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Priests for Life Newsletter

 

Volume 17, Number 6
November-December 2007

 

Click here for the PDF of the newsletter

 

Table of Contents

 

The Many Facets of Gospel of Life Ministries

Frequently Asked Pictures about Priests for Life

December Brings Special Pro-Life Feasts

Humanae Vitae Almost 40 Years Later

Priests for Life Is Supported Only by You!

Voter Registration -- All Year, Every Year

Prayer Intentions!

Stay Connected With Us!

A Petition to the Media: Show the American People what an Abortion is!

Featured Products
 

 

The Many Facets of Gospel of Life Ministries


"Gospel of Life Ministries" is a family of ministries which coordinates, supports, and/or works in collaboration with the following efforts. It was created as the many outreaches of Priests for Life extended beyond the specific needs of priests or even just of Catholics. The title "Gospel of Life" more adequately expresses the broad outreach that these many ministries encompass - priests and laity, Catholics and Protestants, and religious and secular efforts to protect the unborn.

Healing After Abortion
 
www.RachelsVineyard.org 
www.SilentNoMoreAwareness.org 
 
Clergy Outreach
 
www.PriestsForLife.org  
www.DeaconsForLife.org   
www.SeminariansForLife.org  
www.MissionariesoftheGospelofLife.org   
 
Ecumenical Outreach
 
www.GospelOfLife.com  
www.LifeOnTheLine.com  
 
Youth Outreach
 
www.AbortionAborted.org  
 
Washington DC Outreach
 
www.NPLAC.org 
www.PoliticalResponsibility.org


Click here to see a medical diagram of a Suction and Curettage abortion of a 9-week old fetus.

Frequently Asked Questions about Priests for Life

1. Is Priests for Life a “radical” pro-life group? Priests for Life is a national pro-life organization that is highly respected by parish priests and by Cardinals at the Vatican, by local ministers and leaders such as Dr. James Dobson, by ordinary citizens and celebrities, by diocesan respect life directors and by members of Congress, and even by those who disagree with us. Some of the feedback we have received can be read at www.priestsforlife.org/praise. Priests for Life is recognized by the United Nations as a non-governmental organization with all the rights that attach to such groups; is invited to participate in and often lead national and international pro-life strategic planning; is a valued friend of national pro-life groups everywhere; and has been invited to hold Congressional briefings. The meaning of the term “radical,” of course, is relative to the person who uses it. If by "radical" one means that a group is committed to certain unchanging principles - like the sanctity of life - and is willing to challenge anyone and everyone to observe those principles, to go against the tide of public opinions and political correctness, and even to die for the cause of life, then yes, we proudly wear the label, because it is consistent with the demands of discipleship.

2. Does Priests for Life reject the use of violence? Yes. Violence is never an answer to violence. We have publicly rejected violence against abortionists, as can be seen by our public statements and articles at www.priestsforlife.org/nonviolence.

3. Does Priests for Life have a position on the war? As a Catholic association, Priests for Life aligns itself with the official teachings of the Catholic Church on every issue. Therefore, in regard to any war, we hold that the principles the Church teaches are to be applied. The practical focus of our ministry, however, comprises the issues of abortion and, to a lesser extent, euthanasia.

4. Does Priests for Life endorse political candidates? No. We are not allowed to do so by laws governing 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt entities. We do, however, teach what the Bible and the Church teach about political responsibility, and we urge all citizens (including those who lead organizations) to speak up and work for the candidates of their choice.

5. Does Priests for Life have a paid staff? Yes, Priests for Life employs approximately fifty employees. The National Director, Fr. Frank Pavone, has freely chosen never to take a salary from Priests for Life.


December Brings Special Pro-life Feasts

The liturgical seasons and feasts always provide insight and incentive to our pro-life commitment, because they point to its source. The month of December, in particular, provides several high points.

The Advent Season: In Advent, we focus on the first and second comings of the same Christ, and on how to prepare for His arrival, namely, by repentance. "Reform your lives! The reign of God is at hand." St. Paul urges, "Let us cast off deeds of darkness" (1 Advent A), and "Live in perfect harmony with one another" (2d Advent A). He speaks of faith as an obedience (4th Advent A). St. James encourages, "Be patient .... Steady your hearts" (3rd Advent A). The Old Testament prophets, furthermore, describe the results of the Messiah's coming, "One nation shall not raise the sword against the other" (1 Advent A), "There shall be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain" (2d Advent A). "Then will the eyes of the blind be opened ... sorrow and mourning will flee" (3rd Advent A). "Immanuel" (4th Advent A). Advent, in other words, points toward a world where the violence of abortion is unthinkable, and repentant hearts welcome and nurture every human life.

