By TAMI QUIGLEY Staff writer
On the 45th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion in the United States, Yvonne Florczak-Seeman shared her powerful and emotional journey of being a young girl who had five abortions to being a tireless crusader for the unborn.
“The sanctity of a woman’s womb – where our maker decided it to be the most sacred place to be born – is worth fighting for,” Florczak-Seeman said, presenting “The Dignity of Woman, I Am Pro-Woman.”
The lecture recognized the 45th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade at the Forum on Biomedical Ethics Jan. 22 at DeSales University, Center Valley.
Florczak-Seeman is an author, anti-abortion activist and educator. She is the president and founder of Love from Above, Inc. and A Time to Speak.
The forum celebrated St. Francis de Sales as the Christian Humanist. The evening event in the University Center was part of Heritage Week, sponsored by the Salesian Center for Faith and Culture at DeSales.
Lore McFadden, director of programs for the center, welcomed the audience.
Those attending included Mary Fran Hartigan, secretary of the Diocesan Secretariat for Catholic Life and Evangelization and director of the Diocesan Office of Pro-Life Activities and Social Concerns.
“Abortion was shoved down on our country in 1973, and it was a bad law from the beginning. The other side knows it, and fights night and day to stop it from being overturned,” said Florczak-Seeman.
“We have got to do what is right regardless of what politics tells us. If not, who will?”’
“Each one of us will stand before our maker. When we do, how cool would it be to say, ‘I was all over that Roe vs. Wade,’” she said.
“Let today’s anniversary mark in time the change you will make to make a difference for your future and children’s futures.”
God, Florczak-Seeman said, can give us the words to articulate the issue to change hearts and minds.
“Many women are hurting out there,” she said. Florczak-Seeman said she’s even met women in their 90s seeking God’s forgiveness for abortions they had before it was legalized.
Florczak-Seeman said it’s been proven that it’s a baby in the womb, not tissue. “Let’s get on the bandwagon, and talk about women’s medical and spiritual aftermath after having an abortion.”
She said former pro-choice women are now on her team. “Validate women’s pain and loss, and we’ll find an awakening, a change in women.”
Sharing the motto from the Love From Above movement, Florczak-Seeman said, “We are not Republicans or Democrats, we are independent thinkers; we are not blacks, whites or Hispanics, we are human beings; we are not Protestants or Catholics, we are children of God; we are not rich or poor, we are fighters for social justice; we are not pro-life, nor pro-choice, we are pro-woman.”
“When you are pro-women, you will save those babies,” she said.
Now the married mother of four children, Florczak-Seeman had five abortions between ages 16 and 20.
When she arrived at Planned Parenthood for her first abortion, Florczak-Seeman said, she really believed it was a legal procedure and it was her right.
The abortions left her suffering from depression, suicidal, and abusing drugs and alcohol.
“Planned Parenthood never once gave me information to empower me to make an informed decision,” Florczak-Seeman said of her abortion provider. It never told her antibiotics would cancel the effects of the birth control pill. “I wasn’t a patient for them, I was a client that kept bringing money to the bottom line.”
“When I had my daughter, I knew I had to speak,” said Florczak-Seeman, 54, who has been sharing her story for the past 15 years. Doctors had previously told the mother of four she would never carry a child to full term due to the scar tissue from the abortions.
Florczak-Seeman said after having her fifth abortion at age 20, she walked to a Chicago bar with the intent to later take some pills and end it all.
“God, did you not have a plan for my life? I knew you at age 5 and loved you. How did I become this monster?” she prayed while at the bar. She also thought about the Parable of the Prodigal Son.
A much older man asked her what was a pretty girl like her doing in a place like that. As they spoke, he told Florczak-Seeman she was there because “God has a plan for your life,” and that God had been waiting for her to ask about the plan.
When Florczak-Seeman looked outside for the man after he left, there was no trace of him. “He just vanished.”
That night, she went home, got down on her knees and prayed.
Divine intervention saved her life, but for the next 19 years the aftermath of abortion left Florczak-Seeman with failed marriages, and problems with drugs and alcohol. “I was wreckage.”
“The healing began through Project Rachel,” she said, referring to the post-abortion reconciliation and healing program with trained priests and counselors.
Florczak-Seeman, who had been Protestant, converted to Catholicism in 2000. “There’s power in the sacrament of reconciliation,” she said.