Student Org: Catholic University of America ‘Pressured’ Us to Cancel Pro-Life Event

Catholic U of America Chaplain Jude DeAngelo
Catholic University of America

A student organization at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, claims it was forced to cancel a pro-life event after facing pressure from the university chaplain.

The pro-life student organization Cardinals for Life canceled an event featuring Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood clinic director turned pro-life activist after being “pressured” by university Chaplain Father Jude DeAngelo, according to a report by Daily Caller.

Following the cancelation of the event, the president of the Cardinals for Life student organization, Anna Stephens, resigned from her position.

“I am writing today to inform you that I am resigning from my position as President of Cardinals for Life at the Catholic University of America, effective immediately, because of how I was pressured, against my conscience, by the University Chaplain in his capacity as adviser to Cardinals for Life, into making a decision to postpone indefinitely an event with Abby Johnson,” said Stephens in a letter shared with the Daily Caller.

A petition protesting Johnson’s appearance on campus had garnered more than 2,300 signatures.

“We ask that [Cardinals for Life] explicitly acknowledge that Abby’s views are not in line with Church teachings which promote the dignity of all human life, no matter sex, gender, race, or sexual orientation, from conception to natural death,” the petition reads.

Chaplain DeAngelo ended up taking to Instagram to post a statement, in which he apologized to the campus community and the Cardinals for Life for how he handled the situation.

“To the members of Cardinals for Life, an organization whose mission is to work for pro-life issues, you deserve better from me, the university Chaplain in this situation,” DeAngelo wrote.

DeAngelo went on to explain, however, that his issue with Johnson was not derived from her pro-life stance, but rather, because she had suggested last summer that she would understand if police profiled her adopted, biracial son.

“I can tell you that even this week Cardinals for Life has had extensive conversations about the dilemmas they face with this invitation. I have attempted to help them realize that they are in a lose-lose situation,” DeAngelo wrote.

In response to the event’s cancelation, the university’s College Republicans group decided to host Johnson themselves.

“The Catholic University of America College will be hosting pro-Life warrior Abby Johnson (@prolifeabbyjohnson) tomorrow night, at 7:00 PM,” said the College Republicans in an Instagram post.

“We understand that this is a decision that is bound to upset many students, and it’s not one that we came to lightly,” the College Republicans added in their post. “Our members have placed their trust and faith in us to advance their beliefs, and even when unpopular, we will continue to do so.”

Meanwhile, the school’s College Democrats group posted a statement to their Instagram page, stating that they support anyone who is against the pro-life activist being allowed to speak at the Catholic University.

“CatholicU College Democrats stands unequivocally with those calling for revoking Abby Johnson’s invitation to address members of the Catholic University community,” said the College Democrats.

The student group went on to claim that Johnson has exhibited “blatantly racist and disrespectful comments surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement,” as well as “coded language voicing her opposition to same-sex adoption and promoting LGBTQ+ discrimination.”

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Facebook and Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, on Parler @alana, and on Instagram.


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