TINY MIRACLES-Premature Babies Attest to the Dignity of Life

Hi all, I could not resist sharing this article from the NCR, June 9, with you.

He weighed less than 10 ounces when he was delivered by emergency cesarean at 24 weeks and five days. /when he was released from a Japanese hospital six months after his birth, he had grown to more than 7 pounds. According to a registry maintained by the University of Iowa, this micropreemie holds the record for the smallest newborn boy to be discharged from a hospital in good health.

Now anotoher baby has been recognized by the registry. “The smallest surviving baby in the world was released this month from a San Diago hospital after being born at just 8.6.” Fox 5 San Diego reported May 29.  Saybie, born at 23 weeks and three days in December, weighed 5.6 pounds when released from the neonatal intensive care unit.

These tiny babies reflect a study published in THE NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE that found that there are premature babies surviving outside the womb earlier than doctors once thought possible.

“Now, 90% of babies born at 28 weeks will survive.” Dr. William Stigall, a Catholic pediatric intensive at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Forth Worth, Texas, to the Register. “Now 23-24 weeks is the age of viability, meaning 50% of those babies will survive.”

Linda Raleigh’s youngest two children (no. 6&7) were born prematurely, one four weeks early and the other five.  Both premature babies spent weeks in the NICU, but now that they are 15 and 11 years old, it’s clear that being born early did not negatively impact them in mind or body.   “It really made me trust God a lot,” she added.  “He wants these little people born. They’re willed into existence by God.”

Giving a preemie required treatment is not always simple-or inexpensive. That’s where the line of viability can come into play, with some health care providers declining to treat infants born at an earlier stage. That NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE STUDY, for instance, found that hospitals vary widely in their approach to 22 week-olds: A few offered no active medical treatment, and at the other end of the spectrum, a handful offered assertive treatments.  Stigall explains that there are differences between ordinary and extraordinary interventions–something one must do and something one can do.  —-What doesn’t change is the infinite worth of that person.” he said. “The primary concern is the patient.

For Jessica Spradlin, that seemed obvious when she went into preterm labor and her son Kailor Dean was born at 22 weeks and four days, at the local hospital-closer than the facility where her specialist worked,  But the local hospital’s policy was to provide care for babies born at 23 weeks – and Kailor was a few days younger than that. So he received no medical assistance, and he died 51 minutes after being born.

“This is a baby that was prayed for, wanted and loved from the beginning.” recalled Spradlin. “They could have tried and failed, but at least they would have know every effort was made.”

Now Spradlin is focused on raising awareness of the fact that hospitals can have different policies for providing care to preemies – a fact that could literally make the difference between life and death. Even with assertive treatment and care, not every prematurely born baby will survive, but the miracle of life is clear, no mater how short its span.

She was just 21 years old when she gave birth to her fist son, Joshua, at 33 weeks and five days. —-now 16 years old, that prematurely born baby is a driving, piano playing, potential future law student. “  “I think the argument that it’s just a ‘clump of cells’ should be unraveling,” his mother said. 

by: Elisabeth Deffner

There you have it, the value of an unborn child, created by God, is unlimited. I know when a woman become unexpectedly pregnant, it can be frightening. The question, “What am I going to do now?” is definitely a problem. However, there are free clinics that will help her through the 9 months and beyond. If you know someone or if it happens to you, please call Catholic Charities or look in the phone book or call the birthing section of a hospital. Someone will know where there is a clinic and help, even a home for unwed mothers if you need that help, don’t go to Planned Parenthood or another abortion provider. Abortion is not the answer. If you can’t care for your child, someone else can and you can get back to your life.  Please act Responsibly.

 

 

CONNIE’S MEMORIES-MEMORIAL DAY

Hello folks, it’s been quite awhile since I blogged, although I have thought of a lot of articles. So perhaps I will do better this summer.

Memorial Day is one of my many Family Holidays that I remember as great family fun. My folks probably didn’t plan it that way, it was a day to honor our dead relatives, not just service members but everyone. I believe, what my siblings and I enjoyed was a tradition that had been going on since my mother’s father and grandfather died, which would have been around 1918.  My mother’s father died of the flue at the time of a flue epidemic that killed around 50,000  around the globe. Remember, no medicine to fight it at that time. My mother was 4 or 5 yrs. old at that time.  A few months later her grandfather died of mouth cancer from smoking a pipe or cigar. They were the first graves in our family plot at the Catholic Cemetery in our town.  My father’s family also had a family plot, because years before his father had died in his 60’s, his aunt had died when he was growing up, 2 sisters had died of TB, and one had died at birth. Also, my cousin’s father and sister were buried there.  If I remember correctly, that was the way the cemetery situation was when I first remember memorial day.