December 8 - the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary: Scripture makes it clear that God chooses us from all eternity, and prepares us for our mission even from the womb. In Mary's case, she is saved in advance from original sin because of her unique role as Jesus' mother. The unique bond of mother and child is therefore brought out by this Feast, as is the saving power of Christ to deliver us from sin and its effects. All of this has important applications for the fight against abortion.

Our Lady of Guadalupe: The patroness of the pro-life movement, Our Lady of Guadalupe, is honored on December 12, and the one to whom her image was revealed – St. Juan Diego – is honored on December 9. Our Lady’s image, in which she is pregnant, converted Aztecs and ended human sacrifice. The image today stops many abortions as it is brought to the killing centers worldwide.

December 28 -- the feast of the Holy Innocents: These children were martyrs because they were killed as part of an attack on Christ. Today, though opposition to Christ is not normally the intention of those who have abortions, it is nevertheless a central part of the efforts of those who deliberately and persistently work worldwide to assure that abortion remains legal. Mockery of Scripture, Christians, the Church, and God himself is a common aspect of the beliefs, writings, and activities of radical abortion advocates. The children killed by abortion are the Holy Innocents of our day, and some theologians and other members of the faithful are studying and advocating for the possibility that the Church will claim these children as martyrs.

The Feast of the Holy Family: Falling this year on December 30, this feast highlights the sanctuary of life, where life, both born and unborn, is to be welcomed and nurtured. Without family, there can be no life, and without life, there can be no family.

Humanae Vitae almost 40 years later…

Priests for Life has launched a special period of preparation leading to the 40th anniversary of Humanae Vitae, which was published on July 25, 1968, by Pope Paul VI. The website www.HumanaeVitae40.com has been established to promote study of this document, and the Priests for Life pastoral team has produced a study guide for this encyclical, as well as a pamphlet called "Preaching on Contraception."


On a previous anniversary of this encyclical, one diocesan newspaper had a copy of the encyclical on the front page with the headline, "Why did this 25-cent pamphlet cause so much trouble? ...Because it was right!"


Indeed, all the things which Pope Paul VI said would happen if the meaning of human sexuality were not recognized and respected are in fact happening. In this sense, the strength of the encyclical increases with time.


The encyclical's message is broader than the rejection of birth control. The title means "Of Human Life." It is a declaration of the dominion of God over human life, and of the full beauty of human sexuality. The problem of our age is not that it is obsessed with sex, but that it is afraid of it - afraid of the full dimensions of its claim on human commitment, self-sacrifice, and generosity - afraid of the fact that authentic sex does not let us get lost in ourselves and our pleasures, but demands that we give of ourselves for the good of the other, including the children God may give us.


Finally, an aspect of the Church's teaching contained in the encyclical but not so widely emphasized is that we do recognize the circumstances in which it is quite legitimate for a married couple to avoid pregnancy. Such a judgment must be based on objective circumstances and carried out within the moral law. But to claim that the Church teaches that parents may in no way plan their families is not only contrary to Catholic teaching, but opens the door to unnecessary but all too common criticism from the world, who thinks we are out of touch with reality. Pope Paul's marvelous encyclical is, on the other hand, quite in touch with reality - with the full truth about human love and life.


Let us preach that truth with joyful confidence!

Priests for Life Is Supported Only by You!

Priests for Life is not subsidized by dioceses, the Bishops' Conference, or the Vatican. We rely completely on donations from individuals like you!  All contributions are tax-deductible, and may be designated for specific projects if you so choose.  You may donate at www.priestsforlife.org/donate, or by making a check payable to "Priests for Life" and sending it to PO Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314.


If you wish to support us with a monthly donation, you may call us at 718-980-4400, ext. 232, and we will arrange to charge your credit card automatically, in the amount you designate and for the time period you designate. Those who donate in this way do not receive appeals by mail.

Voter Registration -- All Year, Every Year

Good Christians are called to be good citizens. Being a citizen of heaven does not replace being a citizen of earth. Rather, we work out our salvation and sanctification precisely through the exercise of our earthly duties, including our civic duties.

And primary among our civic duties is the duty to vote. One of the tools we need to carry out that mission is to register to vote. The Church's role is not to set up or run the political parties. But the Church's role does include equipping the people with the tools they need to be good citizens of earth so that they can be citizens of heaven. Hence, Churches should register voters.

Now we normally hear about this only at election time. But we cannot afford to wait until then to try to get all of the unregistered believers registered. We are called to be proactive, not just reactive. There simply isn't enough time to do the kind of persuasion, education, and outreach needed to activate all believers if we only do it when a major election is on the horizon. Voter registration is an activity Churches should do all year long, every year. The call should go forth constantly: be vigilant, be ready, have your tools in hand. Let's not wait until registration deadlines surprise us, or people realize too late that because they have moved, they have to register in their new district.

