"As we tinker with the beginning,
the end and even the intimate cell structure of life, we tinker with our own
identity as a free nation dedicated to the dignity of the human person. When
American political life becomes an experiment on people rather than for and by
them, it will no longer be worth conducting. We are arguably moving closer to
that day. Today, when the inviolable rights of the human person are proclaimed
and the value of life publicly affirmed, the most basic human right, 'the right
to life, is being denied or trampled upon, especially at the more significant
moments of existence: the moment of birth and the moment of death' (Pope John
Paul II, The Gospel of Life [Evangelium Vitae], 18)" (US Bishops, Living the
Gospel of Life, 1998, n.4).
"Respect for the dignity of the
human person demands a commitment to human rights across a broad spectrum…Yet
abortion and euthanasia have become preeminent threats to human dignity because
they directly attack life itself, the most fundamental human good and the
condition for all others. They are committed against those who are weakest and
most defenseless, those who are genuinely 'the poorest of the poor'" (US
Bishops, Living the Gospel of Life, 1998, n. 5).
"Every Catholic is a missionary of
the Good News of human dignity redeemed through the cross. While our personal
vocation may determine the form and style of our witness, Jesus calls each of us
to be a leaven in society, and we will be judged by our actions. No one, least
of all someone who exercises leadership in society, can rightfully claim to
share fully and practically the Catholic faith and yet act publicly in a way
contrary to that faith" (US Bishops, Living the Gospel of Life, 1998,
"In a striking way, we see today a
heightening of the tension between our nation's founding principles and
political reality. We see this in diminishing respect for the inalienable right
to life and in the elimination of legal protections for those who are most
vulnerable. There can be no genuine justice in our society until the truths on
which our nation was founded are more perfectly realized in our culture and law"
(US Bishops, Living the Gospel of Life, 1998, n. 14).
Bulletin Inserts on Faithful