Tuesday, February 08, 2011

To stand out for Christ: The Fellowship of the Unashamed

Recently I have basked in a wonderful response to my interview by Teresa Tomeo on EWTN during the March for Life about my advocacy group Keep Infants with Down Syndrome. So, I was relatively unguarded when Kirk Carapezza from WBUR a radion station at Boston University asked to interview my on the comments I made below.

"I am raising an 8 year old daughter with Down syndrome, I refused pre-natal testing since abortion was not an option for my family. The key to lowering the 92% abortion rate of children with Down syndrome is education. Did you know that recent studies at Johns Hopkins and Stanford University with mouse models of Trisomy 21 are holding hope that a drug can be developed within a decade to normalize the cognition and memory of those with the disorder? And that Dr Roger Reeves of Johns Hopkins holds out hope that this research may provide treatment for the neural degeneration of Alzheimer’s Disease, and even possible cure for cancerous tumors?

The future looks bright ONLY if we give these babies life and invest in such promising research. Look at the results of the education advances of the last 20 years when we stopped institutionalizing children with Ds and began to mainstream them. Adults who have been in typical educational environments are graduating college, holding down jobs, getting married, excelling in sports, driving and starring in films.
Would anyone have considered these possibilities in the 1970′s?
If you, like Marjorie, feel unequal to the challenge of raising your child with Ds, over 600 families are on a waiting list to adopt your baby with Down syndrome.
Where there is life there is hope."
Posted by Leticia Velasquez on February 2, 2011

I did what felt like a thorough interview with Kirk Carapezza, an alumni of Holy Cross College as part of the letters section in response to the original interview with Down syndrome advocate, Dr Brian Skotko. . My piece appeared after a banal 15 minute discussion on nit-picking (an in depth discussion about head lice). Its at 15:25 in the interview. You can listen to it here.

My points  from the original comment were covered and Kirk even took the time to ask me to verify the 92% abortion rate of babies with Trisomy 21 and the number of families on a waiting list to adopt a child with Down syndrome (600, I interviewed the nurse who maintains the registry).
 Yet, from a ten minute interview, only a tiny soundbite was played and Kirk emphasized that I declined pre-natal testing due to my convictions. While that IS true, my sharply curtailed comments were followed by a woman who related that her friend spent untold sums of money on therapies for her child with Trisomy 21, and that this would not be possible for the average person. The implication was that if you are not wealthy and prepared to expend lots of energy on your child with Trisomy 21, you had better abort him. This is utter nonsense, we paid nothing out of pocket for all of Christina's therapies and education. I can't help feeling like they deliberately frightened any woman who may be carrying a child with Trisomy 21 into an abortion.

Never will I submit to a taped interview again on a liberal radio station with such a pro-abortion agenda!!
My previous experience with NPR was positive, I posted about how Christina has enriched both my family life and my Catholic faith here. .But it was written and published in its entirety.
I posted my anguish in a note on Facebook with a large sympathetic response. Thank you to my loyal friends who were as outraged as I was. Why should be we surprised? The world has always hated us for being faithful to the Gospel of Life.
I also received a long private email from an author who tries to influence others without showing her hand as a Catholic as directly as I do. God bless her, she may reach more souls for Christ than I do, with her eloquence, and conviction, but even she had a bad experience with NPR as her interview on her book was scrapped because she insisted on giving God credit for her accomplishments when the host was desperately trying to coach her to attribute her accomplishments to socialization, or any other means other than the grace of God.  She ignored it and paid the consequences.
I offer this meditation from Patrick Madrid's website as an inspiration for those of us who are  trying to influence the Culture of Death and running straight into walls with the secular media. Its just part of the life we live as followers of the Crucified One. What did we expect this side of heaven? It should neither discourage us or slow us down.
We are. . .

I AM A PART of the Fellowship of the Unashamed.

The die has been cast. The decision has been made. I have stepped over the line. I won’t look
back, let up, slow down, back away or be still.

My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is in God's hands. I am
finished and done with low living, sight walking, small planning, the bare minimum, smooth
knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, frivolous living, selfish giving, and
dwarfed goals.

I no longer need preeminence, prosperity, position, promotions, applause, or popularity. I
don’t have to be right, first, the best, recognized, praised, regarded, or rewarded. I now live
by faith. I lean on Christ’s presence. I love with patience, live by prayer, and labor with the
power of God’s grace.

My face is set. My gait is fast, my goal is heaven. My road is narrow, my way is rough, my
companions are few, my Guide is reliable, and my mission is clear.

I cannot be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, turned back, deluded, or delayed. I
will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the
table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediocrity.

I won’t give up, shut up, let up or slow up until I have stayed up, stored up, prayed up, paid
up, and spoken up for the cause of Christ.

I am a disciple of Jesus. I must go till He comes, give until I drop, speak out until all know,
and work until He stops me.

And when He returns for His own, He will have no difficulty recognizing me. My banner is
clear: I am a part of the Fellowship of the Unashamed.

Adapted from the original (author unknown) by Patrick Madrid


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PattyinCT said...

Beautiful. You are as elegant a witness to life as your daughter is. Thanks for all you do!

Jackie Parkes MJ said...

Great post..