Archive for February, 2014

Today’s Pro-Life Reflection

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

This reflection is taken from my book Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Amen, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see that the kingdom of God has come with power” (Mark 9:1).

Reflection: The second coming has not happened yet, so what did Jesus mean? He meant that they would see him in the glory of the resurrection. He appeared to many of the disciples after his resurrection, and told them full authority had been given to him. These disciples saw the kingdom of God established in power and glory.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, you rule the universe. May we find the freedom that comes from subjecting all our choices to you. Amen!

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014

This reflection is taken from my book Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Whoever addresses his brother in an insulting way will answer for it before the Sanhedrin, and whoever calls his brother a fool will be liable to the fires of Gehenna” (Matthew 5:22). 

Reflection: Jesus says that using dehumanizing language is sinful. Before the schoolyard bully beats up his victim, he calls him names. Throughout history, groups that have been oppressed – like slaves and Holocaust victims — have first been called names. It also happens to the unborn, who have been called “parasites,” “tissue,” and “medical waste.”

Prayer: Lord, may we affirm one another, including the unborn, with ennobling language that inspires respect and love. Amen.

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Fr. Pavone Invites Pro-lifers to Sign Open Letter to President Obama Following Outrageous Omissions in Prayer Breakfast Speech

Monday, February 17th, 2014

Washington, DC — Responding to President Obama’s speech at the National Prayer Breakfast on Thursday, Feb. 6, Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, has written an open letter to the President that he is asking all pro-life people to sign on to.

The letter also contains a link to the full text of the President’s speech.

“This speech raises troubling contradictions, and a glaring blind spot, about which we cannot be silent,” Fr. Pavone declares.

Among the troubling aspects of the speech, Fr. Pavone points out that the President, while upholding consistently a policy of abortion on demand, states, “the killing of the innocent is the ultimate betrayal of God’s will.”

And, while trying to force Americans to violate their faith through the HHS mandate, the President states in his speech, “Central to [human] dignity is freedom of religion — the right of every person to practice their faith how they choose.”

Fr. Pavone has promised those who sign on to the letter that he will deliver it personally to the proper people at the White House. Will it have an impact? Fr. Pavone explains, “We do not think that by writing the President a letter, he is suddenly going to have a Saint Paul conversion. That’s not what we’re doing here. But it is still essential to write to him publicly for the sake of helping the public to reject his errors, and to demand of him, as the letter says, an accounting to the American people as to why and how, in that speech, he would tolerate a blind spot so large as to swallow up the very principles that he spends the rest of the speech vigorously proclaiming.”

All are invited to sign the open letter today, which is President’s Day!

The letter can also be accessed at www.LetterToObama.org

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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Politics and the Pulpit: Part One: “Uninhibited, Robust, and Wide-Open!”

Monday, February 17th, 2014

It’s an election year, and it’s time to open our mouths, in the Church, about politics, candidates, and the right to life.

Our fight for our unborn brothers and sisters is a fight for freedom and against tyranny; for people and against oppressive governments. Our Founding Fathers fought this fight, and so must we, with the same readiness for self-sacrifice.

This is true for every American. How much more true is it for us as the Church, as disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ? The Gospel is a Gospel of freedom. “I have come to proclaim liberty to the captives…to let the oppressed go free,” Jesus said in defining his mission.

Carrying out this mission requires the freedom to speak the truth as we understand it. Not only was this fundamental right explicitly acknowledged by our Founding Fathers and placed at the top of the Bill of Rights, but it has been affirmed time and time again by the Supreme Court, not only to point out the existence of such freedom, but also its characteristics.

In New York Times Co. v. Sullivan (376 U.S. 254, 270 (1964)), the Court asserted that the protection of citizens to advocate for particular issues reflects our “profound national commitment to the principle that debate on public issues should be uninhibited, robust, and wide-open” (emphasis added).

In 2010, the Supreme Court also affirmed the following:

“Speech is an essential mechanism of democracy, for it is the means to hold officials accountable to the people. The right of citizens to inquire, to hear, to speak, and to use information to reach consensus is a precondition to enlightened self-government and a necessary means to protect it. The First Amendment ‘has its fullest and most urgent application to speech uttered during a campaign for political office.’”

“[I]t is inherent in the nature of the political process that voters must be free to obtain information from diverse sources in order to determine how to cast their votes.” (Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 310 (2010)).

The corresponding freedom of the Church to speak and teach the truth — a freedom also contained in the Founders’ recognition of freedom of religion — is something explicitly insisted upon in the Church’s own documents. This freedom is, in fact, an essential aspect of the Great Commission left by Jesus Christ: “Preach the Gospel to every creature.” “Teach them to carry out everything I have commanded you.” Because the Gospel covers every aspect of life and human activity, the Church must also be free to comment on political matters. In this regard we see the following strong statement from the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (Gaudium et Spes):

“At all times and in all places, the Church should have the true freedom to teach the faith, to proclaim its teaching about society, to carry out its task among men without hindrance, and to pass moral judgment even in matters relating to politics, whenever the fundamental rights of man or the salvation of souls requires it.” (n. 76)

In my upcoming columns, I will help us prepare for the midterm elections by reflecting on how we in the Church have often stifled this freedom, and why it is time to repent and open our mouths.

