12/23/09

"O Emmanuel"


O Emmanuel, our King and Lawgiver, the Expected of the nations and their
Savior. Come and save us, O Lord our God.

O Emmanuel,
Rex et legifer noster,
expectatio gentium,
et Salvator earum:
veni ad salvandum nos,
Domine, Deus noster.

more from Fr. Z...

12/22/09

"O Rex"

O King of the Gentiles and the Desired of all, you are the cornerstone that binds two into one. Come, and save man whom you fashioned out of clay.

O Rex Gentium,
et desideratus earum,
lapisque angularis,
qui facis utraque unum:
veni, et salva hominem,
quem de limo formasti.

more from Fr. Z...

12/21/09

"O Oriens"


O Rising Dawn, Radiance of the Light eternal and Sun of Justice: come and enlighten those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.

O Oriens,
splendor lucis aeternae,
et sol justitiae:
veni, et illumina
sedentes in tenebris,
et umbra mortis.

more from Fr. Z..

12/20/09

"O Key of David"

O Key of David and Scepter of the House of Israel; you open and no man closes; you close and no man opens. Come, and deliver from the chains of prison those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.

O Clavis David,
et sceptrum domus Israël,
qui aperis, et nemo claudit,
claudis, et nemo aperuit:
veni, et educ vinctum
de domo carceris,
sedentem in tenebris,
et umbra mortis.

more from Fr. Z..

12/19/09

"O Root of Jesse"


O Root of Jesse, you stand as a sign for the peoples; before you kings shall keep silence and to you all nations shall have recourse. Come, save us, and do not delay.

O Radix Jesse,
qui stas in signum populorum,
super quem continebunt reges os suum,
quem gentes deprecabuntur:
veni ad liberandum nos,
jam noli tardare

more from Fr. Z...

12/18/09

"O Adonai"


O Adonai and Ruler of the House of Israel, you appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush and on Mount Sinai gave him your law. Come, and with outstretched arm redeem us.

O Adonai,
et dux domus Israël,
qui Moyse in igne flammae rubi apparuisti,
et ei in Sina legem dedisti:
veni ad redimendum nos in brachio extento.

more from Fr. Z...

12/17/09

"O Sapientia"




O Wisdom, you came forth from the mouth of the Most High and, reaching from beginning to end, you ordered all things mightily and sweetly. Come, and teach us the way of prudence.

O Sapientia,
quae ex ore Altissimi prodiisti,
attingens a fine usque ad finem fortiter,
suaviterque disponens omnia:
veni ad docendum nos viam prudentiae.

more from Fr. Z...

12/16/09

The "O Antiphons"




Starting on December 17, through to December 23, the Liturgy of the Hours features the "O Antiphons" , messianic promises proclaimed by the prophets.

Each O Antiphon begins with an invocation of the expected Messiah, followed by praise of him under one of his particular titles. Each ends with a petition for God's people, relevant to the title by which he is addressed, and the cry for him to "Come".

The seven titles attributed to Jesus in the antiphons are Wisdom (Sapientia in Latin), Ruler of the House of Israel (Adonai), Root of Jesse (Radix), Key of David (Clavis), Rising Dawn (Oriens), King of the Gentiles (Rex). and Emmanuel. In Latin the initials of the titles make an acrostic which, when read backwards. means: "Tomorrow I will be there" ("Ero cras"). To the medieval mind this was clearly a reference to the approaching Christmas vigil.

Today the O Antiphons are most familiar to us in the hymn "O come, O come Emmanuel". Each verse of the hymn parallels one of the antiphons. In addition to their use in the Liturgy of the Hours and the gospel acclamation, they have been popularly incorporated into church devotions and family prayer. An Advent prayer service for use at home, in school, or in the events of parish life can be built around the singing or recitation of the antiphons, accompanied by the related Scripture readings and prayers. They can be prayed at family dinner times or with the lighting of the Advent wreath, with a short explanation of their biblical background. The titles can also be depicted by simple symbols - for example, on banners and posters or in bulletin illustrations - to help us to reflect on these Advent themes.
(Jeanne Kun)

more from Fr. Z...

12/13/09

Remembering Avery Cardinal Dulles



Cardinal Dulles' articles were the ones that initially attracted me to 'First Things' so its appropriate that I found this beautiful tribute to him in their
'comments' section : by Nicholas Frankovich
In the last year of his life the polio that he’d lived with since the Second World War robbed him of the ability to speak, or at any rate to speak intelligibly. He was articulate and lucid and spoke in complete sentences that it was always a pleasure to listen to. He still was, and he still did, but now some neurological error that was affecting his speech made it hard for anyone to make sense of the sounds. His long-time assistant, Sister Anne Marie Kirmse, knew him that well that she could interpret for his interlocutors. All of this he handled with supreme grace. It was admirable.

Apparently immunity to self-pity was a lifelong strength of his. In the course of a talk that involved reference to Christians who had been persecuted for their faith, he added something to the effect that he’d led a fairly easy life and didn’t know anything like persecution first-hand, and I thought: Hey, I know enough about your background to know that you fought in a war. You surprised (and probably more) family members by converting to Catholicism. As an academic theologian you’ve experienced your share of polemical vituperation. Whatever pain you experienced along the way you’re counting as negligible, petty, not worthy of being referred to at all, even if only to dismiss it? I salute you, Cardinal Dulles.

I was so used to being awed by his professional accomplishments (the dozens of books, hundreds and hundreds of articles) that it hit me when, in his introductory remarks before one of the last McGinley Lectures, the president of Fordham used the word “holy” to describe him. He was right. It’s a word we tend to be shy about applying to anyone who’s still living, but in this case it was so apt I wondered why it never occurred to me to think of Avery Dulles as that all along.

In that last year of his life, he still had things to say that we wanted to hear, and so his final McGinley Lecture was read for him by a Jesuit colleague at Fordham. His concluding remarks:

“Suffering and diminishment are not the greatest of evils but are normal ingredients in life, especially in old age. They are to be expected as elements of a full human existence. Well into my 90th year I have been able to work productively. As I become increasingly paralyzed and unable to speak, I can identify with the many paralytics and mute persons in the Gospels, grateful for the loving and skillful care I receive and for the hope of everlasting life in Christ. If the Lord now calls me to a period of weakness, I know well that his power can be made perfect in infirmity. ‘Blessed be the name of the Lord!’”


Pray for us, Cardinal Dulles.

11/28/09

Oh, Christmas Tree...,


Here we are in Advent, and we have the annual stories of 'cultural vandalism' filling the air. First , two tree stories - one from Orange County, Calif., and the next from Cambridge (Incidentally, Dundee has had a change of 'Spirit'!)

If that's not cheerful enough, how about a 'Naughty & Nice' list from the American Family Association, or one from Liberty Counsel?

Advent Prose (Rorate Caeli)



Sung before Benediction, the First Sunday of Advent at St. Andrew's Catholic Church, Edinburgh. (2008)

Nick Farage Defending (...a bit too late)



(h/t SDA)

11/20/09

Works In Progress


We are all 'works in progress'. Each of us has an individual relationship with our God, and none of us are fit to judge the 'progress' being made by a fellow pilgrim.

