Archive for August, 2009

Prominent Clergy Group Launches Health Care Prayer Campaign on Facebook

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Margaret
Date: August 20, 2009
888-735-3448, ext. 251

Washington, DC. – Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, has invited tens of thousands of Churches across America this week to build “the largest prayer group in history” by urging them to promote membership in the “Pray to End Abortion” cause on Facebook.

The cause can be accessed at www.ProLifePrayers.org.

Fr. Pavone said that the Facebook cause will enable believers to connect with one another and pray on an ongoing basis for the specific needs of the pro-life movement. The ongoing prayer campaign will provide specific prayers to be said jointly across the nation for specific needs.

Currently, a special prayer is posted regarding our nation’s health care reform debate. Calling Jesus the “Divine Physician,” the prayer intercedes for elected officials, that they will have “the humility to know that they are servants, not masters,” and “the wisdom to realize that every life has equal value.”

The prayer concludes, “Let every reform in our public policy be based on the reform of our hearts and minds.”

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Unequal Praying Field

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life

The need to end abortion is our world’s first obligation at the moment, because nothing takes more lives, and no right other than life itself is more necessary to secure if all our other rights are to be preserved.

The war against the unborn can only ultimately be stopped by and through the Church. When we mobilize the Church, when we fully activate and encourage the Body of Christ to use the natural and supernatural gifts given to us to overcome the Culture of Death, then victory will be achieved.

Imagine the vast structure of the Catholic Church. In the United States alone, we have nearly 19,000 parishes, 8,000 schools, and over 41,000 priests. Each diocese and parish has means of communication with the people they serve on a daily basis. Just from a natural, sociological point of view, this is a vast network of interaction and communication, geared precisely to helping people love God and neighbor. Imagine what can happen if our priests infuse that vast structure with clear, vigorous, and compassionate pro-life teaching and action.

The Church is the only institution that has a Divine guarantee that it will prevail over the culture of death. “The gates of hell will not prevail against it,” the Lord said (Mt.16:18). In a battle, a gate does not go into the battlefield to attack the enemy; rather, it stands still to defend the city against the attack of the enemy. It is the Church that is on the offensive against the gates of hell. Those gates cannot withstand the power of heaven. The gates of death fall in the presence of eternal life. Sin melts in the presence of saving grace. Falsehood collapses in the presence of living truth.

To fully exercise those gifts and apply those tools to the specific problem of abortion, therefore, does not so much require more structure as it does more spirit, more awareness, more courage, and more determination to use both the means and the opportunities we already have.

That is what Priests for Life is all about. From the heart of the Church, it is a movement of priests seeking to help the rest of the Church to use her full strength against the most devastating attacks on human life in our day. And now we find ourselves at the start of an entire year dedicated to energizing the priesthood. The Year of Priests can indeed be a turning point in the battle against abortion if we make a concerted and deliberate effort to help our priests in that specific aspect of their mission.

Among our many initiatives toward that end, we have launched two special causes on Facebook. One is the “Year of Priests” cause (see www.YearofPriests.org), by which you can be part of a nationwide spiritual bouquet for our priests. The other is the “Pray to End Abortion” cause (see www.PrayerCampaign.org), equipping every believer to pray daily for a Culture of Life. We will win; after all, it’s an unequal praying field.

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Hearts and Laws Should Change

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Some people say that the solution to the abortion problem is to change people’s hearts.

In fact, changing people’s hearts is the solution to every problem that the world faces.

But that doesn’t mean that we don’t have laws. The fact is that while there are people around whose hearts are not in the right place, there have to be laws to restrain their heartless activities. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, the law cannot get the white man to love me, but it can stop him from lynching me.
We also should not overlook the power that laws have to shape minds and hearts. When our children learn in school that something is legal, they are learning that such a thing is right.

Whether regarding abortion or anything else, both hearts and laws must be changed.

–Fr. Frank

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Celebrating the Assumption

Friday, August 14th, 2009

Tomorrow, Catholics celebrate the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a feast with profound lessons for our struggle against abortion. At the end of her life, Mary was assumed into heaven not only in spirit, but in her body, because the body is just as much a part of any person as the soul. Mary’s Assumption is a sign that God ultimately saves us — and will raise us — in body and in soul.

