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Did Facebook save an unborn child?
Hundreds of adoption offers flooded in after a Catholic church posted this message on Monday.
July 11th, 2013
11:47 AM ET

Did Facebook save an unborn child?

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN) – On Monday morning, a Catholic parish in Virginia posted an urgent message from its priest on Facebook.

A couple was pregnant with a child diagnosed with Down syndrome, said the Rev. Thomas Vander Woude of Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Gainesville, Virginia.

If they didn't find a couple willing to adopt the unborn child by the end of day, they would abort it, according to the priest.

Within hours, hundreds of couples had contacted the church with adoption offers, according to Holy Trinity staffers.

The parish had to bring in extra staff to field the phone calls flooding in from around the world, including the Netherlands, Puerto Rico and Canada, said Martha Drennan, the parish's director of Adult Faith Formation & Liturgy.

In addition, Vander Woude received upwards of 600 e-mails, Drennan said. "It has to be well over 1,000 couples who were interested in adopting the baby," she said.

"It's really beautiful," said Vander Woude. "Here you have this unborn babe with handicaps and all these people almost immediately offer to take care of it. It's just really a testament to the goodness of people."

READ MORE: Dad's confession: I almost left my disabled daughter

On Tuesday, a local adoption agency presented three prospective families to the pregnant couple. Drennan said the church is not disclosing the name of the adoption agency, which screened prospective adopters, to protect the biological parents' privacy.

"It was so exciting to see all those people stepping up to give that baby a voice - a life," said Geraldine Erikson, a member of Holy Trinity who posted Vander Woude's urgent message on the church's Facebook page.

Erikson, who manages the church's social media accounts, also said she sent an e-mail blast to 140 families on a Yahoo discussion board for homeschooling families

Dozens of Catholic Facebook groups, as well as international media, have jumped on the story.

"I was doing a search this morning and saw some articles in languages I don't understand," Erikson said.

The Catholic Church teaches that all life is sacred and strongly advocates against abortion – but the story is even more personal for Vander Woude. The 47-year-old priest has a brother, Joseph, who has Down syndrome.

The priest's father, Thomas Vander Woude, died in 2008 after diving in a septic tank to save Joseph, who had fallen in while walking in the backyard.

"With our experience with my little brother Josie, this is something that is close to my heart for sure," said the priest.

More than 70 priests attended Thomas Vander Woude's funeral at Holy Trinity Church, including his eldest son, Thomas Jr., who officiated at the Mass and delivered the homily.

It's not unusual for families to find children with Down syndrome to adopt on social media,  said Diane Grover, founder and president of the International Down Syndrome Coalition. In fact, several of the coalition's board members have adopted children after seeing a Facebook post, she said.

"It's a beautiful way for people to get the information out there," Grover said. After checking to make sure the story was true, the coalition helped spread the word on social media about Vander Woude's message and received hundreds of calls in return, she said.

"Its a good eye-opener for our society to see that so many families value a child with Down syndrome like any other child and want to raise them as their own," said Jon Coleman, president of the National Down Syndrome Society.

"People with Down syndrome are making great strides in living more independently, attending college and working. With the proper support, they can do so much if given the opportunity."

READ MORE: Breakfast, lunch and hugs at Tim's Place

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Abortion • Catholic Church • Church • Faith • Faith & Health • Virginia

soundoff (807 Responses)
  1. Agnostickids

    This just in!!!! Facebook is an instrument of god! It saves children with downs syndrome! WHOO HOOO!!!

    July 12, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • Heretic

      It helps xtians obtain more jesus points.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Are you implying that what happened in this story is anything other than positive?

      July 12, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
  2. Doc Vestibule

    Right now in Chile, there is al 11 year old girl named Belen.
    She is 14-weeks pregnant and the father is her stepfather who repeatedly ra.ped her over a period of two years.
    Thanks to the Chilean governments blanket ban on abortion in any and all circ/umstances, she will be a mother at age 12.

    It frightens me that there are people who think it a good thing that this child has no option but to give birth.

    July 12, 2013 at 11:52 am |
    • Vic

      Loud and clear adoption case!

