Ep 410 Dr. Monica Migliorino Miller
The. Welcome. You're listening to the crosswalk with deacon Kevin Andrews a show about living life at the intersection of faith, family and vocations. And now your host Deakin Kevin good afternoon and thanks for tuning into the crosswalk here today in the radio network. I'm your host deacon, Kevin Anderson. This is kind of a big a big day in the life of Barroga radio because this is actually the first crosswalk that is being transmitted over our brand new fiber optic cable, which literally just went on fifteen minutes prior to the recording of the show, so as all technological things in IT things. Go will keep our prayers. Keep it in our prayers that the switch over of the switch has worked in will provide for more sustainable and reliable signal for all of our shows being broadcast over the air. Here. We are coming to the end of lent and coming to the end of something else that's going on all across the country. And that is the forty days. For life campaign in part of that forty days for life that end that is going to be a candlelight vigil on April thirteenth that has organized for a group called protest, Planned Parenthood or hashtag protest p p vigils. There's going to be one here in traverse city and there'll be one in Petoskey on April thirteenth as well in. So my guest today is Dr Monica Nikola Reno Miller, and she is a nationally known pro-life leader founder and director of citizens for a pro-life society active in the pro-life movement since nineteen seventy six she is also professor of theology at Madonna university in Livonia, Michigan. She's an author of several published books and articles including sexuality in the thorny in the Catholic church in abandoned, the untold story of the abortion wars. Dr Miller, welcome to the crosswalk so pleased to be with you. Thank you so much in again, the forty days for life campaign is is coming to an end. There's this vigil coming up at the end of. Of that campaign in also the other big news item. That's occurring right now is the movie unplanned, which is in feeders, as we speak that is actually got in some some pretty good reviews in in again, another kind of a Christian based moral story that has done well in the box offices, kind of probably at the the chagrin of the Hollywood elites. But, but you you've been in this along I I would say, you know, reading your bio, and in reading kind of your history that you know, you you're kind of in the pro-life movement, right? From the beginning that you've been a pioneer in in really a warrior in this movement. And so maybe the listener just a little bit of a background of kind of where you've been in. How you got initially into the pro-life movement. Well, I got I got involved very early. I was only twenty three years old. And I was a recently graduated from southern Illinois university with a with a bachelor's of science degree in theater. So my my interest was in theater and in films. So I guess that's why now I'm just writing movie reviews, but in any case, I got involved in the act of this movement. I moved Chicago to study theology at Loyola University to get my degree in my masters. Agree, the algae. And then they went on to get a PHD as well. But I met Joseph Scheider of the pro life action league when I was a graduate student in Chicago and got involved in sidewalk counseling outside outside of abortion clinics. And also I also participated in the early days of the pro-life, shall we say sit in movement, even though we don't call them sit ins, they're rescues of on born children from abortion. So I I know the ins and outs of a of a of jail cell and also the ins and outs of courtroom. And and I was actually twenty four just merely a mere twenty four years old when I under the leadership of Joseph Scheider participated in my first rescue in nineteen seventy eight in nineteen eighty five. I founded my own. A pro-life activist group citizens for a pro-life society. And we've been we've been going full full steam ahead ever since and down in the down in the trenches of the of the pro-life effort, and I do have my book which actually chronicles nineteen nineteen to twenty years of the of prolife activism abandoned, the untold story of the abortion wars published by Saint Benedict press in the year of twenty twelve. So if people wanna take a look at that book, it's certainly available Amazon has has it, of course, and just go to Saint Benedict press, and you'll be able to get it one of the one of the things these the red rose rescue project, which you helped organize. What what what is the red rose rescue project or protests Ari? Yeah. Well, no, that's fine. We'll call it. An in a way, it's really a Christian apostolate people may have a memory of the nineteen eighties in the nineteen nineties when there was a very vigorous robust pro-life rescue movement would actually had involved literally thousands of pro-lifers who would gather together and engage in nonviolent direct action efforts to protect unborn children. Who were then in there at these abortion centers scheduled for abortion? And there's a lot of complicated reasons. I actually talk about some of some of this in my book as to why that movement faded out. And yet there were there. There's always been a contingent of us, including myself that always felt that the that the pro-life movement to have