Many thanks to the young adults, SPUC staff, and speakers for making this year's youth conference a very good occasion of friendship and formation. The weekend began on Friday at 4pm with registration, and numerous calls and texts from stranded groups all over the UK due to the very heavy snow. Some groups arrived later in the evening, whilst two groups from Scotland got as far as Manchester, stayed over at a hotel, and finished off the journey the next day. Good effort!
Anthony McCarthy, SPUC's education and publications manager, introduced the conference. One of Anthony's key messages was a paraphrase of the philosopher Aristotle: "a small error in the beginning leads to a bigger error later on". Anthony reminded attendees that the conference was there for their benefit, and the importance that SPUC attaches to the nurturing and support of young adult prolifers. He also said it was important to understand the philosophical and practical links between various prolife concerns.
|Picturesque Hayes conference centre covered in snow|
|Almost all of our delegates made it!|
|Friday afternoon meet and greet as people arrived|
|Anthony McCarthy introducing the conference|
|Ira Winter waiting to give her presentation|
|Ira speaking about the loss of surgery skills for fertility and pregnancy|
|Dr. Watt speaking on the ethics of pregnancy|
|Panel discussion with Anthony, Ira, and Helen.|
|Peter Smith, SPUC UN lobbyist|
|Peter with sucessful applicants for the SPUC UN internship 2013 and 2014|
|Fiorella spoke the need for a prolife response to difficult pregnancies|
|Fiorella shows the audience as photo her newest child Natalia Evangelina|
Below are also some photos of Anthony Ozimic, SPUC communications manager, who spoke about SPUC's history, campaigns, and points to remember for the future of the prolife movement in the UK at the culture and political level.
|Dr. Lisa Nolland giving her presentation|
|Anthony Ozimic speaking about SPUC's work|
|A vision for the present and the future - cultural and political|
|UN lobbyist Peter Smith, Dr. Philip Howard, and Professor Patrick Pullicino|
|Barrister James Bogle talking about euthanasia|
SPUC was very fortunate to have Professor Patrick Pullicino, professor of Clinical Neuroscience and Consultant Neurologist in the East Kent Hospitals Trust, speak about the dangers of the Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP). Prof. Pullicino is renowned for speaking out against the LCP and how it is being used as a "death pathway" for ill patients. Prof. Pullicino talked about the lack of evidence-based medicine in this regard, the difficulty of trying to predict death, and the financial incentives being offered to NHS trusts to get patients on the LCP.
|Prof. Pullicino giving his presentation|
|Another tea break - time to chat and briefly discuss the talks|
|Following the tea breaks we had panel Q&A sessions|
|The Saturday night ceilidh|
|The band and MC leading the dancing|
|Merciless! This young man shall remain nameless :-)|
|Snowman abandoned for a wrestling match|