Some who justify abortion say they don’t know if the child has a soul. But that’s beside the point. What matters is that the child has a body, and when we know that abortion destroys the body, we have all the information we need to know it’s wrong.

–Fr. Frank

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Jail the Abortionists, Not Women

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

When abortion becomes illegal again, are we going to start throwing all the women who have abortions into jail?

No – the people who should go to jail in that case are the abortionists. This is how it worked before abortion became legal, and how it should work again.

After all, the woman who gets an illegal abortion is the best source of information and evidence needed to convict the abortionist. If she feared prosecution, she would never admit to the abortion, which would make it harder to find the abortionist.

This doesn’t excuse the woman’s wrongdoing; rather, it is the same principle by which the state grants immunity to a small-time drug user in exchange for information leading to a big-time drug dealer.
The pro-life movement is not interested in punishing women, but rather in stopping the killing.

–Fr. Frank

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All Humans Should Speak Up

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Some people think that because men cannot get pregnant, they have no right to say anything about abortion.

But any human being, male or female, has the right and duty to speak up when someone’s life is in danger. Real men don’t stand around with their hands at their side when innocent babies are being ripped apart. They do something to defend these children.

Saying that only women should have any say about abortion is like saying that only Jews can speak about the Holocaust, or only Blacks can speak about segregation, or only children can speak about child abuse.

The truth is that every human being can speak about human rights, and has a duty to defend those rights when they are under attack.

–Fr. Frank

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No Closer Bond Than Mother and Child

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

In a few days we will celebrate the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Like every Feast, it is a celebration of Jesus Christ. This feast shows us that because of her unique role as his mother, Mary received from Jesus a full share, body and soul, in his victory over death. The feast is a reminder that in Christ, we all will share resurrection of the body.

Mary has it now, because in the human family, which God decided to join, there can be no closer bond than mother and child. They belong together; their destinies are intertwined.

That is one of the central messages of the pro-life movement. To love and care for a mother necessarily means protecting, loving, and caring for her child. Mothers can never benefit from the destruction of their children.

–Fr. Frank

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Annual Respect Life Conference

Monday, August 10th, 2009

Today, Diocesan respect life directors from around the country are gathering for their annual conference.

In their pastoral plan for pro-life activities, the United States Catholic bishops call for the creation of diocesan pro-life committees, whose responsibilities include providing educational opportunities, promoting alternatives to abortion and healing after abortion, promoting pro-life prayers and liturgies, monitoring what the media are saying about abortion, reaching out to other pro-life groups, and communicating with elected officials.

The Church does not want diocesan groups to replace other groups, but rather work productively with them, and also in an ecumenical and interreligious spirit with all who want to end abortion.
I encourage you to get to know your diocesan pro-life committee, and if one does not exist, to help start it.

–Fr. Frank

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The Assumption Novena

Friday, August 7th, 2009

Priests for Life begins today a Novena of Prayer in preparation for the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This Assumption prayer for life can be found at priestsforlife.org. The prayer reminds us that this feast is about the victory of life over death, and renews our confidence in the power of that victory as we battle evils like abortion.

The prayer proclaims the hope of the Gospel: that every human life, in body and soul, be seated on the throne of God. The prayer also asks that we will grow in reverence for the human body, which is a temple of the Holy Spirit.

Please download the Assumption Novena for Life at priestsforlife.org and invite your family, pro-life group, school and parish to take part in it.

–Fr. Frank

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The Transfiguration

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

In his Transfiguration, Jesus gave Peter, James, and John a glimpse of his Divine Glory, and of his unique relationship with the Father. During the event, Moses and Elijah, who in their own time pointed to the coming Christ, discussed the suffering that the Lord would undergo in his passion. This incident occurred so that the disciples would be strengthened, and would know that the darkest hours they experienced were part of God’s plan and would result in the victory of salvation.

We today live in the dark shadow of the culture of death. Let the transfiguration strengthen us, to know that in the end, truth is victorious over falsehood, grace is victorious over sin, and life is victorious over death. May the Lord transfigure us, and make us courageous apostles of life.

-Fr. Frank

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