ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (ChurchMilitant.com) - Billed as the "late-term abortion capital of the nation," Albuquerque has a family fighting full-time to end corruption and lawless abortion.
"New Mexico does not have any of the major types of abortion restrictions," the Guttmacher Institute reports. There are no waiting periods, mandates for parental involvement, limitations on public funding and it is legal at any time up to birth.
Bud and Tara Shaver, pro-life advocates dedicated to ending abortion in America, were commissioned to Albuquerque by Operation Rescue in 2010. They have been working full-time to "bring our culture and community to a point ... where New Mexico understands and embraces a culture of life."
Church Militant spoke with Tara Shaver about their latest project, investigating Southwestern Women's Options to see just how close to birth they were willing to abort. Shaver said, "We'd been praying for an informant or someone to come forward with information," when Felicia (last name withheld) approached the group through a mutual friend.
Shaver said Felicia was "the perfect operative" because her baby had received two diagnoses for Trisomy 18. Trisomy 18 or Edward's Syndrome is a chromosomal error that is similar to Down Syndrome but is associated more with medical complications. These complications result in a high number of still-births and infant mortality, though a significant number born with it can live many years being active and engaged in family life and society.
Shaver told Church Militant that Felicia's genetic counselor brought up abortion three times, saying "her genetic counselor did not give her any hope." The genetic counselor only discussed the negatives associated with having a disabled child and "never gave her testimony of families who chose to keep their babies or enjoyed their babies." Shaver said the genetic counselors, "Never provided any stories of hope."
In her investigation, Shaver said she found research that showed nearly a 60 percent chance of a false positive with the non-invasive tests for Trisomy 18. One study explained the inaccuracies of some of the newer, non-invasive tests and recommended they "must always be confirmed by invasive prenatal diagnosis." The study further claims, "It is mandatory to inform the patient that the CVS and amniocentesis still represent the only form of prenatal diagnostic test available."
"Southwestern Women's Options did not give her any alternatives, either," Shaver said. She notes it's important for women to know:
When they go into an abortion facility, that's what they're selling, and they're not going to be given any other alternatives. They're not going to be given any hope for their situation because abortion facilities are businesses that are there to make money.
Shaver notes this is the reason sidewalk advocacy is so important. Pro-life advocacy may be the only time women are given hope and encouragement so "women can have a positive outlook before they step into a place of death," Shaver said.
Felicia scheduled an appointment for the abortion with the Southwestern Women's Options. She was informed the cost of the procedure was $17,000 and was told how to apply for emergency Medicaid to have it paid for with taxpayer funds. Only two days after the scheduled day of the abortion, Felicia went into labor naturally, giving birth to her son — perfectly normal and healthy. Her son does not have Trisomy 18.
In the video, Shaver describes the late-term abortion procedure. She said it is a process that takes four days, three of which the pregnant woman is walking around with a dead baby and the chemicals used to kill it in her womb. The first part of the procedure requires that the baby is injected into the heart, without any painkillers, with a chemical that will stop its heart. The woman is sent home and has to return several times for her cervix to be dilated for the baby to be removed.
Shaver says this dilation process can leave the women susceptible to infection. Shaver believes this is the cause of Keisha Atkin's death in February 2017, a tragic event she uncovered and investigated. Operation Rescue's report on Atkin's death showed a cover-up on the autopsy report, leading to Rep. Steve Pearce sending a letter to the U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, asking for an investigation into the New Mexico abortion industry.
Abortion Free New Mexico has done several other reports, showcasing the evils of the New Mexico abortion mills. In 2015, they confirmed that Southwestern Women's Options and the University of New Mexico was under criminal investigation for supplying and using aborted baby parts for medical research, violating state law.
Another report identified a schismatic "Catholic" priest that would come to the abortion clinic before, after or during and after an abortion to assure and encourage Catholic women to abort their babies.
Francis (Frank) Quintana is the pastor of the Blessed Oscar Romero Catholic Community, an Ecumenical Catholic Communion, and he admits to having a partner of 16 years and together they "are developing a flourishing and growing ministry."
Church Militant reached out to the archdiocese of Santa Fe to inquire about the canonical status of Frank Quintana. Father John Daniel, the vicar general, said Quintana "has no canonical status with the archdiocese of Santa Fe." Father Daniel told Church Militant that he did not believe Quintana was ordained by a Roman Catholic bishop and said there "isn't a way to legally stop him from wearing a clerical shirt."
Father Daniel was quite concerned about the abortion mill, and Quintana promoting the idea that he is affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church, saying "that gives a false pretense and leads people to something that not the truth."
Shaver says they have been working with the archdiocese of Santa Fe as well. She told Church Militant they had a meeting with Abp. John Wester last month. "He is very focused on immigration," Shaver said, adding, "He's obviously pro-life, but his issue is immigration."
She said it was a very positive meeting, and "He has said that he will start a pro-life commission and get some good people on the commission to make sure we have a louder voice in the state."
Shaver said there is "deeply rooted corruption" within the political parties. Even though it is a predominantly Catholic state and quite a few Catholic legislators who are Democrat and pro-abortion." Shaver called out the governor, Susana Marinez, saying they had met with her several times, and "she ran as pro-life and yet she has refused to do anything."
"You would expect it as a Catholic state to be one that affirms life, but the Catholics tend to vote Democrat," Shaver said, noting that they do not question the stance of the candidates on abortion.
"There is such a demonic stronghold here, it's hard to get a breakthrough," Shaver says, noting they just keep uncovering the corruption and evils and "praying these seeds will be watered."
Abortion Free New Mexico works with Fr. Stephen Imbarrato of Priests for Life, who has led Eucharistic processions outside of the Planned Parenthood abortuary. Fr. Imbarrato issued a statement after the release of Abortion Free New Mexico's late-term abortion video saying:
As a Catholic priest, I am appalled at how many Catholic politicians and taxpayers in our state defy their Catholic faith and support this mass murder of the unborn. It is a conspiracy of silence that has brought us to this unacceptable and deplorable situation. The blood of these babies is crying out to Heaven for justice, yet the silence from every sector of our state is deafening.
Shaver is asking for prayers for the state and help to get the word out. "Even if we cannot get our elected leaders to move here and do what they've been elected to do," Shaver says sharing the stories on social media will help women contemplating abortion to "be able to see the truth of what happens inside of these abortion facilities and hopefully reach out and find some life-affirming help and not choose abortion."