that. Kind of witness and that kind of Christian defense of on born children, and so two years ago this month a bunch of got together and in April of twenty seventeen to talk about it is there is there a place for a rescue movement in in the pro-life effort, and we all came to the agreement that yes, yes, we need to do this. And we we decided we were going to do things a little bit differently from the way things have been done in the heyday of the rescue movement. So we call our effort the red rose rescues. And so that means we we will go a small team a small team between three to six people. We'll go into an abortion center, actually, go into the waiting room, and we will quietly sit down next to the moms that are scheduled for abortion. We will talk with them. We will provide them with. Literature educational pamphlets about the humanity of them born Sheild and try to persuade one on one quietly in the waiting room, persuade them to make a decision to give life to their babies, and we've done thirteen since September of twenty seventeen that was that was the first day that we did started to do the actual rescues that we've done thirteen of them's us, thus far of the most the most recent took place just last month on the nineteenth on the feast of Saint Joseph two of them took place in Washington DC, and we take roses into the abortion center with us, and we'll offer them to the moms offer them to the staff. And the the point though is if the women don't listen to us that they still make a decision despite our efforts to. Swayed them, we we will stay with those those babies that are about ready to go to their execution. We will abide with them. We will we will be in solidarity with them, and we know from our own experience that it. There's a pro-life presence inside the abortion center. Abortions are not happening. They're not happening as long as we're there at one of the rescues in Washington DC that father Stephen in Barato was involved with they closed that clinic for four hours. They had an opportunity to talk to every woman coming to that abortion center, actually, had at least three Catholic priests participate in the red rose rescues notably a father Fideles motion ski of the Franciscan friars of the renewal in the in in the Bronx the org. That was founded by father Benedict Rochelle. He's been very father Fideles has been very involved with the with the red rose rescue ministry. And so we hope that the the movement our efforts will grow we ask people to join us, and there's just lots and lots of ways that people can participate. I mean, we've had we've had people going into the abortion centers with us, but they opted to leave when the police come in. And they they they command at people leave or you're going to be placed under arrest. We, you know, you have the option you if you, but at least you're there, you try to talk to the moms before whatever reason at that time, you don't feel able to commit to being placed under arrest because then it means you're going to be going to court, and that's part of the red rose rescue part of what we're doing is giving that public witness in the halls of Justice to advocate and to witness to the sanctity of human life. Before the judge the jury the bailiffs if they're pro-abortion people that come to our trials the media. So this is a this is part of the effort last summer three of us actually did about just over a month of of jail time at the Oakland County jail here in Michigan is a consequence of one of the red rose rescues that we did in in Bloomfield hills at the Jacob Kahlo abortion center, but you know, in going, but here's the thing, you know, even going to jail ministry. I my my experience was to minister to the to the broken women. I know I'm living thirty four days with with, you know, a women that have been sent to jail for for various offenses and some of them had abortions and some of them are actually pregnant in in jail. And I'm able to be there for them and counsel them and listen to them and and try to provide them with. Guidance. And they come to me like a magnet. You know? I didn't pay couldn't blue leave that I was in jail for for trying purpose. Right. Right. Exactly. They couldn't believe it. There's no way that you're for that. Well, yes. Yes. I'm glad you cleared that up because when you started I was thinking to myself. We'll wait a minute. I've got the my office. My business office is right next to the Planned Parenthood clinic here in traverse city intentionally right? I mean I purchased the building next next to that for my own business. But so that the I don't I'm not quite sure they know what moved in next door that a Catholic deacon, you know, owns the building next to them Impreza rotary for the end of abortion everyday from his office window looking at the front door, but the forty days for life is out there, you know, right now in we allow our building to be used for restrooms and things like that limb to store scientists in stuff to to support that to support that ministry, but we've had they've had the cops called on them for doing. I mean, they know their boundaries this public sidewalk in yet. I was kind of wondering, well, how are you walking in the front door and sitting waiting room because these people have Airlie can barely walk down the sidewalk getting the police called on them yet you're walking into the