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Pro-lifers imprisoned under FACE Act speak out

After seven pro-life activists were sentenced to years in prison for a “rescue” attempt at a Washington, D.C., abortion clinic, some of the activists are now speaking out.

Joan Andrews Bell, a 76-year-old Catholic and pro-life activist who was sentenced to two years and three months in prison, shared a statement in which she vowed to continue advocating for the unborn and called on others to join her in prayer.

“The rougher it gets for us the more we can rejoice that we are succeeding; no longer are we being treated so much as the privileged born, but as the discriminated against conceived child,” Bell said in a statement obtained by CNA. “We do not expect justice in the courts. Furthermore, we do not seek it for ourselves when it is being denied [to] our beloved brothers and sisters.”

She said that she views her prison sentence as “a time of prayer and reparation” for “the sin of abortion in America.”

“God’s timing is perfect,” she concluded. “I may not see any fruits of these simple prayers and acts, but the Lord of all will do what is best. Please pray and do what God wants you to do.”

What is happening?

Bell and six other pro-lifers were sentenced this week for felony crimes involving conspiracy against rights and violating the federal Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, also known as the FACE Act.

Signed by President Bill Clinton in 1994, the FACE Act prohibits obstructing access to or destruction of abortion clinics, pregnancy centers, or church property. The law has been criticized by several lawmakers for being unevenly applied against pro-life activists.

The activists sentenced to prison this week are Bell, Lauren Handy, 30, John Hinshaw, 69, William Goodman, 54, Herb Geraghty, 27, Jonathan Darnel, 42, and Jean Marshall, 74. The sentences were given by U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly.

According to the Department of Justice, the seven activists engaged in a conspiracy to create a blockade of the Washington Surgi-Clinic operated by Dr. Cesare Santangelo, an abortionist who has been accused of infanticide.

Read more at Catholic News Agency 

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