Prayer Chapel Opens Next to North Dakota Abortion Business

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 25, 2011   |   12:25PM   |   Fargo, ND

The Catholic Diocese of North Dakota has opened a prayer chapel next door to the lone abortion business operating in the state — with the hopes that prayer will encourage women considering abortions to find alternatives.

The Catholic Diocese of Fargo will open the Visitation Chapel at 502 1st Ave. N. on the 1st of June to offer <ass and prayers on Wednesdays. That’s the same day that the Red River Women’s Clinic abortion center, located next door to the business office where the prayer chapel will be located, does abortions.

“We believe prayer is so powerful and what we’re engaged in is a spiritual battle,” Rachelle Sauvageau, director of the diocese’s Respect Life Office, told the Fargo Forum newspaper. “It’s a place where we need an intense and focused prayer and that’s why we feel the need to be right there.”

The windows of the chapel, located on the third floor of the Gibb building, overlook the abortion center and the new facility will support sidewalk counselors who talk with abortion customers as they head to Red River.

“There are a lot of people who can’t stand outside – the elderly and other people who don’t feel called to be down there on the sidewalk,” Sauvageau said. “This gives them the opportunity to be there in a real present way.”

Red River Women’s Clinic spokeswoman Tammi Kromenaker send the Fargo newspaper a statement saying, the abortion center will continue doing abortions regardless of who is located next door.

“It doesn’t matter who moves in next door, across the street or down the block. We are a safe haven for women to consider what they need to do with this pregnancy and for their lives,” she said.

The abortion center came under fire last year for putting women’s health at risk by using two abortion practitioners who had expired medical licenses.

As reported, abortion practitioners Lori Lynn Holst Thorndike of Colorado and Miriam McCreary of Minnesota allowed their state -issued medical licenses to lapse on June 30, 2010.

Operation Rescue spokesperson Cheryl Sullenger told Thorndike should have been charged.

“North Dakota laws are very explicit,” she said. “It is a Class B Felony to commit abortions in that state without a valid North Dakota medical license. Burdick has decided all on his own that the laws of North Dakota that were enacted for the protection of vulnerable women should not be enforced.”

The pro-life group also engaged in undercover phone calls showing potential problems associated with illegal or botched abortions.