The sacredness of the human person
“I wish to restate as firmly as I can that abortion is a grave sin, since it puts an end to an innocent life. In the same way, however, I can and must [state] that there is no sin that God’s mercy cannot reach and wipe away when it finds a repentant heart seeking to be reconciled with the Father.” (Apostolic Letter, 2016)
A sin is an act of self-destruction. Something that lessens our humanity, which I believe as a Christian, Jesus calls us all to, a fuller, freer, more loving humanity. I would say that Jesus shows us the way, by the manner in which he lived and related to those around him. He had compassion, deep empathy, spoke gently to those who struggle, and yes fail. He says that God will forgive 70 X 7 times a day. God is not the issue, nor God’s love, nor God’s will for what is best for humankind. It is our short-sightedness that is the problem. I understand this since many times I have failed to live out what I know I am called to do.
Abortion is the termination of a life, and the legality of when that can happen is arbitrary and changing over time. Now an abortion can be procured at 24 weeks. Or with a doctor’s ok, it can happen right up the time of birth. Which is in reality ‘infanticide’. That is where we are going with this. Or even beyond. It can’t be stopped, everything evolves, matures, and bears fruit.
To want to protect life in the womb does not mean that concern for life after birth is somehow weaker. Many pro-lifers walk their talk and adopt, often more than one infant in order to save it from being aborted. Many counsel women, gently, who are trying to make a choice to abort or not.
Many pro-lifers counsel women after they have an abortion and lead them into healing. Why? Because all life matters, all people matter, all are loved by God, and God wills their salvation and healing if they seek it.
Just because I am pro-life does not mean I am for Trump. I identify with neither party. Both have grown old and corrupt. I doubt any party really cares about people, just about power. The constant squabbling at the expense of the country points to that. I know that there must be some honest politicians out there, but I believe they are rare. To be fair, if I was in politics, I doubt I would stay honest either, power and money do corrupt.
I do believe that arguing over this is a waste of time. I also respect those who do not agree with me, even though I believe they are mistaken, just as they believe that I am.
The Catholic Church is not perfect, far from it. Our scandals or out there for all to see, and I am glad for that. The truth will set us free. I also believe that on the teaching level, the church is one of the few voices that seek to defend the sacredness of life in the womb and the sinfulness of ending such a life.
Abortion will not go away, yet I do believe that someone should speak out for the civil rights of the unborn, few do, the life in the womb is helpless against abortion. Family, peer pressure, men not taking responsibility for their children, and the simple fear of survival are big factors for many women to decide to get an abortion. They need our compassion, love, and yes, acceptance so that they can find healing.
Yes, I know that that is not true for all women who get abortions. In 2016 some women got up during the democratic convention and actually bragged about getting an abortion for career reasons, so there is a continuum when it comes to this issue. There is always a backstory, unknowns, that keeps me from judging in a matter that is way beyond my paygrade.
So I am pro-life, abortion for me is murder since life is being ended. I say that in sorrow, not in anger, or in condemnation of those who disagree. The Lord has freed me from the need to judge, a terrible burden, and I often, sin when I fail and judge others. I can pray for all, and I do believe that prayer is important, though I know that many will not understand that way of thinking.
I do wish that we the people would stop thinking that if only we had so and so in the White House everything would get better. No, not true, we are doing it to ourselves. How we relate, listen, and either love or hate one another is the true culprit. Yet I am hopeful for all of us.
We are at a crossroads, which way we go will have enormous consequences for all of us.-Br.MD