Week in Review
Charity Watchlist Helps Donors Ensure Their Year-End Gifts Don’t Support Abortion
In a season of giving, American Life League urges caution for life advocates selecting recipients for their charitable donations. The national organization known for its “no exceptions” policy on abortion wants charitable givers to know exactly what they are supporting with their dollars. American Life League’s Charity Watchlist is an online tool using a simple stoplight green-yellow-red color coding to allow donors to know if they “go ahead” and donate to a nonprofit without reservations, “proceed with caution” after being fully informed of the potential risks, or “stop” any support of an organization that endorses abortion.
“The Charity Watchlist is a project designed to hold nonprofit organizations to account for the positions they take, especially when it comes to their positions on respect for life, fertility, the nuclear family, and the aging,” stated Judie Brown, American Life League president. “Americans should be fully informed before they choose to support any charity, and our project helps fulfill this need.”
The Charity Watchlist does hold some surprises.
The Salvation Army, widely known for its Christian ministry, features an overtly pro-life statement on its website. But as one reads the complete message, more and more exceptions surface, raising serious concerns for those donors who do not wish to support abortion in any context. This alarming dichotomy has earned the organization a designation of red.
American Life League also points out the misnomer of the nonprofit named Children’s Defense Fund. The group that bills itself as championing policies and programs that lift children out of poverty is certainly not defending preborn children. This organization promotes abortion and contraception, even to children, and has had a relationship with Planned Parenthood for decades. The Charity Watchlist tags Children’s Defense Fund as red.
By contrast, Food for the Poor, an organization that serves the poor in Latin America and the Caribbean, gets a Charity Watchlist green light for giving. While providing food, medicine, and shelter (among other services), Food for the Poor works to expand and build maternal health clinics in rural areas but will not endorse abortion. The group severed its partnership with Jamaica Aids Support for Life once they learned of its aggressive contraception promotion.
“As the abortion industry has grown into a multi-billion-dollar operation, more individuals and organizations have been corrupted and participate in abortion,” observed Ed Martin, who leads STOPP, American Life League’s Planned Parenthood watchdog division. He continued, “The Charity Watchlist is important because it shines a light on organizations and exposes their connections to the killing. When you follow the blood money, you see the truth about these organizations.”
“You can take the Charity Watchlist one of two ways,” stated Katie Brown, American Life League’s director of communications. “It’s an eye opener to how many big-name nonprofits fund dirty programs, but what I think is more important is that there are many nonprofits that do great things and keep out of the weeds of abortion research. This is something people deserve to know. Where we put our dollars counts, and nothing sends a message quite like withholding funds from pro-abortion organizations.”
Brown offered the example of green-rated Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. Unlike many other organizations funding cancer research, this pediatric cancer charity, founded by neuroblastoma patient Alexandra “Alex” Scott, states that research utilizing human embryonic stem cells is not permissible and that the group will not fund it. She noted that many other nonprofits funding cancer research are willing to support abortion for the sake of using fetal cells. Among those earning the anti-life red designation are American Cancer Society, Breast Cancer Research Association, Children’s Leukemia Research Foundation, Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and even St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
“The Charity Watchlist is a significant project in the fight to defend life and the truth,” shared American Life League’s lead researcher Katherine Van Dyke. She stated, “While looking at many of these charities for the first time, it was shocking at how many of them no longer even attempt to hide their support for abortion and human embryonic stem cell research. The culture of death stands right in front of our faces. The Charity Watchlist seeks to educate and encourage the public to know, discern, and challenge these organizations by making informed decisions for charitable giving, while providing donors with information about alternative charities that promote and support all human life and true charity.”
To illustrate this, Van Dyke related the story of the green-lighted Fuller Center for Housing and its unrelenting Christ-centered quest to provide adequate shelter for all people. Begun by Habitat for Humanity founder Millard Fuller, the group split away from Habitat for Humanity due to a change in board leadership, which chose to minimize the Christian values of the organization. The Fuller Center upholds pro-life values and does not support anti-life organizations or agendas. In comparison, Habitat for Humanity is coded with a cautionary yellow because of partnerships with groups that support abortion and contraception.
