Protesting ‘Abortion Shaming’ at Old St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Mott Street [PHOTOS]
While it wasn’t immediately evident why the historic house of worship was singled out, the group’s social media channels allege that the church organizes parishioners to “shame” and “intimidate” patients visiting the Planned Parenthood location just a block-and-a-half north at Bleecker and Mott Streets.
Nearby nonprofit Housing Works Bookstore Cafe tweeted in support of the group’s unapologetic call to action, which also alleges that the church “harasses women” who seek abortions.
The group of about 30 protesters congregated in front of the cathedral at 263 Mott Street, carrying banners and signs, and chanting slogans like “This church harasses women.”
A few people entered the church grounds unobstructed.
There was one female pro-lifer who stood alone and silent against the gates with a “PRAY TO END ABORTION” sign, appearing to be from a group called 40 Days For Life.
Another passerby stopped and pointed at the activists and repeatedly called out, “you are all murderers.” A woman holding up a banner started to shout back: “We have a right to do what we want with our bodies.” The man stood his ground until a police officer emerged from his parked cruiser and waved him on. The man walked off casually.
While silent prayer vigils attacking abortions on the opposite corner from Planned Parenthood are frequent (the first Saturday of every month, in fact) it is unclear whether these or other such “protests” are actually organized by the Old St. Patrick’s clergy.
The reproductive rights group disbanded quietly just before 9am leaving behind messages scrawled on the sidewalk in chalk that read ” This Church Harasses Women” and “abortion is essential to healthcare.”
ACTION ALERT: Please join NYC for Abortion Rights (NYCFAR) on Sat., 8/4, at 7:45am for an action to confront the anti-abortion church processional by members of the Basilica of Saint Patrick's Old Cathedral. https://t.co/6ob2OzXORN #reproductiverights pic.twitter.com/mKfXz5kDoB
— Housing Works (@housingworks) July 24, 2018