by Steven Ertelt
September 6, 2007
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Noted evangelist and activist D. James Kennedy, a top pro-life advocate in the fight against abortion, has passed away. Just days after celebrating his 51st wedding anniversary, the founder of Coral Ridge Ministries succumbed to the lingering effects of his December heart attack.
Under the theme "reclaiming America" — Kennedy pursued the pro-life cause as a pastor, broadcaster, and organizer.
Family Research Council president Tony Perkins told LifeNews.com that Kennedy was one of early leaders of the pro-life movement, beginning just after Roe v. Wade.
"When religious leaders were contemplating how they could affect the culture, Dr. Kennedy did more than contemplate–he dove right in with the goal of restoring virtue to Congress and empowering the Church to lead the charge for change," Perkins said.
"We are indebted to him for helping to blaze the trail for Christians to influence the political process," Perkins added.
Praise for the pro-life work the evangelical pastor championed cross denominational lines.
Priests for Life director Fr. Frank Pavone told LifeNews.com, "America has lost a strong and consistent voice for the most helpless in society."
"The unborn and the physically impaired had a great advocate in Reverend Kennedy, who always pleaded for the vulnerable with love," he said.
Kind words for Dr. Kennedy came in from pro-life leaders across the country upon learning of his death.
Focus on the Family founder Dr. James Dobson called Kennedy "a giant in the battle to restore traditional values in our nation."
And Beverly LaHaye, the founder of Concerned Women for America, told LifeNews.com, "Jim Kennedy left a legacy of profound spiritual leadership and effective evangelism. I was honored to work with him to restore a culture of life to the nation we both love so dearly."
In 1974, Dr. Kennedy started Coral Ridge Ministries, an organization that shares the Gospel through radio and televised broadcasting. Today it reaches millions of people in the United States and around the world.