      July 12, 2013 at 11:58 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      An 11 year old girl's body, though capable of becoming pregnant, is not able to handle the rigours of pregnancy and childbirth in the same way a physically mature woman.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
    • Mary

      Vic, I have worked with cases that Doc has described and most of the time the child remains in the home to be abused just like the mother. In many cases the child suffers more because of both parents abuse it. Unless someone can step in for the child the cycle of abuse continues and the child is often not put up for adoption.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • WASP

      @vic: so where is your daughter? now remember when she is date ra-ped; don't worry she can just put it up for adoption. :)

      July 12, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
    • Vic

      The God who made her fertile at that age makes her durable for pregnancy and giving birth; I trust in the Lord!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
    • Saraswati

      As far as I am concerned, every person who voted for a system that forces this girl to remain pregant is guilty of torture and deserves punishment accordingly.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
    • Doobs

      Vic must be one of those "all babies are a gift from gawd" people.

      Yes, it's truly a blessing from your god allowed a nine year old girl to be repeatedly raped for two years by her stepfather until she became pregnant so that some rich white couple can adopt a baby.

      A nine year old girl, Vic. Nine.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
    • R.M. Goodswell

      This girl is at a critical point in her development....for 9 months her body that should be building will be instead depleting – resulting in stunted delelopement for the child mother....and the baby is far more likely to not get everything it needs in development + more birth defects....there is a reason it is a horrible idea for children to have children.

      Vic ...you support a truly evil philosophy.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
    • Vic

      @Mary "..."

      That should be illegal; that depends on what system the case is in!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • Pete

      "The God who made her fertile at that age makes her durable for pregnancy and giving birth; I trust in the Lord!"

      You have no clue what you're talking about a teenage girl is physically not ready to have a baby which is why that group has a higher rate of premature babies. Babies born to teenage mothers are more likely to die in the first year of life . Get an education.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • Candiano

      Vic, you have zero knowledge about biology and the female body. I hope you don't have female children.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • Vic

      @Sara "..."

      You can not defy science! God made her fertile at age and durable for pregnancy and giving birth!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Sure, Vic, happy trolling.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • Ummmmm

      "You can not defy science! God made her fertile at age and durable for pregnancy and giving birth!"

      You're wrong.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • Vic

      @Doobs "..."

      I trust in the Lord!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • Vic

      @R.M. Goodswell "..."

      You completely missed my point! If it is established that the mother's life is at risk, you abort, simple as that!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
    • FYI

      "You can not defy science! "

      http://www.webmd.com/baby/guide/teen-pregnancy-medical-risks-and-realities

      July 12, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • Vic

      @Pete "..."

      You also completely missed my point! If it is established that the mother's life is at risk, you abort, simple as that!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • R.M. Goodswell

      @ vic.. ....... id call 12 years old being at risk.....

      July 12, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Vic

      @FYI "..."

      Right! If it is established that the mother's life is at risk, you abort, if not, you do not abort, simple as that!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
    • Roger

      "Right! If it is established that the mother's life is at risk, you abort, if not, you do not abort, simple as that!"

      So then you should support that girls should be allowed to marry starting at the age of 12 around the world since you are putting them in the category as an adult.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
    • WASP

      @VIC:"The God who made her fertile at that age makes her durable for pregnancy and giving birth; I trust in the Lord!"

      good then trust in your "lord" when one of the male teachers has relations with her at a young age and she gets pregnant. you may be able to place him in jail, but remember you now have a grandchild to take care of or just force your daughter to go through the pain of giving their own flesh and blood away to total strangers. :)

      remember your god knows all and has a PLAN for your daughter. :)

      July 12, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • Vic

      @WASP "..."

      I DO NOT advocate anything illegal! We are talking about a Human Life here that took place already that comes before anything else!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
    • WASP

      @VIC: "I DO NOT advocate anything illegal! We are talking about a Human Life here that took place already that comes before anything else!"

      EXACTLY! regardless of where the child is born, lock up the perv, but remember SPARE THE FETUS FOR YOUR DAUGHTER'S SAKE.
      wouldn't want her under developed body to miss out on MOTHERHOOD! now would we?
      remember this is what YOU want for your child!
      your daughter gets ra ped in school, on the way home, or while you are out of the house........................YOU ONLY HAVE YOURSELF TO BLAME!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Vic: You are clueless and beyond ignorant. This is a CHILD!!!! She was raped!! By saying she should carry through the pregnancy, it condoning the rape. You have no clue as to what the risks involved are or what it is to carry a baby to term. Why the hell would you wish this forced upon a child? Are you that insensitive?

      July 12, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • Doobs

      @ Vic

      "I trust in the Lord."