My earliest memories were of my younger brother, myself and my parents. Other siblings were added later. About 9:00am we would be finished breakfast and the kitchen cleaned up, when my grandmother, great grandmother, one maybe both of my mother’s two sisters  would arrive and sometime my older cousin, when she was on leave from the Waves. (Women in the Navy). The family members changed as some died and the men came home from the war but the tradition continued on even after I left home, if I made it back for Memorial day, the tradition was about the same.

This was my mother’s side of the family, my father’s side had their own tradition. There would be the arranging of flowers, our lilacs and if some were alive, some tulips were added.  The we all went up to the cemetery to put the flowers on the graves, both at my mother’s family and my father’s.  Then we all stood there and said prayers for our dead relatives.

You will note that I never had grandfathers when I was growing up, they had all passed away before my parents got married.

Once we got home, my mother made sandwiches and we went to the park in town for a picnic. (I don’t remember it ever raining but if so, we would have picnicked at home). Then we walked from the park, about a mile to my grandmother’s home which was near the Post Office and the Town War Memorial. During the afternoon, there was a band concert and speeches at the Memorial. My memories go back to when I was around five or so, which was around 1943-45 during WWII. After the ceremonies, we went back to my grandmother’s house and visited. I remember all of us being out side or on her big closed in porch. Her house was big and interesting with places to explore.  My grandmother’s brother lived on the third floor, and they were always there also. I know it doesn’t sound very exciting, but our relatives were very loving, and my brother and I were the first grandchildren, so for awhile we were the main attraction and since during the week everyone was busy, this was great family time.

When I was in high school and  in the band I was marching in parades, so wasn’t home for the cemetery visits, but always managed to make it to my grandmother’s house. Things changed thru the years as the older people died, but my parents kept up the Memorial Day tradition and cemetery visits until they couldn’t do it anymore, then my aunt and I took over, and then my husband and I. Last year, one of my younger brothers also started putting flowers on the graves, which is great, since I know the tradition will continue a little longer.  We also used to get to go back to the cemetery to tend the flowers and pick them up when they died. We got to explore the other graves at that time and find some more relatives. You probably get that I loved and love family history.

There are a lot of graves there now, sadly, all the people that used to make our Memorial Day fun, have passed away. So by going to the cemetery and putting the flowers on the graves, saying the prayers for their souls, and saying thank you for wonderful memories and a wonderful life, we are honoring them. I don’t believe the town has a memorial service like they used to, but they still lay flowers at the War Memorial which has now grown to honor service people from several wars.

Now, here is what I was thinking about on Memorial Day this year. How did my relatives ever get to my house with all those flowers?  They lived a mile away. and how did we all get to the cemetery which was a couple of miles up the road on top of a hill? No one had cars, and gas was rationed until after the war?  My uncle did have a car, he was a sales man,  so maybe they used his.  After the war, my aunt and uncles had cars, but not in the beginning. My folks didn’t buy a car until they had the money(no loans for them) and I was then in High School. So I guess it had to be my uncle’s car, and the rest of us must have walked to the cemetery and we definitely walked to the park, another mile or so from my house.

I guess I will never have the answer to that question, but my memories of Memorial Day are lots of fun to think about. The most important thing was family, family time and the fact that my family did not forget those relatives that gone before.

I hope you had a blessed Memorial Day, and if you couldn’t visit your family’s graves, I do hope you stopped to think about your family members, ancestors, and said a prayer or two for them.  My folks used to remind us that friends come and go, but you always have your family, good or bad, so make peace with them, and pray for them.

 

DAY OF PRAYER FOR THE LEGAL PROTECTION OF UNBORN CHILDREN

Hi folks, I meant to write this just after the March for Life in Washington DC but didn’t get a chance. Monday, Jan. 22, 2018 was the National Day of Prayer for Catholics all over this Country and any other Christian that wanted to take part. There were Masses and prayer groups gathered in many places. This is the Meditation of the Day in the Magnificat Magazine.

WHEN we fail to acknowledge as part of reality the worth of a poor person, a human embryo, a person with disabilities–to offer just a few examples–it becomes difficult to hear the cry of nature itself; everything is connected. Once the human being declares independence from reality and behaves with absolute dominion, the very foundations of our life begin to crumble, for “instead of carrying out his role as a cooperator with God in the work of creation, man sets himself up in place of God and thus ends up provoking a rebellion on the part of nature”  (Pope John Paul ll, Encyclical Letter Centesimus Annus, May 1, 1991)….

When the human person is considered as simply one being among others, the product of chance or physical determinism, then “our overall sense of responsibility wanes” (Pope Benedict XVI, Message for the 2010 World Day of Peace)

Human beings cannot be expected to feel responsibility for the world unless, at the same time, their unique capacities of knowledge, will, freedom, and responsibility are recognized and valued..

