Stories from abortion workers.
By Sarah Terzo
In a recent article, I wrote about abortion workers asked to baptize aborted babies.
Here are stories of abortion workers who baptized aborted babies on their own initiative.
British Nurses Who Baptize Aborted Babies
British author Mary Kenny quotes a nurse named Carol Tattershall in her book Abortion: The Whole Story.
In America, nearly all abortions are done in abortion facilities, where employees are pro-abortion. But in the UK, many abortions are done in hospitals. Some nurses working in these hospitals are pro-life but are pressured to assist with abortions.
Carol Tattershall says:
I was always taught in my training that a nurse’s prime duty is to preserve life and alleviate suffering. How on earth does this match up with assisting those who want to destroy life?
Many times, the Roman Catholic and Church of England nurses have baptized little fetuses gasping their last breath in a kidney dish.1
In Great Britain, most late abortions are done by induction rather than D&E, which may lead to more babies being born alive.
A “Catholic” Abortionist and His Victims
Another book features a quote from Joyce Craigg, former director of a Brooklyn Planned Parenthood facility. Craigg assisted with late-term abortions for two months, then quit.
The doctors would remove the fetus while performing hysterotomies and then lay it on the table, where it would squirm until it died. One Catholic doctor would call for sterile water every time he performed a hysterotomy and baptize them then and there. They all had perfect forms and shapes. I couldn’t take it. No nurse could.2
I can barely fathom what goes on in the mind of someone who commits abortions and then baptizes the babies as they die.
About Hysterotomy Abortions
Hysterotomy abortions generally aren’t done today.
In them, incisions were made in the pregnant person’s uterus and the living child was lifted out – basically a C-section where the child was left to die.
Kenneth Edelin was convicted of manslaughter when witnesses claimed a baby he aborted by hysterotomy was born alive. His conviction was overturned.
C. Everett Koop and Francis Shaeffer quoted a 1974 publication of The International Correspondence Society of Obstetrics and Gynecologists in their book Whatever Happened to the Human Race. It describes the practice in one abortion facility:
At the time of delivery, it has been our policy to wrap the fetus in a towel. The fetus is then moved into another room while our attention is turned to the care of the [mother] …
Once we are sure her condition is stable, the fetus is evaluated. Almost invariably, all signs of life have ceased.
Pro-life researcher David Reardon quoted former abortion worker Molly Graham recalling how the abortion facility where she worked drowned a baby in a bucket of water after a hysterotomy.
Risk of Hysterotomy Abortions
Hysterotomy abortions were also very dangerous to the woman.
A study in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology examined 700 hysterotomy abortions committed between 1968 and 1972.
It found 53 very serious, life-threatening complications and one death, causing the authors to observe that “Hysterotomy is a lethal procedure.”
Of course, they were referring to the risk to the mothers, not the routine death of the babies.
Pro-lifers have done much activism surrounding babies born alive after abortions. This may be one reason hysterotomy abortions aren’t done today.
A Student Reluctantly Helps with Abortions
Nurse Bonnie L. McClory wrote an essay called “Products of Conception” in the book The Abortion Debate: TCU Voices.
McClory worked in the Labor and Delivery unit of what she calls a “large metropolitan hospital.” She was pursuing a nursing degree.
She wanted nothing to do with abortion, but her assignments included assisting with them.
The hospital did saline abortions. Like hysterotomies, saline abortions are very rarely used today. In them, a caustic salt solution was injected into the pregnant person’s womb. This solution poisoned the baby. The pregnant person then delivered a dead child.
[I]t broke my heart every time the doctor handed me a basin with a small, perfectly formed human baby lying dead and bloody inside it. I forced myself to rationalize that I had done nothing to bring about this death; I was merely cleaning up the aftereffects. That way, I could live with myself.
An Aborted Baby in the Third Trimester
One day, she was attending to a teen girl who was about to deliver her dead baby. The paperwork noted that the child was less than 20 weeks old. However, rather than a 20-week baby, McClory says she delivered “a nearly 4-pound dead baby girl, about 15 inches long, with a full head of hair.”
McClory tried to hide the baby’s body from the mother, but the girl saw it and screamed, “It’s a baby! My baby! My baby!”
McClory describes the child:
She was beautiful, even in death… Her silky fair hair had a slight curl to it after I washed it. She had long eyelashes, high cheekbones, and a tiny cleft in her chin. Her fingers were long and delicate, tiny nails dotting their ends.
…I conditionally baptized her. Her mother, I knew from the records, was Catholic. I held her in the crook of my left arm, against my heart—the same place I always held my own babies—and poured a few drops of water over her cool forehead.
My tears mixed with the water as I baptized her. ‘If you are able to receive this Sacrament, I baptize you in the name of The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.’
Then I hugged her close in a great gasping sob and, in a gesture any mother would recognize, placed a kiss at the top of her little head. After I had done it, I realized it would be the only kiss she would ever receive.
McClory later found out that the parents of the teen girl, the baby’s grandparents, were friends of the abortionist, who knew the baby was in the third trimester.
Read more about McClory’s experiences.
These stories show glimmers of humanity in abortion facilities and hospitals.
- Mary Kenny Abortion: The Whole Story (London: Quartet Books, 1986) 270
- James Burtchaell, ed. Rachel Weeping and Other Essays on Abortion (Life Cycle Books 1982) 34