Deacon Keith Fournier writes about the ungenerous criticism of the very generous gift to Ave Maria University made by B. Thomas Golisano....
... It appears that Mr. Golisano, like most of us reading this article, is a work in progress. His long life reveals that he held some positions in the past which do not comport with those which he holds today. Some within certain segments of the Catholic blogging community were only too eager to point out those positions of the past. However, they took another step; they attacked the man’s motives and attacked Ave Maria for accepting his charity so as to help fund their work of forming young men and women in Charity....Securing this gift from Tom Golisano is wonderful news for the thousands of faithful young Catholics and others who will grow in their ability to serve the Church - called into the world - while living and studying there through his generosity! It is also a great example of a Catholic vision of evangelization and mission. ...What are we supposed to do - not allow people whom we are seeking to bring to the fullness of the truth to be generous and assist the Lord's work with their goods?...


...............................................................................

Thomas Golisano is the founder of the Golisano Foundation whose Mission Statement reads :
The B. Thomas Golisano Foundation is interested in funding programs that will help individuals with developmental disabilities achieve their maximum potentials by integrating independence, self-determination, and productivity into all facets of their lives.

The Golisano Foundation will serve as a proactive partner with service providers, organizations, and the community. Together, we will:

* Enable those with disabilities to more fully participate in the life of the community.
* Create an environment of dignity and care for disabled individuals and their families.


More at NCRegister

11/3/09

92 % Of Down's Babies Are Killed Pre-Birth


The decreasing number of babies born with Down's Syndrome in spite of a growing number of mothers in the 'high-risk' age group, doesn't mean that research into Down's Syndrome has brought good results. Very simply, it means that given the choice to abort a down's syndrome baby or let it live, mothers are choosing death.

abc News:
...About 400,000 Americans have Down syndrome, the most common genetic condition in the United States, which produces an array of challenges, including retardation, delayed language and slow motor development.

In the absence of prenatal testing, the United States would have experienced a 34 percent increase in the number of Down births between 1989 and 2005, Skotko estimates.

Instead, 15 percent fewer such babies were born during that time, representing a 49 percentage point difference between expected and observed rates, according to Skotko's research...

Although screening facilities are careful to assert that screening is not compulsory (yet), the information given to parents about screening comes with an underlying attitude that 'some things are to be avoided'.

The IWK Pre-Natal Screening webpage is an example of this presumption:

Remember that screening and diagnostic tests cannot rule out all possible inherited conditions, health complications or developmental problems in a baby.


The desire to 'rule out' is the presumption - a presumption that eugenics is acceptable. Only in a limited number of cases does pre-natal screening reveal information that can be acted upon to positively affect the health of the child. The rest of the time, the information provides only a 'reason' to abort.

Many parents receive unbalanced information, missing the positive input from parents of children with conditions such as Down's Syndrome. In response to that, efforts have been made to bring in 'prenatal screening awareness acts'. Judging from statistics, more needs to be done is this area.

To help with awareness, disabled persons are beginning to speak out to bring awareness of their humanity, and their happiness to be, and remain, ALIVE!

Such is the state of our society - that human beings are not recognized as human! It seems more and more of us are being excluded from 'full membership' in the human family. The unborn, the disabled, the elderly,the terminally ill... how soon will the 'expensive to treat' be added to the list? (Wouldn't that include obese, smoker, family history of heart failure..?)

11/2/09

REAL MAN : Canadian MP Brad Trost


Representing 'life'in the Canadian parliament happens rarely, especially since the Conservative PM, Stephen Harper, has stated that it's not in his 'area of interest'. In a very un-'PC' manner, Conservative MP Brad Trost, is circulating a petition to stop all Canadian gov't funding of Planned Parenthood International.

LifeSiteNews:

...In addition to IPPF's abortion advocacy, the petition cites the fact that the organization "does not support physicians' freedom to practice according to their conscience and/or religious beliefs regarding abortion referral."

According to IPPF's 'Charter on Sexual and Reproductive Rights', physicians may only refuse to offer contraceptive and abortion 'services' "if they can refer the client to health professionals willing to provide the service immediately" (5.3). "No such right exists in emergency cases where lives are at risk," they add.

IPPF took in $119 million in 2008, with almost 80% coming from government grants. In the midst of a financial crisis, $23 million of that money went towards staffing, with over 3 dozen people given six figure incomes that topped out at $480,000.

CIDA would seem to have become a dedicated supporter of organizations that advocate de-population and actively work towards global abortion access, giving away millions of Canadian tax money. In 2007, for example, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation reported that, in addition to the money pledged to IPPF, in 2006/2007 CIDA had given $44,050,000 to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) as well as $18 million to UNICEF.

While UNFPA claims that they do not promote abortion, they are an ardent supporter of abortion advocacy groups, such as IPPF, which reported in 2008 that it had received $1 million from the fund that year. In September, the UNFPA's leader, Thoraya Ahmed Obaid, called for a budget of $23 billion to be able to fund abortions worldwide.

In Trost's opinion, the government has continued funding IPPF because of "inertia." "The bureaucracy's done it before and no one wants to rock the boat," he explained. "So at the end of the day, don't make any waves. ... I'm encouraging people to let their voice be spoken so that the unelected government, i.e. the bureaucrats in CIDA who support Planned Parenthood, don't get to dictate where people's tax dollars go."...


Call or Write :

CIDA Minister
Bev Oda, MP (Durham) and Minister of International Cooperation
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON
K1A 0A6
Phone: (613) 992-2792
Fax: (613) 992-2794
Email: Oda.B@parl.gc.ca

Prime Minister Stephen Harper
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa
K1A 0A2
Fax: 613-941-6900
E-mail: pm@pm.gc.ca

Brad Trost, MP (Saskatoon-Humboldt)
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON
K1A 0A6
Phone: (613) 992-8052
E-mail: trostb@parl.gc.ca

Young and brave and committed to the good of Canada. Just what Canadians should be looking for in representation, and hopefully there are more young , brave individuals ready to run in the next election. Canada needs some new blood - red blood - that sustains life.

11/1/09

Day 40 - 40 Days For Life



Intention:

Let us keep our eyes fixed on the New Jerusalem, where death will be no more.

Scripture:

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!"

--Revelation 21:4-5

Reflection:

Every activity we undertake in defense of the sanctity of life is prophetic, inasmuch as it points to the day when "death will be no more." Every victory we have when an act of abortion is prevented is prophetic of that day when death itself will be definitively conquered. Every triumph of grace in this world, whereby someone is brought to see the value of life and given the strength to welcome it, is a breaking into our history of that definitive future in which the old order of things will have passed, and all things will be made new.

As pro-life warriors, we must keep our eyes fixed on heaven, and our hearts secure in the hope that the day is coming when all evil will be conquered. It is the future that shapes the present; it is victory that informs the battle; it is the destination that determines the journey.

