Welcoming the New Mass for Life
October 31, 2011
Below you will find my latest column about the new Mass "For Giving
Thanks to God for the Gift of Human Life." The brand new texts for this
special Mass are a result of the overall new translation of the Mass that
Catholics will start using in Advent. I'm very excited that we have these
texts; let's encourage our parishes to use them frequently! And, if you are
not a priest yourself, please pass this column along to your parish priest
so that he can get acquainted with this new resource!
But before we get to my column, let me first give you some other
Many primary elections are coming up soon so it’s important to educate
yourself about the Candidates now. A list of primary dates for each state
can be found at
Other events related to the elections and coming up soon are as follows:
(for more information see
November 5th is the Illinois Republican Party
Presidential Straw Poll to be held in Illinois’ 102 counties, giving more
people a chance to participate.
November 8th is Election Day in the following States:
Kentucky, Mississippi, New Jersey and Virginia.
On Nov. 8, Mississippi will also vote on “Amendment 26” (the Personhood
Initiative) which states, “The term ‘person’ or ‘persons’ shall include
every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the
functional equivalent thereof.” If this Amendment passes, abortion will
be illegal in Mississippi and a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade will have
November 19: Louisiana Run-Off Election Day
The month of November is a special time to remember and pray for the
dead. Please let us know whom you want us to pray for at
www.priestsforlife.org/data/prayer_request.aspx. On that page you can
also order Mass cards for your deceased 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 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
Please join us in saying and Advent Prayer for Life each day during
Advent, from November 27-December 4. Order your free prayer cards now, while
supplies last! Order the prayer cards and find the prayer at
Finally, view my latest YouTube video at
which I explain that pro-life work is a spirituality and that the
Missionaries of the Gospel of Life take special promises to live that
spirituality on a daily basis.
Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life
Welcoming the New Mass for Human Life
Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director, Priests for Life
With the start of Advent, Catholics begin using a new translation of the
Mass. Along with this there are two brand new texts for a Mass "For Giving
Thanks to God for the Gift of Human Life." This is the result of a long
process that actually started with Cardinal John O'Connor of New York over
twenty years ago.
The opening prayer for the first of these masses reads as follows:
God our Creator,
we give thanks to you,
who alone have the power to impart the breath of life
as you form each of us in our mother's womb;
grant, we pray,
that we, whom you have made stewards of creation,
may remain faithful to this sacred trust
and constant in safeguarding the dignity
of every human life.
Drawing images from Genesis 2:7 and Psalm 139, the prayer affirms that
only God can create. Parents cooperate with his creative power, but the
conception of each new life is a direct choice and act of God. He alone owns
human life -- not parents, nor doctors, nor government -- and he alone can
Our role, as the prayer indicates, is to carry out a "sacred trust" as
"stewards." In "The Gospel of Life," Blessed John Paul II said it this way:
"Yes, every man is his 'brother's keeper', because God entrusts us to
one another" (EV, 19). Some think it's none of their business to defend
the life of someone else's child. But God Himself makes it our business. The
child scheduled to be killed today by abortion is our brother, our sister,
our sacred trust.
We safeguard human life in a variety of ways, including speaking words of
encouragement, teaching, assisting parents, and shaping public policy. This
mass text is especially appropriate to use in pro-life gatherings of those
who work in the legislative and political arena.
The opening prayer for the second of these masses reads,
O God, who adorn creation with splendor and beauty
and fashion human lives in your image and likeness,
awaken in every heart
reverence for the work of your hands,
and renew among your people
a readiness to nurture and sustain
your precious gift of human life.
Echoing the imagery of Psalm 104 and drawing from Genesis 1:26, this
prayer focuses on how human life itself reflects the image of the Creator,
and therefore should evoke in our hearts a reverence and awe which should
outweigh any fear in welcoming or defending human life.
This Mass is especially appropriate to use in gatherings of those who
assist moms and dads in pregnancy centers, and who do spiritual and
educational work in the pro-life movement. The reverence for the work of
God's hands feeds the love which is expressed in that "readiness to nurture
and sustain" human life. As Blessed Teresa of Calcutta said, "The mother
who is thinking of abortion, should be helped to love, that is, to give
until it hurts" (Prayer Breakfast, 1994).
Let's use these new Mass texts often!
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