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Arkansas Catholic
Little Rock, Arkansas
July 21, 1991     Arkansas Catholic
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July 21, 1991

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PAGE 8 ARKANSAS CATI-K~IC JULY 71, 1991 "Abortion," from page 1 "In order to protect their mental stab'fl- ity," the Reissers say, "many women must rationalize the need for an abortion and therefore repress any initial feelings of guilt. As a result, most emotional reactions to abor- tion are delayed, sometimes for as long as five to ten years." Project Rachel aims to give these women a place to turn when the nmnbness begins to weal" off. The project grew out of the Church's response to the Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion in the U.S. "Back in 1975, about two years after the Roe s~. Wade deci- sion, the Catholic Church realized what was happen- ing to baffles and the lack of respect for life. They saw that something needed to be done in the Catholic Church, and they came out with a pastoral plan for pro-life activities. All the bishops sent Anne Dierks out this statement in 1975, and as I under- stand it, the Respect life office came from that," Dierks said. Dierks, who is also president of Arkansas Right to Life, said Bishop Andrew J. McDonald called her in November 1989 and asked her to begin Project Rachel in the Little Rock diocese. She started the local prognam last spring, using the continuing education program for priests. /'" : ......... , ( :" The Rev.Joseph Naumann, who foundeding machine urill take calls when no one is tS-oject Rachel, came for a workshop on there. Dierks will get the women's names April 23, "along with Rev. Francis I. Malone, .JCL, a canon lawyer, Dr. Kay Cash, an Project Rachd aims to give oncologist who described what really hap- pens in an abortion, and a Qahofic couple these women a place to turn who have suffered from an abortion and when the numbness beg to achieved recondfiafion. The priests were also allowed to im~ite wear off. lay counselors they thought might be able to help them with women suffering from and then put them in touch with a priest, deep-seated emotional problems related to probably by ha~ng the priestcall the woman abortion, back to set up a time when they can meet. Altogether, about 108 people attended The names of the priests are being kept along with the priests for a day that induded confidential to keep them from being in- the speakers and a question-and-answer undated by calls. period. At the end of the day volunteers were Abortion Counseling recruited from around the state. Dierks said One of the priests who attended the it was important to her that the network of seminar has ahead)' had experience with counselors be'statewide beca usewomen who in-depth counseling of a couple suffering had had abortions were often concerned from abortion. about confidentiality. The wife got in touch with the priest and For instmlce, she said, "a woman from told him her husband was having trouble Blytheville who calls in and wants to remain sleeping and was bothered by nightmares. anon}a~mtts might like to talk to a priest in His problems weren't the usual sort, such Texarkana, so my office would put those as wondering what his child would have two together mtd would know which priests looked like when he saw other people's children, but "he was under heavy condem- are Project Rachel priests and which aren't." Dierks said that a brochure is in the nation and carding a lot of guilt," the priest said. making at the present thne that will go out The wife added that her husband had to hospitals, .schools and crisis pregnancy centers mid doctors' offices immersed himself in charitable actMdes, but According to Dierks, her office has two nothing seemed to stop Iris torment. phone numbers, 6154-0340 during the day, In counselhag, the priest said timt "guilt and a night number, 661-1802. An answer- from abortion is to be handled as any other. Jesus didn't die on the o~o~just for nickel and dhne stuff, our tittle white lies. He died for nmrderers mid 1,-apists as well. He did wan t to extend recondliation to ,'myone who needs it." In Catholic hospitals --- Genetic counseling be=ng offered By Tracy Early New York (CNS) - A growing nmnber of Catholic hospitals are offering genetic counsel- ing for prospective parents, but many others "have opted out of being players in tiffs arena," Plan to attend Camp TOGether - a week of fun and according to Jesuit Rev Robert C. Batuniller, director of die genetics division of