I was going to link to an amazing Homily that was emailed to me, given by a Priest in Ohio last Sunday, but just this morning I read an article and I am going to go in that route.
Depending on the statistics given, there is a good chance that you know or are acquainted with a woman who has had an abortion. She probably does not talk about it because it is a secret that remains in her heart. Maybe she wants to talk about it, but she is stopped when she hears those who would consider themselves to be Christian use words like:
“I can’t believe a mother could kill her child.”
“A Real Mother would find a way out.”
“If she thought of someone other than herself, she would have chosen life.”
“What kind of woman would so something like that?”
Most women who have had abortions are not going to come up to you and say, “Hi, my name is Sally and I aborted my 3rd child. Let’s grab a cup of coffee!” But post-abortive women are out there and they have eyes to see and ears to hear. They will hear the words you use when you don’t think anyone is listening. They will see your body language when you recoil at the thought of anyone walking into an abortion clinic. I hate to say, but while I KNEW this in my heart, I don’t think I really HEEDED it.
The only way that hearts will be changed with regard to abortion will be if God changes them, and a gentle pro-lifer is going to be more effective than an in-your-face pro-lifer. As evidenced by the March for Life, held this past Monday, leading with a heart of peace and a hand of hope is changing hearts and minds. Estimates put the number of attendees in the hundreds of thousands and reached across all faiths, socioeconomic statuses and lifestyles. It was not just a bunch of Catholic priests and nuns out marching, but there were atheists, homosexuals, elderly, young adults, teens, rich, poor, feminists, men all marching for the same reason:
Because women and families deserve better.
Abortion is a difficult subject to talk about. It can strain if not ruin friendships and relationships. It can make you second-guess all that you think you know for sure. It’s a game of numbers and spin and to the victor goes the headline. But remember this:
The child is not the only one affected by an abortion.
The mother is affected.
The father is affected.
Their families are affected.
Our community is affected.
IF we are truly interconnected and interdependent on one another,
We are all affected.
So, when writing or talking about abortion, remember who is listening or reading. You may be her one example of Christian and Human Charity, right there, right then. She might be ready to rid herself of that burden… of that secret. You may not get a second chance.
Don’t blow it.
If you’d like to read the homily, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward it to you.
Image from Barbara H at faithgraceandjoy.com