Bernard Nathanson, Rest In Peace

This morning I had the immense privilege of celebrating a Requiem Mass for Dr. Bernard Nathanson.  It was inspiring to see so many people present to celebrate the life of this champion of life.  Dr. Nathanson’s pastor, Father Gerald Murray, preached a magnificent homily.  I’m privileged to share it with you.

Here is an excerpt:

“Dr. Bernard Nathanson was a fearless advocate of the self-evident truth that it is a grave injustice to kill people before they are born. The unjust decisions of the United States Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton mandating legalized abortion in our country cry out for the counter-witness of those who will not abide this injustice. Heroism is called for. True heroism is never easy and is only possible through God’s grace. We acknowledge today our gratitude to a true hero who would not abide such grave injustice in our land. In doing so, we too recognize the Hand of God in the life of Dr. Nathanson.”

You can read the whole thing here.

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4 Responses to “Bernard Nathanson, Rest In Peace”

  1. Brian Taber says:

    A beautiful requiem homily. I have often meditated on Dr. Nathanson’s early work in the pro abortion movement. Through his genius the movement gained one of its most powerful ideas. The idea of choice as being the ultimate principle. He coined the term Pro -Choice and it is not something he could take back. He did not own his actions and his ideas will be something he cannot retract. He did work tirelessly as a pro-life advocate. May he be canonized a great Saint for his courageous work against this great evil of our day. Bishop Dolan you really are at ground zero in this fight or prayers are with you.

  2. Andrew Piacente says:

    We know it’s hard Your Excellency. I tell my children that the hardest thing they do in this life is to be and remain Catholic. But at your level we seek leadership. Be not afraid John Paul the Great said. There are a handful of bishops who adhere to strict Catholic teaching regarding genocide in the womb and until we are united, yes by you, until we are united, gestures and fancy words are meaningless.

    We need examples, witnesses (martyrs), leaders who will suufer even unto death for Church beliefs.

    As the new leader of the USCCB, the Holy Spirit has chosen you, IMO for a reason.

    If our leadership does not adhere to our teaching esp. Canon 915 which refers to an exclusion of the sacrament of the holy Eucharist.

    The Eucharist, our greatest good in the church, is “the culmination of all the sacraments in perfecting our communion with God the Father by identification with his only-begotten Son through the working of the Holy Spirit” (John Paul II, encyclical letter Ecclesia de Eucharistia, “On the Eucharist in Its Relationship to the Church” The reception of Communion, therefore, requires certain dispositions within us, lest we sin against the holiness of the sacrament.”

    In his encyclical letter Ecclesia de Eucharistia, Pope John Paul II states that the visible and invisible dimension of the communion with Christ and the church that must exist for a worthy reception of the body of Christ (Nos. 34-46). Regarding the invisible dimension of communion, he reminds us of what we have been taught or should have been taught from our first preparation for holy Communion, namely that it is a sacrilege to receive the sacrament when one is not in the state of grace. One who publicly condones and promotes objectively grave sin also lacks the proper disposition for the worthy reception of holy Communion. As the Catechism of the Catholic Church, following St. Paul, reminds us, we must examine our conscience before approaching to receive Communion; and if we are involved in a grave sin, we must repent and be absolved of the sin in the sacrament of penance before receiving Communion.

    Without a unified USCCB that publicly follows these patently Catholic teachings we are just fiddling while Rome burns and standing by as the slaughter of the innocents continues.

    There are multitudes out here who will stand shoulder to shoulder with you in this endeavor. I pray for our Lord to give you strength.

    HOSEA 4:6

  3. Jo says:

    Does anyone know where Dr. Nathanson was buried?

  4. Brian Taber says:

    Dear Archbishop Dolan,
    I sent a letter to you yesterday with an idea of a way to both honor Dr. Bernard Nathanson and build the culture of life. Since he lived in your diocese and you are at the epicenter of the abortion movement, I have offered you the idea first. It came to me on the feast of St. Joseph he who is the protector of pregnant mothers and unborn children. God bless you for your strength and thank you for your airport encounter story.