Crosses Vandalized at St. Stephen Church

Parishioners at St. Stephen Catholic Church are wondering why someone would destroy a display of crosses intended to bring awareness to lives sacrificed in abortion.


It took volunteers with St. Stephen Catholic Church's Respect Life Ministry hours to set up wooden crosses on the church property to remember the lives lost since the 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court case that legalized abortion.

But it took vandals only moments to destroy the display.

Some time during the late-night hours of Jan. 29-30, vandals demolished the display of white crosses in front of the church in Valrico, at 5049 Bell Shoals Road, either breaking the crosses or tossing them into a nearby retention pond on the church propery.

Ministry leader Jeanne Lewis said the volunteers, who have been displaying the crosses annually, were surprised by the level of destruction.

She said she feels it's not only a violation of the ministry's freedom of religion and speech but also goes against their right to mount a peaceful protest highlighting the physical, emotional and spiritual effects of abortion.

Lewis said the purpose of her ministry isn't to condemn those who have had abortions but to raise awareness of the numbers of abortions occurring and to reach out to those touched by abortion and help them find God's forgiveness and healing.

"The statistics show that, at the current rate, more than a third of American women will have an abortion . . . " Lewis said. "Extremely sad, but true."


Madeleine Davis February 04, 2013 at 04:50 AM
Why does this crime surprise anyone? Those who support abortion will not give a second thought to destroying private property or another's religious beliefs. Ignorance is abundant. Go ahead, "forgive them." Madeleine Davis/member of St. Stephen's C.C.
Jery Elliott February 05, 2013 at 05:57 PM
"...when YOU take the reasons why we have abortion in this country seriously….WE will start taking you seriously. If you want to keep shouting, praying and holding signs of aborted fetuses, you are showing us you aren’t really concerned with saving any of those fetuses, you are only worried about making sure your version of God knows you were angry during your lifetime, which I’m starting to wonder if that may be the ONLY reason you are pretending to be angry – to score points for later." http://thebigslice.org/reality-slap-are-you-really-trying-to-end-abortions/
Phil M February 05, 2013 at 09:13 PM
What is funny to me is most of these people speak about tolerance but are some of the most intolerant people. ________________________________________ Find a Career College near you, www.americolleges.com
Dave Koehler February 05, 2013 at 11:49 PM
It's called free speech. Get over it.
Cathi T February 06, 2013 at 01:57 AM
Cathi T Jerry I feel sorry for you. You just don't understand what legalized abortion has done and is doing to the morality of this country. Some one must speak up for the unborn. You're acting as if this human fetus is some kind of parasite that you want to remove because its inconvenient or uncomfortable. And unfortunately that is the attitude that has allowed this country to make it legal to destroy living human young. Abortion is the easy way out of a very uncomfortable situation. As a woman who has experienced abortion I can tell you that it would not have happened if it had not been legalized! We women must stand up and take responsibility for the decisions we make. If we become pregnant because of lack of self control or simply laziness then we must accept the consequences and bring this life into the world and make sure he or she is taken care of the best way possible. There are too many ways to avoid pregnancy other than killing the innocent victim of our mistake. That is the main problem with youth and our society in general ; no one accepts accountability for their actions. There is a huge lack of responsibility. It's always someone else's fault! Cheating is rampant in our schools and universities. I truly fear for the future of America as we condone murder in the womb, euthanasia and other atrocities against life crested by God. How long is He going to tolerate us?
Jery Elliott February 06, 2013 at 01:52 PM
I am sorry for you Cathi ... I call B.S. on your claim. Anyone who believes that having an abortion is the "easy way out of an uncomfortable situation" has obviously never had to endure the emotional, psychological, and physical pain of the procedure. No person that I know is actually FOR abortion. Who in their right mind would be in favor of such a medical procedure. However, it must remain an option for those cases where it is medically or legally necessary to terminate a pregnancy. What I am FOR is many of the things that the Catholic Church seems to be against -- and which have been proven effective in limiting the need for abortions. I am FOR health education. A person educated as to their sexuality and how the process works is less likely to engage in sexual activity that will result in an unwanted pregnancy. The Catholic Church prefers to bury its head in the sand and believe that people don't have sex unless they intend to get pregnant. I am FOR access to competent and available health care and especially that which results in pregnancy prevention. the Catholic Church is against contraception in all forms ... as well as the insurance that could provide it. I am FOR women having protective rights and a legal say in what happens to them and their bodies. the Catholic Church sides with politicians who vote against legislation such as the Violence Against Women's Act and other laws that can protect women.
Jery Elliott February 06, 2013 at 01:57 PM
By the way Cathi ... "HE" (by whom I assume you are referring to G-d) is not a corporeal being. "HE" is an image created in the minds eye based upon scripture that is interpreted by others and presented to you in a prescribed manner for maximum control of your attitude and opinions. MY version of G-d wants individuals to be educated and have free will over their bodies. MY G-d hates abortion as much as your G-d ... but mine has the necessary compassion and knowledge to know that there are ways to limit the need for abortion through education and access to medical care.
Frank Shannon May 24, 2013 at 12:05 PM
Ah, in other words, Jery hasn't the humility to recognize a power having authority over him. He wants to make his own rules, moral relativism, basically. He wants to be GOD.


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