There are many of us, for very good reasons, who cannot attend the March for Life in Washington DC on January 22, or the ones scheduled in other cities. Yet we yearn to attend. Let us channel that yearning beyond wishful thinking and DO SOMETHING.
Discern on what front God wants you. Catholics have a consistent life ethic. Preventing abortion is a very important aspect of that ethic, but so is caring for those women. men, and families needing support in their daily needs, and those facing the end-of-life. The USCCB’s Pastoral Plan for Pro-Life Activities has four emphases that you should consider. I’m here just to say we all can DO SOMETHING.
Here are three suggestions:
1. Pray and fast. Offer your intentions for the March and the marchers’ witness to life, for families in need, and for women contemplating abortion. Also discern where God is nudging you to act.
Pray as you are able. Pick one or more:
- Go to Mass
- Pray a Rosary or the Chaplet of Divine Mercy
- Spend an hour in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
Fast as you are able. Pick one or more:
- Fast from lunch, or choose a bread and water fast for the day.
- Fast from coffee, or whatever your go-to beverage is.
- Fast from television, or better yet, your internet connection, for a period of several hours or days.
2. Support and celebrate motherhood.
- Do you know a single mother? Call her today and tell her you are ready to give her one day a month to serve her. She has the hardest job in the world. Make a plan and let this be your private march for life during the Year of Mercy. March on over to her house and get involved. Perform a chore, babysit, pay a bill if you are able, tutor a child, paint a room. You get the picture. And remember to invite her to church with you, and tell her you’ll help with the children.
- This is a very unique idea: Offer to host the 2016 Catholic Conference 4 Moms, themed “Faces of Mercy”, at your church or in your living room during Lent. This is an online conference with videos and support materials — a complete “conference in a box”. Listen to this Among Women podcast for a conversation with the conference organizer, Tami Kiser. [Update for 2017: Tami Kiser offers a new parish event for women.]
3. Donate your time or your money to those who are assisting women with crisis pregnancies, or trying to find healing from “the after affects” of abortion.
These groups support women and babies:
These groups support women in recovery from abortion, with confidential retreats, counseling, etc.
May the “people of life” constantly grow in number and may a new culture of love
and solidarity develop for the true good of the whole of human society.
– Pope John Paul II, The Gospel of Life, no. 101_