Dear Brothers and Sisters,
As we approach Holy Week and prepare to celebrate the greatest event of the year, the Resurrection of Christ, there is another topic that I would like to address today. During some Masses this past weekend, we spoke briefly on the subject of abortion. Contrary to what many believe, this is not a Catholic issue but a human rights issue! As the fear of reversing Roe vs Wade grows, many states are getting ready to “protect women’s rights” by creating state laws that make abortions not only more accessible but also more dangerous for women. Some states, like the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, are capitalizing on this momentum to go to unimaginable territory. Right now, there are two bills (HB 3320 and SB 1209) in the Massachusetts legislature that propose the following:
· Allow abortion in Massachusetts during all nine months of pregnancy.
· Eliminate any requirement that even late-term abortions be performed in hospitals.
· Eliminate the requirement to make efforts to care for a child who survives an attempted abortion.
· Eliminate any requirement that a pregnant minor (under 18) have adult consent (parental or through the courts) before undergoing an abortion.
These are elected men and women that should be representing us, our views, in creating just laws that protect the weak, the innocent, and those who do not have a voice. It is our duty as Catholics, as citizens, and as human beings to stop this. I urge all of you to contact your representatives and spread the word among your friends and acquaintances. EVERY EMAIL COUNTS!. In fact, that may well be our most powerful weapon at this point. ACT BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE. The House Bill 3320 is sponsored by Patricia A. Haddad, of Somerset (Patricia.Haddad@mahouse.gov) and Jay D. Livingstone of Boston (Jay.Livingstone@mahouse.gov). The Senate version of the Bill 1209 is sponsored by Harriette L. Chandler of Worcester. Harriette.Chandler@masenate.gov
Regarding the act of abortion itself, we must always try to understand the circumstances in which some women find themselves. More often than not, they do not have any support to go through the pregnancy; they feel alone and scared. Sometimes other people, such as boyfriends, parents, or other close acquaintances, will push them to do it. They do not see any way out other than going through an abortion. There are also times when women are deceived by different opinions which lead them to believe that the child is not alive or that the child will not experience any pain. To gain a better insight into the process of abortion, I would like to encourage everyone to watch the movie Unplanned. It recounts the real story of Abby Johnson, the former director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas. She was a staunch defender of abortion, having made two herself, until she witnessed for herself the process of removing a child from his mother’s womb. We are not in the business of accusing people or condemning anyone. We are here to support and welcome anyone who needs help, regardless of their past decisions. Maybe we have never pulled a trigger on anyone, but with our words or with our thoughts we could have killed many people and hurt many others. So here is not a matter of who is good or bad…but only finding God’s mercy. If you have experienced it, then lead others to it!
We are in the process of preparing a moment of prayer on Divine Mercy Sunday (April 28th), in which we will bring a speaker to give witness to the devastating effects of abortion on both the mother and father. We will also pray for all those who are in need of healing, especially spiritual healing through mercy. Please don’t wait for April 28th to pray for them – let’s start today!
Father Steven Clemence