Wednesday, January 04, 2006
Well Said  

Fr. Pavone of Priests for Life writes in his most recent column (also available as a podcast) about three important events that occur this month in the United States. First, there is Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday on January 15th which is celebrated as a federal holiday on Monday, January 16th this year. On this day, we remember the work that this man did to help lead the civil rights movement in this country. One of the things for which he is remembered is his "I have a Dream" speech in which he was able to express the hopes and dreams of millions of African-Americans, indeed of all Americans of good will, who simply want all Americans regardless of race or skin color to be able to exercise their civil rights which they possesses as citizens of the United States. His work is continued today by all men and women who continue to fight all forms of discrimination and prejudice.

The second event that Fr. Pavone mentions is the marking of the terrible Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision which has allowed for tens of millions of abortions. This January 22nd will be the 31st year that this decision has remained in force. On Monday, January 23rd many people will unite together to provide an alternative view, a pro-life view that recognizes the reality that all human life is sacred even the unborn person. The March for Life will be held in Washington, DC in order to demonstrate to all Americans that civil rights are for all persons regardless of whether they have been born or are still developing in the womb.

Finally, Fr. Pavone notes that January 18 - 25 is the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. During this week Christians of many backgrounds come together in an honest way to pray for the unity which Christ desires. As Fr. Pavone notes, it is important for all to recognize what are our differences are what they are not. In particular, it is important that all Christians build on the One who is able to unite us. It is only Christ the Redeemer who is able to unite us.

Fr. Pavone continues to note that one source of unity in Christ is the work that many are doing throughout the world to, in the words of John Paul the Great, "chang[e] the world by inculcating respect for the rights and needs of everyone, especially the poor, the lowly, and the defenseless". He continues by noting that the civil rights and pro-life movements are doing this very work because both have the mission of, "seek[ing] to secure equal rights for marginalized human beings, despite their appearances, and to apply to law and culture the promises of the Gospel."

He emphasizes this idea by including a quote from Dr. King which captures the importance of these works of mercy which are saving and transforming lives,
"I'm always happy to see a relevant ministry. It's alright to talk about 'long white robes over yonder,' in all of its symbolism. But ultimately people want some suits and dresses and shoes to wear down here. It's alright to talk about 'streets flowing with milk and honey,' but God has commanded us to be concerned about the slums down here, and his children who can't eat three square meals a day. It's alright to talk about the new Jerusalem, but one day, God's preacher must talk about the new New York, the new Atlanta, the new Philadelphia, the new Los Angeles, the new Memphis, Tennessee. This is what we have to do."

Posted by David at 12:21 AM  |  Comments (0)  | Link


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