Shortly after his installation as Bishop of Dunkeld, Bishop Stephen got into discussions to set up a local pro-life conference to maintain the spotlight on pro-life issues in the Diocese. In conjunction with SPUC Dundee, the 4th Afternoon for Life was hosted by Bishop Stephen in the Pastoral Centre, Lawside Road, on Saturday 24th February.
The conference came as the pro-abortion lobby stepped up their campaign to decriminalise abortion and silence those who seek to help women facing a crisis pregnancy. Clare McGraw told Dunkeld News, “Despite recent medical research showing the significant negative impact on the mental and physical health of women experiencing abortion, the Sottish Government have returned abortion to the back street by allowing abortion drugs to be taken at home. This devastating move has been legally challenged by SPUC in Scotland, but many won’t be aware of the dangers of the DIY abortion scheme. Not only does the scheme compromise further the health of women, but in undermining the safety provisions set out in the Abortion Act, the scheme takes Scotland a step closer to total decriminalisation – a transformation that will allow for abortion at any stage in pregnancy for any reason.”
“Hand-in-hand with the pressure to make abortion easier, pro-abortion activists are deliberating quashing help for vulnerable women facing a crisis pregnancy. Amid calls for buffer zones to be created outside abortion clinics, many MPs simply refuse to hear the testimonies given by women who have been helped by pro-life workers to keep their babies.”
The Dunkeld Diocese Afternoon for Life heard contributions from speakers in the firing line. Margaret Ackers, past president of University of Edinburgh Life Society, is currently touring Scotland with SPUC to campaign against the push to decriminalise abortion. Complimenting Margaret’s talk, the Afternoon for Life organisers were delighted to be hosting Clare McCullough, founder of the Good Counsel Network. In a recent letter to Amber Rudd MP, Clare who set out an irrefutable argument against buffer zones. In her truthful simplicity she writes that Rudd’s proposed legislation would ban peaceful ‘activity which has allowed hundreds of women to make a choice to keep their baby which would have been impossible for them otherwise’. Emmett Dooley, SPUC Director of Outreach also addressed the conference with ideas of how Dunkeld Diocese can help in the fight for life.