In honor of Respect Life Month, Fr. Scott Daniels, a Priest for Life, was invited to speak to parishioners at St. Mary of the Hills in Rochester Hills over the weekend of October 22-23 at the daily Masses and on Sunday evening. A Dominican priest, Fr. Daniels has been a part of the Priests for Life organization for 2½ years since meeting with leader, Fr. Frank Pavone, in Nashville, Tennessee. Fr. Daniels shared that he ‘felt called’ to go in this direction of preaching and that even when he is feeling tired, his mission energizes him.
Fr. Daniels recalled that on his travels, he met a woman who was quite unaware of the serious nature of abortion as sin and that many people believe the lies that are told to them about abortion. “At Planned Parenthood, the two questions that are most commonly asked before an abortion are, ‘Is it a baby?’ and ‘Will it hurt?’ and they are told ‘no’ on both accounts he said. Fr. Daniels urged parishioners to always ‘speak the truth in love’ to people who have had abortions or co-operated in them. He coached that people are in need of healing from the effects of abortion reminding all that God is perfectly just but also perfectly merciful. Out of guilt and shame, many women ‘keep silent for years or even decades about having an abortion…you can’t give it to God if you don’t admit it!’ said Fr. Daniels.
Why is abortion such a terrible sin? Delving into the question of what it means to be a human being, Fr. Daniels affirmed that God, who is love itself, pours Himself out to His creation and we are created in His image. We, though creatures, are the embodiment of God in this world. In the likeness of the Almighty God, we are the only ones who can know Him.
The 'right to life' is a natural human right and the foundation of all human rights. Fr. Daniels strictly upheld that evil is never to be tolerated even when some form of good seems to be a possible outcome. The case of using aborted fetuses to create vaccines to inoculate our children against disease is one such example.
Quoting Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a pro-life advocate, 'Injustice anywhere leads to injustice everywhere.’ Fr. Daniels referenced the special targeting of Planned Parenthood abortion clinics positioned strategically near the black communities. The largest abortion provider in the country, Planned Parenthood, was founded by Margaret Sanger, a racist, who sought to eliminate the black population.
A woman parishioner at the Sunday talk expressed appreciatively that Fr. Daniels had had a huge impact on her daughter, Casi, when he spoke to their youth group of about 20 the previous night. Said Casi, ‘I used to have a different opinion about abortion but Fr. Daniels made so many good points: Life is a gift and it shouldn’t be wasted…God is the only one who should control life and death…having an abortion is like saying, 'I don’t want your gift’. I think abortion is wrong and should never ever be a choice. If you don’t want your child there is always adoption. Someone will want your baby!’
Casi is determined to get involved and do more to help the pro-life cause. She explained, ‘Each member of the St. Mary’s Youth Group made a commitment to pray for the protection of an unborn child for nine months…we all received a life-sized model of a tiny fetus at the age when abortions often take place. It was so tiny and precious! It made me cry!’
Fr. Daniels urged all to preach the Gospel of Life and ended with a request for prayer for him and his fellow priests. Learn more about Priests for Life by going to their website.