Pro-life Heroine Joan Andrews Bell Arrested With Three Others in Red Rose Rescue Pro-Lifers Conduct Red Rose Rescue at Plainfield, NJ Abortion Facility, Saturday, Jan.18.
At 11:00 a.m. Saturday, January 18, 2020 five pro-lifers entered the “Options for Women,” abortion facility located at 1024 Park Ave., Plainfield, NJ. Among the pro-lifers was Joan Andrews Bell, active in the pro-life rescue movement from its earliest days. Andrews-Bell spent 18 months in solitary confinement when convicted for a rescue she conducted in Pensacola, FL. in 1986. Andrews-Bell, in her second Red Rose Rescue, was arrested at the New Jersey clinic with Fr. Fidelis Mocinski of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, Matthew
Connolly, and William Goodman. Adele Gilhooly also entered the abortion center, but opted to leave prior to the arrests.
(Photo: Joan Andrews Bell appears to be in pain, arrested during Red Rose rescue at the Options for Women abortion center, Plainfield, N. J., Jan.18, 2020)
Once inside the waiting room Andrews-Bell approached a young woman seated there with an older woman, possibly her mother. The young woman was receptive, as Andrews-Bell handed her a red rose and pro-life pamphlets. Attached to each rose was a card which stated on one side “You were made to love and to be loved... your goodness is greater than the difficulties of your situation. Circumstances in life change. A new life, however tiny, brings the promise of unrepeatable joy.” and phone numbers of local pregnancy help centers on the other. Soon a young Hispanic woman entered the clinic—she too took a rose and was talked to by one of the rescuers before clinic staff ushered her into a hallway.
Abortionist Elrick Murray emerged from a hallway and shouted at the pro-lifers “Get Out!” But the rescuers had plenty of opportunity to engage him in conversation, encouraging him to respect life, urging him to spare the unborn and honor the dignity of women. Oddly, in his dialogue with the pro-lifers he constantly denied that he performed abortions.
The Red Rose Rescuers sought to encourage the women scheduled for abortions, and by refusing to leave the clinics when told to do so by law enforcement, they offer an act of non-violent defense of unborn children about to be aborted, resulting in their arrests. The pro-lifers were able to remain in the abortion facility for approximately an hour before the arrests began at 12 noon.
Photo: Matthew Connolly under arrest at the Plainfield, NJ, Abortion Center
At the Plainfield, N.J. rescue, the four pro-lifers chose to remain in the clinic as an
act of solidarity with the unborn children scheduled to be killed. The Red Rose Rescues are a new, innovative pro-life action on behalf of women scheduled for abortions, in which pro-lifers actually go inside abortion facilities offering help to women scheduled for abortions and providing an act of practical defense for their unborn children.
This is the 17th Red Rose Rescue to take place in the United States since September 2017. The rescuers, like any others who recognize an urgent situation, responded to dire circumstances of imminent peril in a spirit of intervention on behalf of innocent babies and beleaguered mothers taking their inspiration from Proverbs 24:11: “Rescue those who are being led away to death.”
While the rescue was taking place within the abortion facility a team of pro-lifers remained outside to offer counseling and help to mothers as they approached the clinic. The Red Rose Rescue is modeled after the pro-life rescue activity of well-known Canadian pro-lifer Mary Wagner, who has repeatedly entered Toronto abortion centers and offered red roses to mothers waiting to have their children aborted.
When police officers arrived on the scene, pro-lifers attempted to continue conversation with women or sat on the floor praying quietly or singing hymns until they were placed under arrest. Lisa Hart, speaking on behalf of the pro-life rescuers, explains: “The Red Rose Rescue is an act of charity for women who feel for whatever reason they must have their innocent unborn children killed. Those who took part were willing to embrace risks for these women and their babies.”
Monica Migliorino Miller explains: “We will go into the very places where the unborn are put to death and extend help to the moms. Should this help be refused — we will not leave the abortion centers but remain in solidarity with the helpless victims oppressed by the injustice of abortion. Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta said that her work was ‘to go into the dark holes of the poor.’ The Red Rose Rescue is an action of going into the dark holes of the poor—namely abortion clinics where the innocent are rejected—and in these dark holes we seek to bring hope, true peace and the presence of God.”
All of the Red Rose Rescuers were released by 3:00 p.m. from the Plainfield, N.J.
police station on their own recognizance. They have been charged with violating a
municipal trespassing ordinance with a first court appearance February, 5th.
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