September 24, 2010

Mass, Life Chains to highlight Respect Life Sunday events

By Mary Ann Wyand

“The Measure of Love Is to Love Without Measure” is the theme for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ national Respect Life Program for 2010-11.

On Oct. 3, Respect Life Sunday will be celebrated with Masses at Catholic churches and pro-life prayer chains in dioceses throughout the United States.

Officials with the U.S. bishops’ Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities said this year’s theme is a reminder that, “There can be no compromise with the standard [that] Jesus set and continually calls us to [follow].”

Msgr. Joseph F. Schaedel, vicar general, will celebrate the archdiocesan Respect Life Sunday Mass at 1 p.m. on Oct. 3 at SS. Peter and Paul Cathedral, 1347 N. Meridian St., in Indianapolis.

The vicar general will represent Archbishop Daniel M. Buechlein, who will lead the archdiocesan pilgrimage to Austria and Germany from Sept. 25 through Oct. 4.

At the conclusion of the liturgy, Msgr. Schaedel will present the Archbishop Edward T. O’Meara Respect Life Award to a longtime adult pro-life volunteer and the Our Lady of Guadalupe Pro-Life Youth Award to a dedicated teenage volunteer in recognition of their distinguished service to the cause of life.

The pro-life award recipients will be announced in the Oct. 1 issue of The Criterion.

Catholics from throughout the archdiocese are invited to participate in the archdiocesan pro-life Mass then join the Central Indiana Life Chain, a silent, one-hour prayer vigil for an end to abortion, from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. along North Meridian Street.

Servants of the Gospel of Life Sister Diane Carollo, director of the archdiocesan Office for Pro-Life Activity, said the Church observes Respect Life Month every year in October “with the hope that our society will be transformed into one that supports and respects human life from the moment of conception until natural death.

“The temptation to discouragement is real as we witness the ongoing assault against innocent human life in our country,” Sister Diane said. “What should console us are the words of the first reading from Habakkuk (Hb 1:2-3, 2:2-4) on Respect Life Sunday. We are instructed that the Lord hears the voices of the oppressed and the poor, which certainly includes the silent voices of the unborn babies that die from abortion. The ultimate victory of good over evil and life over death will be won by God.”

Ecumenical Life Chains also are scheduled in 30 other cities in Indiana and in 49 other states on Respect Life Sunday.

Last October, Life Chains were held in more than 1,450 cities and towns throughout the country.

In addition to Indianapolis, pro-life supporters will be praying along Indiana streets in Bedford, Bloomington, Brazil, Carmel, Columbia City, Columbus, Connersville, Covington, Decatur, Elkhart, Evansville, Frankfort, Greencastle, Hartford City, Highland/Munster, Kokomo, Lafayette, Lebanon, Michigan City, Milan, Muncie, Noblesville, Plymouth, Portage, Rockport, Terre Haute, Valparaiso, Wabash, Warsaw and Westfield. †

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