As a diocese, we pray for a conversion of heart for those responsible for the vandalism at St. Boniface.Jill Parks, communications director for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Savannah
SPRINGFIELD — St. Boniface Catholic Church’s pro-life message was interrupted July 20 — but only briefly.
Shortly after congregants learned that a familiar billboard in front of the church at 1952 Ga. Hwy 21 had been defaced by spray paint and a vile message overnight, it was replaced with a new one. The substitute sign wasn’t an exact copy of the original but displayed the same opinion: “God doesn’t make mistakes. Choose life!”
The vandalism occurred about a month after the U.S. Supreme Court changed the landscape of abortion by overturning Roe v. Wade and just hours before the 11th U.S. Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals upheld Georgia’s “heartbeat” abortion law. The state statute bans abortions after detection of a fetal heartbeat.
St. Boniface congregant Yvette Carr was outraged by the trashing of the sign.
“That’s definitely wrong,” she said. “Here in American, we have the freedom to express our opinions and to participate in marches. However, that freedom of speech doesn’t allow us to deface banners or destroy things that are not on our property.”
Carr voiced strong support for HB 481, which went into effect immediately following the appeals court ruling. It prohibits physicians, except in certain situations, from offering abortions to pregnant women after a fetal heartbeat is present. This typically occurs in the sixth week of pregnancy.
“I agree that once a heartbeat is detected no abortion should be performed,” Carr said. “If protestors would put themselves in one of their parents’ mind when they found out Mom was pregnant, they should be thankful that Mom didn’t have an abortion.”
After being asked to comment about the incident, Fr. Martino Nguyen referred the Herald to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Savannah.
“As a diocese, we pray for a conversion of heart for those responsible for the vandalism at St. Boniface,” said Jill Parks, the diocese’s communications director. “Incidents such as these underscore the importance of rejecting a culture of death and working instead to build a culture of life that recognizes the beauty and dignity of every person. It is our responsibility to respect, love and protect the sanctity of God’s creation, recognizing the incomparable value of human life from its very beginning until its end.
“Life is sacred.”