Stand Up for Religious Freedom Rally held in historic Debate Square in Freeport IL. (ProLifeCorner.com) – 6-9-2012 – On Friday, June 8, Freeport joined 164 cities all across America for the second Stand Up For Religious Freedom Rally. Several speakers were on hand to express their thoughts on the HHS mandate and how it would affect all Americans, regardless of religious preference. Christopher Clukey, board member of Stephenson County Right to Life, sponsor of the rally, introduced Father Timothy Barr of St. Joseph’s/St. Mary’s Churches in Freeport for the opening prayer and comments.
The keynote speaker was Mitch Striedl, Respect Life Director for the Diocese of Rockford. He spoke of the Bill of Rights and our founding fathers, who stressed the importance of freedom of religion and not freedom from religion. If this HHS mandate is approved it will affect all religions, not just Catholic, and will infringe on our religious freedoms for years to come. Churches, hospitals, clinics, social services, and many other organizations will be forced to go against their beliefs and principles whether they want to or not.
Following Mr. Striedl was Lisa Johnson of Silent No More in Rockford, IL. Lisa told her experience of an abortion at the infamous, now closed, Northern Illinois Women’s Center in Rockford. Lisa was only fourteen years old and was coerced into an abortion by her boyfriend and his parents. She told the assembly that she contemplated suicide many time but was unable to follow through; she suffered depression and guilt and had horrible nightmares. Her experience included the abortionist coming to her after the procedure and holding something in a dish in his hand. He told her this was not a baby, just a blob of tissue but Lisa knew that at eight weeks of gestation, the legs, arms, face, and a beating heart were present. This outrageous act by the abortionist was barbaric and it made her suffering that much worse. It was apparent to all who heard her that even 15 years later she still suffers with the after effects of this hideous procedure.
Christopher Clukey, long time member of Stephenson County Right to Life, spoke of what can happen if this mandate is passed. He cited instances of socialized medicine in Canada and how many people have to wait months for needed surgery because the government decides if they need this or not. Many Canadians cross over into the US to have the life-saving surgery or procedure necessary for them to continue to live, proving the government-run health care is an empty promise. As usual, his comments were well researched and factual.
Representative Jim Sacia of the 89th Illinois district, told the crowd about the many pro-life bills that are stalled because of the pro-abortion forces; simple bills that would allow a woman to see her ultrasound if she so desires; bills that would protect women and not harm them.
Monsignor William McDonnell closed the program with a prayer.
We will be posting a separate article with full pictorial spread of the June 8 event in Freeport.
UPDATED JUNE 10: We are pleased to tell you all the videos from the June 8 religious freedom rally in Freeport, IL are now available below. Please return often until you have viewed all the videos. Our thanks to all our wonderful speakers for their excellent presentations. They have helped expose the evil of the HHS mandate.
Opening Comments & Prayer 6:Min
Respect Life Coordinator On HHS Mandate 13:Min
Lisa Johnson Silent No More HHS Mandate 13:Min
Clukey Comments on HHS Mandate Effects 14 Min
State Representative Jim Sacia 12 Min