Remembering Schiavo and John Paul II

Leticia Velasquez has written a beautiful witness to life and love on the main page:

It was the first day of spring in 2005. I was at the florist in the seaside village where I grew up, assembling a basket of flowering spring plants for my sister, who had just given birth.

Immersing my hands in budding greenery, inhaling the earthy scents—it helped to chase away, for a few moments, the looming death which occupied my mind. Later that evening, watching my sister’s pink newborn suck on his tiny fists, I smiled; it was a welcome break from the tragedy that was flooding the airwaves, and leaving me feeling panicked.

Terri Schindler Schiavo was being dehydrated to death in Florida, and I took it very personally.

Schiavo had her family by her side, yet they were helpless to give her even one drop of water, though the flowers in the vase next to her bed had plenty, to keep them fresh and alive. Would that, I wondered, be our situation someday?

I fought pain in my stomach as I listened to Sean Hannity report from Schiavo’s hospice in Florida. What was a woman my age doing in a hospice, anyway? Until her husband had won a battle to remove her feeding tube, Terri Schiavo had not been dying. After his victory, though, even an act of Congress wasn’t enough to save her life. What chance would I have of saving Christina’s life against a society which devalues the weaker members?

Read the whole, passionate piece

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Lily

    Thank you for bringing this beautiful post to everyone’s attention. I appreciated reading it. Like the author, I took Terri’s death personally and thank God that I did. It’s too easy to be distanced from these situations.

    During the months prior to Terri’s death, I was surprised by how many people must have somewhat adopted the utilitarian view of human life because of the way they were not outraged by it and seemed to merely accept it.

    I felt so much like the author and will always be haunted by the facts listed in one paragraph (pasted below). I will never understand how a man and an American court could collude to let anyone purposely die a long agonizing death. We are kinder to our pets and I can find no compassion in my heart for him.


    The reaction in my home was mixed. Grief, relief that her suffering was over, and anger that her husband seemed to do everything in his power to make sure that she died, even though Schiavo’s parents had offered to care for her. He had already moved on, starting a relationship with another woman that led to two children. Why would he not simply divorce Terri, and allow her parents their daughter, whom they loved unconditionally?

  • Kensington

    I’ll never forget the glee with which an alarming number of people took her death. For way too many people it was nothing more than a political game. It was dreadful.

  • Greta

    I will never forget or forgive the bishops who were absent without leave during this teaching moment.

    I will also never forget the crowds who were there for John Paul II and who stayed to cheer at the election of Benedict XVI as our Pope. These two have given us a new springtime with strong conservative and authentic priests, bishops, and religious. I love how the Anchoress points to those relgious who are strong in their faith and in support of Church teaching as they witness in their habits and with their loving and fruitful lives. meanwhile the old dissenters are fading away and will soon have to meet their maker and answer for their failure to stand strong against the culture of death. I would imagine Mother Theresa and Pope John Paul II will both be their as witness to the culture of death along with the 50 plus million babies killed in abortion mills and those lost to the abortion integral to the birth control pill. I pray each day for those who dissented from church teaching and led others astray even to supporting political hacks for abortion. If they are forgiven, I have a chance as well.

  • GM Roper

    Civil Truth posted a remembrance at GM’s Place including a link and excerpt from a very moving and heartrending post at Red State.

    Like the tragedy of abortion, the death of this young woman is a great tragedy that will forever live in true infamy.
    I can’t help but wonder if I, as a 64 year old 5 year survivor of lung cancer will be told sometime in the future, should the cancer return: “Sorry Mr. Roper, it just isn’t worth it to keep you alive. Medicare doesn’t pay for chemo-therapy for the elderly anymore.”

    Having worked with the mentally retarded for years, I wonder too if their brief lives will be shed at the alter of expediency.

  • Lisa

    i was upset when prayer intentions were never mentioned for terri shiavo when the drama went on for weeks. I was so angry.

  • J

    I was amazed to hear in ultra-lefty liberal MA who supports all types of abortion, assisted suicide, etc., people saying with great passion, Pres. Bush (for whom they did not vote)won’t let this awful thing happen, will he? I was just speechless and have yet to get my mind around that.

  • newton

    Terri’s death outraged me. Her family was willing to care for her (blood being thicker than water and all that), but her cad-of-a-”husband” just wanted to watch her die.

    I sure hope that God has given her and her blood family some peace in their hearts, and that He gives that sorry-excuse-of-a-husband exactly what he deserves. In part, he got some of it back already. He supported three candidates for Congress back in ’06, in CO, FL and CT. All of them lost.

    And remember, all of that happened before the phrase “Death Panels” entered our common lexicon…