By Mary E. Jaminet
September 7, 2007
The post-Labor Day rush has begun. It is a time of transition and a time to look ahead and plan the rest of the year and into the next. What projects will we take on before the year is out, and what goals will we accomplish? Before your agenda is full, consider adding a pro-life event to your calendar. As Pope John Paul II explained in The Gospel of Life, "Everyone has an obligation to be at the service of life." Each one of us has a gift to use for this purpose. To what is God calling you?
On October 7, the Church will celebrate Respect Life Sunday. Check with your diocesan pro-life office to get involved in local programs and events. Look through the annual Respect Life program materials at /prolife/programs/rlp to get new ideas and educate yourself on the issues.
Get involved as a pro-life citizen. Sign up for Action Alerts from the National Committee for a Human Life Amendment (www.nchla.org). NCHLA has great resources on federal legislation – fact sheets, backgrounders, vote tracking, and everything you need to call or write your members of Congress on issues important to the Church.
Consider a pilgrimage to Washington, D.C. for the annual National Prayer Vigil for Life on January 21-22, 2008 at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. See /prolife/anniversary.shtml for more information. While you are in town, attend the annual March for Life on the Mall at noon on Tuesday, the 22nd of January, the anniversary of the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision, and make an appointment with your congressman and Senators while on the Hill.
Getting involved could be as simple as setting aside weekly prayer time for the intention of ending abortion and increasing respect for all human life. Here are a few other ideas:
- organize a monthly Holy Hour for Life in front of the Blessed Sacrament at your parish
- run a diaper drive at your place of work for a local crisis pregnancy center
- host a "Truth Booth" with footage of 3D and 4D ultrasounds at your local mall (see www.truthbooth.org)
- read page 4 of each Respect Life Program article for more ideas of how you can take life-affirming action
The hearts and minds of Americans are steadily becoming more pro-life, and it is important for each of us to get involved to keep that momentum going. From praying in front of abortion facilities to visiting the sick and elderly in nursing homes, we are all called to become a part of an ever-growing network of generous support for the gift of others, the gift of life. Providing loving service and life-affirming witness to people in our communities will bring about a culture of life where all are accepted and welcomed. Now is the time for each of us to answer the call of the Gospel of Life!
Mary Jaminet is Special Project Coordinator at the Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.