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Action limits abortion options

By Editorial Staff
Published August 18, 2006

Women might have to travel farther — doctor plans to appeal state’s suspension

By Robyn Shelton, Sentinel Medical Writer

Women seeking an abortion in Central Florida should not have difficulty finding a doctor, although they may have to travel farther now that the state has stopped two Orlando clinics from performing abortions indefinitely.

The two offices, owned by Dr. James Pendergraft, were open Thursday for other services. But the state has suspended Pendergraft’s medical license and barred all five of his clinics in Florida from providing abortions on the grounds that he illegally carried out two third-trimester abortions in 2004 and 2005. The procedures under investigation occurred at his Orlando sites.

Pendergraft’s spokeswoman said he denies any wrongdoing and plans to appeal the state’s actions.

As a result of the restrictions, other abortion clinics in Central Florida reported getting more calls Thursday.

Tammy Sobieski, who owns the Womancare clinics in Orlando and Daytona Beach, said some women might be inconvenienced but that abortion services are still readily available. There are at least five remaining abortion providers in the area, according to data on a state Web site.

“Women with first- or early second-trimester pregnancies are pretty well covered in Central Florida,” said Sobieski, whose clinics perform abortions up to about 16 weeks’ gestation. “It’s women who are later in their pregnancies that may have to travel outside of Central Florida” to get the service.

Many abortion providers do not treat women beyond 18 weeks’ gestation, though there are a limited number of clinics in Florida — including in West Palm Beach, Tampa and Jacksonville — that offer abortions up to 24 weeks’ gestation.

The vast majority of abortions reported to the state in 2004 occurred in the first trimester, according to data from the Florida Department of Health.

The department counts a total of 91,710 abortions statewide in 2004 — 82,782 of them involving fetuses 12 weeks and younger. Another 8,918 abortions were performed when fetuses were at 13 to 24 weeks’ gestation. Ten abortions were done in the third trimester at 25 weeks and over.

Of those 10 late-term abortions, four were done in Orange County, according to the state, which does not provide specifics on where the procedures were carried out.

In its actions against Pendergraft, the state claims that the doctor failed to get a second physician’s opinion, as required by law, before performing an abortion on a woman who was 28 weeks pregnant in July 2005. In a 2004 incident, the state claims Pendergraft calculated the age of a woman’s fetus at 22 weeks but it was really between 25 and 27 weeks’ gestation.

Third-trimester abortions are legal in Florida when a woman’s life or health is in danger, but state law requires that they be performed in a hospital unless the procedure is urgently needed and two doctors “certify in writing” that the woman is at risk. According to state documents, Pendergraft carried out the third-trimester abortions without meeting these requirements.

His spokeswoman, Marti Mackenzie, said the woman’s life was in danger in 2005 and that Pendergraft disputes the age estimation of the fetus in the 2004 incident. She characterized the state’s actions as another in a “series of onslaughts” targeting Pendergraft.


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The Four Keys to the Millennium (Book)

Foundations in Biblical Eschatology

By Jay Rogers, Larry Waugh, Rodney Stortz, Joseph Meiring. High quality paperback, 167 pages.

All Christians believe that their great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will one day return. Although we cannot know the exact time of His return, what exactly did Jesus mean when he spoke of the signs of His coming (Mat. 24)? How are we to interpret the prophecies in Isaiah regarding the time when “the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:19)? Should we expect a time of great tribulation and apostasy or revival and reformation before the Lord returns? Is the devil bound now, and are the saints reigning with Christ? Did you know that there are four hermeneutical approaches to the book of Daniel and Revelation?

These and many more questions are dealt with by four authors as they present the four views on the millennium. Each view is then critiqued by the other three authors.

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Abortion Clinic 911 Calls (DVD)

Exposes the Dangers of Abortion to Women!

These shocking eyewitness accounts expose the dangers of abortion not only to unborn children, but to the health and lives women as well. An antidote to the smokescreens of the liberal media, these short clips show what really happens in and around abortion clinics.

Although the content is emotionally gut-wrenching, these videos have been used in church seminars and small groups to educate Christians on the abortion issue and to lead people toward a pro-life position. Contains 2 hours and 40 minutes of materials that can be shown separately.

Watch these pro-life videos on-line.

“These videos helped change my mind from pro-choice to pro-life. Your videos are what did it for me. I will be walking in next year’s March For Life in San Francisco.” — A. Jackson, California

“I was going to have an abortion until I saw your video. Praise Jesus!”
— M. Drew, YouTube Commenter

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The Beast of Revelation IdentifiedThe Beast of Revelation: Identified (DVD)

Who is the dreaded beast of Revelation?

Now at last, a plausible candidate for this personification of evil incarnate has been identified (or re-identified). Ken Gentry’s insightful analysis of scripture and history is likely to revolutionize your understanding of the book of Revelation — and even more importantly — amplify and energize your entire Christian worldview!

Historical footage and other graphics are used to illustrate the lecture Dr. Gentry presented at the 1999 Ligonier Conference in Orlando, Florida. It is followed by a one-hour question and answer session addressing the key concerns and objections typically raised in response to his position. This presentation also features an introduction that touches on not only the confusion and controversy surrounding this issue — but just why it may well be one of the most significant issues facing the Church today.

Ideal for group meetings, personal Bible study — for anyone who wants to understand the historical context of John’s famous letter “… to the seven churches which are in Asia.” (Revelation 1:4)

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Massacre of Innocence (DVD)

Exposing The Occult Roots of Abortion

This presentation looks at the spiritual roots of abortion and exposes the myths surrounding child killing. Little known historical facts about abortion and how they relate to modern feminism are presented logically and accurately. Has been effective in converting many to a pro-life position.

Massacre of Innocence goes where no pro-life presentation has gone before in “tearing the lid off abortion” to reveal the spiritual realities we must battle if we will bring an end to this crime. The presentation is absorbing, fast-paced, informative and incredibly devastating to any attempt to justify abortion.

“… an extraordinary statement … a powerfully articulate presentation about what abortion really means, and why a great and moral nation like the United States must not allow the slaughter to continue.”
— Congressman Robert K. Dornan

Running time: 85 minutes

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Go Stand Speak (DVD)

With “preaching to the lost” being such a basic foundation of Christianity, why do many in the church seem to be apathetic on this issue of preaching in highways and byways of towns and cities?

Is it biblical to stand in the public places of the world and proclaim the gospel, regardless if people want to hear it or not?

Does the Bible really call church pastors, leaders and evangelists to proclaim the gospel in the public square as part of obedience to the Great Commission, or is public preaching something that is outdated and not applicable for our day and age?

These any many other questions are answered in this documentary.

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