May 06, 2011 Print this article

Notre Dame Finally Drops Charges Against Pro-Lifers

TFP sent over 20,000 protest petitions to Fr. John Jenkins at Notre Dame 

On May 5, Indiana prosecutor Michael Dvorak dismissed the criminal trespass charges that he has pressed over the last two years against almost all of the “ND88,” the faithful pro-lifers arrested when they entered Notre Dame’s campus in peaceful and prayerful protest as the university bestowed honors on pro-abortion President Obama at the 2009 Commencement.

Dvorak dropped the charges as part of an agreement between the Thomas More Society and the University of Notre Dame.

Tom Brejcha

“This is a big step forward and a victory for the pro-life cause,” said Tom Brejcha, president and chief counsel of the Thomas More Society and a 1965 Notre Dame graduate. “Those who share pro-life convictions may differ on tactics and approaches, but they best serve their sacred cause when they work together to secure the common good for all human beings, born and unborn alike, rather than carrying on as courtroom antagonists.”

Tom Dixon, South Bend, Indiana attorney and Thomas More Society special counsel, had led the defense over the last two years, during which the parties engaged in vigorous litigation, including extensive discovery proceedings.

Since 2009, TFP Student Action members collected over 20,000 protest petitions, urging Fr. John Jenkins, president of Notre Dame, to drop the charges.

“Hats off to the Thomas More Society and their team of lawyers.  They did a fine job defending the pro-lifers who were unjustly persecuted for nearly two years,” said TFP Student Action director John Ritchie.  “I think all the emails, phone calls, withheld donations, and prayers played an important role in the outcome as well.”

“We must pray that leadership at Notre Dame will consistently oppose the culture of death in all its facets – from abortion to homosexual ‘marriage’ – and resist ongoing pressure to recognize pro-homosexual student groups and activities which offend God,” said Ritchie.  “Catholic moral values are more important than football.”

Related: How the Gold Dome Tarnished

May 17, 2009: TFP members in ceremonial habit at the gates of ND pray in reparation for one of the worst scandals to ever rock Catholic education in America.