“I shall accept whatever they will do to me provided they save the child” (St. Gianna Molla).
Reflection: In 1962, St Gianna Molla died after giving birth to her fourth child. She was a physician herself, and understood the risks of her own complications in pregnancy, but refused abortion. Some would question her decision, given that she already had three born children. However, nothing would have harmed those children more than if she had aborted their sister, and nothing blessed them more than the example of a mother who gave her life for her child
Prayer: Saint Gianna, pray for us, that we may imitate your selfless love. Amen
“He consoles us in all our afflictions and thereby enables us to console others in their tribulations” (2 Corinthians 1:4).
Reflection: Terri Schiavo’s family now assists other families who face tragedies similar to their own, and is calling for laws in various states to protect the disabled from being dehydrated to death as Terri was. Rather than being absorbed in bitterness or despair, this family has accepted from the Lord their mission to be a voice for the voiceless. Their book, “A Life that Matters,” is their personal account of what happened to Terri.
Prayer: As I battle the culture of death, Lord, may I receive and share your consolation. Amen.
”The people of Judah have done evil in my eyes, declares the Lord … They have built the high places … to burn their sons and daughters in the fire” (Jeremiah 7:30-31).
Reflection: A woman who saw the photos of aborted babies on the Priests for Life website wrote to us, “Let me state first that I am rarely if ever speechless, I am very outspoken and speak what I feel. The abortion images are jolting, and will haunt me the rest of my life. … I will never be silent about this matter again.”
Prayer: Jolt us, Lord; awaken us, and preserve us from sin. Amen.
“Give to Caesar what is due to Caesar and to God what is due to God” (Matthew 22:21).
Reflection: When asked whether taxes should be paid to Caesar, Jesus asked whose image and inscription was on the coin. “Caesar’s,” came the answer. Jesus said the coin belongs to Caesar, for it bears Caesar’s image. What then belongs to God? — human beings, because they bear God’s image! The implication of the passage is that what belongs to God includes Caesar himself! Caesar must obey God.
Prayer: Lord, bless all those in civil authority, that they may obey your Divine and eternal law holding all life as sacred. Amen.
“Before I was born the Lord called me” (Isaiah 49:1).
Reflection: When someone is pregnant, she is not “expecting a child” — she already has one. She is not “going to be a mother” – she already is a mother. The baby is not “on the way;” the baby has already arrived. If we are going to change the way society treats unborn children, we have to change the way we talk about them.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for my brothers and sisters now alive in their mothers’ wombs. May we all speak and act in a way that recognizes they are already among us! Amen.
“To the Father and to his mercy you can with sure hope entrust your child” (John Paul II to those who have had abortions, The Gospel of Life, n.99).
Reflection: Baptism is the ordinary way to be born into God’s grace. But for those killed without baptism, we can still have sure hope. St. Paul wrote that God wants all to be saved. Let us entrust these children to the Lord, who does not forget anyone that He creates, even when we do.
Prayer: Father, to you we commend the souls of all children killed by abortion. Bring them to heaven, and bring us your comfort. Amen.
“Jesus spoke to men a message of peace, and taught us to live as brothers. His message took form in the vision of our fathers as they fashioned a nation where men might live as one. This message lives on in our midst as a task for men today and a promise for tomorrow. We thank you, Father, for your blessings in the past, and for all that with your help we must yet achieve” (Preface, Liturgy for Independence Day)
Reflection: The pro-life work we do advances the purpose of today’s celebration: liberty and justice for all.
Prayer: Lord, grant the blessings of liberty to our unborn brothers and sisters. Amen.
“The Lord watches over the stranger” (Psalm 146:9).
Reflection: The Statue of Liberty is a strong symbol of the welcome our nation has given to people from around the world. On its base are the words of Emma Lazarus, “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” This welcome can make no sense if we are afraid to welcome the children in the womb. America is a haven for those escaping oppression in far-off lands. Why should it be land where we oppress the unborn by the violence of abortion?
Prayer: Lord, fill our hearts with a spirit of welcome, for born and unborn alike. Amen.
“If anyone does sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the Righteous One” (1 John 2:1).
Reflection: Often, we tend to think that God is advocating against those who have committed sins against human life and dignity. Scripture tells us, however, that if we sin, he advocates for us – not, of course, to justify the sin, but to justify us, to bring us reconciliation, healing, and salvation. This is true precisely because of the dignity of the human person.
Prayer: Lord, as we steadfastly oppose sins against human life and dignity, may we steadfastly proclaim your mercy and healing. Amen.
“May the Lord cause your love to increase and overflow for one another and for everyone else” (1 Thessalonians 3:12).
Reflection: The Pope and bishops have told us that we are not to “accommodate ourselves” to laws permitting abortion. This means much more than simply not having or participating in an abortion. It means not letting anything keep us from loving and defending the unborn. Laws permitting abortion try to “cap” our love for these children by telling us we cannot prohibit someone from killing them.
Prayer: Lord, let my love overflow all boundaries, that I may resist anyone’s effort to limit my love for those who are in danger of death. Amen.