Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Pro Life Homily September 23, 2012 - Father Jerry Gauvreau Companions of the Cross

Pro Life Homily September 2012
Father Jerry Gauvreau  C.C

 So you’ll notice that by looking at this week’s bulletin that there’s a couple of pro- life events coming up, so this is probably just as good as any Sunday to talk about abortion, pro - life movement.  Certainly the readings can tie in to all this for sure.
If you look at Campaign Life Coalition web site they report that: abortion is legal in Canada throughout all 9 months of pregnancy – for any reason .
And when you read about the definition of the types of abortion performed, especially what partial birth abortion is really all about, I don’t know how anyone can still come away and be pro-choice.  Plain and simple, abortion is murder.
Our Catechism, paragraph 2270 very clearly teaches us that: human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of  his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person…
This past Friday in the House of Commons, MP Mr. Stephen Woodworth proposed to the members of Parliament a bill commonly referred to as Motion 312 – you may have heard  of  it last spring – we knew this was coming.
In Motion 312 he urges Members of Parliament to call on a study of when human life begins – If scientific evidence tells us that our legal definition of who is a human being is wrong, is it right for us to ignore it? – He asks  “why would anyone oppose a respectful dialogue to gather evidence on such an important law?”
So Friday night I called his office and just left him a message supporting him, blessing him, telling him I was praying for him, thanking him for having the courage to put this Motion forward.
Campaign Life Coalition’s President Mr. Jim Hughes says, “Motion 312 calls for parliament to evaluate an outdated 400 year old law that denies modern scientific evidence that proves that life begins at conception.”
In my own personal research, over and over and over again, it shows that scientific studies have proven that within weeks of Conception a baby’s heart can be detected – in less than 2 months all vital organs are present in the baby which is a real person – not a blob of tissue.
The vote on Motion 312 will be held most likely this coming Wednesday, the Feast of St. Jean de Brebeuf and the Holy Canadian Martyrs – St Jean de Brebeuf  had his heart cut out and eaten by the Iroquois , tortured ; they saw his courage and they wanted it.
So if the Motion  is defeated I would just like Mr. Harper to know as well as all the Members of Parliament that the Pro-Life Movement is not going away – we’re here to stay, we’re in your face – we’re  going to be around  a lot longer than any of  us will and any of them.  The Pro-Life Movement has courage; catch it!
We cannot be silent any longer – it’s time to be Pro-Life in this culture of death – and don’t let anyone tell you to mind our own business, because this is our business – as Christians and as Catholics, the child in the womb is our responsibility.
 ( CC#2270 )  - Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception…
A few years ago Archbishop Adam Exner said the same thing : He said it’s time to stop making excuses.  It’s time to stop being afraid of what others will think when we stand up for what is right. It’s time to challenge the status quo. It’s time to put our faith into action. It’s time to be Pro-Life in private and in public. A child is not a problem to be eliminated but a gift always to be cherished …
And just this week in the news, I’m not sure if you read about it, but there ‘s a lot of articles about Justin Beiber’s mother .  I’m not sure, did anybody hear her story?  She’s come out with a book but she admitted that when she got pregnant with Justin she considered having an abortion.  Everybody told her to.  She was 17, a messed up kid, on drugs and alcohol  - but in her heart she knew it was wrong – I think in her heart she knew a child is not a problem to be eliminated but a gift always to be cherished.
And just last year, you might remember Justin himself was asked about abortion and he said  “I really don’t believe in abortion – I think the unborn child is a human being”  – he took a lot of  flack for that statement: God bless him!
Fr. Frank Pavone, Founder of Priests’ for Life says he received a letter one time from a lady who told him that planned parenthood told her that her pregnancy was a blob of tissue as easily removable as a wart.  “No one told me I was killing a human being or spoke to me about adoption or single parenting.”
You may have heard the story of an NHL goalie named  Justin Pogge.   When his mother became pregnant she was going to jump off a bridge, but she felt her baby kick - and she changed her mind – a lump of tissue does not kick.  A baby is not a problem to be eliminated but a gift from God !
Last May, many of you know I was on a Marian pilgrimage in Medugorje and it was at the same time when we were holding the Pro-Life week here in Ottawa.  And during the annual March for Life here in Ottawa  - I followed it closely through the internet – but close to 20,000 people participated, marching through the streets of Ottawa bringing the Pro-Life message into the very heart of Parliament Hill.
And while in Medugorje I heard a story, first hand account from a gentleman who told me how an abortion  doctor from the Ukraine visited Medugorje, well you know the only reason she went was because it was a free trip  - check things out. So, one day she hikes up apparition hill where Our Blessed Mother is said to have first appeared and when she got up there she looked around , she had a vision of every child’s skull and bones that she had murdered through abortion over the last forty  years. Today, they are bringing more and more doctors over there for retreats; pro life retreats.
In 1994 Mother Teresa  said, “ I feel the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion because it’s a war against the child, a direct killing of the innocent child¼if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child how can we tell people not to kill one another? “
By abortion the mother does not learn to love but kills even her own child to solve her problems. And by abortion the father is told that he does not have to take any responsibility at all for the child he has brought into the world. The father is likely to put others in the same trouble. So abortion just leads to more abortion. Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love but to use violence to get what they want. This is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion¼


