By Editorial Staff
Published March 12, 1996
Orlando Vote Is 6-0 Court Hearing Next
By Dan Tracy of The Sentinel Staff
The Orlando City Council on Monday rejected the advice of its own hearing officer and told a Maryland doctor he cannot open a practice where he would perform abortions.
“This is not a difficult decision. It isn’t a gray area with me,” said council member Don Ammerman, moments before leading a 6-0 vote against Dr. James Pendergraft.
Jacob Rose, Pendergraft’s attorney, promised his client will continue fighting the council in an attempt to open his business at 1103 Lucerne Terrace, just south of downtown.
His next venue will be Thursday in U.S. District Court in Orlando, where federal Judge Patricia Fawsett has scheduled a hearing.
In January, Fawsett listened as Rose contended Pendergraft was denied his constitutional right to due process last fall when the city approved, then rejected, his request for a zoning permit to start his practice.
Fawsett recently asked for additional records from Pendergraft and the city, some of the documents centering on whether the doctor’s business could be classified a “clinic” or “office.”
The city defines a clinic as a place that offers procedures where patients might require several hours of recovery, as opposed to an office, where clients leave within 60 minutes.
Orlando’s hearing officer, attorney David Coffey of Gainesville, ruled last month that Pendergraft would be running an office, meaning he should be allowed to open in the colonial-style building he purchased last October for $250,000.
But Ammerman and the council ignored Coffey’s recommendation, saying some of Pendergraft’s patients would require hours of recovery because he offers abortions to women in the second trimester of their pregnancies. That would make his practice a clinic, Ammerman said.
Pendergraft, a 38-year-old obstetrician-gynecologist, maintains virtually all of his patients, whether in their first or second trimester, leave less than an hour after the abortion.
The council, Rose said, is treating Pendergraft and Coffey’s decision with “scorn, derision and ridicule . . . Dr. Pendergraft will not give up, even though this is extremely costly.”
In his federal suit, Pendergraft has asked Fawsett to force the city to approve his business. He also is seeking hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages, claiming he is losing more than $35,000 weekly in income and expenses.
Council’s vote was applauded by Deborah Shearer, director of Respect Life of the Catholic Diocese of Orlando. “I think the city responded appropriately and made the best decision they could make,” said Shearer, who opposes abortion.
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That Swiss Hermit Strikes Again!
Dr. Schaeffer, who was one of the most influential Christian thinkers in the twentieth century, shows that secular humanism has displaced the Judeo-Christian consensus that once defined our nation’s moral boundaries. Law, education, and medicine have all been reshaped for the worse as a consequence. America’s dominant worldview changed, Schaeffer charges, when Christians weren’t looking.
Schaeffer lists two reasons for evangelical indifference: a false concept of spirituality and fear. He calls on believers to stand against the tyranny and moral chaos that come when humanism reigns-and warns that believers may, at some point, be forced to make the hard choice between obeying God or Caesar. A Christian Manifesto is a thought-provoking and bracing Christian analysis of American culture and the obligation Christians have to engage the culture with the claims of Christ.
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“Here I stand … I can do no other!”
With these immortal words, an unknown German monk sparked a spiritual revolution that changed the world.
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Is there a connection between pagan religion and the abortion industry?
This powerful presentation traces the biblical roots of child sacrifice and then delves into the social, political and cultural fall-out that this sin against God and crime against humanity has produced in our beleaguered society.
Conceived as a sequel and update to the 1988 classic, The Massacre of Innocence, the new title, The Abortion Matrix, is entirely fitting. It not only references abortion’s specific target – the sacred matrix where human beings are formed in the womb in the very image of God, but it also implies the existence of a conspiracy, a matrix of seemingly disparate forces that are driving this holocaust.
The occult activity surrounding the abortion industry is exposed with numerous examples. But are these just aberrations, bizarre yet anomalous examples of abortionists who just happen to have ties to modern day witchcraft? Or is this representative of something deeper, more sinister and even endemic to the entire abortion movement?
As the allusion to the film of over a decade ago suggests, the viewer may learn that things are not always as they appear to be. The Abortion Matrix reveals the reality of child-killing and strikes the proper moral chord to move hearts to fulfill the biblical responsibility to rescue those unjustly sentenced to death and to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves (Proverbs 24:11,12; 31:8,9).
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Running Time: 195 minutes
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“Give me liberty or give me death!”
Patrick Henry’s famous declaration not only helped launch the War for Independence, it also perfectly summarized the mindset that gave birth to, and sustained, the unprecedented experiment in Christian liberty that was America.
The freedom our Founders envisioned was not freedom from suffering, want, or hard work. Nor was it freedom to indulge every appetite or whim without restraint—that would merely be servitude to a different master. No, the Founders’ passion was to live free before God, unfettered by the chains of autocracy, shackles that slowly but inexorably bind men when the governments they fashion fail to recognize and uphold freedom’s singular, foundational truth: that all men are created in the image of God, and are thereby co-equally endowed with the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
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This DVD features “Liberty: The Model of Christian Liberty” along with “Dawn’s Early Light: A Brief History of America’s Christian Foundations.” Bonus features include a humorous but instructive collection of campaign ads and Eric Holmberg’s controversial YouTube challenge concerning Mitt Romney’s campaign for president.
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