front door with no ramifications. But you're saying there are ramifications obviously for doing for doing that. But we. We have we have a spiritual purpose for not leaving the the unborn. Who are scheduled for abortion. Have no one literally no one not even their own parents to advocate for them. And we feel very strongly that someone needs to be there to embrace them to stand up for them. And to literally be in the place where they're going to be carted off down the hallway to their deaths. And so I I like in what we're doing to to something that Saint Mother Theresa said that what was her. What was her her purpose for founding, the missionaries of charity to go into the dark holes of the poor? And so it actually to be with the poor to go where the poor live Goto to abide with the poor in their own experience. Since and that's what we're trying to do in a red rose rescue. We are going into the dark holes of the abortion centers where human life is wiped out extinguished where the unborn are abandoned. And so that that I have a couple of videos that people wanna take a look at how you know. You know, how it is that we understand what we're doing to explain what we're doing. So there's some videos up on YouTube. All you gotta do is just put in the search box on YouTube red rose rescue in are two videos will will come up very long. They're only like ten minutes. Maybe not even ten minutes. But people want to get a better understanding of our our purpose, and our our spirituality that would be a good place to start. Deacon Kevin understands for tune into the crosswalk today. My guest is Dr Monica Miglino Miller, and she's a nationally known pro-life leader founder in director of citizens for pro-life society. We've just been discussing her red rose rescue protests that they do that she's organized where they actually go into abortion clinics to meet with mothers as waiting in the waiting room trying to to me with them into encourage them to keep the baby. Obviously to to not have have the abortion, you Dr Miller, you've also you've done some other kind of outstanding things is in. You've actually went into dumpsters of abortion clinics rescued the remains of aborted babies, and then and then actually have taken photographs of those remains to show the horror of abortion, and then did a corporate work of mercy in organizing funerals for for these babies. Just an unbelievable thing. I know for people that have a hard time. Even picturing what it is. But then. To actually physically be there to do it to collect that the collect the remains of those those beautiful souls, and then you know to give them a burial something spectacular. I mean, how is that is that affected your your ministry? Well, I tell you it's something that completely changes your life. Your new you're never the same after you've actually encountered literally held in your own hands. The broken bodies of the victims of abortion, and I had this very rare experience of doing that in in the year of nineteen eighty seven nineteen eighty eight and then again in the year two thousand and eight and also in in the year twenty ten so not that long ago, and then I should add actually we the last time we buried aborted babies was just this past November of twenty eighteen. And these were the fifteen aborted babies that were discovered by the west Bloomfield police department in the trunk of Michigan abortion car, Michael Roth who apparently was doing abortions on in in hotel rooms, and oh, yeah. It's something else. But we got we were entrusted with the remains of these fifteen aborted babies through the Oakland County medical examiner's office. I have to tell you it took almost two years to get those bodies. This was not an easy thing to do. But they finally entrusted us with those bodies. And so they're buried be buried him in November of twenty eighteen but I do talk in in detailed. I tell the story of how we found the remains of aborted babies in nineteen eighty seven and in nineteen eighty eight in in my book abandoned, the untold story of the abortion wars and the photography. We felt it was very important to to to make a record of these victims. So that they these babies that no one was ever supposed to find. No. But no one was ever supposed to see these human beings. Literally. I am not exaggerating thrown out in the trash. They they were in trash dumpsters behind abortion clinics. They were left out for the trash at. A pathology lab in Northbrook, Illinois. I talk about talk about that experience. How we found those bodies but the record of their humanity. We felt was very very important. And actually, we have a website that's dedicated to abortion victim photography. And actually, there's some videos up on that website, also, which is images of abortion dot com and people from all over the world us those photos for their pro-life work for their own in. They make posters of those of photos, and they're there for for anyone to to us at images of abortion dot com. Which is interesting by not even to talk about this particular subject because of the of the movie that out in the theaters now unplanned, I did a movie review, which is if people wanna read it. All they gotta do is just go to crisis magazine dot com and scroll down the homepage. My review on the homepage. This is a very good movie, doesn't it could have been a little bit better