      A nine year old is raped repeatedly, becomes impregnated at eleven, and you think it's okay because it's part of your god's master plan? Her free will to not be abused was violated because her rapist stepfather's free will to abuse her was allowed.

      That's a pathetic answer, and your god is a pathetic god.

      July 12, 2013 at 3:58 pm |
  3. Doc Vestibule

    "I do not believe that just because you're opposed to abortion that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking. If all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed, and why would I think that you don't? Because you don't want any tax money to go there. That's not pro-life. That's pro-birth. We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of what pro-life is.”

    – Sister Joan Chittister

    July 12, 2013 at 11:43 am |
    • Vic

      I sure don't want a single tax penny to go to abortion!

      July 12, 2013 at 11:53 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Vic
      Then may I as/sume that you are in favour of freely available contraception?

      July 12, 2013 at 11:55 am |
    • WASP

      @VIC: good then don't complain when they raise your taxes to pay for child services. :)

      July 12, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • Vic

      I don't have a problem with condoms or any contraceptive!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      "America you are beautiful and blessed The ultimate test of your greatness is the way you treat every human being, but especially the weakest and most defenseless. If you want equal justice for all and true freedom and lasting peace, then America, defend life." – Pope John Paul II

      July 12, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Vi, I don't want to see a single tax dollar going to people who choose to have more than two chinldren. No child tax credits, no public school, no welfare for any beyond two children. I don't want to see tax dollars going to treat children born of drug addicts. addict and pregant? Jail or abortion.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • Doobs

      "If you want equal justice for all and true freedom and lasting peace, then America, defend life." – Pope John Paul II

      He sure didn't defend the lives of countless altar boys. Great example, Bill. The RCC sure can pick 'em when it comes to their VIP club.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      So now we're talking about the murder of altar boys? Yeah boy, flog that dead horse.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • Vic

      @Sara "..."

      I am not a vegetarian nor vegan, and I am pro-life. Here is a clue for you:

      I believe in the S a n c t i t y Of HUMAN Life!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
    • Vic

      Oops..wrong spot!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
    • Doobs

      Bill Deacon deliberately "misunderstands" my post because he has no answer for it. His "saint" is all about the unborn, but once the kid is out of the womb, it's a free for all.

      The horse isn't dead, Bill. The horse is still hidden in the barn. I'll stop bringing it up when the RCC does the right thing and admits to covering up decades of child abuse.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      Does the Pope weep at the thought of so many thousands of young boy's they will never get to molest because of abortion? I'm just asking a question, not making any statements here, just like Fox News likes to do...

      July 12, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
    • Johnny

      Of course Catholic priests are against abortion they need as many children to abuse as they can get their hands on.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
    • God wears panties

      Bill Deacon

      So now we're talking about the murder of altar boys? Yeah boy, flog that dead horse.
      >
      But its not dead, it is still a problem in the katholic church.

      July 12, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
  4. Vic

    We are equipped naturally to preserve life; it's a basic instinct. It is unnatural to end a life! It is baffling to me how many people believe that a woman has the right to abort her unborn for body issues while ignoring that it involves another life. I believe only when the woman's life is at risk she owns that decision and has the right to abort. Other than that, if it has a heartbeat, I believe no one has the right to abort!

    July 12, 2013 at 11:37 am |
    • Candiano

      As you are a man, you will never have to make that decision, and are unqualified to make it for others. Believe as you like.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:54 am |
    • Vic

      I am a man and I know no one has the right to end a life!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Candy believes in a two tiered society where you get extra rights if you are the "right" gender.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Vic, are you a vegetarian? If not, the cow you eat has more neurons than the early embryo most pro-lifers think equal to a human. Unless you are vegetarian, a pro-life argument has zero credibility with me.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • Doobs

      Another Bill Deacon lie.

      You have the right to make medical decisions about your body, and I have the right to make decisions about mine. What gender based rights do I have that you don't?

      July 12, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • Candiano

      Candiano believes that it is the right of the woman to choose what she wants to do with her own body.
      Feel free to disagree.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      If you are a female, you have the right to kill your unborn child with no input from the father. Your so called right to do with your body, trumps the right of both the unborn child and the father's right to choose. Notice, I'm not making a value judgement here, just stating the facts of the law. When you get past the rhetoric about the science of life and the religious tenets of various faiths, you are left with the reality that what the government has provided is a right based on gender

      July 12, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Candiano

      And when science catches up, and the technology exists to implant the zygote into the father's body, how many do you think will step up to the plate? Those same fathers you are talking about are the ones driving the women to the clinic. Fathers can always offer to take the child after birth and raise the baby; why isn't this happening? Answer: because although fathers love to put in the order, they rarely stick around for the delivery.