Daily, we are called to reflect on heaven. When we weep, we are to think of the day when every tear will be wiped away. When we face the destructive power of death, we are to think of the day when death is swallowed up in victory. When we labor against abortion, we are to think of the day when we will have the rest and peace of the final triumph of life. Heaven is as real as earth, and its joys will be as real as our present sorrows.

Prayer:

Father, you are the God of hope. Your word fills us with the vision of the world to come, when every tear will be wiped away, and death will be no more. Father, how we need that hope, how we are strengthened by that vision! Keep our hearts focused on heaven, and diligent in the labors of earth. As we struggle against the culture of death, root our souls in the assurance of victory. We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life and President, National Pro-life Religious Council
40 Days For Life

10/31/09

BISHOPS TAKE ACTION: TARGET HEALTHCARE BILL






"When the time comes as it surely will, when we face that awesome moment, the final judgment, I've often thought, as Fulton Sheen wrote, that it is a terrible moment of loneliness. You have no advocates, you are there alone standing before God and a terror will rip through your soul like nothing you can imagine. But I really think that those in the pro-life movement will not be alone. I think there will be a chorus of voices that have never been heard in this world but are heard beautifully and clearly in the next world and they will plead for everyone who has been in this movement. They will say to God, "Spare him because he loved us," and God will look at you and say not, "Did you succeed?" but "Did you try?"' (Henry Hyde)

Day 39 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

Pray that volunteers will replace exhaustion or discouragement with rejoicing over the miracles we have seen thus far, and enthusiastic service as God takes us on to victory!

Scripture:

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

-- 1 Peter 1:6-7

Reflection:

We have reason to rejoice when we consider the many babies whose lives have been saved during the 40 Days for Life campaign. Add to those lives, the women and men who have been spared from a devastating decision and now have opportunity to make a plan for their baby that is both life affirming and God honoring.

Whether directly, or indirectly, you have contributed to these testimonies of praise with your sacrificial service. Perhaps you have been grieved by various trials during your commitment to 40 days. The attacks of the enemy come in many forms -- difficulties in relationships, finances, health. Or maybe you are physically and mentally exhausted and have been marking off the days on your calendar, eagerly waiting for Day 40.

Consider these trials in light of God's plan for you. The Apostle Paul understood the big picture when he said in Romans 8:18, "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." This is our Hope and our victory. Let us rejoice in the opportunity to give that Hope to others in our path.

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father, We sing to You a new song, for You have done marvelous things. Forgive us when we allow circumstances to defeat us. You give power to the faint and You increase strength in those who have no might. We rest in You dear Lord, and ask You to empower us again for Your service as You work out Your plan for us and through us. May You receive glory through our victory in Christ, in whose name we pray, amen.

Carmen Pate
Co-host, "Point of View" Talk Show

40 Days For Life

10/30/09

Canada Asleep


An interesting and insightful perspective on the Canadian psyche, from Julie Culshaw:

...Here in Canada, we already have abortion funded by our tax dollars, so the fight that is going on in the US right now against their health bill no longer applies here. In fact, we never fought that at all.

There is a different mind set in Canada, one that accepts government control in many areas of our life. The trouble with that is that people tend to become apathetic, because they figure that the government will take care of things. For instance, the poor can get welfare, so we don't have to help them. The unemployed can get EI or welfare, so we don't feel the need to help those who have lost their jobs. Everyone can get medical help if necessary so we can leave the helping to the people trained to do that.

This lets us off the hook. But as Christians, we know that we are not off the hook. Jesus calls us to love our brother, He calls us to be the good Samaritan and act out of love for our brother and sister in need.

How can we do that for those babies in need who are being aborted? There seems little we can do here in Canada, except to pray. But I sincerely believe that our prayer must be public. Our witness to the sanctity of life must be seen as a public witness...



Canada is a somnolent nation. Content to sleep in personal comfort while a hundred thousand Canadian babies a year are killed in the womb. Happy to doze while their personal freedom to speak up about anything is dissolved for lack of interest.

I am proud of my Canadian forefathers, their Christian heritage exemplified by their willingness to sacrifice for family and country, their work ethic, their interest in the 'meaning of life' and their community spirit. I am proud of their entrepreneurial courage that helped build the west. I am proud of their fortitude in the face of physical and financial disasters. They were strong, Christian, hard-working , loving and happy . They were poor with large families, satisfied to contribute to the future prosperity of the nation.

How has that contribution been wasted by subsequent generations? We are definitely better off physically and financially, but are we better people? Are we happier? Do we feel certain that there IS a meaning to life, a TRUTH that makes everything important and worthwhile? Are we Christian?

Some Canadians are Christian, of course. And some Canadians who aren't, are still striving for TRUTH. Unfortunately, I don't believe that Canada as a whole is very interested in TRUTH, in some ways it is really against the very idea of 'truth'. They are so far gone, that they don't believe 'truth' exists.

Where's the Joy in that?

No wonder they sleep!

Day 38 - 40 Days For Life



Intention:

Pray that we become vessels of hope to all around us, especially to those who minister in the pro-life movement.

Scripture:

On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. "Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen!"

-- Luke 24:1-5

Reflection:

This meditation, based on a sermon I once heard, is adapted for pro-life concerns.

It's Friday. Jesus is on the cross. He has been killed by his enemies; he is off the scene. But that's because it's Friday. Sunday's comin'!

It's Friday. Abortionists continue their work 3,300 times a day, tearing off the arms and legs of little babies and crushing their heads. But that's because it's Friday. Sunday's comin'! It's Friday. Pro-abortion groups receive blood money from billionaires who are as deceived as they are. But that's because it's Friday. Sunday's comin'!

It's Friday. Liars attempt to speak for all women and hide the pain of abortion, and ignore the evidence of how it harms women, and call abortion a blessing. But that's because it's Friday. Sunday's comin'! It's Friday. People of hardened hearts guard the clinics and usher desperate women in to have their abortions, while keeping them from the pro-life people who want to give them hope. But that's because it's Friday. Sunday's comin'!

Hope does not mean that we ignore or minimize the evils around us. It means, rather, that we see the whole picture, which is that evil is conquered because of what happened one Sunday morning. The power of sin and death has been broken by the Resurrection of Christ. We are called to proclaim, celebrate, and serve that victory, waiting in joyful hope for Christ's return and the full flowering of the Culture of Life! Indeed, Sunday's comin'!

Prayer:

Lord, fill your people with new hope. Make us vessels of hope to all around us, especially to those who minister in the pro-life movement, that as we engage in the difficult work ahead, we may experience the peace and joy that come only from you and that nobody can take away from us. We ask this through Christ our Lord, amen.

Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life and President, National Pro-life Religious Council

40 Days For Life

10/29/09

Day 37- 40 Days For Life


Intention:

Pray that we will each submit ourselves this day as a living sacrifice to God, giving all that we have in us for those being sacrificed on the altar of convenience.