Georgetown faith sharing August 11 - 16, 1991. Camp TOGether is located off Highway 67N in Bald Knob, AR. Total cost is $100. A $25 non-refundable deposit is required to hold your registration. Lodging and meals are included in fees. Transportation to camp not provided. Hurry, registraaon deadline is August 2, 1991. Call or write for more information. YOUTH MINISTRIES DIOCESE OF LITTLE ROCK 664-0340, Ext. 337 Box 7565 LITTLE ROCK, AR 72217 P.O. University Medical Center in Waslfington. Encouragement for such counseling by Catholic hospitals came in a 1990 document of the Catholic Health Association that he helped write, Baumiller said ha an interview in New York. He said the majority of Catholic hospitals still send pregnant couples elsewhere for ge- netic cotmseling, and those beginning to offer it seemed to do so more for "marketing" thml "mission" reasons. Baunfiller was interdewed after he spoke to participants in die Cathofic Hospital Adminis- trative Personnel Program, a weeklong course offered under joint sponsorship of the Catho- lic Medical Center of Brooklyn and Queens and St. John's University. He said Georgetown and New York Medical College, an institution related to the Archdio- cese of New York, were the only two Catholic facilities in the U.S. doing the necessary lab work for genetic counseling. But some others take samples, send them out to labs elsewhere and then offer counseling about the results, he said. B Many administrators at Cathofic hospitab hold back out of fear that die bishops will oly I. ject, but die bishops are not blocking geneticof tl counseling direcdy, tm said "I've been doingcerlj dais for alinost 25 years, and no one has everrler said anything to me." Irlfil Catholic institutions have tended to avoid S tiffs field, Baumiller said, because some pafienU tion may decide to deal wid~ problems by abortio~rnet or other actions whuch Curch institutes canno! .druI approve. trite But die result of avoidance, he .said, is that ,; people are referred to secular institutions wi~ poi~ less concem for the moral v',dues invok,ed andrelk with no pastoral care depamnents to offer assis ital~ tance, hea "We have opted out of being players in ~ "] arena," he said. " th~ Many people come for testing simply becaus~ esse a doctor has told them to, he said, and the3 pro have not thought about what they might do it bet: they found a child ~as going to be bom wi~ tots genetic defects. Pastorally, it is better not to can require that they decide before testing is done acti he said. BaumiUer said that in a paper he was prepay bee hag for an international genetics conference, ht arc would call for more attention to differentiatinll gen categories of genetic disorder. For some extreme to a cases of malformation, where no potential for existence of htmlan quality is present, almost cyd everyone would favor termination of pregnancy, he said. r~ In another category, including diseases su~ I,J as cystic fibrosis, die fight of people to make |I decisions would be recognized, he suggested. The categolT where no opporumity for mr' minating should be offered, he said, would i~ clude cases such as parents wanting a baby of~ particular sex. If parents feel the), could not cope with deformed clfild, Batuniller said, a Catholic ho~ pital could counsel them on options such foster care. ltowever, he said a question for the futur~ would be wlmther society would relnain wiUin~ for parents to make these decisions if it meaxat )'ears of care at }maW public expense. Insm'ance may also become a problem, ht .said, if some insttrance companies decide tc offer covei'age only tO people who are not i~ danger of passing along genetic defects. 'I would like to see the debate about theg issues go on in die (Church and in Catholi~ hospitals," Baumiller said. 1 t gre t Jm Abortion gaining -B, COl acceptance in Britair 1TI( Glasgow, Scoiland (CNS) - Britain is slid t~c ing rapidly into automatically acceptint sai abortion as the solution in complicated pre~ nancies, said the president of the Scotti~ rr~ bishops' conference, Archbishop Thoma sai J. Winning of Glasgow. th, Speaking after a recent decision by al a.u English high court judge to allow an abd sm tion for a 12-year-old girl who was 20 wee~ pregnant, the archbishop said that "t_hl Wt ruling was a death sentence on the unborl al~ child. It totally disregarded the baby's nat~ wl ral right to life." wt The court ruled over the objections 0 the girl's mother, tic Winning said the lack of public concer~ wt about the implications of the case was "dr th pressing." sit See ~," next p~ of