Reactions to the Murder of Pro-Life Hero Jim Pouillon
September 12, 2009
(christiansunite.com) - A pro-life activist was gunned down yesterday in Michigan. Jim Pouillon was shot multiple times as he held a sign proclaiming "Life" with the image of a baby. Police have arrested a suspect who they believe killed a second man at a nearby business.
The following are reactions from several Christian Ministries regarding this tragedy.
A pro-life activist was gunned down yesterday as he peacefully held a picture of a baby with the word "Life" outside a high school in Owosso, Michigan. The victim is Jim Pouillon, a well known activist in the Owosso area and a friend of Operation Rescue.
A suspect was arrested about 45 minutes after the shooting and is now in police custody.
"We are stunned by Jim's murder. We extend our condolences to the family and share in their grief over his loss. His life was characterized by his love and concern of the vulnerable, and he will be greatly missed," said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman.
"We denounce this senseless act of violence in the strongest terms, and pray that this murderer will be swiftly brought to justice."
This shooting comes in the wake of hundreds of death threats that have been received by Operation Rescue and other pro-life organizations over the past three months.
"We have received literally hundreds of death threats in the past three months. Our office has been vandalized three times. Just yesterday, the FBI was in our office and picked up a stack of threatening letters that we received," said Newman. "We denounce violence in the strongest terms. The bloodshed must stop both inside and outside of the abortion clinics."
Wendy Wright, President of Concerned Women for America (CWA), stated, "We are shocked at this senseless violence against a peaceful man. Jim Pouillon sincerely lived out his belief that babies have the right to be born. He dedicated his life to convincing others to reject the violence of abortion. It is a tragedy upon tragedy that a peaceful man who tried to end violence was himself violently killed.
"We hope Attorney General Holder will as vigorously denounce the murder of Jim Pouillon, who tried to save babies from violence, as he did the murder of George Tiller, the late-term abortionist."
Cal Zastrow, Co-Founder of Personhood USA:
"Yesterday a violent man murdered a peaceful pro- life Christian, Jim Pouillon, my close friend. Jim was completely non-violent and never condoned using violence. I knew him very well and had prayed and ministered with him often. He was praying and holding a poster of a newborn baby outside of Owosso High School. One of the students in the school was his granddaughter. His beating heart and measurable brainwaves are stopped. Also yesterday, 4,000 American preborn children with beating hearts and measurable brainwaves are being murdered with suction 'abortion' machines or drugs. Their beating hearts and measurable brainwaves are stopped. We condemn both forms of murder. Don't shoot, stab, smack, slap, or suck the arms and legs off of children with suction machines! Stop the violence!
"The last time I talked to Jim was this week, Monday. I prayed with him over the phone as he was preparing to go talk about Jesus and show pro-life signs in front of Owosso High School, where he was martyred yesterday." -- Cal Zastrow
Operation Save American:
Jim Pouillon was shot and killed at 7:30 am yesterday, (9-11-2009), while ministering the truth to the children of Owosso High School in Michigan. A lone gunman shot Jim three times in the chest. He died at the scene. The gunman is in custody. The motive for the shooting has not yet been made public but we do know that the enemy, Satan, comes to kill, steal and destroy. "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." John 10:10
Jim was a Godly man, a beloved friend of Operation Save America and a dedicated pro-life sidewalk counselor.
"We knew Jim as 'Jim from Michigan'. Jim would often call and say 'Hello Flip, this is Jim from Michigan' and go on to tell of his most recent exploits for Jesus at the school, the abortion mill, the Governor's Mansion or anywhere that he could stand up and be a voice for the babies. I'd say, 'God bless you brother' and Jim always answered, 'He already has, I got to talk to you today, brother.'" -- Flip Benham, director of Operation Save America,
Cal Zastrow, an Operation Save America Leader from Michigan and a close friend of Jim said through his tears, "He got his martyr's crown yesterday."
In the small town of Owosso, Jim Pouillon was well known for His love of Christ and unborn Children. Today the world lost a shining light for Jesus. He died as he lived, standing for Jesus. Jim is a testimony for all of us.
All of us with Operation Save American send our love, prayers and condolences to the Pouillon Family.