And let us not tire of repeating the rather elementary legal principle that voter registration is an activity perfectly legal for Churches to perform, as long as it is non-partisan. In other words, we do not limit the opportunity to register only to people of a specific political party. Rather, we open the doors to everyone without regard for party affiliation. That's because the motive is not to promote a party, but rather to equip Christians to do the work for which the Spirit impels them.

All year long, every year, Churches can have voter registration forms available at the rectory, and regularly have tables at the back of Church to give people an easy opportunity to register. Mailings to parishioners can contain regular reminders about this. The parish website can have a link to www.VoterSunday.org, which enables people to download the registration forms from their own computer. That same website gives all the information you need to conduct voter registration in Church or in a church-group meeting.

Don't wait! Let's register voters all year, every year!

Prayer Intentions
 

You are encouraged to remember the following intentions as you pray the Liturgy of the Hours:

November intention: That the children who are now scheduled to be aborted may be protected.

December intention: That God may give eternal rest to the women who died from abortion.

Stay Connected with us!

Subscribe to our Email services:


Information and inspiration every two weeks from Fr. Frank Pavone: subscribe@priestsforlife.org
Weekly email with pro-life liturgical resources for priests and deacons: clergy@priestsforlife.org 

Watch our TV Programs:


Defending Life on EWTN every Friday at 10pm ET (repeated Saturday at 2:30am).
Gospel of Life on Sky Angel’s "Angel One" every Monday at 3:30am ET, Tuesday at 2:00 am, Thursday at 8:30am, and Saturday at 7:30pm.

Listen to our Radio Programs:


Life on the Line is on every weekend on AM stations nationwide. Consult www.LifeOntheLine.com for stations and times.

Come to hear our speakers:


It won't be long before one of our speakers will be near your community again! The schedule of most of the public talks given by our pastoral team is posted on our website at www.priestsforlife.org/speakers.

Please publicize this information in your parish bulletins and pro-life newsletters to assist more people to come into contact regularly with the latest pro-life information!

A Petition to the Media: Show the American People what an Abortion is!

Abortion is the most common surgery in America, yet we never see what it looks like. While the national debate over abortion continues to rage, most people have never been given the chance to see what all the fuss is about. In an age when we can broadcast images instantaneously across the country in order to inform people about the realities of poverty and war, or to bring them in touch with events of history or even trips to the moon and rovers on Mars, it stands to reason that America should see the horrible results of abortion.

This information is available from neutral medical and scientific sources, can be presented without polemic or "taking sides" in the national debate, and furthermore can be portrayed in a way that respects the norms of public decency.

We also know, from daily experience, how quickly the images of aborted babies change people’s minds on abortion. (See evidence at www.priestsforlife.org/images.)

For years, Priests for Life has been challenging the American media: Show the American people what an abortion is! We have said this publicly in press conferences and ads, and privately to many media professionals. And many of them have told us that this is a point we should press.

Now, Priests for Life wants to present millions of signatures to key representatives of major media outlets, with whom we have developed relationships over the years. We believe that the goal of having the results of abortion aired on national television is a goal that can be reached. We ask you to join that effort today by signing and mailing in the form below, or by signing it online at www.priestsforlife.org/media.

Full Name (Please print) __________________________________

Address _______________________________________________

City ______________________ State _______ Zip ____________

Phone _________________________________________________

Email _________________________________________________

I join in the challenge of Priests for Life to the media: Show the American People what an Abortion is!

Signed: _____________________________________________________________________

Featured Products

 

You can order at our online store at www.priestsforlife.org/products!  Or order from: Priests for Life, P.O. Box 141172, Staten Island, NY 10314; Or fax (718) 980-3900; Or Email: orders@priestsforlife.org.

 

2008 Priests for Life Wall Calendar

(#2010) - $10.00

 

This contains photos of some of our activities out on the road.  It’s an attractive and enjoyable way to spread the pro-life message.

 

Redeeming a Father’s Heart

By Kevin Burke, LSW, David Wemhoff & Marvin Stockwell

(#2004) - $12.95

In this newly released book, men share powerful stories of abortion loss and recovery.

 

Spiritual Bouquet for the Living (#1805-free of charge) and Mass Cards for the Deceased (#1708 - free of charge).

 

Make it possible for your loved ones and friends to share in the fruits of all the prayers, Masses, and good works of the priests of Priests for Life!  We have Spiritual Bouquet cards for the intentions of the living and Mass cards for the deceased.  We will send you a supply of cards free of charge. Keep them on hand, and when you use them, send us back the name, with your offering.

 

 

Priests for Life
PO Box 141172 • Staten Island, NY 10314
Tel. 888-735-3448, (718) 980-4400 • Fax 718-980-6515
mail@priestsforlife.org