“The world is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Many organizations that work to care for others do so at the expense of human dignity and truth,” noted American Life League vice president Hugh Brown. “They feed, clothe, and help those in need, while also providing access to abortion and contraception. They affirm disordered lifestyles and give false hope to the most vulnerable. American Life League’s Charity Watchlist shares the truth about many duplicitous organizations that work and live serving two masters. We also highlight those outstanding organizations going above and beyond to do good works, serve others, and adhere to the moral standards taught and created by Christ and His Church.”
ALL’s Charity Watchlist currently profiles more than 60 tax-exempt nonprofits based on their implementation of life-affirming values or their endorsement of anti-life practices. American Life League promises that the list will continue to grow and invites charitable givers to submit nonprofit groups for Charity Watchlist review.
View the current Charity Watchlist at all.org/charity-watchlist.
ALL in the News
Hugh Brown was quoted in a recent article from The Guardian discussing brain death. On an episode of the Catholic radio show Trending with Timmerie, Hugh discussed “brain death” from a Catholic perspective. He commented, “During the first six weeks of pregnancy, our body lives without a brain,” which The Guardian found alarming because it disarms not only a defense of abortion, but also organ harvesting. Read the full article here.
Susan Ciancio, editor of Celebrate Life Magazine and director and executive editor of the Culture of Life Studies Program writes weekly blogs for each. This week, her CLM blog offered 12 ways to make this Advent holier. It was published by Catholic 365 and can be found here. Her CLSP blog talked about the coming of Advent and St. Francis Xavier’s feast day, as both occur on the same day this year. You can read that on the ALL site.
ALL’s Charity Watchlist is gaining attention as people plan their end-of-year giving. LifeSiteNews and Faith on Trial both recently featured articles about the Watchlist and its findings. Read the LifeSiteNews article here and the Faith on Trial article here.
Twice a week, Judie’s commentaries are distributed to an expansive media list. The list contains over 100 media outlets such as Fox News, The Federalist, Breitbart, and The Daily Caller, among others. Judie’s commentaries are each featured on the front page of ALL.org.
Culture of Life Studies Program
Awaiting the Gift of Christ is our downloadable Advent booklet that features daily reflections on the life of a saint and wisdom from the Catechism of the Catholic Church. We hope that this booklet not only strengthens your relationship with God but that it gives you the peace and the joy that we all deserve this holiday season. You can find it here for just $1.99!
From now through Christmas, all of CLSP’s Christmas lessons are on sale.
We offer three beautiful lessons to help your children focus on what’s truly important this Christmas.
Giving with a Happy Heart: Teaching the Culture of Life in Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol’ is a high school lesson that examines Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol under a pro-life lens to find themes that support the culture of life and reinforce the principle that all human beings are sacred, unrepeatable, and deserving of respect.
Christ, the True Gift of Christmas is a pre-K-2nd grade lesson that teaches children the story of the first Christmas through the eyes of Santa Claus/St. Nicholas, reinforces the pro-life message, and reminds children that Christmas is about God’s greatest gift to us—His Son.
The Christmas Star is also a pre-K-2nd grade lesson that teaches students about the importance of offering our lives in Jesus’ service. Students will learn about the dignity of each person and how Jesus calls us to love one another as He loves us.
The Advent booklet and our Christmas lessons are on sale! SHOP NOW!
ALL’s Education Materials
Inaccurate science leads to the dehumanizing of preborn babies. From the moment the sperm fertilizes the egg, a new human being is created and begins growing exponentially each day. Our illustrated brochure introduces readers to a baby’s first 30 days. A Person’s a Person, No Matter How Small also reveals how those in favor of killing children in the womb are redefining life’s beginnings so that more and more children are aborted without our knowledge or consent. SHOP NOW
Popular Catholic App Compromises Principle for Celebrity Clout
Catholic and pro-life organizations are not immune to the temptation of celebrity clout. Using Hollywood actors and renowned conservative influencers to lend their talents to an organization’s project can increase awareness. It can even lend legitimacy to public perception. Sometimes eagerness to grab that big Hollywood name comes at a price. What does that celebrity truly stand for?