Scripture:

-- Romans 12:1

Reflection:

Since all things are for His glory, we are to offer ourselves for that purpose. This of course is in sharp contrast to those who are being swayed by the enemy to sacrifice their babies on the altar of convenience, rather than choosing to surrender their all, including their unborn child, to the Lord for His purposes.

A career, education goals, or even a boyfriend can unknowingly become an idol for some young women. In their minds, abortion is a convenient way to "rid themselves" of an obstacle in the way of their "worship."

In light of the sacrifice Christ made on our behalf, and the fruit of God's mercies on our lives, we owe God our highest form of praise and worship. Presenting our bodies as living sacrifices is therefore reasonable service.

We were made to worship God and God alone. The enemy who seeks worship for himself distorts God's truth regarding worship, sacrifice, idols, and children.

As you have given of yourself to rescue those who are perishing -- the young woman and her child -- you are worshiping God in the truest sense of the word.

May your example lead an abortion minded client to turn from her idols to worship the one true God, sparing her child from the altar of convenience, and sparing herself from a lifetime of regret.

Prayer:

God Almighty, You alone are worthy of our praise and worship. Having accepted Your Son's sacrifice on my behalf, I in turn present my body to you as a living sacrifice. Thank you for deeming me holy and acceptable because of Christ's shed blood for me. I pray that you would use me as your vessel to rescue others who are perishing. Through Christ who is Our Glory, Amen.

Carmen Pate
Co-host, "Point of View" Talk Show

40 Days For Life

10/28/09

Day 36 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

We are the defenders of true freedom. May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.

Scripture:

Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

--2 Corinthians 3:17

Reflection:

Norma McCorvey (the former Jane Roe of Roe v. Wade) used to work at an abortion mill named "A Choice for Women." She now realizes what a cruel irony that title was. She saw first hand, just as pregnancy resource center counselors see, that women don't get abortions because of freedom of choice, but rather because they feel they have no freedom and no choice. They feel trapped, abandoned, desperate and afraid, and have been led to believe that abortion is their only option.

As Frederica Mathewes-Green has written, no one wants an abortion like she wants a Porsche or an ice cream; rather, she wants it like an animal caught in a trap wants to gnaw off its own leg.

"Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty." That doesn't mean that the Spirit allows us to do whatever we want or to decide for ourselves what's right and wrong.

Rather, it means that the Spirit gives us the freedom to do what is right, the power to choose what is good, when we see it before us and yet feel pulled in the opposite direction. Liberty means that we no longer have to feel doomed to do what we know is wrong.

We are the people of the Spirit of the Lord, and when we take action on behalf of life, especially by being present at abortion mills, we are acting on behalf of true freedom, and imparting to those who are in bondage the power to do what is right.

Prayer:

Come, Holy Spirit. You are the Spirit of freedom, the source of all that is good, the power to do what is right. Fill us, and fill those who are in bondage today, feeling doomed to do what is wrong. Set them free, and help us to hasten them on the road to freedom, where your grace overcomes every temptation. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life and President, National Pro-life Religious Council

40 Days For Life

10/27/09

Day 35 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

Pray for post-abortive women who cannot forgive themselves; may they understand that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

Scripture:

Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sin is covered. Blessed is the one to whom the Lord shall not impute sin.

-- Romans 4:7-8

Reflection:

In the passage above, the Apostle Paul making a point about justification by faith, refers back to David's words in Psalm 32:1-2. In spite of the enormity of David's sin -- adultery with Bathsheba and his murder of her husband -- and the utter absence of any personal merit, David in his brokenness, understood the imputed righteousness of God. David's response was not continued guilt over his sins, but praise for his freedom from guilt, and God's power to live life differently.

Once your relationship with God has been restored, your guilt has served its purpose and should no longer be given place in your life. This is true regardless of the sin, including the sin of abortion. As a post-abortive woman, I too struggled with this issue until I realized that punishing and hating myself after receiving God's forgiveness was an insult to God.

It was as though I were minimizing Christ's work on the cross as insufficient to cover my sin. I was denying Him the opportunity to bring glory to His name for the healing and restoration He wanted to do in my life. I was giving victory to the enemy who having lost the battle for my soul, was bent on destroying my testimony as I accepted the continual guilt he heaped on my mind.

It is my joy to continually sing of God's grace rather than give the devil a foothold in my life. Don't waste God's mercy! Accept His forgiveness and forgive yourself as testimony of His amazing grace.

Prayer:

Our Most Gracious Heavenly Father, thank you for your amazing grace that saved a wretch like me. I come against the enemy of my soul who would have me feel cast down and dejected. Lord, keep your children from falling prey to the accusations of the father of lies. Turn our mourning into dancing and may we bring praise to you as we give testimony of Your healing and restoration in our lives. For by His grace we are saved, amen.

Carmen Pate
Co-host, "Point of View" Talk Show
40 Days For Life

Fr. Thomas J. Euteneuer - Pro-Life Missionary


Father Thomas J. Euteneuer is on a mission. President of Human Life International, Fr. Euteneuer has traveled the world, speaking to and motivating workers for the 'Culture of Life'. His organization has offices in eight countries, and Fr. Eutenueur has inspired and informed thousands in the war against the 'culture of death'.

Impressively media savvy, Fr. Euteneuer can be found in the 'social media' on Facebook and Twitter, and HLI has an impressive website with links to many resources including podcasts . Father also produces an insightful weekly commentary that keeps up with the latest 'life' news.

Fr, Euteneuer's straight-talk gets a passionate response from both friend and foe. He calls out the hypocrites and encourages the faithful . He tells it like it is, unvarnished. The hard truth.

Time will tell whether the 'blunt reality' approach works better than the 'polite everlasting discussion' approach.

My money is on Father Euteneuer!





(Fr. Euteneuer and other Catholic speakers are being featured around the blogosphere, organized by Matt Warner at Fallible Blogma.)






UPDATE: Since this post, Fr. Euteneuer has been removed from HLI, the Diocese of Palm Beach, and his work as an exorcist. It has not yet been made public the reason why, but prayers are in order.(01/30/11)

pax.

FINAL UPDATE: Father Euteneuer's Personal Statement

10/26/09

Day 34 - 40 Days For Life



Intention:

May we come to know that divine life, in relationship, creates human life.

Scripture:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.

--John 1:1-3

Reflection:

"In the beginning" was God. Always, before all times, there was God. This particular God -- the God of the Bible, the God of St. John's Gospel -- is different from all other gods. This God is alive and full of life. This God is not the picture of deadness and death, aloneness and isolation. This God is the picture of life, relationship, and unity. For within this God, within this one God, there are three divine persons who live, who love, and who work -- together. This is the glorious mystery of the Trinity. The Trinity means divine life. The Trinity means three, living Persons -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit -- who relate to each other. The Trinity means mutual love and service among three Persons.

The Word was always with God the Father. This Word was, is, and will be the Trinity's second person. The Word is also the Son of God or, as revealed in time, Jesus Christ. God the Father and God the Son live, love, and work for each other. As one, they create "all things" together: the Father creates all things, including all human life, through the Son.