Thomas More Society of Chicago:
Chicago-based Thomas More Society (TMS) expresses shock and outrage over the cold-blooded killing of pro-life activist Jim Pouillon of Owosso, Michigan as he held a pro-life sign early Friday morning, September 11, 2009, on a public sidewalk outside Owosso's high school. On August 25th, the TMS president and chief counsel, Tom Brejcha, met Pouillon who had come to Oakland County Criminal Court of Michigan to support TMS's defense of pro-life activist, Dan Holman. Pouillon was sitting just outside the courthouse door, holding a large sign bearing the message, "Free Dan Holman," protesting the fact that Holman had been jailed over two months on an unreasonably high $50,000 bond -- bond which was then reduced to $5,000 thanks to sterling advocacy of TMS's co-counsel, Anthony Lubkin, who coincidentally also hails from Owosso, the late Jim Pouillon's home town.
Tom Brejcha recalls Pouillon as a very soft-spoken, kind and articulate pro-life advocate, who told Brejcha after the August 25th court hearing in Holman's case that his (Pouillon) pro-life activism traced back to October, 1988, when he joined a "rescue" protest in Atlanta, Georgia. Since then, Pouillon had engaged in peaceable, non-violent protest and prayer vigils in Michigan and elsewhere in the U.S., carrying an oxygen tank wherever he went owing to a breathing disorder from which he suffered for many years. "The pro-life movement has lost another peaceful warrior against the violence of abortion," said Brejcha, "and I am grateful to have had this recent opportunity to meet this quiet hero, another martyr for the cause of life."
Thomas More Society's defense of Dan Holman continues in Oakland County, Michigan, and the defense team now has been bolstered by addition of Robert Fleming, Esq. of East Lansing, Michigan, a veteran Michigan criminal defense lawyer who teaches criminal law at the Cooley Law School, affiliated with Michigan State University. "Dan Holman is another kind of martyr for the pro-life cause," said Brejcha, "because his acting reasonably in self- defense against a violent pro-abortion antagonist has led to Dan's getting slapped with two felony charges while those who harassed him and his wife, Donna, endangering their 'truth van' by reckless highway maneuvers as they were returning from a friend's wedding, have been treated as victims," said Brejcha. "The killing of Jim Pouillon should drive home to Michigan officials and citizens alike that stereotypes about violent pro-lifers have no place in law enforcement. It's too short a step to go from killing the unborn to killing in cold blood those pro-life advocates like Jim Pouillon whose message often arouses such extreme hostility. Killing doesn't solve society's problems."
Priests for Life:
Leaders of Priests for Life, the largest network of clergy and lay people dedicated to ending abortion, reacted today to statements by a Sianwassee County, Michigan, prosecutor that James Pouillon was killed by a man who was upset at Mr. Pouillon's pro-life activism.
"James Pouillon today joined the approximately 4,000 other victims who will be killed today because of abortion," said Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life. "The taking of all innocent lives must stop. I call on the leaders of the so called 'pro-choice' movement to condemn this killing and to consider all of the people who lose their lives to abortion every single day."
"Mr. Pouillon was known as the 'sign guy' because he had the courage to show people what abortion really is," said Janet Morana, Priest for Life's Executive Director. "This brutal murder will not deter pro-lifers from continuing to expose the horror of what abortion does, not just to the baby who loses his life, but also to the mother who lives with the truth of abortion the rest of her life."
"In the Fifties and Sixties, people lost their lives to secure the civil rights of those victimized by discrimination," added Dr. Alveda King, Pastoral Associate of Priests for Life and niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. "Now, James Pouillon has lost his life in the civil rights cause of the 21st Century, the struggle to protect the right to life of every single person, born and unborn. Mr. Pouillon has not died in vain; the struggle will only be renewed because of his courage and sacrifice."
Life Coalition International:
Jim Pouillon a friend, and a champion for Jesus and unborn baby boys and girls was shot and killed on 9-11-2009), while ministering the truth to the children of Owosso High School in Michigan. Jim was never ashamed of His Lord and now he is with Him hearing "well done, good and faithful servant."
We all knew Jim as "Jim from Michigan." We do not know the motive of the murderer but we do know that the enemy, Satan, comes to kill steal and destroy. "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." John 10:10
Jim was a gentle warrior who stood against all violence including the violence of abortion. He understood that abortion is the root of all violence. He died as he lived, standing for Jesus. Jim is a testimony for all, a shining example of true Christianity.
Life Coalition International sends our love, prayers to the Pouillon Family.