This Sunday we celebrate Respect Life Sunday. As Catholics, we are encouraged to promote the dignity of all human life from conception until natural death. Our Holy Father, Pope Francis has called us to promote the Gospel of Life, and protect and cherish the lives of the elderly, the physically and mentally challenged, and the unborn. We should never forget that God is the Creator of all life, and all life is precious in His sight. In past statements, Pope Francis has strongly criticized a “throwaway culture” that places too little value on human life. He said, “Unfortunately what is thrown away is not only food and disposable objects but often human beings themselves, who are discarded as unnecessary.” He stressed the need to respect the dignity of the most vulnerable and marginalized in society.
The following “Prayer for Reverence for Life” provided by “Catholics Online” reflects the sentiments of Our Holy Father:
All mighty God, giver of all that is good,
we thank You for the precious gift of life.
For life in womb, coming from Your creative power
For the life of children, making us glad with their freshness and promise
For the life of young people, hoping for a better world
For the life of the handicapped and disabled, teaching us humility
For the life of the elderly,
witnessing the ageless values of patience and wisdom.
Like Blessed Mary, may we always say yes to Your gift.
May we defend it and promote it from conception to it’s natural end
and bring us at last, oh Father, to eternal life,
in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
As we reflect on this prayer and on the profound words of Pope Francis, this Sunday we are invited to reaffirm our appreciation for the precious gift of life. There will be a series of “Life Chains” which will be conducted throughout the Archdiocese of Atlanta. We are invited to participate in the “Life Chain” that will be held between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Old Alabama Road in an area which will include the space in front of our Church. The “Life Chain” will be a peaceful, public, and prayerful witness concerning the dignity of all life, especially the lives of the unborn. We will pray for our nation and its people and we will be exercising our responsibility to speak out on behalf of the value of life.
Our Holy Father has reminded us that we have been called to be voices for the voiceless, to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves. We are challenged to commit ourselves publicly to the protection of all human life as we strive to enhance the moral integrity of our great nation. If we cannot be at the “Life Chain” in Johns Creek this Sunday, we are invited to speak for the most vulnerable through prayer in the silence of our hearts. May God continue to bless you and your families for all you do to embrace a culture of life.