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Peace & Life Connections #249
February 27, 2015

Regional Conference Success
        Our "Making the Connections" conference, held February 14 at St. Edward's University in Austin, TX, was a smashing success! CL Board member Lisa Stiller was in charge of organizing, and did an excellent job lining up speakers and workshop participants and organizations focusing on various combinations of life issues. We were especially honored to have two of our well-known endorsers, Abby Johnson and Sr. Helen Prejean present together in the keynote session. Each described her story and important work.
249 Johnson Prejean
Photo: Keynote speakers Abby Johnson (left) and Helen Prejean (right)
        The event lived up to its name: We not only made connections between the life issues, but also made connections between people. Helen and Abby had not interacted much before, and they are hoping to keep in touch and possibly collaborate in the future. Our Board members and other longtime supporters met Texan believers in CL with whom we will be working more closely going forward. 
       See highlights on our Twitter feed and Facebook page

Austin conference collage

Top Left: Sandy McDaniel with the John Paul II Life Center in Austin
Top Right: Carol Peters with Texas Democrats for Life
Middle: Austin Campaign to End the Death Penalty –  
Judy Morgan (left), Julie Strickland (middle), Creighton Chandler (right)
Bottom: Heather Garner with Central Texas Coalition for Life (left) and Debbie Bruce-Juhlke of EMBRACE (right). EMBRACE works in African American and Hispanic churches offering resources for pregnant women and families.
249 Crouch 2        Attendee Thad Crouch reports:"I'm now doing some of the same things I did under the concept of ‘social justice and peace’ like end war and listen to morally injured veterans and proclaiming these activities as "Pro-Life," which has largely been effective so far, even though it has been difficult for some of my fellow peace activists who operate largely out of partisan politics . . .
        The other connection I made are also exciting . . .  with other local Pro-Life leaders at the conference. Already I'm finding and acting on opportunities to get involved with their activities and building relationships that will help us expand the Culture of Life . . . .
        I can't wait to initiate some connections between my old ‘justice and peace’ friends and my new 
Pro-Life friends and see how surprised they are by meeting each other as we are beyond judgments
and labels. I just know that the exciting opportunities we create together are likely to surprise me all over again!"
Photo: Thad at the peacemaking workshop explaining civilian killings in drone warfare.

Latest Issue of Life Matters Journal
        Volume 3, Issue 4 can now be accessed online. Articles include "After Abortion: The Hard Questions," "Sexual Assault on Campus," "Scalia Wrong on Torture" and many more. We expect to give more coverage next week.
Quotation of the Week
John C. Willke & Barbara Willke
Note: Pioneer pro-life educator Dr. J.C. Willke died last Friday, February 20, 2015, age 89. He was an inseparable team with his wife, Barbara, who died in April 2013.    
        We, however, see one glimmer of light that hopefully would appeal to both sides [of the abortion debate], and certainly would to those in the middle. It is the recent emphasis on the simple question, "Why can’t we love them both?"
        Why can’t we all stand with the pregnant woman? Why can’t we tell her that we share the agony of her decision? That we really know of no "convenience" abortions? Why can’t we tell her that we stand with her, not against her? Why can’t we begin to discuss constructive alternatives to abortion?
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