By: Meredith Hale
In case you didn’t see on Facebook, Six Rivers Planned Parenthood partnered with Clergy for Choice and an organization called Faith Aloud to put on a 40 Days of Prayer. These prayers petition to further the cause of abortion and Planned Parenthood. There has been a ruckus about this everywhere, and a common response to this initiative is fear—specifically a fear of God. And no wonder! 40 Days of Prayer implies that God would will someone to have an abortion. Why would He forcibly kill His own creation before he or she is born?
Some of the intentions on the list are prayers that the Pro Life community would also ask God for, such as Day 24: “Today we pray for an end to hateful language that diminishes the dignity of women.” However, other intentions are quite appalling. One that especially offended me was Day 14: “Today we pray for Christians everywhere to embrace the loving model of Jesus in the way he refused to shame women.” It hurts my heart how much these people are confused. Jesus refused to shame women by accepting them after they had sinned, like the adulterous woman in John 8. However, He told her to ‘Go and sin no more.’ He loved her and wished her no harm—he was not defending her sin.
Jesus would not want women to get an abortion; killing is never the answer. In fact, because Jesus refused to shame women, he would stand up for anyone who believes that an abortion is their only option. Abortion goes against the law of nature (that of maternal instinct), and going against who you were created to be can only shame yourself.
The main emphasis on this campaign is a women’s right to choose. God himself gives us the freedom to love him or not–to choose Him or choose to be without Him. This organization is fighting for the right to sin, which we already have. But they are also encouraging women to sin and praying for the right to kill unborn children. I could not possibly explain all the Church’s philosophical reasoning against abortion in this short blog post, but abortion can’t ever be right if the pre-born baby is a human person. A baby’s right to life trumps a mother’s freedom to choose. In this case choice prevents another person from living, and that’s wrong. I gladly sacrifice my freedom for love because although freedom is good, it is nothing without love.
Another prayer intention that really hit home was Day 6: “Today we ask for blessings upon the women who pass through hostile protesters on their way into an abortion clinic. May they be shielded from physical and emotional harm from those who do not know them.” This should be a wake-up call for those of us Pro Lifers who have gotten too bruised in the battle against Satan, and allowed ourselves to harden. We cannot forget that we do this out of love. In the spirit of St. Mark the Evangelist whose feast day was this week, may we offer truth to everyone who opposes our views with love and charity. Let us put on the armor of God and keep persevering in prayer, for this is a spiritual battle just as much as it is a fight for real human lives.
Click here for the 40 Days of Prayer brochure.