by Steven Ertelt
January 27, 2005
Boulder, CO (LifeNews.com) — In the latest development in a controversy over a Colorado church burying the remains of babies who died from abortions at a late-term abortion facility, the mortuary that provided the church with the ashen remains has apologized.
Meanwhile, a local hospital said it will institute new rules on what happens to the remains of babies that die from abortions, stillbirths or miscarriage there.
Sacred Heart of Mary Catholic Church became the subject of a local and national controversy when it announced that it had been burying the babies for a decade at a memorial located on the church property.
Crist Mortuary, which serviced the abortion facility where the aborted babies were obtained, issued an apology Wednesday.
The apology was given to Avista Adventist Hospital representatives, where Crist Mortuary also obtained the bodies of deceased unborn babies.
Avista says it will put in place new rules clarifying how the remains of unborn babies are to be buried. Avista CEO John Sackett told the Associated Press that he met with Crist Mortuary officials about the arrangement.
Sackett said he and the mortuary agreed to bury the remains from babies who die from abortions at Avista in a nonsectarian setting apart from the church. That’s if the mother does not indicate where she wants the baby’s remains to be buried.
"We never thought to ask that question," he said of potential burial sites.
Sackett indicated to AP that Sacred Heart could be chosen by someone wanting a burial site.
"It’s a neat thing what they’re doing in Boulder," Sackett said. "But if the (women) aren’t Catholic, we don’t want it done without their consent."
Susan LaVelle, organizer of the church ceremony, said she favors asking women where to bury their babies who die.
"I love it that women actually will have the opportunity to say what they would like done with the remains of their unborn child," she told AP.
Avista does a small number of abortions, typically when the unborn child has no chance to live outside of the mother’s womb.
The apology wasn’t enough to satisfy local abortion advocates, who have protests planned at Crist and Sacred Heart.
"Crist knew what they were doing,” said Peggy Loonan, executive director of Life and Liberty for Women, which backs abortion. "I don’t buy (the apology) for a second.”