.- Following a heartbreaking battle to save the life of their brain-damaged daughter last spring, Bob and Mary Schindler, parents of Terri Schiavo, are scheduled to make a special appearance at this month’s National Catholic Family Conference in Anaheim, California. The Schindler’s, who made headlines during their battle to halt a court-ordered starvation of their daughter--set in motion by Terri’s husband Michael Schiavo--will speak to conference participants on how to avoid what organizers call “similar nightmares” to theirs.
Ruben Quezada of Catholic Resource Center, the conference’s sponsor organization, told CNA this morning that they chose to invite the Schindlers because of their close alignment to the group’s mission, which is to “defend life in all matters.”
The Terri Schiavo case, he said, “was one that opened the eyes of thousands of people…but it’s a situation which should have been brought up years ago.”
He noted that while Terri’s body of has already been examined following her death, “it’s time now to examine our souls…to educate people” on the need to defend life.
“We invited the Schindlers”, he said, “to share their testimony and how their faith played a role.”
Quezada noted that following the Schindler’s presentation, the conference will welcome Br. Paul O’Donnell, to explain the Church’s teaching on matters like Schiavo’s and where Catholics ought to stand. He will be followed by attorney Mark Henry, who will explain to listeners how to avoid being placed in a situation similar to the Schindler’s.
The organization is already boasting a pre-registration of over 4500 for the July 23rd through 24th conference.
Added Quezada: “it’s going to be a huge event this year.”
More information can be found about the Catholic Family Conference by visiting www.catholicRC.org