Here is a first-hand account of Friday’s Red Rose Rescues from rescuer Laura Gies.
We had 2 teams: One went to Center City Planned Parenthood in Philadelphia and another went to West Chester, PA Planned Parenthood (in western suburbs). Both arrived at approximately 8:05 – 8:15 am.
Center City Philly PP: The Red Rose Rescue team was able to peacefully enter the waiting room of PP with 7 Red Rose Rescue team members in place by 8:20 am. We were able to talk quietly to 3-4 clients. One young woman there to have Norplant removed took the rose I handed to her.
We had 45 minutes of fruitful interaction within the waiting room, without being noticed at all by the PP staff. Then there was a call for all of us to evacuate. It took a moment to understand what this was about, at first we thought that it was because the staff figured out that several people in the waiting room (us?) were not actual patients.
But then we realized it was due to rescuer Matthew Connolly who, when he managed to get past the clinic security guard, made a decision to “hide” in a bathroom down the hall from the procedure rooms. The clinic staff detected that someone was “barricaded” in the bathroom and they made a hasty judgment that this person was a danger to himself — not realizing of course that Matthew was a pro-life rescuer. As a result, the entire building was evacuated.
The police came and ordered that everyone leave the building—the PP staff, the women scheduled for abortions and us. However I made a decision to remain in the waiting room — as I was concerned that at some point the staff and women would eventually return and the abortions would begin. I wanted to remain to reach out to the women. Another Red Rose Rescuer had the same idea, and stayed in another bathroom off of the waiting room, completely undetected by clinic staff or the police. Two other rescuers, one of them Will Goodman and Dianna Harlow, evacuated the clinic with everyone else as they intended to continue to talk to the women, by now up to ten, who had come for abortions — women who thought that they too were there for an abortion!
Outside on the sidewalk the rescuers were able to interact with the PP clients, gently conversing about not getting an abortion, and this went on for over two hours.
I stayed in the waiting room for one hour, sitting with the roses in my hands, undetected. I prayed a Rosary. A major focus was afoot — the police negotiating with Matthew “barricaded” inside the other restroom down the hall. A SWAT team was even called in, and they managed to get the door of the restroom open — and by now the entire block where the PP clinic is located was cordoned off by police tape. Women arriving for their abortion appointments were told point blank by the police that the clinic was closed for the day.
Matthew was apprehended, by some degree of force (they used a tazer and pepper water spray, yes he says: it was not pleasant). However, Matthew was later released with no charges.
Finally, a uniformed police officer walked into the empty waiting room. I was there quietly praying with roses in my hands, and he suddenly noticed me. He looked at me startled, and began to explain that I did not belong inside, and I must “go outside with the rest of the protestors.”
I responded, “Officer, as long as there is any chance that all the patients and staff would come back into the building to resume the dismemberment of children, I will not leave.”
This exchange continued with both the uniformed officer and a civil affairs officer who came after being alerted to my presence. Eventually, I was handcuffed and dragged out of the waiting room and taken out of the clinic. I received a $50 dollar city citation. The handcuffs were removed and I was free to walk away.
Two hours later the other rescuer in the second restroom (who wishes to remain anonymous) was discovered by police inside and permitted to leave the clinic with no charges.
We witnessed the police informing about a dozen patients approaching the Planned Parenthood doors that all appointments were canceled for the day. No one was allowed entrance. Due to the Red Rose Rescue, no unborn children were killed at this PP clinic. We pray this reprieve will be the opportunity for at least one, and maybe more than one woman to choose life.
West Chester PA PP: Father Fidelis Moscinski, Linda Mueller and John Hinshaw participated in this rescue. Once they entered the waiting room however, the clinic staff detected that they were not there for any PP “services.” Police arrived very quickly and they were belligerent and hostile — even threatening to arrest Fr. Bill Kuscinsky who was outside on the sidewalk because he stepped into the street to take a photo.
Father Fidelis, Linda Mueller, and John Hinshaw were arrested and taken away quickly. Sadly, abortion appointments continued for the day. The prayer supporters that came with the Red Rose Rescuers were alongside the faithful, local pro-lifer sidewalk counselors who were already in place as usual for Fridays at this abortuary. Much sidewalk outreach occurred to women arriving for abortions.
Fr. Fidelis, Linda and John were taken to the County Jail. Unbelievably they have been charged with felony trespass and conspiracy to commit trespass. There is simply no reason for such severe charges.
Linda was arraigned in late afternoon (before close of court for day) and given a $2,500 bail which her husband managed to pay.
John and Father were not arraigned until “night court” after 7 p.m. Although their charges were the same, the bail was doubled. $5,000 bail each. John was bailed out by a generous local benefactor.
Father Fidelis was very clear to everyone that he did not want to be bailed out. He refuses to pay the bond. Thus Fr. Fidelis of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal is still in the Westchester County jail. He will appear before a judge, Friday, Sept. 3rd at 10am — and we hope he will be released on his own recognizance. Please pray.
For those who may not understand why Father Fidelis refuses to pay the bond — When you post bail, the court has the money now, and if you are found guilty later, and you refuse to pay the fine, the fine can be deducted from the bail you posted.
