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Petition against Catholic university’s pro-abortion club reaches 35,000 signatures

A petition calling on a Catholic university to ban a pro-abortion student club recently garnered 35,000 signatures and will now be sent in to administrators.

Saint Louis University, a Catholic school in Missouri, is home to the pro-abortion student club If/When/How, which trains law students to advocate for pro-abortion legislation.

TFP Student Action, a group that works to “affirm the positive values of tradition, family and private property,” created the petition on its website in November. Director John Ritchie told The Fix that once the petition garners 35,000 signatures, it will be sent to Saint Louis University.

As of Sunday night, it reached its goal with over 35,000 signatures, and Ritchie confirmed it’s being shipped off to the school.

Saint Louis University’s media relations department and the university’s Students for Life club did not respond to multiple requests for comment from The College Fix.

Ritchie told The College Fix the If/When/How club not only trains law students how to promote pro-abortion legislation but “also advocates for direct abortions.”

“Any university that calls itself Catholic yet favors anti-family causes directly contradicts Catholic teaching,” Ritchie said. “The truth is very simple: You can’t be [a] good Catholic and at the same time support procured abortion in any way. Period. Because it’s a mortal sin against God to kill an innocent person.”

“Every young Catholic, everyone who loves God, should take a stand for the right to life and resist the culture of death that is destroying the sacred institution of the family and undermining the moral fabric of our beloved nation,” he said.

Ritchie had previously messaged Fred Pestello, president of the university, last December to voice his concerns.

“As a fellow Catholic and a firm believer in the God-given right to life, I prayerfully asked him to discontinue the abortion advocacy club on the Jesuit campus,” he said, “but I’m still waiting for a reply.”

TFP Student Action is a project of the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property. Ritchie told The Fix that Professor Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira inspired him to run the TFP Student Action group.

“Prof. Corrêa de Oliveira was a Catholic leader with great vision and leadership,” he said. “He founded the first Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) in Brazil. His profound faith and zeal for the rights of God quickly inspired autonomous TFP groups in more than 25 countries, including the United States.”

He explained that TFP “was formed to resist, in the realm of ideas, the liberal, socialist and communist trends, and proudly affirm the positive values of tradition, family and private property.”

“The family and the right to life are inseparable,” Ritchie said. “That’s why TFP Student Action volunteers are always on the frontlines of the culture war defending the innocent unborn.”

The Catholic Church teaches that abortion is a grave evil.

“Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception,” the Catechism of the Catholic Church states. “From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person – among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.”

MORE: University approves creation of ‘humanized rodents’ with late-term aborted babies

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About the Author
College Fix contributor Maria Lencki is a senior at Franciscan University of Steubenville double majoring in political science and communication arts. She works as a cantor at her church and volunteers for her local hospital and at a soup kitchen.

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