The parents of Terri Schiavo held a memorial mass and dedication on the third anniversary of their daughter's death this week as pro-life leaders renewed their vows to fight for the forces of life.
The events surrounding Schiavo, who had been in what some doctors described as a "persistent, vegetated state" after incurring brain damage fifteen years earlier, and her death in 2005 after a court ordered her feeding tube removed, continues to bring new dimensions to pro-life issues.
Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life, an association of Catholic Clergy who give special emphasis to pro-life teachings, commented on Schiavo's death Monday as being part of a larger and continuing desperate struggle.
"Terri's death was not the end of her fight. It was the beginning of a new chapter in the pro-life movement," he said to WorldNetDaily.
"I call upon all those who were moved by Terri's death to continue their courageous activism in the cause of life, and never to be silent."
Steven Ertelt, editor and CEO of LifeNews.com, also commented on the events involving Terri Schiavo's death in an editorial Monday.
Ertelt, whose pro-life news service claims to reach 250,000 people each week, said Schiavo's death has given the pro-life movement a new "obligation to speak up for the Terri Schiavo's of the future and millions of people around the world at risk."
"We must draw on the lessons from Terri's brutal 13-day starvation and dehydration death … and we must pass laws that give patients the medical care and treatment they deserve," he said.
"With so many Christians and pro-life people who are still pro-life on abortion but tolerant of putting grandma 'out of her misery,' our educational efforts need to start at home. We must put forward the principle that everyone deserves the right to live regardless of age or quality of life both before and after birth," he added.
Schiavo's brother, Bobby Schindler, speaking for The Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation, which advocates for both the legacy of Terri Schiavo and "all persons in danger of being killed because they have been deemed 'unworthy of life,'" also released a statement Monday.
"This third anniversary should be an occasion for all of us to both remember the injustice done to Terri, and reach out to others with prayer and concrete action when they need the kind of help Terri needed," he said.
Last December, The Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation and the Priests for Life announced that the March 31 date of Terri Schiavo's death would be an "International Day of Prayer and Remembrance" to be held each year.
The mass and memorial service for Terri Schiavo was held Monday evening at St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Largo, Fla.