T. Murphy Goodwin, MD

“I am honored to have an award that has his name” remarked Dr. Murph Goodwin upon receiving the 2005 March Calegari Award at the CANFP Celebrate the Gift Banquet at Our Lady of Angels Cathedral. Dr. Goodwin came to know Fr. Marc years ago when his search for an OB/GYN residency which would respect his convictions to not perform abortions or prescribe contraception brought him to Fr. Marc’s Arizona neighborhood. Dr. Goodwin fondly recalled his admiration for Fr. Marc: “He was something like a  fool for Christ. He was just a person who was smarter than everyone else and so devoted to this important cause. He was prescient, he could see beyond something that was important to something that was more important.”

Dr. Goodwin and Fr. Pavone

Fr. Pavone presents Dr. Goodwin with the 2005 Calegari Award

Fortunately for us, Dr. Goodwin and his family returned to his native southern California, where he served as a Professor in the Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, USC, and Chief, Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine at LAC-USC Womena’s and Children’s Hospital. Dr. Goodwin’s professional accomplishments are too numerous to list in their entirety, but include publication of over 100 articles as author or coauthor, peer reviewer for five medical journals, and national and international speaking engagements, presenting twice before the national meetings of the US Bishops, and three times at CANFP Conferences. He serves on the boards of CANFP, California Nurses for Ethical Standards, Pregnancy Help Center of San Gabriel Valley, the Catholic Medical Association, and the Life Commission of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. With his wife Joann he founded St. Monica’s Academy, a private Catholic school with a classics based curriculum, and together they serve on the marriage preparation team at their Pasadena parish, St. Andrews.

Dr. Murph Goodwin and Dr. Tom Hilgers

Dr. Murph Goodwin and Dr. Tom Hilgers

Contrasting his professional world of academia with his pro life convictions, Dr. Goodwin shared “When you are in the regular academic world in obstetrics and gynecology, you feel like you’re crazy if you’re pro life and believe in Natural Family Planning. It was always a very reinforcing and nourishing experience to come back and talk to people and find out you aren’t really crazy—or we’re all crazy together!”

Dr. Goodwin praised colleague and featured speaker at the conference, Dr. Tom Hilgers. “I’ve always drawn a lot of inspiration from you and I really appreciate all the things you’ve done” specifically citing the recent publication of Dr. Hilger’s texbook.

Dr. Goodwin and family

Joanne Goodwin, Mary Goodwin, Dr. Richard and Mary Vanis, and Dr. Murphy Goodwin

Family present included Dr. Goodwin’s sister, Mary Vanis, President of Right to Life League of Southern California, her husband Dr. Richard Vanis, wife Joanne, and daughter Mary, representing her eight siblings. Dr. Goodwin quipped some were surprised to see he was selected for a state NFP award, as they “thought you were disqualified from the award after you got above five or seven kids”.

On a more serious note, Dr. Goodwin expressed his appreciation. “I am very honored to have the award and I am most grateful for all the encouragement and support. I know everybody feels the same way—the support that you get when you go back and recharge your batteries and be reinforced in your fundamental beliefs, and this is the kind of group that’s always done it for me”.

Dr. Tom Hilgers, Dr. Goodwin, Sheila St. John, Bill Simon,m and Dr. Gregory Polito

Dr. Tom Hilgers, Dr. Goodwin, Sheila St. John, Bill Simon,m and Dr. Gregory Polito

All present were touched by his humility and generosity, and grateful to have the opportunity to honor Dr. Goodwin for, as Dr. Polito said, “his unfailing support of every aspect of the Gospel of Life”.