for certain reasons, which I don't know we'll have time to talk about that. But it is a good movie. And one of the things that unplanned does is it they say in the headline of of my review it didn't play it safe. Right. I mean, this movie has an R rating for reason, and this movie is I think I can I can very safely say that. It's it's it's the first time that any feature film that is in a wide distribution that deals with the subject of abortion really shows you what is abortion. And and so for that reason, it's it's it may be for some people some somewhat of a difficult movie to watch. But I think you'd in my review, you know, how do you do a movie about what goes on inside of a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic and not show. What goes on in the clinic? Right. Right. So to try and sanitize it or or, you know, find some sort of a some sort of movie trick to not to not expose. Does the violence of abortion? I think would have been a huge mistake. And thankfully, this movie. Did not make that mistake. So I, you know, I give it high a lot of credit for for doing that. And I think I think it did that very very well. And so I I do give this movie a positive review people can read it at crisis magazine dot com, and it can see what some of my criticisms are. But but but overall, I thought this was a was a bold piece of film, making sure and and and it deserves to be seen dick and Kevin Andrews things for tune into the crosswalk here on the burger radio network is after noon, my guest is Dr Monica Mitte Reno Miller, and she's a nationally known pro-life leader take a quick break. When we come back. We'll continue with Dr Miller and a little bit more about the movie on planned and some of the. The other things again, they can't wait vigil coming up in April thirteenth around the country and in here northern Sheehan as well. Stay tuned. Are you a business owner or to taken maker would you like to gain the ability for your business and support Catholic radio at the same time? Underwriters important part of the team that's ports. Our operation all eight four four two three eight five zero eight today to find out more. Welcome back to the crosswalk with your host deacon. Kevin good afternoon. Thanks for tuning into the crosswalk here on the bigger radio network. I am your host deacon Kevin Andrews in my guest today is Dr Monica Miglino Miller, and she is a nationally known pro-life leader before the break. We were talking about her red rose rescue project protests that she does the time she spent in jail doing that meeting with pregnant young pregnant women in the abortion clinic, waiting room themselves risking being arrested and spending three days in jail for that work. And then just started the touch on the new movie that everybody is heard about that's in the theatres right now, the unplanned movie, featuring kind of the the life of Abby Johnson and her transition from running in abortion clinic for Planned Parenthood to becoming kind of a pro-life champion herself and turning her life around based on what she saw in the clinic. And that's kind of what we were talking. About before the break. Dr Miller is is it's kind of hard to really hit home the idea of abortion without really knowing. What abortion does? And I think that that's kind of what you what you brought to light when you publish the photos of those aborted, you know, infants remains that you got from a dumpster from an abortion clinic, and you know, and I I've seen some of those photos, you know, different rallies and people have big signs of your pictures. You know print it out, you know, to show what what is the destruction of abortion know, people push back and say, why do you have to go there and do that? But that isn't that the reality though, that people need to see it's kind of it's kind of like the movie too and unplanned, some of the some of the the scenes where like you said, they go into the clinic in kind of give you a a reenactment of, you know, wanting to Boertien really is. And it's one of those things where you don't wanna see it. But you kinda have to see it. And then once you see, you can't unsee it. Right. But it's kind of what we need in society. Because over time. My guess is you've been in this pro-life movement rate from the beginning that it's changed considerably from Roe v. Wade until now that your protest to it. I know the the vocabulary has changed in the discussion considerably, you know, what I mean, I don't even refer to you know, babies aborting babies, we talk about you know, fetuses and clumps of cells and things like that. And it what what has I mean, what has kind of been that transition of the pro-life movement over time. Well, I do think even though right now Robie Robie Wade is still there every single on born child is at risk of being aborted in some ways in terms of the law. The law does not protect any of them. When all is said and done nonetheless. I do think that there has been an increase in the awareness of the. Humanity of the unborn child. Even the evidence is there just by pointing we can just point to the the new state initiatives of that. We see literally all over the the country with fetal heartbeat bills. Like enjoy dismember banning dismemberment abortions abortions being banned for twenty week pain capable the babies that are at least twenty at twenty weeks, and