Thursday 29 January 2015

Mary Wagner and Linda Gibbons: The Scandal of Silence must be broken in Canada

"When you have done it to the least of these, you have done it to me.”

Photo: Courtesy "The Interim"
Canada is blessed with two Angels for Life. That is,  two women who, in their total devotion to Our Lord, have "incarnated" his love in seeking out the lost, the forgotten, and those deprived of love: the unborn child with no voice, and the mother who is about to kill her baby.  

Linda Gibbons has been in and out of prison for witnessing to life for the past twenty years. Mary Wagner, has been in and out of prison for well over the past decade, most recently spending nearly two years in prison. Yet Christ's love has no bounds. Even in prison, His miraculous power is there to behold:  young women received back into the Church, babies saved, souls sent to Heaven. Even the Black Madonna visited Vanier Centre for Women

There are two great, immediate victims of abortion, two great sorrowful tragedies. The child and the mother. The child is killed and the mother becomes a killer. The unborn child in the womb is deprived of love, his mother's love, the most precious human love in the world. This is the first tragedy of abortion. The young woman at the abortion mill, many times frightened, confused, and pressured to kill her child is lost and forgotten. This is the second tragedy of abortion. These two figures: child and mother are the great tragedies of abortion: the life-receiver, murdered before birth, and the life-giver, turned into a killer (many times against her will).

Abortion has also other victims: the father, the abortionist, the family, society and the social order of the State. All these tragedies interact in such a manner, that they should impose on us the reality that abortion is the greatest threat to peace: peace in the family, peace in society, peace in the Church, peace in the world.

The Catholic Church, as the sole guardian of faith and morals, should clearly, and with a strong and clarion voice, speak on issues of Life. Sadly, we are not hearing this. It is not enough to issue discrete papers (that no one will read), give speeches at bishops' gatherings, have "official" newspapers publish both sides of a story, or publish confusing information for a laity already utterly bewildered and ill catechized, or remain silent on the evils of contraception (when it is the fuel that feeds the abortion furnace). In Canada, we are not hearing a strong voice from our bishops. We are not hearing a strong voice from our priests. We need to hear the voice of Christ's representatives proclaiming the Gospel of Life from the pulpit, in the media, on the internet, on the streets, outside the abortion mills - everywhere!

Photo: Courtesy Ewa Rejman 
That Mary Wagner is in prison for over a month, and we have not heard one word of support from our hierarchy is a scandal. Many examples could be given to show this untoward silence. This blog, reported back on January 11th the words of Bishop Henryk Tomasik in support of Mary. That was met with utter silence from our hierarchy and from the press (and I do not mean just secular or "mainstream"). When we reported that public prayers were offered for Mary at the Shrine of the Black Madonna, we were met with silence. When we published an open letter from the "Holy Family Medical Group" from Poland, we were met again with utter silence. When we published Fr. Peter Baltarowicz's letter, again, utter silence... and so on. Along with Vox Cantoris we have stood in solidarity with Mary, and we will continue to do so. We stand in solidarity with Linda and will defend her when she returns to prison in the future. Inside and outside of prison, we will defend our Angels for Life. 

H. E. Bishop Henryk Tomasik
There is something deeply, profoundly wrong in this country. The Catholics of Poland are correct: Canada has her head buried in the sand. Do Canadians think that the horror of abortion will just go away if we shut our eyes? Evidently, the vast majority, including Catholics, do. But abortion will not go away; nor contraception its evil twin, with an ongoing scandal of silence. To combat evil it must be exposed and the victims of it must be drawn lovingly towards the truth about Life. This is what Mary and Linda are doing. And we should be supporting them in every way we can. Primarily by unceasing prayer. The question again arises: and it is not why they keep going to prison, but why there are not hundreds, if not thousands there with them? 


Lawrence and Susan Fox said...

This article is a great work, and a tremendous voice for the unborn as well as their silent witness Mary Wagner. Yes the Canadian bishops and priests are largely silent, but as is the case with St. Susanna in the Old Testament, God has raised up another prophet, another Daniel, to speak for the Silent Witness Mary Wagner, and it is the Toronto Catholic Witness as well as the whole people of Poland.

So not all Canadians are silent about this matter. The Witness is not silent. God bless the Witness and its apostolate.

Susanna was falsely accused of adultery by two elderly men who wanted to lay with her. She resisted them, so they bore false witness. She was condemned to death. But before she could be executed, the young man Daniel interrupted. Inspired by God he said the elders should be questioned separately in order to prevent the death of an innocent. Their truthfulness was nonexistent, and they were put to death at the end of Daniel's interrogation. But not Susanna.

I remember Susanna's story so well as she is my name sake. And St. Faustina of Poland would understand her well because Susanna -- like Faustina -- practiced the third degree of humility. She waited for God to defend her. Susanna said, " “Eternal God, you know what is hidden and are aware of all things before they come to be:
you know that they have testified falsely against me. Here I am about to die, though I have done none of the things for which these men have condemned me.” (Dan 13:42-43) And the next line is my favorite: "The Lord heard her prayer."

In such straights is Mary Wagner, silent, in prison, literally for talking to women in an abortion clinic and offering them roses. But she waits silently for God to defend her. And yes, God, may be calling many others into the clinic to suffer the same fate with Mary. The Canadian authorities are unjust. They will not listen. The Canadian clergy is silent. The Witness is not. Neither are the people of Poland. God will defend Mary. We must trust in that. And her imprisonment is bringing about great good for those around her, most notably the women in prison with her. Young women are received back into the Church, babies saved, souls sent to Heaven, Barona faithfully reports. Even the Black Madonna visited Vanier Center for Women! Praise God.

Reminds me of the martyrdom of St. Philomela. Every time they tried to kill her and they didn't succeed until the third time, witnesses converted to Catholicism. She was drowned, shot with arrows and finally stabbed to death. Mary's witness is bearing similar good fruit. God bless you. Susan Fox

Anonymous said...

I do not understand why law of Canada agree for abortion if the birthrate of this country is below 0 and they are searching for imigrants all over the world. There is no explanation for such behaviour, in my opinion present goverment of Canada is damage state acting allowing for killing so many citiziens. They don't want strong Canada, they want this country to make poor and soon it will happen if the people won't change somethnig.

Luciano said...

For the second time in about a month I have asked for prayers for Mary at our weekly RCIA gathering and for the second time I am met with absolute silence. No questions, no interest shown. It really really saddens me, especially the silence from the priest.