Life issues

Alternatives to Abortion saves lives

In the last several months American pro-life workers have experienced setbacks — some of them alarming. There are more major challenges and possible losses for life advocates in the future. The key to responding to such reversals is the Catholic community in the United States. If Catholics, both lay and clerical, spoke up in larger numbers on embryonic stem-cell research, abortion on demand becoming “an essential service” in Congress's new health care bill, parental notification laws, late-term abortions and the Freedom of Choice Act, the nation could be transformed, and unborn children would have a fighting chance at realizing a full life.

In Missouri, Catholics and people of faith have an immediate opportunity to make their voices heard by Gov. Jay Nixon by supporting the Missouri Department of Health’s Alternatives to Abortion program. According to the Missouri Catholic Conference, the state Department of Health and Senior Services has proposed that Gov. Nixon  cut this program for 2010, to help balance the state budget this program provides emergency services to poor women facing crisis. The support for these women, woefully below the poverty line, and their children then continues for a year after the children are born. The program is made up of a consortium of faith-based agencies and institutions that offer counseling, educational programs and services, adoption assistance, prenatal care, mental and physical health care, newborn care, housing, food, clothing and other basic needs.

Respect Life Apostolate launches campaign to ensure protection of life in health care reform

The archdiocesan Respect Life Apostolate has launched a local campaign to stop proposed federal health care legislation from including policies that could violate the dignity of human life. 

Several health care reform packages currently being debated in both Congress and the Senate do not specifically mention abortion. However, legal precedent proves abortions could be covered by federal tax money unless excluded in legislation. The legislation also could mandate abortion coverage for most insurance plans.

Earlier this week, the Respect Life Apostolate sent a mailing to parish coordinators and mailing list subscribers, asking Catholics across the archdiocese to contact their elected officials and ask them to protect the dignity of human life in health care reform legislation.

“We want them to share with those elected officials our priorities as Catholics and what this legislation should and should not include,” said Beth Lauver, director of the Respect Life Apostolate.

Annual run/walk fundraiser for Birthright to be held Aug. 29

The Friends of Birthright Scholarship Committee is holding its eighth annual 5K Run/Walk on Saturday, August 29 at Creve Coeur Park, 2143 Creve Coeur Mill Road. 

Proceeds from the event will go to scholarships for Birthright mothers facing unplanned pregnancies so they can continue their education during their pregnancies and after their children are born.

The event begins with registration at 7:30 a.m. at the Tremayne Shelter in the park. The 5K run and one-mile fun walk will start at 8:30 a.m. A quarter-mile youth run with Cardinals’ mascot Fredbird for children 12 and under will begin at 9:15 a.m.

Cost is $17 per individual and $45 per family prior to Tuesday, Aug. 25; and $20 per individual and $55 per family from Aug. 25 to the day of the event.

Weekend retreat to help heal post-abortive stress

For the first time, Project Rachel in St. Louis will offer a weekend retreat for women who have had an abortion experience.

The retreat, which will take place in late July, is the next step in the ministry’s effort to provide ongoing support for post-abortive individuals, said Marisol Pfaff, coordinator of spiritual activities.

Project Rachel currently offers an annual day retreat for women, which Pfaff said gives them a “secure, safe place” to share their experiences.

“But it doesn’t give them all the tools that they need,” she said.

The weekend retreat is based on “Entering Canaan: A Sacramental Journey to an Inheritance of Mercy for Those Suffering Abortion.” The ministry was developed by the Sisters of Life in New York with the assistance of Theresa Bonopartis, a post-abortive woman and licensed counselor.

Project Life teens make most out of service week

Teens participating in Project Life painted the walls last week at Peter and Paul Community Services' emergency shelter in the basement of Sts. Peter and Paul Parish in Soulard.

The feet washers united on “A Simple Path” at Project Life last week.

That was this year’s theme for Project Life, the annual weeklong service retreat sponsored by the archdiocesan Catholic Youth Apostolate’s Office of Youth Ministry. The program is among the office’s most popular events, and spaces fill up quickly.

Volunteers promote international adoptions of Down Syndrome babies

WESTERLY, R.I. (CNS) — A Maryland-based organization is working against the trend of aborting Down syndrome babies by placing those children from around the globe with loving families in the United States.

Reece’s Rainbow (reecesrain assists couples in adopting Down syndrome children from other countries. Founded in June 2006, Reece’s Rainbow has already found families for more than 175 children with Down syndrome from 32 countries around the world, including Armenia, Haiti, Mexico, Ghana, Russia, Liberia, Vietnam and Korea.

An entirely volunteer organization, Reece’s Rainbow prides itself on the fact that 100 percent of every dollar donated goes to the child, family or fund designated by the donor.

For decades doctors have recommended an amniocentesis test for pregnant women 35 and older because their age dictates a greater risk for chromosomal defects. Because the test carries a slight chance of miscarriage, it has not been routinely offered to younger women, who end up giving birth to the majority of Down syndrome babies.

Syndicate content