Increased Hostilities against Churches and Pro-Life Groups, following Supreme Court Leak and Ruling
06/30/2022 Washington D.C. (International Christian Concern) – On May 2, Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion, revealing the potential outcome of the ongoing Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health was leaked from the Supreme Court, alluding to the potential revocation of the Roe v. Wade decision allowing abortion for parts of the country.
In the wake of the leak, many pro-choice Americans took to the streets, seeking to express disdain for the potential outcome. While rallies and protests were expected since Americans are guaranteed the right to express their opinions, a wave of hostility started against Catholics, who are doctrinally pro-life, and pro-life-leaning pregnancy resources centers.
Rallying demonstrators initially threatened to disrupt Catholic Masses on Mother’s Day and to burn the Eucharist, as an attempt to punish Catholics for their convictions. Following through on their word, demonstrations outside Catholic churches took place, including outside the iconic St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan.
The threats and protests were only the tips of the iceberg, as the intimidation continued to escalate. The first attack occurred in Southeast Portland, when a pro-life pregnancy crisis center was vandalized, leaving behind graffiti and smashed windows. Within days, two more were targeted: one in New York and another in a Portland suburb—both were allegedly firebombed. As of today, it is estimated that some 30 centers and churches around the U.S. have been targeted.
On June 17, after being pressured by concerned lawmakers and several threatening communiques began to proliferate online from a left-wing domestic terror collective, the FBI announced that it would launch an investigation into this series of attacks and threats against pregnancy centers and several faith-based organizations. The group, calling themselves Jane’s Revenge, called for increased violence and a “night of rage” on the night of the Court’s final ruling.
The weight of this case pushed these demonstrators to be bolder, as they sought to intimidate Protestants and Catholics alike and sway the future verdict. Their key message: “if abortions aren’t safe, then neither are you.” However, the fervor of many Christians remains steadfast in their convictions.
This ruling was finally announced on June 24, confirming the leaked opinion. On the day of the decision, several Catholic churches and dioceses were reportedly notified by the Department of Homeland Security in an urgent memo, warning them of the “night of rage” threatened by the pro-choice demonstrators. While the night of the ruling came and went without catastrophe, many pregnancy centers and catholic groups remain wary of the months to come.
Note: ICC seeks to share with you glimpses of issues involving Christianity in the Western world. So often, ICC’s content focuses on where we see persecution in its most extreme forms— murder, rape, torture, and imprisonment. Those who experience and endure these forms of persecution will always be at the forefront of our ministry mission. However, ICC stands for religious freedom for everyone, everywhere. When we see religious freedom being violated, especially in the “free world,” we call it out.
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