October 2013, Letter from Mary Wagner:
This letter goes out from Vanier [Centre for Women], an Ontario jail where I have been incarcerated for the last 14 months. I am awaiting trial on charges of "mischief: interference with lawful enjoyment/operation of a business", and breach of a probation order that unjustly prohibits me from entering within 200 m. of any place where abortions are committed in Ontario.
Several people from Canada and abroad have asked if I would write something to help convey why I am here. I hope the following will be of help to my Christian brothers and sisters in particular, as well as to anyone of good will, especially those who care about the littlest and most defenceless of God's children, our brothers and sisters in the womb.
I am a Catholic and having been raised in a large and very pro-life family, was active in what many would consider various branches in the pro-life movement. As a young adult, God attracted me more and more, and seeking His will became more important. Through prayer and discernment, He showed me more deeply the painful reality of abortion, and I realized that He was leading me to go to these places where His little ones are killed, to pray, to speak to the mothers and for their little ones; to be present and not to walk away, but to remain with them, regardless of the outcome. Each person, no matter how small, is a unique, unrepeatable human being of infinite worth, made in God's image and likeness, precious to Him and deserving of our love, as Jesus Himself tells us: "whatsoever you do to the least of these, my brothers and sisters, you do to me" (Mt. 25:40).
As Canadians are aware, abortion was decriminalized in this country over forty years ago. This has resulted in the killing of millions of unborn children at all stages of pregnancy (to say nothing of the many who are also irreparably harmed in the womb because of their mother's alcohol and drug abuse). Until one is born, there is no legal protection from the abuse or killing, since in law, there is no personhood status recognized.
With time, abortion has gained acceptance as the "providing of a medical procedure", and those who seek to intervene on behalf of the babies in imminent danger can be - and are - charged with crimes, as I am, as Linda Gibbons has been repeatedly, and as many others in the past have been as well.
It is vital that we realize that abortion is NOT a medical procedure, but the killing of helpless children. When a human being is threatened with death, it is a gravely unjust law that would prevent people from protecting him or her. Catholic teaching makes this clear in Section 2242 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church: The citizen is obliged in conscience not to follow the directives of civil authorities when they are contrary to the demands of the moral order, to the fundamental rights of persons or the teachings of the Gospel. Refusing obedience to civil authorities, when their demands are contrary to an upright conscience, finds its distinction between serving God and serving the political community. "We must obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29).
Mother Teresa condensed the message of Mt 25:40 into what she called "the five finger Gospel": “You did it to me". As Mother knew so deeply, Jesus thirsts for love, especially in the poorest and most forgotten. Who, in our cities and towns, are more forgotten, unloved, than the child - indeed the mother and child - entering the abortion clinic"?
I have been arrested numerous times as a result of reaching out to mothers within the "Bubble Zone" and for remaining on the property where abortions are committed. In such cases, my presence is deemed "interference with…a business", the "business" being abortion. Of the many times I have been present to the abortion-minded mothers, there have been some mothers who had a change of heart and left before it was too late for their children. Sadly, many have gone through with the abortion. However, even if the child is not spared, the outcome does not change the truth that Jesus, present in "the least of these" was shown some love; He was not utterly abandoned in death. If we are arrested, we can truly say, in faith, that we are blessed to share in some small way in the suffering He endured so willingly for each one of us.
My lawyer, Dr. Charles Lugosi, has been working hard to prepare my defence that will bring the unborn child into the center focus and will also concern the implications of the fact that our constitution was founded on the supremacy of God. Please pray for this case and for the parties involved. Prayer is of utmost importance. As Jesus said, "Without me, you can do nothing" (Jn 15:5).
If you wish to assist with the funding of this case, any and all contributions are very much appreciated, since this defence entails a great deal of work and the assistance of expert witnesses as well.
Please pray for me and the other women here at Vanier, many of whom are post-abortive and in need of healing, and for those who, while pregnant here, are able to be taken to have abortions. Let us recall the words of Mother Teresa: "Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use violence to get what they want. That is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion".
God bless you, Mary Wagner