Thursday, February 4, 2010

Thank God: Ireland is Pro-Life

Mary set out and went as quickly as she could. This took place right after the Angel Gabriel announced to her that she was to give birth as a Virgin to the Saviour of the world. It would have taken Mary, at the very least I'd say, a few days to get to Elizabeth’s house and so we can guess that when she arrived there, Jesus was no more than a couple of weeks old, quietly growing in her womb, at a stage of the pregnancy when many women wouldn’t yet know they were pregnant. And – small and all as he was – his presence; the presence of the Lord clothed in flesh, is felt by the six month old baby – John the Baptist - who leaps for joy in the womb of his mother. And Elizabeth filled with the Holy Spirit recognises as her ‘Lord’, what many in our world would class as a mere bunch of cells.

But this pregnancy and every pregnancy is much more than a bunch of cells – it is a living human being, growing and developing along the great path of life that we all have taken from the first moment of our conception to this day. Science tells us it is human life – that every pregnancy – no matter how conceived – means a human being is present and living.

And if it is a human being, and he or she is a human being, then it stands to reason that he or she has certain human rights which cannot and should not be overlooked – the most important being the right to exist – the right to life itself. As scientific progress advances our knowledge of the mechanics of life, and as the consciences of this generation and those of the future are awakened to the great evil of abortion, how will future generations judge our generation on how we treat human life at its most vulnerable, on how we stand up for the rights of living human beings at this most delicate stage of development. How will those future generations judge our world’s treatment of so many mothers who tragically feel they have to make the decision for abortion? Is that the best solution we have to offer them in difficult situations? A solution which leaves one dead and another seriously wounded on so many different levels. In Ireland, thankfully we haven’t yet completely sold out on our fellow citizens in the womb, although their brothers and sisters stored as excess embryos in labs fare less well.

Up and down this country in every parish, a high percentage of the baptism carried out are of children whose parents are not married. That’s not great news, it’s far from ideal, but I thank God that we live in a country that by and large cherishes the unborn – because in other countries, those same children have less of a chance of making it out of the womb alive, never mind being brought to the baptismal font. We are overwhelmingly a pro-life country and indeed our Catholic faith means that we can be nothing other than pro-life, because to be pro-choice (as benign and well-meaning as that title seems to be) is to be pro-death; pro the death of innocent human beings at their most vulnerable. Long may Ireland hold firm to its convictions and be a beacon of light – a sign of contradiction - to virtually the whole world. And when the world finally comes to its senses with regards to abortion – may history record that Ireland - and very few other places – was a place where that madness, that great evil, could find no inroads.

1 comment:

  1. Be assured of our prayers.