      Her body, her choice to keep or abort.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
    • Vic

      @Sara "..."

      I am not a vegetarian nor vegan, and I am pro-life. Here is a clue for you:

      I believe in the S a n c t i t y Of HUMAN Life!!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
    • WASP

      @bill: "a right based on gender"

      yup and they had to seeing men have been taking privledge with the female body since the dawn of humans. i say it's about time for some protections for the gender that has been keeping this species alive since the beginning; and don't give me that " well without men" BS, you carry a developing fetus inside your body then you can claim something, otherwise without the life giving body of the mother, you wouldn't be here to argue this BS.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
    • WASP

      @VIC: "I believe in the S a n c t i t y Of BOVINE Life!"
      XD

      July 12, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      If you are a female, you have the right to terminate a fetus before 22 weeks with no input from the father. You say "kill child" I say "terminate fetus" just like we don't call pleasuring oneself into a tissue "mass genocide" of potentially unborn children. You say a fertilized egg is special because it has some divinely delivered invisible soul, I say you are delusional and have no evidence of such. There is as much evidence that a fertilized egg has a soul as there is for sperm having souls.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Just, A newly fertilized egg doesn't even have differentiated cells, let alone neurons yet these folks want to discuss the sancti.ty of a few cells while chomping down on some animal torutured on a factory farm. You've got to be either really ignorant of basic biology, blinded by religion or, more likely, both, for this kind of thinking to make sense. Add to this, by the way, thatmost of these folks think this terminated blob of undifferentiated cells gets a free ticket to heaven by the luck of not being born, and even their own ethics make no sense.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • Doobs

      "If you are a female, you have the right to kill your unborn child with no input from the father. Your so called right to do with your body, trumps the right of both the unborn child and the father's right to choose. Notice, I'm not making a value judgement here, just stating the facts of the law. When you get past the rhetoric about the science of life and the religious tenets of various faiths, you are left with the reality that what the government has provided is a right based on gender"

      Bill Deacon the Hypocrite says he's not making value judgements, but uses the false and inflammatory term "unborn child" to describe a zygote, and embryo, and a fetus.

      Please tell me how a man's rights are violated when a woman chooses to end a pregnancy. If a man has sex with a woman, he should discuss the possibility of pregnancy with first. If he doesn't want children, he should use appropriate birth control. If he wants children and the woman doesn't, he should practice celibacy until he finds a woman who also wants children. Men should be as vigilant as women have to be to avoid an unintended pregnancy, and that doesn't mean assuming the woman takes care of it all. Men have the right to not engage in intimate relations if they feel it might end in an unwanted pregnancy. They don't have the right to tell her what to do if they aren't careful and she gets pregnant. They should have thought of that before they fell into bed with her.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Candy, your posts bring up a couple of interesting points. The first that I notice is a tendency to value the contributions of mothers over fathers. My point is that women have been granted a special status because of their gender.It seems as if you are not arguing against that, but instead offering a justification for why it is so. In which case, I would that the societal predisposition for women's rights and the near history of abuse of the rights of fathers contributes to your second valid issue, the absenteeism of fathers.

      In either case, you haven't countered my argument that a two tiered system is in place. You've merely made excuses for it on the one hand and lamented the unintended consequences of it on the other. In either case, I oppose your solution, which is the termination of the life of an innocent unborn.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Doobs, the argument about "caring about what happens before you fall into bed cuts" both ways doesn't it? By the way, I agree. An caring person uses their judgement in order to prevent the need for their justification.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Perhaps one day science will fix the unfairness in allowing men to "carry the fetus." (Perhaps in some sort of advanced incubation chamber?) Then, men will have the same rights in the same case as only the fetus-carrier does now. The right to abort goes to the person who is almost solely responsible for fetal development up to a predetermined point.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:21 pm |
    • WASP

      @BILL: ", the absenteeism of fathers"

      good you take care of getting all those men that ran for the hills when they were told " WE'RE HAVING A BABY" to stay there and deal with everything that comes with that little bit of fun, a life time of responcibility.
      seeing you are a male, take care of the men issues; and leave the women issues to those that understand them, the women.

      hmmm wonder if you would be so prone to fight pro-choice if by law you had to raise the child all alone?

