January 31, 2020

Editorial

Marches offer a reminder that our faith implores us to stand for the unborn

Make Womb for Love! Love Life: Choose Life. I Am The Pro-Life Generation. As A Former Fetus, I Oppose Abortion. Pray to End Abortion.

A sea of signs shared these poignant and heartfelt messages last week.

The signs reflected the goals, the dedication and the determination of the roughly 1,100 people who took part in the Indiana March for Life in Indianapolis on Jan. 22 and the thousands of thousands who participated in the national March for Life in Washington on Jan. 24.

Both groups wanted to leave no doubt where they stood when it came to the unborn: the faith they live teaches them to respect and care for all human life—from conception to natural death.

Indianapolis Archbishop Charles C. Thompson shared that message in a homily during a Mass celebrated at St. John the Evangelist Church in Indianapolis before the Indiana March for Life.

“While there is a specific focus on defending and safeguarding the unborn, we march for the dignity of the human person, the sacredness of life from the moment of conception to natural death,” he said. “We cannot be authentic advocates and defenders of the dignity of life for the unborn if we do not evidence respect for the dignity of those with whom we live, work, encounter and even disagree with in this life. Each and every human being is created in the image of God.”

We are again encouraged and hopeful as we see more and more young faces taking part in the marches for life, and we pray that God continues to move hearts each day where the abortion debate is concerned. We need to remind others that people of all ages attend the rallies. Youths, teenagers, college students, parents, grandparents—all are committed to standing up for life. So are people from all ethnic backgrounds: black, white, Hispanic, Asian. They understand the tragedy of abortion affects all races, cultures and nationalities. They, too, want to see this holocaust end.

Many in the secular news media again attempted to make abortion a political issue. But as Catholics and people of various faith traditions who took part in the rallies, we understand that it is a life-and-death issue.

We see more and more frequently how some in society—including various politicians—try to put boundaries on our faith, to keep it only in houses of worship and out of the public square.

And yet some of those same politicians tell us they know what’s best for us: think of the Affordable Care Act, where businesses could be forced to provide abortifacients, contraception and sterilization to employees. Thankfully, the courts have stepped in to address this wrong, and we hope and pray all faith-based businesses and others who oppose this law come out victorious when all is said and done.

We should also remind lawmakers that, according to a new poll released in advance of the annual March for Life. seven in 10 American adults support “significant” restrictions on abortion.

Conducted by the Marist Poll at Marist College under the sponsorship of the Knights of Columbus, the survey of 1,237 adults on Jan. 7-12 showed that the respondents would welcome limits on abortions so that it can be performed only during the first three months of pregnancy.

Notably, 47 percent of “pro-choice” respondents favored restrictions while 98 percent of “pro-life” respondents felt the same way.

With advances in technology, we believe more and more people are embracing the fact that life truly begins at conception. And through catechetical and evangelization efforts, more people understand that every child is made in the image and likeness of God.

We would be remiss if we did not recognize President Donald J. Trump, who became the first sitting president to attend the national March for Life and address participants in person.

“Today, as president of the United States, I am truly proud to stand with you. We’re here for a very simple reason: to defend the right for every child, born and unborn, to fulfill their God-given potential,” Trump said.

The president also credited the young people who made up a large portion of the crowd for their commitment to life.

“It’s your generation that is making this a pro-life nation,” the president said, adding, “You are powered by prayer and motivated by pure, unselfish love.”

Archbishop Thompson encouraged Massgoers to seek to allow the power of the Holy Spirit to guide their efforts and the light of Christ to shine through their witness.

“The outpouring of grace provided by this celebration of word and sacrament is meant to lead us in service to others—including the unborn, those struggling with unplanned pregnancies, expectant mothers, health professionals, legislators and women who suffer from the procurement of abortion,” he said. “No one is beyond the scope of divine mercy nor the spirit of gratitude that is to permeate our witness to life in faith, hope and charity.”

When it comes to life, may our prayers and actions continue to change hearts.

—Mike Krokos

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