May - June 2008 Vol. 18 www.priestsforlife.org Number 3

Clerical Contraception

 “It’s not any easier to raise up a spiritual family than a physical family. Some people look at the priest and say: “Well, he’s not married, he doesn’t have any children, his life must be easier.” Oh, no. To think that it’s easier is to fall into materialism. Why materialism? Because we see physical realities as the only real reality. Spiritual realities are real ones too! Some people ask us, “Can priests have children?” Sure! In fact, if we don’t have children, born of our preaching of the Word and our administration of the Sacraments, there is no growth in faith. Think of those who, through our priestly ministry, hear the call of Christ to come into the Church, or overcome obstacles to faith and prayer, or receive new life by the sacraments. These are our spiritual children! If we are not of the mind that we are to be generative, that we are to bring spiritual children into the world, then we are practicing what might be called a clerical contraception. We are ordained to bring forth life and to do so generously.” (Fr. Frank Pavone, Address to Clergy and Lay Leaders in the Philippines, 1994. For the full talk, see www.priestsforlife.org/articles/Role.html.)


On January 22, 2008, women and men of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign again marched at the front of the March for Life in Washington, DC.
 
A Movement of Mercy
The pro-life movement is a movement of mercy. Rachel’s Vineyard is the largest ministry in the world for healing after abortion, and it functions worldwide under the umbrella of Priests for Life. Many of those who are healed then share their testimony of the harm abortion did and the healing Christ brought. The Silent No More Awareness Campaign gives them a platform to do this. The campaign is not a separate organization, but rather a joint project of Priests for Life and Anglicans for Life.

Please publicize these missions of mercy in your newsletters and websites. Visit www.RachelsVineyard.org and www.SilentNoMoreAwareness.org.
Ending Abortion the
Church’s Way
by Fr. Frank. Pavone
(Part 1)

The premise of Priests for Life is that abortion will end through the Church, because Christ has conquered death, and it is He who works through each of us to bring this victory to every segment of our society. The activity of the People of God to end abortion is not primarily a response to Roe vs. Wade. It is, rather, a response to Jesus Christ.

Fr. Denis Wilde, O.S.A. speaks to 500 High School students in Syracuse, NY


This response, of course, overflows the visible boundaries of the Catholic Church. Pope John Paul II, in The Gospel of Life, told us, “No single person or group has a monopoly on the defense and promotion of life. These are everyone’s task and responsibility” (EV 91). He says this after asserting that the effort must be ecumenical and, in fact, must include the involvement of all people of good will.

The United States Catholic Bishops have provided marvelous guidance on how the pro-life effort of the Catholic Church should be undertaken, and at the conclusion of their national Pastoral Plan for Pro-life Activities, they echo what John Paul II said in the quote above. They write, “We hold in high esteem all who proclaim and serve the Gospel of life. Through their peaceful activism, education, prayer, and service, they witness to God’s truth and embody our Lord’s command to love one another as he loves us. We assure them of our continuing prayers. And we renew our appeal to all in the Catholic community to join with them and with us in building a ‘culture of life.’”

“No single person or group has a monopoly
on the defense and promotion of life.”

That openness to others, that esteem for those who work for life in every denomination, and even outside the realm of Christianity, is essential for success - and that attitude is inherently a Catholic attitude. The word “Catholic,” after all, means “universal.”

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Priests for Life

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

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