How does a young man from a devout Catholic family, with a Catholic school education, and a strong desire to help others, become a medical doctor who preforms abortions, sterilizations, and creates embryos for In Vitro Fertilization? Dr. John Bruchalski of Tepeac Family Center joins me on this episode of The Dignity of Women to explain how he was carried down this “slippery slope,” and how an encounter with the Blessed Mother brought him back to the truth – where he has been fighting the pro-life cause ever since. 

 

Dr. John Bruchalski

Dr. John Bruchalski received his M.D. from the University of South Alabama College of Medicine in 1987. He then completed his residency at the Eastern Virginia Medical Center and the Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine in Norfolk, Virginia, receiving board certification in 1993.

Motivated by a desire to become the best trained physician possible, Dr. Bruchalski learned methods for preforming abortions, sterilizations, and artificial reproductions during his residency. His follow-up experiences with the women he served made him question whether the services he offered were truly improving their situations in any way. After a spiritual awakening, he returned to the Catholic faith of his youth and answered God’s call to start a medical practice that truly helped women.

Dr. Bruchalski founded Tepeyac OB/GYN in Fairfax, VA, in 1994, which has become one of the largest pro-life private OB/GYN’s, offering excellent care, which is in line with Biblical medical ethics and pro-life values. The center provides comprehensive care to women regardless of their religious beliefs, background, or financial situation. 

In 2000, Dr. Bruchalski founded Divine Mercy Care as an umbrella organization to support Tepeyac and other pro-life healthcare initiatives. Today, DMC has 8 programs, which all advance the pro-life healthcare movement, broadening community awareness of holistic, life-affirming medicine.

Dr. John Bruchalski‘s tireless leadership in the pro-life movement has led to countless other conversions, positive birth experiences, and the advancement of fertility awareness, family planning, and religious freedom in the medical world.

 

Abortionist to Pro-Life Doc

What I wanted to understand is the mindset behind a doctor who believes he’s truly helping women through abortion. I asked Dr. Bruchalski if he had every grappled with the personhood of the aborted fetus or questioned the morality of creating human embryos. His answer was “no,” stating that his four-year Jesuit education was mostly about situational ethics, relativism, and proportionalism. The way it was presented to him was that the Church simply had not caught up yet with medicine and that Pope John Paul II was still stuck in the past. Good theologians across the world were arguing and dissenting from Church teaching, and it was still widely believed that you could dissent and still be a good Catholic.

“By the time I got to medical school, it was a done deal. Meaning, you just were surrounded by really good people who were trying to improve the quality of health of women, and  contraception and abortion were just part of it.”

Dr. Bruchalski remembers the sadness of his parents when Roe v Wade was passed, saying that they were good people who always prayed for him, but he just “slipped away.” When I asked him what I thought of his medical practices, he said that he never told his parents at that time what he was doing because of the shame. This caused him to begin building walls.

Dr. John Bruchalski also recounts how his prayer life began to fall off. He lost his sense of the Mother of God and the Eucharist, and began to see the Church as crazy – they were talking about old stuff that didn’t matter anymore. I wanted to be excellent, so I went to the best school I could – a contraceptive and research development center.

“And, oh by the way, we (Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine) were the home of the first IVF baby in our country. Part of our electives were sucking eggs and making embryos and participating in IUD studies. It was just part of what you did. 

Dr. Bruchalski was first affected by the testimony of Dr. Jérôme Lejeune in the 1989 trial involving a young divorced couple battling over custody of their seven frozen embryos, which Dr. Bruchalski’s group has created. The mother wanted to have custody so she could have the embryos implanted in her womb or to donate to other childless women. The father wanted custody for the sole purpose of destroying them in their frozen state.  

This brought back an experience when a friend had taken him to the Guadalupe shrine in Mexico City, where he heard the Blessed Mother say to him, “Why are you hurting me?”

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS  

  • A devout Catholic upbringing and Jesuit education
  • Wanting to be the best medical OBGYN
  • Pregnancy as a sexually transmitted disease
  • Learning abortion, sterilization, contraception, and IVF
  • Dr. Jérôme Lejeune testimony in the case of a divorced couple battling over custody of their seven frozen embryos 
  • Volunteering at a Pro-Life pregnancy center by night and doing abortions by day
  • Delivering a live baby during a late term abortion
  • Experiences with the Blessed Mother at Guadalupe and Medjugorje
  • Hardness of heart and the slippery slope
  • Conversion and taking a stand
  • Beginning Tepeyac Family Center and Divine Mercy Care

LINKS AND RESOURCES

 

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Kimberly Cook

Writer, Podcaster, Mother, & Catholic Apologist. Meet Kimberly

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