Just over a quarter of a century ago, Pope Saint John Paul II released his encyclical, Evangelium vitae, in response to the ever-increasing attacks against human life and dignity. Each Friday, we aim to explore a different aspect the prophetic papal document.
Today’s passage drawn from Section 15 of the encyclical where Pope John Paul warns against a reversion to “a state of barbarism” that would see newborn babies, who are unwanted by their parents, left to die or actively killed with the connivance of the medical authorities:
“The point has been reached where the most basic care, even nourishment, is denied to babies born with serious handicaps or illnesses. The contemporary scene, moreover, is becoming even more alarming by reason of the proposals, advanced here and there, to justify even infanticide, following the same arguments used to justify the right to abortion. In this way, we revert to a state of barbarism which one hoped had been left behind forever,” Pope Saint John Paul II, Section 15, Evangelium vitae.
Reflecting upon this passage today is Jenny Ingles, Director of Fertility and Life Ministries for the Diocese of Lansing. Jenny writes:
“In his encyclical, Evangelium vitae, John Paul II recognizes that "proposals" have been made to justify infanticide using the same arguments used to justify abortion.”
“This hit US news hard in 2019 when New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the New York "Reproductive Health Act" on the anniversary of Roe v Wade. This law permits abortions to occur at any time in pregnancy (even moments before the baby is to be delivered) for the health of the mother. This guised legislation ignores the fact that the most effective means to save a mother's life in these situations is the delivery (vaginal or C-section) of a baby, not it's dismemberment.”
“A backlash was felt throughout the country where many people, rightfully, saw that the next step in the abortion industry was infanticide. Bills were proposed in many areas that would protect children who were born alive after ‘failed’ abortions. Despite insistence from the abortion industry that babies born alive after ‘failed’ abortions are never left to die unless they're under 22-weeks gestation, reports of these atrocities do exist. And as many states attempt follow New York's lead in permitting late-term abortions, there will be an inevitable increase of babies born alive after these botched abortions.”
“It is important for us to do everything we can to fight for an unborn (and born) child's right to life. May we be guided by the Holy Spirit in our efforts and may Mother Mary protect these little ones.”
Pope Saint John Paul II, pray for us!