Parents Upset After Priest at Catholic School Shows Pro-Life Video to Sixth Graders

State   |   Sarah Zagorski   |   Feb 13, 2015   |   11:49AM   |   Scranton, PA

Father Leo McKernan admitted that he used poor judgment when he approved the showing of a 14-minute abortion video to a six-grade class of Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD) students.  However, according to the Times Leader, the parents of the students involved aren’t accepting his apology.

The parents are saying that their children saw an “’exaggerated’ abortion video with scenes that show a horrific dream sequence of the procedure in living color, with flashing lights, gleaming sharp silver instruments, bloody doctor’s gloves and a grotesque intensity that is unsettling to many adults — even those who oppose abortion.”

One parent said she called the Diocese of Scranton and left a message to speak with a bishop about the movie and the impact on the lives of the parish children. But Bill Genello, the diocese’s executive director of communications, responded with a statement that upset her further.


Genello said, “The Diocese respects the concerns of parents regarding a film that was shown to a CCD class at St. Monica Parish. The intention to educate students about the dignity of all human life and the need for us to protect life at all stages is worthy. As efforts are made to accomplish this, the age and maturity level of those who receive the message must be considered. The Diocese has responded to the concerns expressed by parents and the circumstances in this particular case are being addressed. The Diocese will continue to offer educational programs that are appropriate for their intended audiences.”

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The woman who taught the CCD class also upset the parents because they believe she is an “enemy of abortion” and shares Father McKernan’s opposition to the procedure.  The parents ask, if the priest and the teacher truly respect the sanctity of life, why inflict a gruesome, bloody and violent dramatization of an abortion into the lives of the most vulnerable — the very children they claim they want to save and protect? Another parent complained because her son came home and mentioned that their teacher past around plastic figures of an unborn baby in various stages of development.

Although the parent’s concerns about the appropriateness of the video for the children’s age range are legitimate, it’s important to note that many abortion facilities perform unsafe and sloppy abortions like the one depicted in the video. For example, as LifeNews previously reported, at an inspection of a Planned Parenthood facility in Missouri, officials found filthy conditions including rusty surgical tables, suction abortion machines, IV stands, and other equipment and “copious amounts of dust” everywhere. Other violations included poor or non-existent infection control protocols and expired, improperly handed drugs.

Additionally, in the last five years Planned Parenthood of St. Louis has botched 27 abortions.