On January 22, 1973, the US Supreme Court decided in Roe v. Wade that a mother has the legal right to end her pregnancy up until the point at which the fetus can live outside of her womb. We lament the death of each child lost to abortion. We pray for each parent who has chosen to terminate a pregnancy. And we commit to become a people who welcome life in a culture of death.
It’s worth remembering today and everyday — the lives lost, the dreams vanquished, the wounds suffered from abortion. And it is also worth remembering that love requires more than ideology… it requires responsibility. In my neighborhood, being pro-life means we have to figure out what to do when a 14-year-old gets pregnant, and how we can all help bear the weight of that responsibility.
I want to be pro-life like Mother Teresa was pro-life. She didn’t just wear an “Abortion is murder shirt” and protest outside a clinic. For her, being pro-life was more than being anti-abortion… it meant coming alongside teenage parents, helping raise kids that no one wanted, and taking in families who had no place to go. That’s the kind of pro-life movement we’re talking about. Pro-life from the womb to the tomb.
Incidentally, I recently read a compilation of the words and writing of the early (pre-fourth-century)
Consider these words of Cyprian of Carthage, a third-century North African bishop: “The world is going mad in mutual extermination, and murder, considered as a crime when committed individually, becomes a virtue when it is committed by large numbers. It is the multiplication of the frenzy that assures impunity to the assassins.”
Let’s renew our commitment today to reduce and eliminate abortion… Lord, give us courage and imagination to do what love requires of us. May we not be known just by what we are against, but by what we are for. Make us people who are not just anti-death but who are FOR LIFE.