      July 12, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
    • Damocles

      @Bill

      It is not a 'special status granted to women'. I can have an operation that, in effect, kills off every child I could possibly ever have. Think about that.... millions of possible kids... gone. Are you outraged yet? Why are the troops not lined up outside my door to prevent me from doing this? If the sancti-ty of life is so all important, where are the laws preventing self-pleasure?

      July 12, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
    • Doobs

      @ Bill Deacon

      Yes, it is both person's responsibility to ensure that an unintended pregnancy doesn't happen. Unfortunately, this responsibility usually falls on the woman because a lot of men assume that the woman has everything under control. If a man doesn't want kids, he needs to ensure that his swimmers don't have any chance of contacting an egg.

      Once the swimmers are in a woman, they don't belong to the man anymore. The lucky winner of the race to the egg then becomes part of the woman's body, and it's her right to do whatever she chooses if she becomes pregnant. Just like a transplanted kidney.

      July 12, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      You all keep reasserting the same thing to me which I have already told you, namely that the woman has a right that a man does not. You can attempt to justify all you like as women's due for centuries of ill treatment or because men or pigs or whatever. But to a person, you have all agreed with me that women have a right which men do not. Therefore it is a stratified system. Seems like you would abandon calls for equality on other issues if you could just admit that it's not equality you're after. You only willing to use that as a clarion call for issues when you'd like to.

      Incidentally, there are groups of people who do consider a man's seed to be sacred and not something to be scattered. There's just been a great deal of success teaching young boys that seexual adventurism is "manly" and their right to "free expression". Now that all the young men have adopted to the new rules, you want to hold them to the old standard of responsibility. Good luck with that.

      July 12, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
    • Damocles

      @Bill

      1) If it's equality you are after am I to as-sume that you would be willing to be the first man to give birth? In the case of being pregnant, there can be no equality.

      2) Please do not try to act like self-pleasure is some new phenomenon that has hit the streets in the last twenty years. Again, if it's equality you are after, you should be braying just as loudly at all the men who have killed potential humans.

      July 12, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
  5. Heretic

    I think god was a dick for giving the baby downs syndrome.

    July 12, 2013 at 11:34 am |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Good call. If prayer worked the priest wouldn't have had to go searching for an adoption.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:43 am |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      Now did God give this baby DS or did he just prepare its brain to be more receptive to religion?

      July 12, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
    • Damocles

      @just

      Awww.... I'm almost ashamed I laughed at that.

      July 12, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      Every Christian I have ever known exhibited sever signs of Up Syndrome where they constantly fretted about whether they were going to go Up or not when they died...

      July 12, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
  6. R.M. Goodswell

    Ive got a solution for this so -called "right to life" bs. Instead of taxing churches, make them fund the child welfare system in this country. make them bear the burden of the physical therapy costs, the operations, feeding , clothing, housing and educating the unwanted children in this country...and have them overseen by the DSHS so there in no short changing these kids....put the hardship on the churches and priests like this one will get the hell out of the misery game they currently dabble in.

    July 12, 2013 at 11:27 am |
    • Candiano

      These people only care about forcing births. After its born, they walk away. "Sanctity of life" through the birth canal, and then it's off to vote to cut SNAP, education, WIC, school breakfast and lunch programs...that sends a clear message about their so-called "sanctity of life".

      July 12, 2013 at 11:41 am |
    • Tim

      @Candiano – the law is quite clear about the rights of a child after it has been born. There is no longer a need to fight for its rights at that point because the law can step in and do that. The attention is needed in the area where legal protection is lacking.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:49 am |
    • Johnny

      So Tim I guess you have no problem forcing unwanted children to be born into abusive homes because after the kids are abused the police will do something about it? Pretty sick if you ask me.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • Tim

      @Johnny – If given the choice of living in an abusive home or being killed, which sounds better to you?

      July 12, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Given the choice of living in an abusive home or not being born and getting a free ride to heaven which would you choose?

      July 12, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
    • Johnny

      If I was still a fetus and could avoid ever being abused, and assuming a fetus could make a choice, I would probably choose being killed.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
    • Candiano

      Tim, Roe v Wade was decided in 1972. See, the law is very clear there, too.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
    • Tim

      @Saraswati – Religious beliefs are irrelevant. Placing a value on life is a basic tenant of humanity.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      Maybe we should make a law that say's it's illegal for Tim to abuse himself anymore, I mean, the law already says he can't abuse others without consent, we just need law's protecting his penis from himself or he may pummle his body into a fit of mass genocide of potential babies...

