“Speak softly and carry a big stick.” This quote personifies Sandy Slater. Of course her weapons were her constant prayer and daily Mass attendance, her faithfulness to the Lord, and her commitment to the most vulnerable in our society, the unborn.
Sandy passed away on December 12 of this year; the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the unborn! How fitting that she would enter her eternal reward on this feast day.
Sandy and I had many conversations over the years and created a bond. She and I are both adoptive mothers. We connected because of our adoption experiences, our love of the Lord, and our commitment to do what we can to stop the slaughter of our unborn brothers and sisters.
I can picture Sandy sitting on a rocking chair in heaven holding and consoling the many babies who lives were cut short through abortion. I can hear her voice saying to them, ‘hush, it’s okay, you’re safe now.”
Several pro-life warriors have shared their memories with me and I’ve posted them below.
“Sandy Slater was a gentle, graceful presence in the pro-life movement. She was always eager to learn more about the issue and was an absolute joy to work with. Her quiet strength and dignity made her a wonderful role model for advocates for life. She was at the forefront of alerting voters in southeast Pennsylvania to the stands of the candidates as they related to the pro-life issue. She was tireless in her advocacy and dedication. She will be greatly missed.” Maria Gallagher, Legislative Director of the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation
“Sandy Slater was the epitome of a daughter of the Pro Life Movement. She walked in grace and dignity with silent determination to right the grievous wrong of abortion. Every time I met her , she was quietly encouraging and helpful in any pro life work I asked her to share with me. My heart is deeply saddened at her passing. I can imagine that all of the babies she tried to save are now giving her a round of applause and cheer. This beautiful daughter of Life is now residing with her Heavenly Father. I will miss her as will all that knew her and were blessed enough to be her friend in the Journey of the Pro life movement. With all of my heart.” Denise Wilcox, RTL SE PA, the Pennsylvania Pro Life Federation, Director to the NRLC
“Sandy was a person who would want you to get involved in pro life. She had a warm and loving personality. She always was thinking of others before herself. She was a great example of following Christ with a true and loving heart. She was humble, modest, kind, and a gentle woman. My comfort is thinking of her in the arms of Mother Mary, St Joseph and our loving and merciful God, Jesus.” Christina Doherty, Treasurer, Bucks County Pro-Life Coalition
“A few years back when Sandy was sick, another pro-lifer and I spent some time praying with her. I was very inspired by Sandy’s acceptance of her cross and quiet, gentle demeanor in spite of her suffering. Another memory which I will always hold onto when thinking about this kind woman is that she always asked how my youngest son was doing even though she had met him only once. She was so spiritual that she was truly seeing Christ in everyone. Missing you already, Sandy. Please pray for us.” Mary Paris, Bucks County Sidewalk Counselor
“I only met Sandy two years ago but am so thankful I had the opportunity to know her and join her at Bucks County Pro-Life activities. She was a soft-spoken woman with an easy smile and laugh but was fiercely committed to the pro-life cause and was a tremendous gatherer of people to help her on this journey.” Anita Flynn, Bucks County Pro-Life Coalition
“Sandy was a great lady! It is heartbreaking to hear she is gone. May she be richly rewarded for her marvelous work on behalf of the babies! And May the Lord of Life hold her in the palm of His hand. Rest In Peace Sandy!” – Ted Meehan, Delaware County Pro-Life Coalition
“Sandy always had a little hustle in her step and a gentile manner in dealing with others. She was the real McCoy. There was no guile, only a willingness to lead others in the fight against the greatest evil in our lifetime.” – Patrick Stanton, Pro-Life Union of Greater Philadelphia Board of Directors, Founder, Our Lady’s House
“Sandy was by far one of the sweetest persons to ever enter our lives. I believe most of us would agree on this. There was an instant connection between Sandy and whomever she met. Many of us felt like a daughter, son, a sister, brother, or a best friend to Sandy because that’s just the way she made you feel. Sandy was interested in your wellbeing and your family too. Her soft and gentle style was all it took to feel the warmth of her personality and the depth of her sincerity.
Beneath the tenderness was a woman of conviction that was full of love for God. Her priorities were God-driven, placing others’ needs before her own. Nothing was sugar-coated about Sandy’s ambition to protect life. Year after year, the challenge was on between good and evil and Sandy’s determination persisted. Sandy inserted herself, in her kind yet convincing manner, where the need was the greatest. Understanding the law, knowing our legislators, seeking protection for the unborn and attending to the financial needs of the pregnancy centers was Sandy’s mission and she carried out God’s plan through her tireless efforts.
People were drawn to Sandy and for this reason were compelled to join her crusade for those at-risk babies. Individually and collectively, we were important to Sandy. She saw our value and understood the impact each of us could make if we gave just a little tiny bit of ourselves. Sandy’s requests of us were simple and uncomplicated, never wanting to burden anyone with a load too heavy to carry. All the while, Sandy carried the heaviest load as our leader and mentor. Never asking of us what she wouldn’t do herself.
Sandy, our dear, sweet friend will be remembered by all those who entered her life. Only the Lord knows the full range and magnitude of her acts of kindness as I am sure we have only had a glimpse. Sandy’s influence on the respect life movement and many other social concerns will surely have a lasting effect on those she touched. Well done faithful servant! Proverbs 16:24 – Anne Ruegner, A Baby’s Breath
Sandy Slater was a strong leader and role model in the pro-life movement. She was devoted to the Lord and faithful to His call in restoring the sanctity of human life. Sandy was soft spoken and gentle in her manner. These were in strong contrast to her efforts and determination to save babies from abortion and assisting mother’s who chose life. She worked tirelessly to promote the pro-life cause.I’m so thankful for having known Sandy. Her friendship, leadership and example of perseverance and love has been an inspiration. I will miss her more than words can say. As we mourn her passing, we remember the legacy she left us. We are grateful for Sandy’s life and devotion to ‘serve the least of these’. Sandy was faithful to His call and now she is home with Jesus. “…We’ll done thou good and faithful servant…” Matthew 25:21 – Terry Noble, Bucks County Pro-Life Coalition, Voices for Life Blog
I describe Sandy Slater as a meek and faithful compassionate servant and courageous warrior for justice, all motivated by her deep Catholic Faith.
Meekness is the virtue that counters the sin of Anger, which is the desire for revenge or to cause serious harm to another. In her pro-life advocacy and leadership, Sandy maintained a calmness and gentleness in word and spirit while usually speaking through her actions.
Sandy spent most of her 83 years in the service of the Least of our Lord’s brethren. When the Culture of Death pervaded our nation, State, and community, she demonstrated the insight and courage to recognize children in the womb as the least of these.
During her service as a social worker, particularly in drug and alcohol abuse counseling, Sandy offered a sympathetic ear and practical assistance. In her encounters with expectant mothers, she resisted the pervasive practice of her colleagues to recommend killing the mother’s child by abortion and provided extensive assistance for these mothers and their children.
Providing such counseling and assistance led Sandy to lengthy and extensive volunteer service in the pro-life movement as her Parish Pro-Life Coordinator and in the leadership of the Bucks County Pro-Life Coalition. This leadership included persistent and effective efforts to elect and motivate public officials who would do justice by enacting pro-life public policies that included legal protection for the lives of all children before birth.
Sandy’s life beautifully fulfilled the exhortation of the Old Testament Prophet, Micah to.. “Do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God.” – Micah 6:8 – Mike McMonagle, President Pro-Life Coalition of Pennsylvania