Human life is still gravely threatened
The Holy Father has called for all nations to observe a special day each year
to promote the sanctity of life. "I propose that a Day for Life be celebrated
each year in every country, as already established by some episcopal
conferences. The celebration of this day should be planned and carried out with
the active participation of all sectors of the local church. Its primary purpose
should be to foster in individual consciences, in families, in the church and in
civil society a recognition of the meaning and value of human life at every
stage and in every condition. Particular attention should be drawn to the
seriousness of abortion and euthanasia, without neglecting other aspects of life
which from time to time deserve to be given careful consideration as occasion
and circumstances demand" (The Gospel of Life, #85).
In Italy, Pro-Life Day is observed on the first Sunday of
February. Following are the Holy Father's words spoken at his Sunday Angelus in
St. Peter's Square on February 1, 1998.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Pro-Life Day, organized by the Italian Episcopal Conference, is being
celebrated today in Italy. This year its theme is: "Communicating life".
I join my Brother Bishops in inviting believers and all people of goodwill to
reflect on the respect due to human life from its beginning in conception to its
Twenty years have now passed since Pro-Life Day was established. If in some
respects sensitivity to the values of life has grown in recent years, it must
nevertheless be noted that there are still some very grave threats, first of
which is recourse to abortion. We must continue to pray and dedicate ourselves
to ensuring that the culture of life will prevail over that of death. That is
why "communicating life" is necessary.
The first "communicators" of life are parents, through procreation and
education; but every person is called to spread the love of life. I appeal in
particular to all those who work in the mass media to convey positive messages
and provide objective information on the crucial problems concerning human life
and respect for its dignity.
Pope John Paul II
Teachings of the Magisterium on Abortion