So what are some other powerful Pro - Life Movements and Campaigns that are happening these days ?  Well, I have already mentioned March for Life.  Many parishes have a Letter writing campaigns to their members of parliament and the prime minister.  I wrote my first one when I was about 8 or 9 years old. I remember being at the kitchen table and specifically asking my father, “what’s abortion?”  I didn’t have a clue. He said, “the Government  kills babies.”
So recently I came across a beautiful story. It’s called  The Letters for Life Story, and  this was initiated by a seventeen  year old girl by the name of Alexandra  ( if I pronounce her last name right ) Jezierski.
See, she was disappointed in the fact that Prime Minister Harper doesn’t even have the courage to open up and discuss the abortion issue.
So last spring she started a letter writing Campaign in the hopes that MP’s would receive 100,000 letters that speak out against the evils of abortion. As the Letter writing Campaign progressed she turned the Campaign towards supporting Mr. Woodworth’s Motion 312. Then they teamed up with MP Postcard Campaign which was doing something very similar. Every letter written and every postcard sent to MP’s was to act as a voice for every child that will be aborted in Canada this year. Over 100,000 letters and postcards , tens of thousands of which are still being sorted through the Post Office.  Because of a back log, they may not make it to the offices of the MP’s because of a shortage of man power. So today is a good day to pray, the day saint Anthony died: get em delivered
Over 100,00 letters and postcards each representing a  child of God who will be aborted in Canada this year – 100,000 aborted children in which you and I and every Member of Parliament are responsible for their well being and protection.
So moving  on we have also 40 Days for Life. Put your hands up it you’ve heard of 40 Days for Life. Quite a few of you: alright! Check this story out.
40 Days for Life is an International Campaign of prayer and peaceful witness outside abortion facilities to highlight and defeat abortion for what it is – murder of babies who have no voice.
The first 40 Days for Life was held in Texas back in 2004
A local Pro-Life group prayed for an answer about how to reduce abortion in their area – and this is what the Lord revealed to them: 40 days, prayerful witness for life.
The Campaign came together in a matter of weeks. A thousand people came forward to participate and their prayers led to a twenty eight per cent  decline in abortions in that community.
So here we are 12 years later: 40 Days for Life is spreading : this Fall, next week actually, there are 316 locations holding 40 Days for Life prayer  campaigns. Across the United States – forty nine States are involved
Here is Canada , seven provinces – which includes eighteen cities right here in Ontario: Ottawa is one of them. But they’re also being held in England, Spain, Australia and for the first time -Uganda –
So are they making any difference? Well, a little bit of research tells me that some abortion workers have quit their jobs and are now Pro-Life, twenty four abortion facilities have closed and organizers of 40Days for Life show that close to 6,000 babies have been saved. It’s a beautiful number, even at one would make it all worthwhile, even if one child was saved
So the sixth 40 Days for Life begins in Ottawa this Wednesday, the same day interestingly enough that Motion 312 will be voted upon. And our parish will be on site as we were last year for one day. Our day this years is Thursday, Oct 4th  and there are sign up sheets in the Narthex – So I want to really encourage you to come out.
As well as next Sunday afternoon is the twenty eight Annual Life Chain  from 2:00 to 3:00 at the corner of Montreal Road and Saint Laurent Boulevard. We’ll meet in the parking lot here about 1:40 to car pool down so again, please join us.  We can make a difference: together we can make a difference to be a voice for an aborted child, even one who may be threatened by abortion.


This whole issue of abortion ; our Late Holy Father John Paul II says the Church is aware of the many factors which may have influenced your decision and She does not doubt that in many cases it was painful and even a shattering decision . The wound in your heart may not yet have healed . Certainly what happened was and remains terribly wrong but do not give in to discouragement and do not lose hope. God the Father of Mercies is ready to give you his forgiveness and his peace in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.


So in closing I’d like to just encourage all of you to fast and pray for the  Life Chain next Sunday that the Lord will touch many hearts, and also during the 40 Days for Life prayer campaigns going on across Canada, the United States and other countries.


Know today’s readings are very powerful and in the Gospel Jesus says, as he took a child among him, taking it in his arms he said: “whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me…”


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