- The pro-life movement in Canada and beyond is mourning the loss of pro-life giant Fr. Ted Colleton, who passed away peacefully Tuesday evening at the age of 97.

“He was a wonderful example, giving everything he had for the unborn and vulnerable. He never rested,” said Campaign Life Coalition National President Jim Hughes, who was a personal friend for three decades.

Hughes said that well into his 90s, Fr. Ted led a more active life than most people 30 years his junior. “He set the standard for us,” he said.

Born and raised in Ireland, Fr. Ted was ordained a Catholic priest in the Spiritan (Holy Ghost) order in 1940, after which he spent 30 years in Kenya as a missionary before being personally expelled from the country by dictator Jomo Kenyatta in 1971. He came to Canada where he began a second career as a pro-life missionary and he spent more than 35 active years preaching the Good News without compromise.

He was a tireless defender of the unborn and fierce opponent of the Culture of Death and its symptoms: abortion, contraception, and euthanasia. He wrote hundreds of pro-life columns for The Interim newspaper for which he was a columnist for a quarter century and published three best-selling books: two collections of his columns and one autobiography.

Fr. Ted Colleton being arrested for engaging in pro-life activities.

In the 1980s he was arrested for chaining closed the gates behind Henry Morgentaler’s then illegal abortion facility in Toronto, and people called him a “radical.” He embraced the term, entitling his collection of columns, “Yes, I’m a Radical,” and “I’m Still a Radical.”

He gave thousands of homilies that preached the Culture of Life. He appeared on television and radio to give interviews and spoke to pro-life and church groups from coast to coast. Fr. Ted said he spoke personally with 100,000 Canadians during his travels. It is estimated that he raised more than $1 million for the pro-life cause over 30 years.

Funeral arrangements are still pending.