So the Father, through the Son, creates all human lives. The little one swimming in his mother's womb, the infant smiling in his father's arms, the child crying in pain in a hospital bed, the energetic teen running another mile, the old man gasping for his last breath -- all were created, at their beginning, by the Father through the Son. No exceptions. Divine life creates human life.

Prayer:

O God, may we always be quick to call you Father. And when we call you father, let your Spirit remind us that we, and all people, from their beginning to their last day, are your children. We praise you, Father, that you sent your Son to reveal to the world that all people are His brothers and sisters, that all people are your children. Through Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.

Rev. Paul Stallsworth
President, Lifewatch (United Methodist Church)

40 Days For Life

10/25/09

Day 33 - 40 Days For Life




Intention:

May we absorb the truth that God is paying attention to us, and to each human life, personally and individually.

Scripture:

When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained, what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him? For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor.

-- Psalm 8:3-9

Reflection:

How often we ignore the phrase, "stop and smell the roses" and instead submit to the all too "urgent" task at hand. Is this tendency what keeps us, at least in part, from acknowledging that God's care for His sacred creation is paramount in His own mind?

The Psalmist speaks of God's handiwork: the heavens, the work of his "fingers," and then points to God's masterpiece - human life. He declares to us that God is mindful of us. God keeps His masterpiece in His thoughts.

God, the creator of the awe-inspiring heavens, is not distracted by the tasks before Him. He is not pulled away, as we might be, by thoughts of something "more important." God is paying attention to and attending to His crowning glory, His masterpiece of creation, which cannot be duplicated or replaced, which surpasses the beauty of all other created things - the human being.

There is no way to adequately describe how God feels about us as human beings. There are no words to fully portray His love, compassion or desire to be in communion with us. Perhaps, the closest we can come, is to contemplate the thoughts of a mother as she gazes for the first time at her newborn child. God cares for Life. We, as His followers, should take time to consider the life He has created and called upon us to love and protect.

Prayer:

Lord, you are the creator of all things. Guide my thoughts to consider your creation in all of its majesty, beauty and holiness. Guide my heart especially to your creation of precious human life. Help me to comprehend how essential life is in your own heart. Teach me to appreciate, love and protect all human life through your son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Fr. Terry Gensemer
National Director, Charismatic Episcopal Church for Life

40 Days For Life

Abortion Mandate (page 140) SFC Bill


Natalie Nichols of SGN explains:


... That’s right, abortion mandates are written in plain text in the SFC bill. In a nutshell, any insurance exchange is mandated to have at least one plan that does not cover abortions and one plan that does.

Where it is written “subsection A”, note that this is referring to “abortions for which public funding is NOT allowed.” And where it says “subsection B”, it is referring to “abortions for which public funding IS allowed. This begins on page 140 of the 1502 page newly submitted Senate Finance Committee bill.

‘‘(3) ASSURED AVAILABILITY OF VARIED COVERAGE THROUGH EXCHANGES.—
14 ‘‘(A) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary [Kathleen Sebelius] shall ensure that with respect to qualified health benefits plans offered in any exchange established pursuant to this title—
18 ‘‘(i) there is at least one such plan that provides coverage of services described in subparagraphs (A) [does not provide abortion coverage] and (B) [does provide abortion coverage] of paragraph (2); [line 20, pg 140]

The current bill mandates an abortion coverage option be available through any qualified health benefits plan in the exchange:

(A) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary shall assure that with respect to qualified health benefits plans offered in any exchange established pursuant to this title—

(i) there is at least one such plan that provides coverage of services described in subparagraphs (A) and (B) of paragraph (2); and

(ii) there is at least one such plan that does not provide coverage of services described in paragraph (2)(A); [line 14, pg 141]......

.... ‘‘(c) NO DISCRIMINATION ON THE BASIS OF PROVISION OF ABORTION.—A qualified health benefits plan may not discriminate against any individual health care provider or health care facility because of its willingness or unwillingness to provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions.’’ [line 6 pg 144]

This basically means that no plan, even one that was highly against abortion, could not discriminate (i.e. not cover services at facilities that provide abortions–like planned parenthood) against any doctor or health care provider because of their WILLINGNESS to provide or refer for abortions. This feels eerily like something we call a “loophole.” The plan itself may not cover abortions, but the plan cannot refuse to pay for services at…say…an abortion clinic.



Rep. Patrick Kennedy. Douglas Kmiec. Are you paying attention? Is this the best your guy can do? Is this why you've pitted yourselves against the Church? IS OBAMA WORTH IT?

10/24/09

Day 32 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

Pray that we display an attitude of humility as we stand in peaceful vigil, as we fast, as we knock on doors in our communities. Though we proudly proclaim Christ's truth, may our boasting be only in His grace.

Scripture:

These six things the Lord hates, yes, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among brethren.

-- Proverbs 6:16-19

Reflection:

The Lord who made us knows us well. I can't help but think that perhaps as He inspired these words, He knew that our tendency might be to make the judgment call on which sins should be labeled as detestable. He wants us to be absolutely clear, however, that the sinfulness of man encompasses much more than the external sins that we easily identify.

Lest we assign a particular sin as that of an abortionist, or a worker in an abortion facility, or an abortion activist, the Holy Spirit insured that our sin of pride would be listed first. In this passage that speaks of eyes, tongue, hands, heart, and feet we realize than every part of our being is subject to the curse of sin.

We all need Jesus Christ who saved us from the penalty of sin, saves us from the practice of sin as we abide in Him, and will one day remove us from the presence of sin. Praise His Holy name!

Proper self-esteem in a follower of Christ is a matter of recognizing and confronting yourself in your humanity, including the tendency to sin. It is also a matter of embracing Jesus' work on the cross --- His grace that covers a multitude of sins. The Apostle Paul sums it up best in 2 Corinthians 10:17-18: "But he who glories let him glory in the Lord. For not he who commends himself is approved, but whom the Lord commends."

Prayer:

Dear Father, Guard my heart. Prick my conscience and may I be receptive to your rebuke at any moment I drift towards pride. May I remember in fear and trembling that You cause the proud to fall, but the humble You raise up. Lord, may I never forget my true identity is in Christ and that apart from Him I am nothing. By His grace, I pray, amen.

Carmen Pate
Co-host, "Point of View" Talk Show

40 Days For Life

DUBLIN RALLY FOR LIFE July 4, 2009

The Bishops Investigate D & P (kind of...)

Thank God for the persistent, thorough investigating of LifeSite News, because the bishops seem somewhat hapless...


John Henry Westen

The archbishop [Martin Currie,NL], who was amicable and courteous throughout the interview, explained the process of the investigation. He noted that he travelled to Mexico with the rest of the investigation team which included Bishop François Lapierre of Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec as well as representatives from Development and Peace.

He explained that the investigation was limited to the first five groups in Mexico that LSN had identified as pro-abortion. He revealed that the investigation team questioned the five groups directly. He said that he accepted the word of the groups when they told him they in no way supported abortion.

