THE NATURE OF THINGS
The two ideas that we are thinking about are the two wings of our belief expressed as the inherent dignity of every human person and that we are only really happy by a sincere gift of ourselves. These two lights also help us navigate certain questions at the beginning of life.
Life in the womb certainly represents one of the most vulnerable moments of human life. The dignity that a child at the beginning of life has is the same as that which is described in the beginning of creation: made in the image and likeness of God and called to life with him forever.
At the same time, the child in the womb represents one of the littlest ones that Christ spoke of. They are those whose voices are not heard because they are too young to speak for themselves. You and I, and the Church, speak on their behalf.
When it comes to questions of abortion or fertility questions, there is also the person of the mother. This is one reason why “rights” talk, although there is a legitimate sense of a “right to life”, may not be the most helpful way to talk about what we believe. My right to do something is often pitted against someone else’s right to do the opposite. Rights-talk, in this way, can be combative. That said, the principles of the civil rights’ movement are all engaged in the talk about the rights of the unborn.
Instead, I propose to you, so that you can propose to your colleagues at those “watercooler” conversations, that keeping in mind also that we are happy only by a sincere gift of ourselves so that others can live, combined with the inherent dignity of human life, moves us out of whose rights do we focus on and into what is best for the child and for the mother.
Given the inherent dignity of all life and that we are happy only by a sincere gift of ourselves illumines one undeniable path – that we choose life. There is much more to say, so we will continue the conversation next week.
Last Week’s Homily Suggestion: I suggested that in our prayer this week, we ask ourselves “what would be good news?” or we picture the Lord asking us “What do you want me to do for you?” and that we answer those questions and place our request trustingly before the Lord.
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