were taking to heart Pope Francis’ call to take their faith to the street corners and to make noise!
The feedback on the quality of the speakers was excellent. Over time videos, talk transcripts and MP3s of the addresses will be available to download. CDs and DVDs can also be purchased through Myriam Media.
Conferences are always a great opportunity for people to gather together, to learn, and to be encouraged. Participants realise that they are not alone in their endeavours to speak up for life, for faith and for family. This Conference was no different.
Together, let us rise up and serve life!
“Everyone has the obligation to be at the service of life.”
Blessed John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae #79