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Respect Life

Every Life is Sacred

Catholics in the Public Square

by Most Rev. Thomas J. Olmsted, bishop of The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix
Online text here







January 22:
Annual Day of Prayer & Penance for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children

In a January 13, 1984 Proclamation, President Regan designated January 22nd, as the first National Sanctity of Human Life Day. The date was chosen to coincide with the eleventh anniversary of Roe v. Wade Supreme Court case in the United States which made abortion legal on demand.  
The U.S. Bishops have declared January 22nd as an annual Day of Prayer and Penance for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children.

January 22 in the Liturgy
The General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), no. 373, designates January 22 as a particular day of prayer and penance, called the "Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children": "In all the Dioceses of the United States of America, January 22 (or January 23, when January 22 falls on a Sunday) shall be observed as a particular day of prayer for the full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right to life and of penance for violations to the dignity of the human person committed through acts of abortion."

January to October
Spiritual Adoption of Unborn Children and Their Parents:

Each year, our parishioners are asked to choose a name for an unborn baby whom they will pray for during the next nine months. On the Sunday before January 22nd, we begin our Spiritual Adoption Program which continues for nine months and ends in October which is Respect Life Month. At the weekend Mass, before January 22nd, index cards are placed in the pews and we explain what we are doing, before the regular offertory collection. We ask people to choose a name for an unborn child for whom they will pray for nine months. They put their cards in baskets when they leave Mass and all the cards are placed at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe who is the patronness of unborn children.  We use our parish bulletin for the next nine months to inform parishioners about the stages of growth of a child in the womb.

At the end of the nine months, we have a Baby Shower celebration, at which time the parishioners bring clothes and suppplies for newborns to assist the parents. We give the items to Choices AZ Pregnancy Centers in the Phoenix area. This wonderful organization has several locations and offers free pregnancy tests, ultrasounds and, most importantly, new parent training and counseling. During the ultrasound, the client hold a baby bootie in one hand a model of a fetus the size of her unborn child in the other hand, making her baby feel real to her. Almost 70% of the clients, who were planning an abortion, choose to have their baby after seeing the baby moving in the ultrasound images. The Choices center shares Christ with every new person they meet, and the results are striking. They see over 100 girls per day without any government funding. This is St. Clare Parish's way of showing our support now and again in nine months of this prodigious vital ministry.

March for Life
These take place near the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, January 22nd. There are marches all around the USA by pro-life groups to help increase awareness of the dignity of unborn children and all human life.  There are events also held in Phoenix and supported by the Diocese of Phoenix. You can find all the information by starting with the national March for Life website.

October is Respect Life Month
We have a baby shower, and bring gifts, which are then given to the Choices AZ Pregnancy Centers. They offer many services including free pregnancy tests and free ultrasounds and they have several locations in and around Phoenix to serve those in need of support. The mission is to promote life for the unborn and the dignity of the mother in need.

Coordinator: Women's Guild
Also Supported by programs in the Knights of Columbus The Knights also do a Baby Bottle drive.

Diocese of Phoenix

Medical Ethics   Read more

John Paul II Resource Center of the Diocese of Phoenix
Learn more about the JP2 Center and the Theology of the Body which is one of the great gifts to the Church and world from Pope Saint John Paul II.


Walking With Mom's In Need: a year of service 

in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix: READ
Downloads (PDF): Resources |  Brochure

40 Days for Life
This movement that has spread throughout Arizona, the USA and to many countries. It is an action campaign to defend the sanctity of unborn life and to give public witness in a respectful and prayerful way. Local prayer vigils are help in front of several abortion clinics in the Phoenix area. You can find out much more by going to the national website and choosing the feature to find local events. 40 Days for Life is also on social media in English and Spanish.
40 Days for Life - PHOENIX

U.S.C.C.B.  (from the bishops)

Human Life and Dignity page of the U.S. Bishops (USCCB)
In this section you will find information and resources to learn more about the Church, what the Church teaches, and how to grow in your faith.
  Topics: Issues and Action Human Life and Dignity

Pro-Life Activities pages of the U.S. Bishops

9 Days for Life is a multi-faceted novena for the respect and protection of human life. Each day, a different intention is accompanied by a short reflection, suggested actions, and related information. READ



Pro-Life Prayers and Devotions
more prayers

Silent No More   

Abortion Forgiveness  Read more... 

Men and Abortion Network    Read more....

Healing After an Abortion    Read more....

Hope After Abortion      Read more... 

Esperanza Posaborto    Leer más

Every Life is Precious in God's Eyes.

    5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; 
    I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” 

The Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version; Second Catholic Edition. (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2006), Je 1:5.

    15 “Can a woman forget her sucking child, 
    that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb? 
    Even these may forget, 
    yet I will not forget you."

The Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version; Second Catholic Edition. (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2006), Is 49:15.

Prayer for Unborn Babies
Lord of Life, we thank You for creating us, giving us life, and providing us opportunities to serve our neighbors. You command us to defend those who cannot defend themsleves. Look with mercy on our unborn brothers and sisters and spare them from abortion. Direct us to speak and act in their defense within our vocations. Turn the hearts of people from selfishness and fear to love and joyful service. Bring those responsible for the deaths of others to repentance and eternal freedom in Christ's full forgiveness. Lord, in Your Mercy, hear our prayer.  AMEN.

The Sound of Abortion. 

The following video shows no graphic violent or sexual images.
It begins in silence and then you will hear the sound of BBs (small metal balls) hitting a tin. Each BB sound represents 10,000 deaths in historical conflicts, wars and by abortion since 1973. Ponder it with your eyes closed as you listen.

Susan B. Anthony List 

Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906) was an American social reformer and women's rights activist who played a pivotal role in the women's suffrage movement. Born into a Quaker family committed to social equality, she collected anti-slavery petitions at the age of 17. Wikipedia  She grew up in a politically active family. They worked to end slavery in what was called the abolitionist movement.  Along with activist Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Anthony founded the National Woman Suffrage Association in 1869.

Their website says:
SBA List’s mission is to end abortion by electing national leaders and advocating for laws that save lives, with a special calling to promote pro-life women leaders.

SBA List is a nationwide network of more than 700,000 Americans. We combine politics with policy, investing heavily in voter education to ensure that pro-life Americans know where their lawmakers stand on protecting the unborn, and in issue advocacy, advancing pro-life laws through direct lobbying and grassroots campaigns.

SBA List is a family of organizations, an arsenal designed not to hurt but to heal; not to shame but to shield. We invite you to stand tall with us in that arena, to encircle the vulnerable ones who need us, and to fight until they are safe and free.

                   Find out more here.

Life Issues Institute
The pro-life partner of the Susan B. Anthony List Education Fund.  Find out more here.


We won't tell you what candidates to choose or how to vote in any election, but we will try to help you make an educated and informed decision when you do vote. Our Catholic faith and doctrine should lead us to make the best prudential decisions. We want you to remember that the first human right is the right to life without which all other rights are denied.  Go to their website.

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