Catholic pro-lifer arrested as fellow parishioner calls cops on him

This is one of the saddest stories I’ve seen in a while. It’s a sure sign that the persecutions are ramping up and that Catholic parishes are more sick than we thought. More commentary below the quote.

FRANKLIN, MA, August 26, 2011 ( – A pro-life activist in New England says he was unjustly beaten, arrested, and accused of a bomb plot while passing out pro-life bookmarks at a local town fair.


In his account of what happened, published online by the pro-family group MassResistance, pro-life activist Peter D’Attilio says that police approached him on the evening of August 11 when he was handing out two-inch-wide pro-life bookmarks to six teenagers. D’Attilio was at the annual St. Rocco fair on the grounds of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Franklin, Massachusetts. (Source)

If you read the victim’s account, he says that he was just handing out bookmarks on abortion to teenagers on the grounds of his parish when the cops came and hauled him away, after beating him. If this is accurate, it’s a sad testimony to the situation of police corruption. The cops claim that he resisted arrest and needed to be forcibly restrained, thus explaining the man’s injuries. We don’t know for sure what happened, but I’m inclined to believe the victim rather than the cops.

Even if we overlook that disagreement on the cause of the beating, there is one aspect of the story that both sides agree on: the police were called to the scene by Peter Brunelli, a member of St. Mary’s parish and the chairman of the fair at which the incident took place. It was Mr. Brunelli that asked the police to intervene. Quoting from the police report:

On the above date and time, I along with Sgt. THIBEAULT were working a paid detail at the St. Rocco’s Festival on the grounds of St. Mary’s, I was approached by Peter Brunelli, the Chairman of the Festival, who stated that he had received several complaints of a white male wearing a red and grey shirt, brown hair and a beard that was handing out literature to people on the grounds and that he wanted the party removed from the property. Mr. Brunelli stated that no one was suppose to be handing anything out. Mr. Brunelli showed me a pamphlet about abortion, I searched the grounds and found the subject matching that description.

(Socon note: all spelling mistakes are in the original)

Let me try to wrap my head around this: if you hand out pro-life material on church property, at your own parish, during a church-organized fair named after St. Rocco, your fellow parishioner calls the cops and earns you a trip downtown in the paddywagon? Does this exude of faithful Catholicism to you, dear reader?

So I ask the burning questions: Is this standard policy at St. Mary’s parish? Do they always call the cops on pro-lifers? Who is this Brunelli guy that he has authority to persecute Christ’s faithful? Couldn’t he at least have asked the victim to stop spreading pamphlets before calling the cops? Where was the pastor in all this? Has he nothing to say? Where’s the Archbishop? Scrap that last thought: this is the territory of Cardinal Sean O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston (you know, the guy that canonized Ted Kennedy).

What a filthy pile of smelly dung. Lord have mercy on us!

6 thoughts on “Catholic pro-lifer arrested as fellow parishioner calls cops on him

  1. A far less dramatic incident vaguely similar to this sort happened to me 19 years ago in Ottawa. I was neither arrested nor beaten like this unfortunate gentleman. I was commissioned by then Abp. Marcel Gervais who wanted to jump start pro life committees in French parishes to start something at St. Jean Baptiste Parish on Empress St. I was told that I needed pastoral councol approval. This was set to a vote and the pro life work was nixed. I approached one of my contacts with whom I had good rapport earlier with work in the St. Vincent de Paul Society. She told me she was pro abort. I contacted the overseer in charge of the French parishes pro life activities. She told me she would intervene. She did and another vote of the council was called. The pro life work was nixed. I talked to the overseer after that and she told there was nothing she could do. I soon joined anothe parish after that. What this says to me is that the bishop seem to have surprisingly little power. There was never any doubts about the strong pro life convictions of Abp. Gervais.

  2. Hi Jean

    I’m sorry to hear about your experience. God bless you for your perseverence.

    Yes; Archbishop Gervais was pro-life, but he wasn’t very gutsy when it came time to confront those who weren’t pro-life.

  3. Not knowing the facts, I’m inclined to believe someone named Brunelli abused his power to persecute a messenger attempting to invite youth to consider the pro-life Gospel message. Jesus said “you are either with me or against me.” Brunelli and d’Attillo -and whomever else formed the chain of attack- have chosen their sides and given the witness by their choices. May all Glory be to God.

  4. John Grant do you know that that police handcuff and haul off pro-life students in many Canadian universities for doing the same?

  5. I ask the intercession of St Peter
    For the conversion of Peter Brunelli the fair chair,
    For justice served and protection of Peter D’Attilio,
    We pray to the Lord

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