Today the Church asks that we pray for the legal protection of unborn children. It is a day of sadness for us as we recall the infamous decision of the United States Supreme Court on January 22, 1973 legalizing abortion in the United States. We remember today the millions of unborn children who have been slaughtered – the holy innocents. Many in our nation have attempted to dismiss the atrocity of abortion in the name of a woman’s right to choose but authentic freedom never permits a choice that takes the life of another innocent human being. There is no question that life begins at conception; medical science has long come to that same conclusion. Faith and reason never contradict each other because all truth comes from the God who created everything in the first place. Some claim that abortion is a political issue or a personal choice that a person must make for herself. But as people of faith we know differently. Every human life is sacred; it has an inherent dignity. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that “human life is sacred because from its beginning it involves the creative action of God and it remains forever in a special relationship with the Creator, who is its sole end. God along is the Lord of life from its beginning to its end; no one can under any circumstance claim for himself the right directly to destroy an innocent human being.”

And so we weep today for the millions of unborn babies who have been destroyed by abortion. We pray for those who have made those choices that they will know God’s mercy and healing. We pray for pregnant women – especially those facing unwanted or difficult pregnancies – that they will be met with assistance and compassion they need to carry their babies to term. We pray for our President, elected officials and judges in our country that they will gain a true moral compass and work to protect and to defend the sacredness of life. We pray for all of our citizens in this nation that we might learn to be come faithful stewards and protectors of human life at every stage, but especially that we might be defenders of the unborn who have no voice of their own. St. Pope John Paul II said that the true measure of a country’s greatness is how well it treasures and protects its most vulnerable citizens. This past Friday, tens and tens of thousands of people – many of them youth and young people from across our nation – gathered in Washington DC to provide that voice for the protection of unborn children and to once again call for an end to the great evil and sin of abortion. We were all encouraged by the presence of President Trump – the first sitting President ever to speak live to those participating in the annual March for Life. His message was loud and strong and gives us all hope: “Today I’m honored and really proud to be the first president to stand with you here at the White House to address the 45th March for Life, that’s very very special, 45th March for Life, and this is a truly remarkable group. Today tens of thousands of families, students, and patriots, and really just great citizens gather here in our nations Capitol. You come from many backgrounds, and many places, but you all come for one beautiful cause, to build a society where life is celebrated and protected and cherished. The March for Life is a movement born out of love: you love your families; you love your neighbors; you love our nation; and you love every child born and unborn, because you believe that every life is sacred, that every child is a precious gift from God. We know that life is the greatest miracle of all. We see it in the eyes of every new mother who cradles that wonderful, innocent, and glorious-newborn child in her loving arms. I want to thank every person here today and all across our country who works with such big hearts and tireless devotion to make sure that parents have the caring support they need to choose life.”

Today I set before you death and life. Choose Life. Choose Love. Choose to be a voice for the unborn in the womb. Choose God’s way over death and destruction. Be a pro life advocate and stand with the Truth. As Pope Francis reminded us: “To serve human life is to serve God.”