"They themselves, in honest and blunt questioning, told me that they themselves are not in favor of abortion," he said. "In no way are they supportive or sponsoring anything dealing with abortion. That was their frank [response], when we asked them point blank."

Archbishop Currie also noted that he was only aware of the groups having signed onto one problematic UN omnibus document, part of which was an endorsement of abortion.

When LSN noted that that the UN document in question was only one piece of seven pieces of evidence LSN had reported, the archbishop admitted frankly he was not aware of and did not consider the other evidence. "No, the other ones, to be honest with you, I haven't followed too closely," he said.

Asked if there was any reason why LSN was not consulted or contacted during the investigation, Archbishop Currie replied, "No, not that I know of … on that matter, really to be honest, I can't really comment."

Despite the brevity of the interview, LSN was able to show the archbishop online evidence of direct pro-abortion advocacy of one of the five groups he investigated. To this revelation the archbishop frankly and apologetically acknowledged, "I just should have followed up more."

The archbishop also noted that in meeting with the bishops of Mexico and one of their experts on bioethical matters, the Mexican bishops' expert, Dr. Pilar Calva, had indeed indicated serious concerns with the groups in question. When asked why those concerns of Dr. Calva were not mentioned in the report, Archbishop Currie said he thought they were in the report. "I think they were," he said.

As no mention of the objections of the Mexican Bishops' expert was made in the publicly released report, LSN inquired about the existence of a separate report. However, CCCB Communications Director Gerald Baril, who sat in on the interview, affirmed there was no other report sent to the bishops.
O.K. So the report is a dud. Let's hope (and especially pray) that the bishops NOW have enough information - and the will - to make the necessary changes.

10/23/09

Day 31 - 40 Days For Life



Intention:

For the medical community, that the truth they know about the human body may become awe and wonder at the God who made it.

Scripture:

Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them.

--Psalm 139:16

Reflection:

Human beings -- God's tapestries.

Psalm 139 is a psalm that reveals the enormity and otherness of God. His divine attributes are on display: omniscience (2-4), omnipresence (7-12), loving-kindness (17-18), justice (19-20), righteousness (23-24), and omnipotence. Yet, when it came to express this last attribute, what example did the psalmist use - God's creation of mountains, seas, or far-flung galaxies? No, he used none of these. To express the wonder of God's unparalleled creative power the writer mentions the fashioning of the human in the womb (14-16).

The Hebrew word used to express God's forming of us in the womb, raqam, is the same term for needlework or embroidery. In other words, we are a tapestry that displays God's artistic mastery. And, like the artist who knows his creation down to the last detail, God intimately knows us. This reality provokes the writer to awe and wonder. He proclaims, "I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

What is true for this psalmist is true for each human being. Each is fashioned by God and known by him and we can proclaim on behalf of each, "I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

Prayer:

Gracious God, help us to appreciate the wonder and beauty of Your creation. Help us proclaim on behalf of every one of our fellow human beings, "I am fearfully and wonderfully made." May the knowledge that we are intimately known by You shape our lives and actions. Amen.

Rev. J. Kirk van der Swaagh
Pastor, Conservative Congregational Christian Conference

40 Days For Life

President George W. Bush Awarded by Canadian Pro-Life Group for Abortion Fight


LIFENEWS
A Canadian pro-life group gave former President George W. Bush an award yesterday honoring his pro-life record and recognizing his fight against abortion. The Saskatchewan Pro-Life Association presented the president with the award while he was in town to give an address.

The group said in a statement that it "had the distinct privilege to present a humble word of thanks to President George W. Bush for his very public determination to protect the unborn while he served two terms as President of the United States."

Bush received the Humanity of the Unborn Child Pro-Life Award and a plaque that states it is "presented with sincere gratitude to President George W. Bush on the occasion of your visit to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada on October 21, 2009."

The award is presented "in recognition of your resolve and initiatives in the protection of human life" and features a quote from Pope Benedict XVI saying, “Openness to life is at the center of true development."

The group posted a laundry list of pro-life accomplishments on its blog and highlighted them in the statement honoring Bush.

The list included signing the Mexico City Policy to stop the use of taxpayer dollars in foreign nations from promoting and performing abortions.

It also noted Bush promoted adoption and parental notification laws, encouraging teen abstinence, signed into law the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, and signed legislation in 2003 to ban the cruel practice of partial birth abortion.

It also thanked Bush for signing the Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004 and naming pro-life advocates to the Supreme Court.

The Canadian pro-life group also challenged those who say that Bush wasn't entirely pro-life because he sent troops to help Iraq.

"One topic that arises in this conversation of the pro-life record of President Bush is the topic of civilian deaths during wartime, especially during the Iraq War. People are rightly bothered by civilian deaths during wartime, because the victims are clearly innocent human beings," the group wrote.

'We need to be just as bothered by death by abortion, because the victims of abortion likewise are innocent human beings. This isn't a numbers game, but here’s a challenge: let’s bring the number of abortions down to the number of civilian deaths in the Iraq War, then we'll be in a position to compare the two moral dilemmas," it added.

"Until then, using the argument that President George W. Bush was not a pro-life president because of the civilian deaths he caused in Iraq makes political pawns of those victims, using their destruction to deflect people’s attention away from the very real and pressing need to eliminate abortions in this province and country," the pro-life group continued.

The group acknowledged that the award is going to "an international politician" but restated its goal to eliminate abortions in Canada.


Bush has been speaking at sold out venues across Canada. Naturally, most of the coverage has been on the 'protesters' outside (unlike when the prolife groups protest 'invisibly'). Too bad. Apparently, the ticket-holders were not disappointed.

10/22/09

Day 30 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

That those tempted to abort may understand that their child is already present, and already a real person.

Scripture:

And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.

-- Luke 1:41-44

Reflection:

Jesus not only loves unborn children -- He was one himself!

Think about this for a moment.

We often hear people speak of a pregnant mother by saying, "She's expecting a child." Now if one is expecting a package, the package is not yet there. As reflected in our verse for today, however, this is not the case with the mother. Her gift is already there. The pregnant woman, a mother already, does not have a child "on the way," but has a child, already present and in full possession of his or her human rights, starting with the right to life.

Prayer:

Jesus, open my eyes to your presence in the life of every child. Open my heart to joy in the birth of every child, a birth that reflects the joy of your own birth in Bethlehem. As you shared life in the womb of Mary, so now send your protection upon every child still in the womb, and grant to their mothers the strength and joy that comes from welcoming the gift of life. We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life

40 Days For Life

10/21/09

The Continuing Saga of D&P


Faithful Canadian Catholics, anxious to see some quick changes in Development and Peace in light of the continued scandal of their contribution to organizations actively involved in abortion advocacy in vulnerable countries such as the Phillipines, should be buoyed by the leadership of the Archbishops of Toronto and Ottawa.

Not being knowledgeable about the 'politics' of reporting at the CCCB plenary, I'm not sure what to make of Bishop Grecco's contribution. (He's our new bishop in PEI.) One can only hope that as a board member of Development and Peace, he would be highly motivated to make changes, and would take his former Archbishop's example to heart.