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection

Monday, February 17th, 2014

This reflection is taken from my book Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“The Lord said to Cain, ‘Where is your brother Abel?’ ‘I don’t know,’ he replied” (Genesis 4:9)

Reflection: In 1973, the Supreme Court was asked the same question, and gave the same answer. Unable to admit that the unborn children are our brothers and sisters, the Supreme Court said, “We need not resolve the difficult question of when human life begins…the judiciary… is not competent to speculate as to the answer.” That’s the same as “I don’t know.”

Prayer: Lord, you ask us the same question today, and will ask it at the final judgment. May all of us recognize and love our brothers and sisters, born and unborn. Amen.

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflections

Friday, February 14th, 2014

This reflection is taken from my book Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Greet one another with a holy kiss” (Romans 16:16).

Reflection: On Valentine’s Day, many messages of affection are exchanged. A culture of life is a culture that avoids two extremes – one, which looks down on all affection and thinks that the only good things are the things of the spirit; and the other, which allows the emotions to run out of control, with no discipline.

Prayer: Holy Spirit, font of love both human and divine, bless us today with understanding, balance, and grace. Enable us to devote ourselves, body and soul, to the service of God and neighbor. Teach us how to love in a holy way. Amen.

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Father Pavone Responds to UN Committee’s Attack on Holy See

Monday, February 10th, 2014

NEW YORK, NY — Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, issued the following statement today regarding the publication of the Concluding Observations by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) following review of the report submitted by the Holy See. The observations were highly critical of the Church’s moral teachings on abortion, contraception and homosexuality.

Father Pavone said: “It’s outrageous that a UN committee that is supposed to safeguard the rights of children is instructing the Holy See that it must change Canon Law in order to determine the circumstances under which the lives of preborn children can be destroyed in abortion.

“Abortion is a death sentence to children and can never be condoned.”

He continued: “The arrogance displayed by those who crafted this document is equal only to their ignorance and failure to understand that the Holy See is unwavering as it upholds the dignity of all life from conception to natural death.

“The comments issued by this UN committee on abortion, contraception for youth and the promotion of homosexuality reveal the growing radicalization of UN treaty bodies. This assault on the basic principles of the Holy See and the Catholic Church will hopefully serve as a wake-up call to faithful Catholics around the world who have not yet realized the great struggles for life and family taking place at the United Nations.”

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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Today’s Pro-Life Reflection

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

This reflection is taken from my book Pro-Life Reflections for Every Day, which is available for purchase at: ProLifeReflectionsForEveryDay.org

“Lord, open my lips…” (Psalm 51:17)

Reflection: If you were stranded on a desert island, and had, pen, paper, and a bottle, the note you write and put in that bottle could save your life. Before sealing it and throwing it in the sea, you would make sure that you put your very best effort behind what you say. So it is with conversations you have about abortion. Some day they may save a life. Conduct them well.

Prayer: Give me confidence, O Lord, at every moment in which I will need to speak on this topic. Open my lips, that I may save lives by what I say. Amen.

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Alveda King: Pelosi deserves Sanger Award for trampling on human rights; Martin Luther King, Jr. would reject it today

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

ATLANTA — Dr. Alveda King, director of African American Outreach for Priests for Life, reacted today to the announcement that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi will receive Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger Award.

“It’s true that Congresswoman Pelosi deserves Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger Award – almost no one has done more to promote the killing of innocent babies in the womb than she has,” noted Dr. King.  “If Mrs. Pelosi wants finally to take her role as a public servant seriously, though, she will reject the award named after a racist woman who had no problem speaking to a Ku Klux Klan meeting.”

The Sanger Award has been given annually by Planned Parenthood since 1966, when the Rev. Dr. Luther King, Jr., Alveda King’s uncle, was named, but did not personally accept one of the first four citations.

“It’s ironic that Planned Parenthood would extend to my uncle an award for his human rights work,” Dr. King continued. “I can’t think of an organization that has done more to trample upon human rights than Planned Parenthood.”

“Of course, in 1966, Planned Parenthood did not advocate for abortion and its racist roots were not well known,” added Dr. King.  “Knowing what we know now and 56 million dead children later, I’m confident that the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., a man who gave his life defending others’ rights to life and liberty, would reject any association with Planned Parenthood.”

Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, drew a tsunami of support last year when he wrote an open letter to Mrs. Pelosi, challenging her claim to being a faithful and practicing Catholic while spreading a message that abortion is “sacred ground.”

Regarding her upcoming Planned Parenthood award, he said: “Nancy Pelosi receives this less-than-prestigious award, yet is unable to explain why she supports dismembering children. We should continue to demand that she do so. Sign on to LetterToNancy.com.”

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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Fr. Pavone: We are closer to our goal of ending abortion

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

NEW YORK, NY — Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, issued the following statement today regarding a new report that found the abortion rate in the U.S. in 2011 was lower than it has been in three decades.

“Abortions are declining. The two sides of the abortion debate disagree as to why, but I agree with the assessment of the National Right to Life Committee that the Guttmacher Institute does not give due attention to how the public debate over the status of the unborn child in our society has contributed to the decline in the numbers,” Fr. Pavone said.

“A decline in abortion, for whatever reason, leads us closer to our goal of protecting children in the womb by law, because the fewer abortions there are, the more legislators will consider it realistic to change public policy on the matter, and the more judges will consider it prudent to uphold such changes.”

Priests for Life is the nation’s largest Catholic pro-life organization dedicated to ending abortion and euthanasia. For more information, visit www.priestsforlife.org.

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