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May 16, 2022
2020 9days Day9
9 Days for Life. The Declaration of Independence boldly affirms that first among our inalienable rights is the right to life, given to us by the Creator. Yet despite being so solemnly proclaimed, the right to life is today threatened and often denied, particularly at the moments when life is most fragile. Our laws should—first and foremost—protect life. But “our highest Court does not recognize children in their mothers’ wombs as persons and claims that abortion is a constitutional right. Further, many political leaders work actively to increase access to abortion. Some falsely describe it as health care and even as a basic human right” (Priorities at the Polls). Laws and policies that legalize or promote an intrinsic evil like abortion violate the virtue of justice.
9 Days for Life is a publication of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and is reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. Music from https://filmmusic.io “Winter” by Alexander Nakarada (https://www.serpentsoundstudios.com/) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)

Today’s Intention: May all who defend life find strength and renewal in the Holy Spirit.

9 Days for Life

Prayers

Our Father, 3 Hail Marys, Glory Be

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Reflection

The Declaration of Independence boldly affirms that first among our inalienable rights is the right to life, given to us by the Creator. Yet despite being so solemnly proclaimed, the right to life is today threatened and often denied, particularly at the moments when life is most fragile. Our laws should—first and foremost—protect life. But “our highest Court does not recognize children in their mothers’ wombs as persons and claims that abortion is a constitutional right. Further, many political leaders work actively to increase access to abortion. Some falsely describe it as health care and even as a basic human right” (Priorities at the Polls). Laws and policies that legalize or promote an intrinsic evil like abortion violate the virtue of justice.

Those who work as public officials and civic leaders have a duty to serve the common good, and therefore have a profound obligation to safeguard this most fundamental right to life. Through our own prayer, witness, and civic participation, we can encourage our leaders to truly answer their call to protect the rights of all people. For “there can be no true democracy without a recognition of every person’s dignity and without respect for his or her rights” (Evangelium vitae 101).

Acts of Reparation

(Choose one.)

  • Sacrifice some of your free time to do a small act of service, such as making breakfast for a family member, writing a note of encouragement to a coworker, or praying for the intentions of a friend.
  • Sometimes restrictions on religious freedom constrain our efforts to live out the Gospel of life. We must be free to live out our Catholic faith in the public square. Offer this Prayer for Religious Liberty, that Christians may always be free to respect, protect, and defend human life.
  • Offer some other sacrifice, prayer, or act of penance that you feel called to do for today’s intention.

One Step Further

When discussing faithful citizenship in 2019, the U.S. bishops reaffirmed, “the threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself, because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed.” Archbishop Naumann of Kansas City, Kansas and former Chair of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities, explains more in Priorities at the Polls.

You Can Pray Each Day

We have nine days of prayer, which is the basic format for any novena. The term novena refers to 9 days, and is a way to recreate the experience of prayer that occurred in the Upper Room between the Ascension of Jesus into heaven, and today. As the apostles and Mary were in the Upper Room, they prayed each day in waiting for the Spirit of God to move, which, of course, we celebrate at Pentecost. Each day we will post an additional novena prayer.

The prayer topics are below:

Day One: May the tragic practice of abortion end.

Day Two: May each person suffering from participation in abortion find forgiveness, hope, and healing in Christ.

Day Three: May all who defend life find strength and renewal in the Holy Spirit.

Day Four: May all unborn children be protected in law and welcomed in love.

Day Five: May all who support or participate in abortion experience a conversion of heart to seek and receive the Lord’s boundless mercy.

Day Six: May every expectant mother receive compassionate care and support as she nurtures the life in her womb.

Day Seven: May expectant fathers lovingly support the mothers of their children in welcoming new life.

Day Eight: May expectant mothers choosing adoption receive grace and support in embracing this loving option.

Day Nine: May civic leaders work for the protection of all human life, in every stage and circumstance. 

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