Day 29 - 40 Days For Life



Intention:

Praise God for His compassion in pardoning our sins and forgiving our transgressions. Give praise that He delights in showing mercy.

Scripture:

Who is a God like You, pardoning iniquity and passing over the transgressions of the remnant of His heritage? He does not retain His anger forever, because He delights in mercy. He will again have compassion on us; and will subdue our iniquities.

-- Micah 7:18-19

Reflection:

Micah had been sent to declare God's judgment and call the people of Judah to repentance. The people had become spiritually and ethically corrupt. Prosperity had hardened the rich, the poor were oppressed and the heirs to David's throne were practicing abominations and idolatry. Is it not easy to see the parallels of God's people in Micah's day and God's people today in America?

Through Micah, God corrected His people by demanding justice, not burnt offerings and sacrifice. He told them to love mercy, and to walk humbly with their God.

In speaking of Old Testament stories of God's people turning from God to sin and idolatry, Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 10: 11, "Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come."

Many biblical scholars believe God has removed His hedge of protection around our nation in response to our sins of immorality and abortion. Let us cry out in repentance for His mercy once again. And may we honor His faithfulness by doing justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly with our God.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, eternal, changeless, and faithful Lord, we recognize that we are in need of forgiveness as a nation, for turning our hearts away from you. Hear our prayer of repentance Lord and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. We praise you for your tender mercies and your compassion that never fails.

Lord, it is only by Your grace that we can live lives that are just, and merciful. May Your Holy Spirit enable us to walk humbly in Your presence and may You be pleased to restore America so that a generation not yet born may praise you. In the name of Christ Jesus, who has done great things for us, amen.

Carmen Pate
Co-host, "Point of View" Talk Show

40 Days For Life

10/20/09

History In The Making ?



Big news , not entirely surprising, out of the Vatican today:

NOTE OF THE CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH ABOUT PERSONAL ORDINARIATES FOR ANGLICANS ENTERING THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

With the preparation of an Apostolic Constitution, the Catholic Church is responding to the many requests that have been submitted to the Holy See from groups of Anglican clergy and faithful in different parts of the world who wish to enter into full visible communion.

In this Apostolic Constitution the Holy Father has introduced a canonical structure that provides for such corporate reunion by establishing Personal Ordinariates, which will allow former Anglicans to enter full communion with the Catholic Church while preserving elements of the distinctive Anglican spiritual and liturgical patrimony. Under the terms of the Apostolic Constitution, pastoral oversight and guidance will be provided for groups of former Anglicans through a Personal Ordinariate, whose Ordinary will usually be appointed from among former Anglican clergy.....


From The Primate Of The TAC


Lots of commentary out there....


ZENIT

The Anchoress

Damien Thompson

Inside Catholic

The Curt Jester

Fr. Rutler

Anglican Samizdat

Stand Firm

FiF UK

While we were in Prince Edward Island this summer, a married Anglican priest we knew became a married Catholic priest for the PEI Diocese.We attended Martin Carter's ordination at St. Dunstan's Basilica, which was accomplished with 'special permission' from the Vatican, after several years of preparation. Although Fr.Carter's conversion was more a result of personal reflection than any dissatisfaction with his Anglican experience, I wonder how today's events might have altered his journey.

As a Catholic with an Anglican husband whose brother is an Anglican priest, and whose father was an Anglican Canon (before becoming an Orthodox Archpriest), I am also wondering what this all means for my entire family!

More interesting times ahead!

UPDATE:

Telegraph,UK

A senior Anglican bishop reveals he is ready to convert to Roman Catholicism.
The Rt Rev John Hind, the Bishop of Chichester, has announced he is considering becoming a Roman Catholic in a move that could spark an exodus of clergy...

Day 28 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

We pray for the conversion of abortionists and all abortion advocates.

Scripture:

"Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil, Learn to do good; Seek justice, Rebuke the oppressor; Defend the fatherless, Plead for the widow."

-- Isaiah 1:16-17

Reflection:

God is just.

Inscribed around the inside of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC, are the immortal words of Thomas Jefferson: "I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just." If the deist, Jefferson, knew in the depths of his being that God is just, how much more ought we Christians to reflect on this profound truth? The justice of God, like his holiness and his purity, encourages us to seek justice for all people. It is the evil deeds and wrong, selfish attitudes of our modern society that have led to the cavalier acceptance of abortion and euthanasia. But, as Jefferson also said, "his justice will not sleep forever."

God is calling us today to seek justice, to encourage the oppressed, and to defend the orphans and widows of our society. It is a noble calling! It is one which every true believer, every God-fearing man and woman, should heed with no hesitation and no reluctance. To follow the God of justice and truth is to stand unequivocally for the right to life of everyone, especially the unborn, the physically disabled, and the terminally ill. God's word through the prophet Isaiah is as relevant in today's 21st century world as it was in Isaiah's 8th century BC world. May God's grace help us to defend the unborn's right to life as well as that of the already born.

Prayer:

O God, our heavenly Father, give us courage and wisdom as we seek to eradicate the evil in our society. Help us to realize that your divine Spirit alone can change hearts and minds so that all your human creatures may enjoy the fullness of life you intended for them. I pray this prayer in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. Amen.

Rev. Ben Sheldon
President Emeritus, Presbyterians Pro-life and National Pro-life Religious Council

40 Days For Life

10/19/09

Day 27 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

We pray for humility in our work for God's Kingdom.

Scripture:

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who being in the form of God did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.

-- Philippians 2:5-8

Reflection:

There is no limit to what we can accomplish when we don't care who gets the credit.

Jesus Christ's life on earth exemplifies a total submission to the will of the Father. His humility, compassion, gentleness and thoughtfulness are reflected over and over again in the New Testament. He was God incarnate, yet He chose to be born to a humble, working class home.

How absurd it must have seemed to the rich and powerful that the Son of God, the Messiah, the one foretold by the prophets, the 'King of the Jews' was born and raised as a simple peasant.

During His thirty-three years on earth, He sought no riches, claimed no secular power and gathered no possessions. Yet, His short time on earth changed more lives, softened more hearts, and gave hope to more people, than all the rich and powerful human 'kings' combined. And, at the end of His life on earth, by dying on the cross, He opened the door to eternal life for those who heed his words and follow in his footsteps.

Prayer:

O Lord, help us follow in the footsteps of Jesus. Let us humbly and diligently work to restore legal protection for the unborn, the disabled, the medically dependent and all innocent children of God whose lives are threatened. Let us remember the old adage that "He can never lead who has not first learned to obey." And, Lord, grant us a peaceful heart as we labor in your name. Amen.

Ernest Ohlhoff
Outreach Director, National Right to Life

40 Days For Life

10/18/09

"We Want To See The World"



Written by David Burke.


(h/t D.Morlani)

Day 26 - 40 Days For Life





Intention:

That those who have forgotten their purpose may discover it in God and therefore have the courage to choose life.

