This week, Fr. Jeremy shares a message from the Catholic Conference of Ohio for Respect Life Sunday, October 1, 2023.
Today is Respect Life Sunday, and as we approach the November election we continue to pray and fast, educate ourselves and our neighbors, and prepare to vote No on Issue 1. We reflect with God’s Word on how Christians respond to the injustice of the world by pursuing justice for those on the margins, including vulnerable women and preborn children.
Our world is not fair, especially to vulnerable women and children. Christ is our model of God’s fairness, which is justice and mercy. To be like Christ, it is not enough to condemn injustice and cruelty – we must act.
“Are not your ways unfair” (Ezek. 18:28)
Our world is terribly unjust and does not respect life. Not just life in the womb, but the migrant, the poor, and the lonely are also the victims of the sins of our society. Abortion is the cruel solution offered by a cruel world: 60% of women who seek an abortion report being pressured or coerced*, 75% of abortions involve poor or low-income womenᶧ, abortions disproportionately affect women of color.
“Have in you the same attitude that is also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5)
The Christian response to the unfairness of the world is to be like Jesus Christ. Jesus’ response to the world was obedience to His Father: caring for the poor, the ill, the sorrowful, and all those on the margins.
“Which of the two did his father’s will?” (Mt. 21:31)
Like Jesus, we are called to address the injustice and cruelty of the world, especially the injustice and cruelty of abortion. It is not enough to simply say that we support women and children – we must act as a Church – through our vital ministries for pregnant and post-abortive women – and as families and individuals – by voting No on Issue 1 to protect our society from laws that put women at risk, allow for late-term abortions through all nine months, and threaten parental rights.
On Respect Life Sunday, we ask the Lord to remember His mercies and empower us to pray and fast, educate our neighbors, and prepare to vote No on Issue 1. Remember: you must register for the election by October 10th, and early voting begins October 11th.
Let us ask God for the grace to be like the son who responds to his father in obedience and like Jesus Christ, who united justice and mercy in His tender response to women and children.
The Catholic Conference of Ohio serves as the official voice of the Catholic Church in Ohio on matters of public policy.
Catholic Conference of Ohio | 100 E. Broad Street, Suite 600, Columbus, OH 43215 | ohiocathconf.org
*David C. Reardon and Tessa Longbons, “Effects of Pressure to Abort on Women’s Emotional Responses and Mental Health,” Cureus, 2023, httpa://doi.org/10.7759/cureus.34456.
ᶧ“U.S. Abortion Patients,” Guttmacher Institute, August 24, 2022, https://www.guttmacher.org/infographic/2016/us-abortion-patients?gad=1&gclid=CjwKCAjwzJmlBhBBEiwAEJyLuweqSU6CeayzJ0_JfoTOYZ2TRyS3ewYmfmsvDeRBffeaXoeQ_ailjhoCTcgQAvD_BwE