Pro-life Leaders Respond to Tiller Shooting

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The pro-life community on Sunday denounced the killing of late-term abortion Dr. George Tiller in Wichita, Kan.

Tillman, 67, was gunned down shortly after 10 a.m Sunday at Reformation Lutheran Church in Wichita. The gunman fled the scene and hours later police arrested a suspect.

The pro-life community is roundly condemning the shooting, expressing their shock over Dr. Tiller's murder. Click the player to watch more from Russ Jones from Wichita, Kan., as seen on  CBN News Channel's Morning program. Also, watch more reaction from the Christian Defense Coalition's Rev. Patrick Mahoney on the Tiller murder, following this report.

Leaders with Concerned Women for America stated they have worked hard for the rule of law to be restored in Kansas.

"Now someone has usurped the rule of law and taken it into his own hands and rendered vigilante justice rather than allowing the laws and procedures to work," Judy Smith, Director of CWA said.

Pro-life groups also met on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court to speak out against Tiller's murder.  Click here to watch their comments.

"Someone, possibly in their frustration at the slowness of the process, decided not to wait on God for the perfection of justice. It is never right to commit a wrong to make something right," she added.

Wendy Wright, President of Concerned Women for America, and a leader of the Summer of Mercy peaceful protests in Wichita in 1991 explained the Bible does not condone such a crime.

"'Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the Sovereign Lord. 'Rather, am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and live?'" Wright said.

Shaun Kenney, executive director of American Life League, stressed that violence is not in the nature of pro-life supporters.

"Today's actions were tragic, and serve as another reminder that all human life is sacred. Pro-lifers by our nature and commitment to human rights reject violence as a means of resistance."

The Reverend Patrick Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, told CBN News the crime must first be put in a personal context.

"A husband, a father has been lost," he said. "We unequivocally condemn the loss."

Pro-life group Americans United for Life president Charmaine Yoest called Tiller's death a "lawless act of violence."

"The foundational right to life that our work is dedicated to extends to everyone," she said. "Whoever is responsible for this reprehensible violence must be brought to justice under the law."

Condemnations of the crime have come from both sides of the abortion debate.

President Obama responded with shock to Tillman's killing.

"I am shocked and outraged by the murder of Dr. George Tiller as he attended church services this morning," he said. "However profound our differences as Americans over difficult issues such as abortion, they cannot be resolved by heinous acts of violence."

Several pro-life leaders cautioned against the ripple effect the slaying could have on the abortion issue in the political arena.

Rev. Mahoney stressed that Tiller's death must not be used for political gain.

"The pro-life community condemns violence on every level. That's why we're pro-life."

Read below for more statements from pro-life groups condemning the murder of late-term abortion Dr. George Tiller:

Tony Perkins, Family Research Council
"We are stunned at today's news. As Christians we pray and look toward the end of all violence and for the saving of souls, not the taking of human life. George Tiller was a man who we publicly sought to stop through legal and peaceful means. We strongly condemn the actions taken today by this vigilante killer and we pray for the Tiller family and for the nation that we might once again be a nation that values all human, both born and unborn."

Charmaine Yoest, Americans United for Life
"We condemn this lawless act of violence. The foundational right to life that our work is dedicated to extends to everyone.  Whoever is responsible for this reprehensible violence must be brought to justice under the law."

Kristan Hawkins, Students for Life of America
"Students for Life of America is shocked to hear about the murder of George Tiller. SFLA is a peaceful organization, and we do not condone today's unfortunate events. We will keep Mr. Tiller's family in our thoughts and prayers."

David Bereit, National Director of 40 Days for Life
"As a nationwide organization dedicated to peaceful and prayerful solutions to the crisis of abortion, 40 Days for Life is shocked and dismayed by the shooting death of Kansas abortion provider George Tiller. Such violence against a fellow human being is never justified, and 40 Days for Life condemns this senseless act. We encourage people of faith to join in prayer for all those affected by this   unconscionable action."

Marjorie Dannenfelser, SBA List
"The Susan B. Anthony List condemns this anti-life act in the strongest of terms. The heart of the pro-life movement is one founded in love. Without this driving powerful center no justice can possibly be achieved.  Authentic progress in women's rights has always encompassed the protection of human rights of every person across the board. The rights of one human being can never be honored by diminishing or ignoring the rights of another. This week as we gather for our annual June Tea event, themed Love Lets Live, we will lift up George Tiller's loved ones in prayer."

Jonathan Imbody, Christian Medical Association
"Freedom2Care condemns the murder of Dr. George Tiller as an act of lawless disregard for the sanctity of human life that forms the foundation of the pro-life movement. Each and every human being is of inestimable value, created in the image of God, to Whom alone belongs the power of life and death. Our prayers are for and our condolences go out to his family."

Lila Rose, Live Action Films
"Live Action condemns the murder of George Tiller and insists on a culture in which every human life is protected."

Wendy Wright, Concerned Women for America
"We are disturbed and saddened to learn that notorious late-term abortionist George Tiller was shot and killed today in Wichita. Through the years, hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers have prayed for George Tiller, peacefully tried to persuade him to end his killing of innocent children and exploitation of women, and actively worked to enforce the laws of Kansas. We were guided by the hope that he would change his ways and find forgiveness in Jesus Christ. As the Bible states, 'Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the Sovereign LORD. Rather, am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and live?' (Ezekiel 18:23)

"George Tiller faced on-going charges of misconduct as pro-lifers continued to rely on our civilized system to bring justice. Now, we will rely on the justice system to discover the motive of his alleged killer and expect that the full force of the law will be applied. Politicians, abortion activists, law enforcement and the media should be careful to distinguish between the millions of peaceful pro-lifers who seek the end of abortion and provide compassionate care for pregnant women, and the person who acted as a vigilante. We denounce this act of violence against George Tiller, just as we denounce the violence he committed against unborn babies and women."

Brian Burch,
"We condemn the violent murder of George Tiller and hope that his killer will be brought to justice for this heinous crime.  We cannot create a Civilization of Love with such violence.  We call upon all people of good will to pray this week for the soul of Mr. Tiller and to pray that our society will abandon every form of hatred and violence. This senseless act of violence represents the utter antithesis of a people of life.

The tens of millions of Americans who peacefully pray and work every day for the protection of all human life are rightfully grieved by this news. As the late Cardinal John O'Connor said, 'If anyone has an urge to kill someone at an abortion clinic, they should shoot me. ... It's madness. It discredits the right-to-life movement. Murder is murder. It's madness. You cannot prevent killing by killing.'"

Jenn Giroux, Women Influencing the Nation
"Women Influencing the Nation condemns all form of murder.  The murder of George Tiller is in direct contradiction with the beliefs and morals embraced by those of us who believe that every life is precious in the eyes of God and no individual has the right to take the life of another.  We encourage everyone to pray for the repose of Dr. Tiller's soul."

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