      July 12, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Tim, Assuming your autocorrect got you there and you ment tenet, I'm still not sure that's what you really mean. Humanity isn't a belief system,but a species. Perhaps you meansomething more like "characteristic"?

      What "life" humans value appears to be partially innate (we mostly protect family) but is clearly also hugely cultural with some valuing the life of an ant equal to humans, some unwilling to eat the reproductive part of a plant, some considering other tribes a different species who can be killed... The fact that some think a ball of 8 undifferentiated cells in the uterous is different than a spec of skin of my thumb is just another cultural quirk. Some buy it...most do not.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
  7. Random thought

    Life is precious.

    Woman rights are God given.

    Sane rational people know how to help change the culture.

    Put America back on the right path.

    Freedom isn't free or easy.

    Choices are not easy.

    Pain and suffering all around.

    selfishness abounds.

    Self centered people don't value life and any point.

    We shall reap what we sow. Life or Destruction?

    Make peace with God, ask for forgiveness, pled for His mercy and hope for His grace.

    One more life was just snuffed out while writing this post.

    Another precious life gone.

    A tragedy.

    July 12, 2013 at 11:19 am |
    • Brother Maynard

      where does the soul of an aborted baby go?

      July 12, 2013 at 11:23 am |
    • Candiano

      You can believe that a woman's rights are God-given, but in the secular United States, a woman's right to choose what she wants to do with her own body is backed up by our Constitution. Her decision is HER decision. Not yours. Not your pastor's.
      You don't know what made any woman come to the decision to abort, and you don't have the right to know. Because it is wholly None. Of. Your. Business.
      Her body, her choice, her decision. Period.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:26 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      It's not about who gets the choice Candy. It's that too many are made poorly.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:35 am |
    • Candiano

      There is no person better qualified to make that choice than the woman, Bill Deacon. You don't have to agree with it, but it isn't yours to make. Her body, her choice.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:47 am |
    • Doobs

      Oh, do tell, Bill Deacon. I can't wait to hear more of your lies.

      It IS about who makes the choice. You get to choose what happens to your body, and I get to choose what happens to mine. You and your "god" don't get to make decisions for me. That's the law of the land.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      I understand the law of the land. Just like drinking alcohol is legal but that doesn't make drunkenness a good choice, or driving is legal but that doesn't make speeding a good choice. A lot of medical choices are legal, that doesn't make them wise. You continue to make the point to me that women have the right to do as they wish in this in this area and I do not disagree that at present that is the case under U.S. law. That doesn't mean the law is justifiable, nor does it mean the option to exercise it is anything other than tragic.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
    • Doobs

      So, Bill Deacon the Liar, you'd be fine with being compelled by law to have DNA samples taken and logged into a database? Then, if someone in the USA needs a kidney, and you're a match, you legally MUST give them your extra kidney to save their life?

      July 12, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
    • WASP

      @BILL: how sweet of you; you're comparing drunk driving to not only a females rights to her body, but yours as well.
      what do you think will happen if a group of females in power decide that your ability to "beat off" is a violation of their rights to give birth?
      i mean look at it, you are killing off MILLIONS of possible human lives; they are merely exercising their rights over what your "god" gave them, their BODIES!

      July 12, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      "Just like drinking alcohol is legal but that doesn't make drunkenness a good choice, or driving is legal but that doesn't make speeding a good choice. A lot of medical choices are legal, that doesn't make them wise."

      lol. FYI Bill, Speeding is illegal, drunkeness (in public) is illegal and yet those are your examples of legal things that are not wise? We have laws regulating those things, and we have laws regulating abortion. The fact that you don't agree with them doesn't bother me at all. The fact that you don't agree because of your belief in invisible souls and that a fetus before 22 weeks should have the same rights as the woman it's growing in only worries me because you and so many like you are trying to force your belief in invisible souls on others against our will. You are effectively r a p i n g women by forcing your decisions on them because as you say "too many are made poorly" and since you know SO much about the female body you know better than they do, right Bill?

      July 12, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
    • Johnny

      I assume that Bill has interviewed every woman who ever had an abortion to determine if their decision was made poorly or not.

      July 12, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
  8. Random thought

    Ken Margo post should be removed too!

