A Catholic prayer service will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 14, at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, 328 Washington Ave., Dunkirk, for baby "Jesse," the male fetus discovered last August along the shoreline of Lake Erie State Park in Portland, N.Y.
Bishop Richard J. Malone and Pro-Life Activities Director Cheryl Calire wanted to make sure the remains of the baby were treated with respect and given an appropriate burial, if no family member was found or came forward to do so.
"My first concern, of course," said Bishop Malone, "is for the little one found and the family. When we first heard and read the news, we began to make an inquiry about the fetus. Our particular concern was that a fetal death certificate be issued and that the child would have a proper burial."
Following an extensive investigation, Calire was contacted to move forward and has arranged through the diocese for the prayer service and burial to take place at St. Mary's Cemetery, 10880 Bennett Road (Route 60), Dunkirk. McGraw-Kowal Funeral Home in Dunkirk has provided an infant vessel and vault for the burial.
"This is only about trying to live out the Gospel for baby Jesse," Calire said. "We are honored to give him the dignity all human life deserves."