Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Friday 17 September |

The surprising pro-life message in CBS’s ‘Madam Secretary’

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 05/09/17

At least one observer was pleasantly surprised at what unfolded Sunday night on the hit CBS series “Madam Secretary”:

In the world of entertainment, if a single woman faces an unplanned pregnancy after sleeping with a man she barely knows, that man ends up dying and thus can’t help her support the baby, and her parents are “church people” who she fears may judge her, abortion is almost always the automatic answer given as a solution to her dilemma.
 On the May 7 episode of Madam Secretary, “The Seventh Floor,” however, that exact scenario resulted instead in an encouraging pro-life, pro-motherhood speech by Secretary Elizabeth McCord (Tea Leoni) to newly pregnant Daisy Grant (Patina Miller), after Daisy expressed fears about handling motherhood on her own after the CIA operative she briefly dated was killed.

Read on to see how it happened and to watch the scene in question.

It’s worth noting that the creator and executive producer of “Madam Secretary” is Catholic convert Barbara Hall, who has spoken publicly about her faith (and its role in this particular show):

Talking to CatholicVote …at a press event in Beverly Hills, California, Hall, an adult convert to Catholicism, says of Henry, (the Secretary of State’s husband) “He’s Catholic. I think he’s cradle Catholic; we establish that in an upcoming episode. He has a vast life experience, but he’s a religion scholar, also. So, he has a perspective on world religion, but his own practice is Catholic. I think he still practices.” Told that seeing an actual practicing Catholic (who’s not a monk, priest or nun) on TV would blow people’s minds, Hall says, “Well, stick around. You know that I’m fascinated by depicting religion in a way that confounds people’s expectations, because, not unlike politics, that’s a world that we need to expose to popular culture. “It’s a fascinating world. I think it’s really fun to reveal that in a more realistic way. I had an opportunity to do that, so I did.”

Some years back, Hall had this to say about her own faith journey:

“I spent a lot of time without a spiritual life and without a religion,” she said. “[Because of that] I feel like I know how to talk to people without making them feel alienated. I feel like I understand how to invite them to the discussion … I have nothing to preach. My thing is, I have questions. I have observations and I’m the last person on earth to be preaching to you about anything. But I want to have the discussion.”

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Top 10
Cerith Gardiner
Our favorite stories of celebrities who inspire us in daily life
Philip Kosloski
How receiving Holy Communion can drive away demons
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Pope considers what to do with pro-abortion Catholic politicians
Berthe and Marcel
Lauriane Vofo Kana
This couple has the longest marriage in France
As irmãs biológicas que se tornaram freiras no instituto Iesu Communio
Francisco Veneto
The 5 biological sisters who joined the religious life in just tw...
Philip Kosloski
Why is the feast of the Holy Cross celebrated on September 14?
Philip Kosloski
This prayer to St. Anthony is said to have “never been known to f...
See More