    July 12, 2013 at 11:09 am |
    • Candiano

      Why? Did he say something that you found uncomfortable?

      July 12, 2013 at 11:19 am |
    • Random thought

      No.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:23 am |
    • Candiano

      Then why should his post be deleted?

      July 12, 2013 at 11:29 am |
  9. Brother Maynard

    "... we are asking all to pray for this baby and teh wisdom that this couple realize the importance of human life and do not abort this beautiful gift from god."
    Why didn't they pray to 'cure' the baby of downs syndrome? That way no adoption would have been needed

    July 12, 2013 at 9:57 am |
  10. Alias

    It is not really on topic, but people seem to be confusing the death penalty with abortion. Let's see if we can put this into logical context instead of just gushing emotional responses. A fetus has not made many decisions. No sane person would want to get an abortion because they were trying to kill a dangerous person. However, once a person has proven themselves to be a danger to everyone around them, society has the right to protect themselves from that individual. Many believe killing sadistic murderers is the best way to accomplish this. These are not the same thing. Views on abortion and views on the death penalty do not conflict.
    Legal arguments around abortion rights include the fact that the mother is sacrificing to allow the baby to use her body, and she will never be the same after delivery. If a woman chooses not to allow the fetus to use her body, she has that right. It is not about protecting the rest of society from the baby.
    The death penalty is about protecting society. I can't understand how anyone would intentionally hurt an animal that wasn't threatening them, but if a dog gets rabies, it has to be put down.

    July 12, 2013 at 9:34 am |
    • Dave

      When a dog has rabies we put it down because it's an animal. When a human has rabies we treat them in hospital as best we can until nature takes its course. We don't put the person down. There is a significant difference between general life and human life.

      July 12, 2013 at 9:42 am |
    • life

      Great points

      On topic:

      Does Size, Location, condition of health and age matter?

      If same child is livlng at home with mother, age is 5, has Downs, and is small for their age group does this same woman have the right to take the innocent child to a clinic to have its life ended?

      So, the fact the living baby in the womb age is anywhere from conception to 3rd term, has Downs, and very tiny- yet has a heart beat, organs and brain activity – this it is acceptable to end the innocent child's life by sucking it out of the woman's womb via a vacuum system?

      Wonderful, the end of humanity. Save the spotted owl eggs in a nest cared by the mother owl, but it is okay to murder innocent children living in a woman's womb.

      July 12, 2013 at 9:50 am |
    • Alias

      @Dave

      Do you think my point is to equate human life with animals?
      Are you really that stupid?

      July 12, 2013 at 9:50 am |
    • Alias

      @life

      Really?? The point i made was that the right to an abortion is about the mother's rights to her body. Did you actually read my post and conclude not only what my view of abortion is, but that i thought killing a 5 year old child was okay too?

      July 12, 2013 at 9:54 am |
    • tallulah13

      Hey "life"? a cluster of cells is not an innocent child. It's a cluster of cells that has the potential to become a child. The womb that houses that cluster, however, generally belongs to a fully functional, sentient human being who is the only one who honestly knows if she can afford (physically, financially or emotionally) to carry a pregnancy to term. (Sometimes the womb belongs to an abused child who has the misfortune of becoming pregnant before her body is able to safely carry a pregnancy to term, or to an abused adult who does not have the mental capacity to understand what is happening.)

      Since the pregnant women is the only one qualified to make choices about her body and her life, the decision doesn't belong to politicians, priests or over-dramatic strangers on the internet who don't actually have to live with the very real consequences of that choice.

      Not every child is wanted. Not every child will be born into a situation where it will thrive. Some children get abused and/or killed by the parents who do not want them. Not every child will be born with the physical capability to survive. Not every pregnancy ends in sunshine and roses. Why don't you concern yourself with those children who fall through the cracks instead of trying to control another person's womb? It may not make you feel as superior, but it might actually do some good.

      July 12, 2013 at 10:11 am |
    • Candiano

      Random, they are decisions that you are not qualified to make unless you are the one who is pregnant. The "price" isn't yours to pay.

      July 12, 2013 at 10:47 am |
    • Johnny

      Besides if you believe in the bible then children are born sinners, and are therefore not innocent.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
  11. Truth Prevails :-)

    That has to be one of the most ignorant comments ever.

    July 12, 2013 at 9:00 am |
  12. Akira

    Not even their wives want them in there...

