I planned on writing this on Friday, Jan. 22, the day of the Pro Life March in San Francisco and Sat. Jan 23, the day of the Pro Life March in Washington DC, but am just getting to it today. Jan. 22 was the DAY OF PRAYER for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children In all the dioceses of the United States of America. It is the 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. The liturgical celebrations for that day could be the Mass “For Giving Thanks to God for the Gift of Human Life, or “For the Preservation of Peace and Justice.  The following MEDITATION FOR THAT DAY expresses our love and preservation of Human Life perfectly. By:  Servant of God Dorothy Day,who was the founder of the Catholic Worker movement and died, 1980.


I am meditating. I am thinking of what I have come to think of as fundamental to our search for peace, for non-violence. A flood of water (and Christ is living water) washes out sins–all manner of filth, degradation, fear, horror.  He is also the Word. And studying the New Testament, and its commentators, I have come in this my seventy-sixth year, to think of a few holy words of Jesus as the greatest comfort of my life: “Judge not…Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us…Forgive seventy times seven times.” All words of our Lord and Savior. “I have knowledge of salvation through forgiveness of my sins,” Zechariah sang in his canticle.

And so, when it comes to divorce, birth control, abortion, I must write in this way. The teaching of Christ, the Word, must be upheld. Held up though one would think that it is completely beyond us–out of our reach, impossible to follow. I believe Christ is our Truth and is with us always. We may stretch towards it, falling short, failing seventy times seven, but forgiveness is always there. He is a kind and loving judge. And so are 99% of the priests in the confessional. The verdict there is always “not guilty” even though our “firm resolve with the help of his grace to confess our sins, do penance, and amend our lives” may seem a hopeless proposition. It always contains, that act of contrition, the phrase, “to confess our sins,’ even though we have just finished confessing them, which indicates that the priest know, and we know, and we want to be honest about it, that we will be back in that confessional, again and again.

I believe in the sacraments. I believe grace is conferred through the sacraments. I believe the priest is empowered to forgive sins. Grace is defined as “participation in the divine life,” so little by little we are putting off the old man and putting on the new.



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