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Love for All, Life for All, One in God, our All in All!
January 18, 2016

Dear National Family,
Today we remember and honor Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 18, 2016)
Today we begin the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (January 19-25, 2016)
On Friday of this week we "March for Life" (January 22, 2016)

This is a sobering week.
It is one thing to be informed of these events. It is quite another to be formed by them.

As we know, formation is not a matter of information alone, but includes prayer, dialogue and action. (As our sister, Anne Mulqueen reminded us in her email this morning. Thank you, Anne!)

So, what is ours to do? How can we be formed by these events?
We might read through Articles 4-19 of the OFS Rule ("The Way of Life"), and as we do so, think about human rights, Christian unity and respect for all life, born and unborn. Which one of these articles does not apply? Which article especially speaks to your heart? Finally, we can ask "What is mine to do?" (This week? Now?)

What is mine to do? Hereís where Iím at right now. I live 30 minutes from Ferguson, Missouri, and the outcry again discrimination rings often. Today it became clear to me in a new way that our efforts to eliminate discrimination must include discrimination against the unborn. This evening I spent some time in prayer with the Rule, thinking about this connection.

So, what is mine to do? For starters, I will engage in conversations to show my appreciation for this connection and the case for a "seamless garment", a consistent ethic of life (with thanks to Joseph Cardinal Bernadin who taught a whole world to live with dignity through his ideas on "The Seamless Garment of Life"). Iíll be listening each day this week to see where the Holy Spirit leads me next.

May the Holy Spirit help each of us seek love for all and life for all, more united with all, in the mercy of God, our All in All.

Prayer. Dialogue. Action. This week? Now?

Let us do so and "Proclaim the mighty acts of the Lord." 1 Peter 2:9 (Theme for this yearís Week of Prayer for Christian Unity)

Peace and all good!
Your sister and minister,

Excerpts from: The Call to End Abortion is a Call to Love By Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director, Priests for Life

"Keep feeling the need for being first. But I want you to be the first in love. I want you to be the first in moral excellence. I want you to be the first in generosity." The Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. King made us see that we are the same. With the force of love, he made us realize that regardless of skin color, we are all included in the human family.

The abortion lobby, however, has always been about exclusion. It sells abortion by appealing to the "me" in all of us. It seeks to suppress love for others.

The latest gambit of the pro-abortion movement is to talk about removing the stigma of abortion. It calls upon us to believe that there should be no negative feelings about denying the humanity of other human beings. It urges us to believe that we should never feel wrong about discriminating against those less powerful than us.

In other words, the pro-abortion movement is using the same tactics used by segregationists in the 1950s and 60s. Its message is that we should not feel bad about oppressing a certain group of people because "they arenít really like us." Abortion advocates regard unborn babies, like African Americans in the eyes of racists, as not fully human.

There is a stigma to racial discrimination because we inherently know that itís wrong to kill or oppress another. There is a stigma to abortion for the same reason. Discrimination is based on fear Ė that somehow one personís good is threatened by another personís existence.

Abortion, obviously, most profoundly affects the person who is denied life and his or her mother (and father, adds Jan) who lives with that denial. But it also "affects all indirectly." By accepting abortion, we accept brutal assaults on the bodies of innocent people. We accept the denial of rights to the weakest by looking the other way. We accept inhumanity.

The call to end abortion is a call to love.

Itís a call to include all of us in the human family.

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