    July 12, 2013 at 12:40 am |
  13. Ken Margo

    @Akira.............................We need Boehner and the rest of the repubs to stay out of women's va'ginas. :)

    July 12, 2013 at 12:27 am |
  14. Akira

    @Ken, lol. Next, if faith's questions are any indicator, we'll have to explain what a vagina is, and how the government and people whose business it is none of, needs to stay out of them.

    July 12, 2013 at 12:22 am |
  15. Ken Margo

    You mean I got it right! YEAH!

    July 12, 2013 at 12:17 am |
  16. Akira

    Are you male or female, faith?
    You don't know where babies come from? Seriously?

    July 12, 2013 at 12:16 am |
  17. Ken Margo

    A woman's va'gina

    July 12, 2013 at 12:14 am |
  18. faith

    finish it.

    where do babies come from?

    July 12, 2013 at 12:07 am |
  19. Raris vocibus

    Here is how I look at the issue of life. When a fertilized egg cell begins to divide we can start to draw certain conclusions about its future. We can say it will develop into a fetus, then into a baby, then into a child, then into an adult, who will eventually wither away and die from natural causes. These things are biological certainty, and we can call it a scientific fact that the fertilized egg, once it begins to divide and barring any interruption, will eventually develop into an adult human as we have never observed a different sequence of events. With the certainly of that biological progression we can say that a fertilized egg is the beginning of the sequence, and the natural death of the adult human is the end of the sequence. A fertilized egg is therefore the beginning of a human life in biology. Whether or not you believe a fetus has rights or a religious soul is purely a matter of philosophy. A human life begins with the fertilized egg. That is where life begins.

    July 11, 2013 at 11:57 pm |
    • Ken Margo

      @Raris.................."When a fertilized egg cell begins to divide we can start to draw certain conclusions about its future. We can say it will develop into a fetus, then into a baby, then into a child, then into an adult"

      You're wrong already. Many women have miscarriages.

      The when life begins argument makes no sense because when a baby is born no one says it's nine months old.

      You could make the life begins argument when the man ejaculates. If that don't happen nothing else does. How far back are we going with the "life begins" argument.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • Observer

      Actually life existed before fertilization. If sperm and egg had not had life previously, there would be no new life.

      July 12, 2013 at 12:14 am |
    • WASP

      @raris: " A fertilized egg is therefore the beginning of a human life in biology."

      the same points can be used for cancerous cells. they are the uncontrolled reproduction of a cell. it just continues to divide; thus the cancer should be seen as life from that perspective.

      life......no that's too broad; human life can only be considered "life" at the point the "individual" is capable of surviving outside the mother's body. once a child breaths on it's own or by way of human intervention through life-saving science technology can it be called life.

      that brings another point, seeing we only call life medically life after it is outside the body that should indicate a hint at what "life" is.
      we use:
      1)life saving medical equipment
      2) life saving medical procedures
      3) life saving medicines

      i could go on; however i hope you catch my drift. medically it's not life until it's outside the body.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:48 am |
    • Tim

      @WASP – birth doesn't end the reliance the baby has on other people. While it relies on the mother in the womb, after birth it will rely on the mother's milk, and then later on solid food and water. There is never a time in a person's life when they are truly self sufficient. They will always rely on their environment to survive.

      July 12, 2013 at 11:53 am |
    • WASP

      @TIM: one MAJOR QUESTION; does that child require the mother to breath?

      no it's doesn't.
      as infants yes we require a "parental figure" to provide us with nutrition, however it doesn't have to be "human milk" to do so.
      trust me being the father of a child born at 5 MONTHS, the option was there to terminate his life, pre-birth. me and my wife weighed the consequences of doning so or not; when the doctor asked we told him we will wait to see if he is born without the ability to survive on his own.
      once he was born the rushed him into a incubator, attacted him to every device they had avaible to help save his LIFE. i understand the pain of having to think these choices over because it's not about you, IT'S ABOUT THEM!.
      what life can a child having a child truly provide that new life?
      does that child deserve to be mistreated because it was a ra pe or incest baby?
      how about does that child deserve to be born addicted to drugs it never choose to take on it's own? the child having to suffer from mental illness and withdrawal symptoms it's whole life?

      i agree with what the nun lady said; "you're not PRO-LIFE, you're PRO-BIRTH"

      July 12, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
  20. Akira

    Y'know what the first line says? Newborn babies. Y'know what newborn babies aren't? Embryos.

    July 11, 2013 at 11:54 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.