Scripture:

These all wait for you, that you may give them their food in due season, what you give them they gather in; you open your hand they are filled with good. You hide your face, they are troubled; you take away their breath, they die and return to their dust. You send forth your Spirit, they are created; and you renew the face of the earth.

-- Psalm 104:27-30

Reflection:

"I am a feather on the breath of God."

As the quote above portrays, we are upheld by the power and purpose of God. Our very existence on earth, from our body's first breath to its last, when we leave it to return home, is our Father's choice and happens only by His willing to do so.

He who created the universe also created that which is "me." I do not "have" a soul - I AM a soul, as well as a body. My entire purpose in this life is to find my way back to my Creator.

Prayer:

Beloved Father, remind us today that there is no truth but you. Do not let us fall prey to the evil one's lie that we may choose death. Remind us right now that you, who created all life, are in control of all life, and let us know right now that you who created all life, are in control of all life, and let us choose life always.

Father, please let us hear your voice more today than yesterday. Keep lighting the pathway home, for us and for all who participate in this 40 Days for Life campaign. Father, we're on our way. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, amen.

Vera Faith Lord
Director, Alpha/Omega Life Ministry
Representative of the Orthodox Church to the National Pro-life Religious Council

40 Days For Life

10/17/09

Community Organizers - Spain


An impressive show of solidarity and independence had over one million Spaniards in the street, protesting the government's proposal to liberalize abortion laws. Although the EU/UN does not have an official mandate of abortion advocacy, both organizations have pressured member states, especially developing nations, to change legislation in favour of open access to abortion.

(h/t BIG BLUE WAVE)

Day 25 - 40 Days For Life



Intention:

We pray for the conversion of all those who refuse to acknowledge that human life belongs only to God.

Scripture:

Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations."

-- Jeremiah 1:4-5

Reflection:

To be or not to be? There is no question!

The question of "being" is something philosophers have long pondered. What is the meaning of being and what is the source? In the passage before us, we have our answer. We have being because we are known by God.

For God to declare that he knows and sets apart the prophet Jeremiah even before he is conceived indicates that our being rests in God's own being. Because He is and because He wills we, therefore, are and do. The Apostle Paul says as much when he declares before the philosophers of his day, "In Him we live and move and have our being" (Acts 17:28).

One of the tragedies of the abortion culture is that life in the womb has been so heartbreakingly devalued. To embrace the arguments of the "pro-choice" crowd one must conclude that the child in the womb doesn't exist, isn't there, has no being. But nothing could be further from the truth. That child is known by God and, as such, has being.

Prayer:

Lord God, we confess that in You we live and move and have our being. Because You are, we are. May we find grace from You to affirm the being of every human and may we labor to make this truth known to the world around us. Amen.

Rev. J. Kirk van der Swaagh
Pastor, Conservative Congregational Christian Conference

40 Days For Life

10/16/09

Especially For Fr. Rosica





I really like this 'badge' from Jay Anderson's "Pro Ecclesia".

Maybe we should all use this badge to make it easier for Fr. Rosica and the CCCB to identify those who are paying attention....

Day 24 - 40 Days For Life


Intention:

Pray that God will continue to bless the efforts that have gone into the 40 Days for Life campaign, as we trust Him for the results.

Scripture:

Now these are Your servants and Your people, whom You have redeemed by Your great power, and by Your strong hand. O Lord, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who desire to fear Your name.

-- Nehemiah 1:10-11

Reflection:

Nehemiah provides an awesome blueprint for volunteers in God's service, particularly those responding to the devastation abortion has caused our nation.

Nehemiah grieved for God's reputation as he witnessed the condition of the city walls of Jerusalem. The walls were broken down which was seen by neighboring people as a sign of weakness on the part of Jerusalem's God. No wall meant no security for the city and its people.

We learn from his story that he covered every detail in prayer; inspired others to join the cause; organized others to help do the work; confronted opposition directly and turned to God when discouraged; and finally celebrated what was accomplished and gave God all the glory!

Like Nehemiah, we must acknowledge God's sovereignty as we serve Him before a mocking world. We too need to be reminded that we are "fighting" for our families. We too must have an attitude of confession and repentance before a Holy God. We must pray for strength, refute slander, and not be diverted from our work.

Like Nehemiah, we will draw attention from the enemy when we are seeking to protect the well-being of God's people. We too must stand firm and seek God's help to persevere until the task is done. We too will be victorious.

Prayer:

Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in heaven and in the earth is Yours. We pray for your continued guidance and protection throughout the remainder of this 40 day campaign. May we be steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in Your work, knowing that our labor will not be in vain. We pray in the name of Jesus, amen.

Carmen Pate
Co-host, "Point of View" Talk Show

40 Days For Life

10/15/09

Meet A Community Organizer



From Halifax, Nova Scotia:


Ellen has been working with Campaign Life Coalition for 20 years now, and she is a veteran in Nova Scotia's pro-life movement. She was there on McCully Street when the Morgentaler clinic was in operation. She organizes every Life Chain in the fall and every March for Life in the spring.
And now she is the organizing force behind 40 Days, she keeps the schedule humming and she makes countless phone calls to fill the vigil hours.

Here is what Ellen has to say about her experience with 40 Days for Life:

Dear vigil attendees,

The 40 Days for Life campaign is a focused vision to access God's power through prayer, fasting, and peaceful vigil at the site where abortions are committed. Our presence is a strong witness that we abhor the killing of pre-born children and are offering up to God our prayers for the souls of these children and also our prayers of repentance, asking God to turn hearts and minds from a culture of death to a culture of life.

When I arrive at the vigil site, I immediately feel a sense of calm. I usually walk up and down carrying the small sign while listening to Christian music, unless it is raining, at which time I sit under the umbrella and pray. One very rainy morning, I arrived rather early - 7:30 am - and did my walk about. After the "early bird" attendees left, I sat under my umbrella and prayed, and prayed, and prayed some more until I realized that an hour surely must have passed. I had forgotten my watch and my cell phone had died so I checked with a worker near by, and indeed my hour had finished and I was now into the next. 2 l/2 hours passed before someone else arrived - and you know what? - I didn't feel anxious or angry that I had been there that long. In fact, I felt so blessed and refreshed. You see, I'm a very busy person - I spend most of my time working out of my home for Campaign Life doing pro-life work, as well as church work, all in between running with my children. And although I attend Mass daily, rarely, if at all, do I spend time in quiet prayer - one on one with the Lord. So this day I thought .... the Lord wants us to come to Him and He is calling me to a deeper prayer life! I believe the forgotten watch and dead cell phone was a message for me to stay put and continue praying. So I thank God for the "no-shows", which allowed me to stay quiet and know that He is near.

The V.G. Hospital site is a place of Grace where we are indeed walking on Holy ground in the spirit of our Lord. Abortions are performed there daily and even when it rains, so be faithful to your commitment and don't let the devil get you down!

God bless, Ellen


Many of us know community organizers like Ellen Chesal. They sacrifice in their own daily lives striving to save the lives, and souls, of their fellow man. Let's get behind these people by putting our own selves 'out there'. Let's make some real communities.