As Polish abortion activists protested a bill to ban abortions and give every unborn baby a right to life last week, a grieving father responded with an emotional message about the value of his daughter’s short life.
On Facebook, Tomasz Stachura of Krakow, Poland posted a photo of his daughter Różyczka, or Rose, and shared the story of her life, birth and death. The Catholic news site Aleteia translated Stachura’s story into English.
“This is the most difficult post in my life but I decided to write it as this is a life-and-death issue,” Stachura wrote. He also posted the hashtag #czarnyprotest, or black protest, a phrase Polish abortion activists have been using to criticize the pro-life bill on social media.
Four years ago, doctors told Stachura and his wife that their unborn daughter Rose had severe congenital defects and almost certainly would die when she was born.
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According to Aleteia:
The couple received none of the support that might be expected from their doctors. Support? Information about the medical condition? Advice on how to get ready for the unbearable situation? None of the above: all the consultant did was suggest an abortion, and that immediately, as the child would soon complete 21 weeks gestation and then, according to the law in place, abortion would be out of the question.
As Stachura observes in his post, “The advice we got was a blow [that hit] far harder than the information about our daughter’s serious defects.”
Their doctors encouraged an abortion, but the grieving couple chose life instead.
“[Rose] was born into this world and lived with us a few hours, one of the hardest and at the same time the brightest moments of our life,” Stachura wrote. As he held her, he said he felt “such profound and utter love, which is virtually unbearable.”
Because they chose not to abort their daughter, Stachura said they were able to spend time holding Rose before she died. Afterward, they placed her tiny body in a grave, a memorial spot that they continue to visit to remember her, light a candle, pray and tell her they love her.
If they had aborted her, Stachura said he would have spent the rest of his life worrying if Rose’s diagnosis was correct and if she would have lived.
The Polish father urged his country to recognize that unborn babies like his daughter deserve to live and be protected.
“Life is a huge gift; do not strip others of the right to life,” he pleaded.
Last week, Polish Members of Parliament voted 267 to 154 to move the “Stop Abortion” legislation forward for further review. Pro-lifers in the Catholic nation are hopeful that the bill will become law.
Almost half a million Polish citizens signed the citizen-led bill, and a new poll found that 58 percent of Poles support a ban on abortion, according to The Wall Street Journal. However, pro-abortion groups, the United Nations and others are working against the life-saving legislation.