they're just station. And and and and then, you know, you even see how the other side is so radical in their commitment to abortion that some some states, and and and notably the state of Newark legalizing abortion for the full nine months of pregnancy and on celebrating it. Well. Celebrating. My gosh. What is a word? They're in a words. But before we run out of time. I do want to let people know about the protests p p event that are that are happening in one of the national organizers for the for the protests p p annual protests of planned Parenthood's, and this is our fifth year and this year, we decided the other national leaders which Mark Harrington of created equal and Eric Seidler of the pro life action league, we decided that we were going to do something somewhat different this year. So instead of the conventional picket of Planned Parenthood, we're going to have a vigil. So we're going to come out, and we're going to focus on prayer. And we have over a hundred of these prayer. Vigils that will be taking place all over the United States April thirteenth, and as you've already indicated there will be a one of these Digital's in Petoskey at the Planned Parenthood and task Michigan. That one starts at seven o'clock at the Planned Parenthood on spring street in Petoskey, and then and traverse city and traverse city. The Planned Parenthood is on eighth street. And that vigil begins at eight fifteen and we'll go until about nine fifteen, and so people can bring bring candles, you should be because, you know, even if it's still daylight, we we'll we'll get to light them. We're gonna light the candles as a symbol of the light of the truth regarding the the the sanctity of life, and of course, in in showing that Jesus is the light of the world and. And the God will one day bring about an end to the injustice of abortion. So we really hoped this is all very family friendly vigils. So in the not gonna you know, they're only an hour. Maybe at the most an hour and a half, they might have some some of these vigils might even be less than an hour, but come on out stand up for life, get out on the street show the world that you are you're you're against abortion, and that you are going to stand up for the unborn. And you're gonna publicly pray to end abortion. So the website of people in check out, you know, what what is protests p p all about. In fact, all of the all of the locations are up on the website. So you can you can find exactly where you want to go on April thirteenth. So just go to protest p p. Of course, was the initials protest p p dot com. And you click on the locations tab at the top there and scroll down to Michigan. And you'll see we have eleven we think we're going to add Lansing. So hopefully, we might be up to twelve just in the state of Michigan eleven to twelve of these vigils are going to be taken place all over the all over the state of Michigan. Sure and listeners are listening. You don't find one in your location? You can actually click on the other button to sign onto lead a vigil of your own just to to get involved in you, find out more information about you know, why we buy they do protests, and why we should protest, and then, you know, as a button to donate to the cause as well again that website is protest p dot com. Those candlelight vigils across the country will be on April thirteenth coming up very shortly. Dr Miller, I wanna thank you for coming on the show today. I wanna thank you for all of your your work and your tireless work in your, you know, risky work for a lot of people in your your willingness to. You know to some degree be persecuted. By love the way, that you said that, you know, and even being, you know, arrested and spending time in jail as all part of the ministry and ministering to all of those people if you're ministering to the people in the courts, you're ministering to the people that are in the gills that you're that you're with at it's all part of that. It's not something that you're giving up. It's just another giving you into another location of of people in being able to to minister to them. So just a beautiful find out some more about red roads rescues they could just go to our website pro-life sihities one word pro-life Thia T dot com. Excellent. Well, we'll continue to pray for you and your ministry and in for the the the candlelight vigil coming up on April thirteenth for your red rose rescue project for for the pro-life society pre- for all of those you know, out there that are are on the front lines in really supporting the pro-life movement in in looking for an end to abortion, again, the movie on planned in theaters Vietnam paternity to see it. I'm sure there will be other opportunities after it leaves the theater when it hits DVD. One of those things that I think to really understand what abortion is like, Dr Miller said you gotta kinda see it. So so documentary. Thank you for for being with us today. Thank you. And God bless you. And thank you for tune into the crosswalk here in the bigger radio network growing in our relationship with Jesus is a lifelong journey every journey begins with the first step. I'll pray for you today that you have the courage to pick up your cross in follow him on deacon. Kevin God bless your week. Thanks for listening to the crosswalk with deacon. Kevin join us again next week exclusively on the radio.