This is something Father Fidelis is avoiding. He has always stated that he is in the best position to do this, as he is a religious, has no money/property, no family responsibilities, etc. After 30+ Red Rose Rescues, and at least a dozen for Father Fidelis himself, Father will be spending at least a few days in jail.
The above comes from an Aug. 30 email from Citizens for a Pro-life Society.
Red Rose Rescuers, Heroes All. They are doing the Lord, and as St. Teresa of Calcutta said, God has not called us to be successful but to be faithful.
They are doing the Lord’s work.
Where did Jesus say in the Gospels to lock yourself in a bathroom in a private place of business to disrupt their activity? He said to go to your room, close the door and pray, not to make a scene. Your heavenly Father who sees in secret will repay you. Do not be like the hypocrites who like to make a show.
Someone is so confused that she/he would distort this scenario & blame courageous men/women for trying to rescue those going to the slaughter & make it look like they are the villains. Perfect example of calling good evil & evil good. God have mercy & untie their hands to the Devil please!
Ronnie, you see them as courageous and trying to rescue. In real time, when anyone behaves inappropriately, you don’t know their motives, you don’t know their intentions, you don’t know what they are going to do or what they are capable of doing. It is a potentially dangerous situation.
Someone else What is more dangerous then dismembering a person to death? What is more dangerous then a woman hemorrhaging to death?
Gun violence and bombings for two.
Ronnie, you are idealizing the results of bad behavior.
and yes, aborting a baby is worse.
Unfortunately , it is legal (as of today.)
Someone else Gun violence? Guns don’t kill people people do. It’s in their heart through the acceptance of killing the innocents in the womb. The culture of death. As for bombings, another result of no respect for all life.
vbs Unfortunately legal does not make it right. Look back at history was legality ok for slavery?
“Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter”
Yes, it is a sin, a mortal sin. It is a murder. Slavery is not ok either.
Nobody here has a problem with the men or women talking to the ladies trying to prevent abortions.
Everyone else here seems to have a problem with the locking yourself in the bathroom stunts or the disobeying of law enforcement.
I hope they think better of their tactics.
70% of women who abort do so because they feel like they have no choice. Sometimes, family and friends pressure them into doing it. Please work on those underlying causes as well as the urgent needs of the day of decision.
Like we…You’re missing the point. Whatever tactic is used it is irrelevant to stopping the murder of the innocent. What do you think we have been doing over 40 years. There are more Crisis Pregnancy Centers than abortion/death camps. Unwed mother homes, standing outside the death camps trying to give these women help. Please think before you make ridiculous statements. My friend saved 5 babies and mothers last week at the abortion clinic. We give them real help and ongoing assistance until they don’t need us anymore. Some women we’ve been helping for 20 years. Again you’re missing the point.
These people have guts…and they see reality with a clarity that most of us do not possess…pray God grant the rest of us such supernatural clarity….
Arrogance and egomania. “Look at me! I’m being handcuffed and tazered! Look at me! I don’t want to get out of jail so I can have more to talk about my experiences!”
The babies they save would not agree with you. Neither would the women who decide against abortion because rescuers show up.
How many women are going to decide against their abortion because some kook locks herself in the bathroom?
I think those sidewalk counselors (CCD used to run articles by them) are better.
Bad strategy. Self-indulgent. Not what pro-life needs.
And how many lives were spared the violence of abortion because of these “kooks”? Praise God for that! And let’s not forget to mention those women who were spared the heartache of living with this for the rest of their lives
The article does not indicate that there were any “turnarounds.” I agree that saving a life would make it all worth it.
JJ God only asks that we try. I remember counseling a woman by phone the night before her abortion was scheduled. I pleated with her but no she was going through it. I told her I would be here for her whatever decision she made. Well two years later she came walking into the pro-life center crying and with a baby in her hands. She said I know you couldn’t save my other child but this one you did. I will never forget you for not judging me and helping me more if I wanted it. She brought me presents too….God will turnaround women. We just have to be His instrument.
Ronnie, thank you for your service. Job well done.
And thank you JJ so much for your kind words but it is not me it is God using me. I’m so imperfect but God is so good that He gives me the courage to reach out to these women.
If you had an appointment to get your hair done and you found out the salon was closed on the day of your appointment because there had been an altercation inside and the police were investigating, does that mean you wouldn’t return on a different day to get your hair done? No, you’d return later.
These stunts save nobody. These stunts don’t change minds. These stunts merely make the people doing them feel good about themselves. It’s devilish pride.
Devilish pride? And here I thought the Devil is on the side of death. A bit confused Id say.
False comparison because an abortion appointment isn’t neutral like a hair appointment, and many abortion minded women do not return later. Lots of them see a protestor as “the sign they were looking for” to cancel their abortion.
Saving a life is not a stunt and these people who put themselves out there are to be hailed as fighters on the right side of history.
Yeah…I can’t think of a better way to gratify my ego than being zapped with 50K volts, rough handled, handcuffed and spend time in jail (you’ve obviously never participated in prison ministry). Nope…no better way…
It might just be mental illness.
When someone I knew was arrested, (charges were dropped), his lawyer told him not to post bail but use a bondsman because if you can afford bail you can afford the fine.
It sounds like that is what the priest is doing only he is saying he cannot even afford the 10% that a bonds person charges.