Festival For Freedom

First Amendment: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Category: Uncategorized

Gov. Cuomo Waging War on the Unborn by Joe Fitzgerald


  • By Joe Fitzgerald; published in Daily Messenger, Canandaigua NY
  • Posted Jan. 22, 2015 at 3:44 PM
    Updated Jan 23, 2015 at 8:49 AMCanandaigua, N.Y.

    The recent Associated Press article in the Daily Messenger about the New York State Senate Republican majority once again not passing Gov. Cuomo’s pro-abortion bill quoted State Sen. Andrea Stewart-Cousins, a Westchester Democrat leader, as being highly critical of her Republican Senate colleagues for their vote to protect the unborn.

    In the interest of being fair and balanced (the AP article was not) Lori Kehoe, New York State Right to Life Executive Director states, “How many times do New Yorkers have to reject the radical agenda that would legalize abortion for any reason through all nine months? New York is already the abortion capital of the world, with no practical oversight of its abortion industry.”

    Gov. Cuomo, in supporting passage of his bill says, “New York State can do better. After all, it’s her body.” This, despite medical and scientific facts that from conception onward pregnancy involves two or more separate bodies. By doing better he not only means abortion on demand through nine months but also removing conscience protections for hospitals, medical professionals and other health care providers.  Forty-two years after Roe v. Wade (Jan 22, 1973) in this year 2015 we have monumentally greater knowledge about the baby in the womb than was known in the last century in the year 1973. We can now watch the baby during its gestation period through advances in ultrasound and other techniques.

    Remarkable advances in fetal surgery and other medical interventions are achieving truly miraculous results. Many medical professionals urge the use of fetal anesthesia because the fetus/baby experiences pain as early as 11 weeks. As this greater medical and scientific knowledge and the people’s “good conscience” about the pre-born has progressed, so also has state and federal legislation for the protection of this rapidly growing baby. One of many such bills is H.R. 36 Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

    Gov. Cuomo is following in the extreme pro-abortion footsteps of President Obama. They are truly waging a tyrannical war on the right to life of the unborn, and it must end.

    Joe Fitzgerald lives in Canandaigua.


Congratulations to Deacon Claude Lester

The person who conceived, inspired, led and was deeply committed to the Festival for Freedom response to the US Bishops’ first call (2012) to “Stand Up for Freedom” was Deacon Claude Lester.  The outstanding response saw more than 500 attendees at what was probably the only event in the US to respond with ALL TWO WEEKS of meaningful activity (see history and program and pictures elsewhere on this site.)

Two years later, the leader of that event has been recognized not only for his Festival for Freedom success, but also for incredible leadership ranging from funding a drinking water well for the people of Kalama, Kenya, to Community Health Initiatives right in Canandaigua NY.  For so much effort and success,  Deacon Claude was honored with the Consistent Life Ethic VITA Award (a lifetime achievement award) by Bishop Matano of the Diocese of Rochester, on June 4, 2014.  It was the first VITA awarded by the new Bishop of Rochester.

What follows is an excerpt from a recent awards program for Catholic Charities of the Finger Lakes detailing a variety of such successes by Deacon Claude, and a testimony from the very people whom he led in the Festival for Freedom endeavors.  Below will be added pictures from the event as soon as they are available.

 Deacon Claude bio crop

Bishop Salvatore Matano,  Diocese of Rochester

Bishop Salvatore Matano,
Diocese of Rochester



Bishop Matano presents VITA Award to Deacon Claude Lester

Bishop Matano presents VITA Award to Deacon Claude Lester



Deacon Claude's Acceptance Speech, crediting everyone but himself.

Deacon Claude’s Acceptance Speech, crediting everyone but himself.

Deacon Claude Congrats crop

Cooling on Global Warming by Diane Harris

Another in a series of Public Opinion Essays written by a member of Festival for Freedom for the Daily Messenger (Canandaigua):

Cooling on Global Warming Messenger Essay 5-8-14crop

Obamacare more than ‘spilt milk’ by Joe Fitzgerald

A Letter to the Editor by one of the members of Festival for Freedom:

Fitzgerald Messenger Essay

Natural Law Symposium: Marriage: 1 Man; 1 Woman


On Friday morning, March 28, 2014, from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM, a Natural Law Symposium will be held at St. John Fisher (Coleman Chapel-Murphy Hall) on “The Natural Law and Marriage betwen a Man and a Woman.”  The Forum is co-sponsored by the St. Thomas Lawyers Guild and the Knights of Columbus, Finger Lakes.

Natural Law Symposium 3-29-14 sjf

With so much discussion leading up to the Extraordinay Synod called for all the Bishops in the world later this year, it is indeed a timely and preparative opportunity regarding the subject: “Marriage and the Natural Law and its evangelization in the Public Square.”  

Our souls cannot afford to have our consciences formed by popular media.

The speakers are two noted and prominent scholars, Dr. Peter J. Colosi, Professor of Moral Theology at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia, and Dr. John C. Eastman, Esq., Former Dean of Chapman University School of Law.  Both are noted and respected authors.

We look forward to some information and help in answering the popular secular question:  “But how is this (so-called “Same-Sex Marriage”) hurting anybody?  Isn’t LOVE a “good” thing?

Contact Us

Festival For Freedom.
PO Box 196
Canandaigua, NY, 14424



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