The report of Joe Lee of SPUC Scotland, who organised Fourth International Youth Pro-Life Conference in Loch Lomond (March 18–21, 2011)
The 4th International Youth Pro-Life Conference was a huge success. Over 120 people attended the conference and left feeling encouraged and strengthened in the battle to defend human life.
The keynote speaker was Fr. John Fleming, member of the Pontifical Academy for Life and SPUC’s bioethical consultant. He spoke on “The Practice of Eugenics Today”, offering a startling insight into the minds of those who promote abortion and euthanasia today.
He clearly demonstrated how the ideas that influenced the early eugenics movement and the philosophies of Nazi Germany are still very much alive today, albeit sometimes practised in more subtle ways, disguised in “compassionate” terms.
Other speakers included Andy Pollard, who has spoken at many previous SPUC events. His original and dynamic presentations illustrated the demographic crisis that Scotland, the UK and Europe faces, so drastic are the consequences of abortion.
John Deighan, Parliamentary Officer for the Catholic Church in Scotland, spoke on how this has been facilitated by the manipulation of internationally agreed human rights principles to suit the pro-abortion lobby.
Sr. Andrea Fraile from the Cardinal Winning Pro-Life Intiative presented on how the pro-life movement attempts to limit the damage of abortion, by offering real practical help to women in crisis pregnancies and throught the newly introduced into Scotland, Rachel’s Vineyard. These powerful retreat weekends can heal the pain of abortion and allow post-abortive women to finally move past the pain of abortion.
There was plenty of homegrown talent at the conference, with SPUC’s own Anthony Ozimic and myself speaking on the work of SPUC, both at home and abroad.
Edinburgh Branch member Lynn Murray shared her own story of how her daughter Rachel has Down’s Syndrome and how abortion is very often seen as the only ‘cure’ for disability.
Once again, the International Youth Pro-Life Conference had a profound impact on those who attended. One delegate told of how the conference has “rapidly changed my life and my view of abortion.”
This is high praise indeed and testimony to the power of these conferences, which are essential to the future development of the pro-life movement in the UK.
“What an amazing trip to Loch Lomond. We heard some truly inspirational speakers, made many friends and have much to think about over the next few weeks...”
“I am THOROUGHLY impressed at how many young people just like me want to be so involved. Time of my life!”
“I had a really great time and will definitely come back.”
“Loved it! Good job!”
"Much learned, highly recommend to others.”
“Better than expected.”
“A very inspiring, insighful and welcomingly truthful weekend!”
Bryan Kemper, the US pro-life leader who also spoke at the conference, has posted his own tribute on his excellent blog.