The creators of a Catholic app are facing such a dilemma.
Hallow brands itself as an American Catholic meditation and prayer app with music and Bible stories to guide Catholics on a path toward a better prayer life. Last week, Hallow revealed in a YouTube video that it has partnered with Liam Neeson for its Advent prayer series.
Apparently Hallow is partnering with Liam Neeson to produce some content for their app. Did Neeson ever disavow his work on this anti-Catholic propaganda campaign to seal the fate of the preborn in Ireland? https://t.co/tcqjvWz67k— Brian Holdsworth (@briankeepsworth) November 21, 2023
X (formerly Twitter) users didn’t take too kindly to the revelation, but Hallow still stands by its position.
It’s something we’ve discerned intensely. Here is the summary. Hope it’s helpful in understanding both our firm commitment to the Magisterium and to our mission of helping those that may have fallen away back into the loving arms of Christ in prayer. https://t.co/ZKe2QQBaPI— Hallow (@HallowApp) November 26, 2023
Hallow links to a statement on its website:
We have many actors on the app with differing personal views on many topics, some who are practicing Catholics, but several of whom come from different faith backgrounds. Several have done things in the past or may hold personal views that we would disagree with.
This often means partnering with non-traditional partners and people from different backgrounds.
According to Hallow, one’s position on the murdering of preborn children is merely a “personal view” that one discerns. This is what happens when we stop taking the killing seriously. It becomes nothing more than a political issue like climate change and immigration reform.
“Discerned”? Choosing what’s best for business has nothing to do with “discernment” in the way that you’d like us to believe. You’re being manipulative and disingenuous.— Joseph Massey (@jmasseypoet) November 28, 2023
Saying “discern” rather that “decide” doesn’t make it any better. Hallow has become just another product after your money.— James (@jamesbggurney) November 27, 2023
Who is next on the list to lead prayers? Nancy Pelosi? Joe Biden?— Tridentine Brewing (@TridentineBrew) November 28, 2023
What’s the difference, really? Why oppose Pelosi reading for the app but not Liam Neeson? Because if the answer is that her voice isn’t as good, then therein lies the problem. The person’s pro-abortion advocacy isn’t a problem for Hallow, only the limits of their talents.
You have no integrity. This is about leveraging celebrities for customer acquisition. Nothing else. It’s time for faithful Catholics to disavow @HallowApp. They’ve already disavowed you for a larger market share— Audrey (@etheldredamg) November 27, 2023
This has affected my decisions regarding whether or not I will subscribe.— ☦️ 🇻🇦🥄Roark, Spoon Supremacist (@Roark1776) November 27, 2023
I don’t want to get behind hearing an open abortion advocate lead us in prayer.
An excellent point. How is one’s focus on the presence of God not compromised by the voice of a child-killing advocate?
I’m cancelling my @HallowApp subscription because it’s paying a pro-abortion zealot to fake pray on the app. I’d be ashamed to contribute to this farce.— Ted Lasso (@JMJWeLoveU) November 27, 2023
Please only add people that are real/true Catholics that upholds the teachings and doctrines of our faith! I love the app, I just subscribed and I’m learning to pray my rosary in Latin, I definitely don’t want to see pro-choice actors leading a prayer!— Carla Alves (@CarlaJo56727016) November 27, 2023
If you truly discerned, you wouldn’t have an abortion advocate, lead people in prayer during the liturgical season where the Incarnation of Christ is focused.. or rather, the Infant Christ is born into the world.— Ioseph-Maria (@ioseph_maria) November 27, 2023
What spirit led you?
Hallow isn’t going to apologize for its error because the project is done. Deleting the content leaves Hallow without an Advent guide. This begs the question: Is it putting its project above principle?
And currently working to get refunded based on being sold a membership app that chooses to platform people who actively mock and attack our faith: pic.twitter.com/HSTrqTrjlU— There & Back Again Catholic Yarn Trad 🇺🇸📿 (@ThereTrad) November 30, 2023