I actually remembered to fast and pray yesterday, the first day of 40 Days for Life, Fall 2009. (And today, too!) We were reminded about it at Mass this past Sunday and I went to the website Monday and downloaded the PDF’s of the daily devotionals, just so I’d have them if I couldn’t get online for some reason.
On Sunday we also filled out little forms with suggested practices during the 40 Days. I chose to pray once a week for an hour (but I’m doing it every day instead), to read Scripture for 15-30 minutes each day for the cause of life, and then I chose “other” and promised to blog about life, so here I am, blogging for life.
Today I found some links I want to give you. First, the booklet, Living the Gospel of Life on the USCCB website, and the study guide on the Priests for Life website. There’s also a Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics in booklet form that you can order or in PDF format that you can dowload.
If you’re a Christian from another tradition, here’s a Voter’s Guide for Serious Christians, too (online only as far as I can tell). See? I realize that some folks reading this are not Catholic, but we share many of the same concerns. And I’m glad we do!
And here’s an interesting tidbit I also want to share. I was told a few months ago, by someone who should’ve known better, that the Church has not ruled on whether or not we can be Catholic and also be pro-choice. Well, I knew that was wrong and I mentioned the Gospel of Life at the time. But just a while ago I found this quote which I wish I’d had that day. It would’ve put an end to that discussion pretty quick, I think. Here it is, from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and published in 1998:
From Living the Gospel of Life, Paragraph 7: “No one, least of all someone who exercises leadership in society, can rightfully claim to share fully and practically the Catholic faith and yet act publicly in a way contrary to that faith.”
And to those who say that the sanctity of human life is a matter of religion and so is a view that should not be imposed on others outside that creed, the Bishops have this to say:
Paragraph 6: “Real freedom rests on the inviolability of every person as a child of God. The inherent value of human life, at every stage and in every circumstance, is not a sectarian issue any more than the Declaration of Independence is a sectarian creed.”
I think that’s worth thinking about, even if you don’t agree…yet. Reading The Splendor of Truth, the Gospel of Life, and Living the Gospel of Life might give you some thoughts to ponder, again, even if you don’t agree. At least, it would clarify the authentic Catholic Church view on these issues. After all, a lot of people have said a lot of things in the media the last few years, purporting to be Catholic. And they just aren’t. Not even close. Some of them have missed it by several million lightyears. It’s as if some people have no idea that the Catechism even exists or any encyclicals either, for that matter. But they do. And I think they make for fascinating reading. But then I am on fire with love for the teachings of Christ and I love learning more about the faith. And deepening my understanding. And my love for my Lord. Hey, I need all the help I can get on the daily path, don’t you know.
I hope you’ll join me and thousands of others around the country as we pray and fast and study and reflect and do whatever we can think of for the cause of life. Peace be with you and thank you for reading!
Links mentioned in this post:
- 40 Days for Life, Fall 2009.
- Daily devotionals, Visit each page to download a printable PDF. Or sign up to get the devotionals in your email. Emails include a link to the PDF for the day.
- The Splendor of Truth by John Paul II.
- Gospel of Life by John Paul II. Study guides on the Priests for Life website.
- Living the Gospel of Life by the NCCB. Study guide on the Priests for Life website.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church, English translation, 1994: Buy. Read online. Searchable.
- Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics, PDF online.
- Voter’s Guide for Serious Christians