Since everything is interrelated, concern for the protection of nature is also incompatible with the justification of abortion. How can we genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings, however troublesome or inconvenient they may be, if we fail to protect a human embryo, even when its presence is uncomfortable and creates difficulties?  If personal and social sensitivity toward the acceptance of the new life is lost, then other forms of acceptance that are valuable for society also wither away” (Pope Benedict XVI, Encyclical Letter Caritas in Veritate, June 20, 2009).

WE NEED TO DEVELOP A NEW SYNTHESIS CAPABLE OF OVERCOMING THE FALSE ARGUMENTS OF RECENT CENTURIES.  From Pope Francis’ 2015 Encyclical Laudato Si’.

__________________________________________________________________

AMAC ADVANTAGE magazine (The Asso. of Mature American Citizens) came out with a cover on their Winter 2018 Magazine of an unborn child and the heading: “PROTECTING THE MIRACLE OF LIFE. This is a very popular national magazine. I am so happy to see an organization accepting and protecting the unborn. It also says, ” The gift of life has been under attack for decades in the United States. AMAC is taking a stand to expose the institutions that demean the sacred blessing of life, including Planned Parenthood and the Roe v. Wade ruling. We must give a voice to those who cannot speak.  Among the articles; Planned Parenthood: The Ugly Truth; Roe v. Wade: A case of Deadly Deception, Protecting the Unborn: The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.  Unfortunately the SENATE OF THE U.S. vote down this bill this week, which would have protected unborn children over 5 months old except in the case of rape and the life of the mother. The Senate should be so ashamed of themselves for allowing Partial Birth Abortion of fully formed babies to continue.

According to Dan Weber President of AMAC, Mother Teresa said about abortion: “America needs no words from me to see how your decision in Roe v Wade has deformed a great nation.” and “Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching the people to love but to use any violence to get what they want.”

Dan Weber says:  We wonder why a government that gives millions of dollars to abortion facilities doesn’t instead provide funds to compensate women with an unwanted pregnancy so the unborn child can be brought to term, and then be adopted by a couple that will love and nurture a much wanted baby. And I wonder what is the matter with using the money given to Planned Parenthood to help the mother get a new start in life, a home to live in while they are pregnant, teaching them how to care for a baby, a high school education if needed and a new start in life, instead of leaving the mother to live with the horror of killing her own flesh and blood.

From me: think about school shootings and why they are happening. We are teaching children violence in this country not love. When will it end?

AMAC also encourages our Representatives in Washington to stop funding Planned Parenthood so that America is deserving of our continued blessings.

My suggestion is to vote and elect pro life candidates, Senators, Representatives, Governors and Presidents, Christian or not, and contact your Representatives and Senators in Washington and at the state level, also, your Governors to pass bill protecting the unborn. The 5 month and older bill was a good start, we can’t do it all at once, but partial birth abortion and abortion because it’s a girl and not a boy, or has a handicap, etc. would be a start. We may have to do it state by state.

Just so you know in Maine, Sen. Angus King voted no when it came to passing the bill stopping abortion over 5 months old. I don’t know yet about Sen. Collins. Please pray for him and the others that voted no since late term abortion now continues. Pray that they will soon come to realize that killing unborn babies is murder.

Here is a prayer you can say to Mary, to ask her to join us with her prayers to her son to stop abortion in this country.

MARY, MOTHER FOR LIFE

O Mary, Mother of the Life Within, all life we entrust to you: the life of every expectant mother, and the child within her womb, the life of every human body, the life of every human soul, the life of every newborn child and the life of all grown old. You held the Lord to Your own Heart and drew Him so close in. So draw us now in all our needs, O Mother of the Life Within.

MARY, MOTHER FOR LIFE

O Mary, Mother of the Life Within, all life we entrust to You: the life of every expectant mother and the child within her womb, the life of every human body, the life of every human soul, the life of every newborn child and the life of all grown olf. You held the Lord to Your own Heart and drew Him so close in. So draw us now in all our needs, O Mother of the Life Within.

_________________________________

PRAYER TO OUR LADY OF HOPE

O Blessed virgin Mary, mother of grace, hope of the world. Hear us, your children, who cry to you.

Oh Mother of Mercy, have pity on me in my distress. You are all-powerful with your divine Son. He can refuse no request of your immaculate heart. Show yourself at true mother to me by being my advocate before His throne.

Above all I pray, O dearest mother, that through your most powerful intercession my heart may be filled with holy hope, so that in life’s darkest hour I may never fail to trust in God my Savior, but by walking in the way of His commandments I may be united with Him, and with you in the eternal joys of heaven.

Mary, our hope, have pity on us. Hope of the hopeless, pray for us.   (from the Novena to Our Lady of Hope.)

GOD BLESS YOU ALL, PRAY FOR OUR PREGNANT MOTHERS AND THEIR UNBORN CHILDREN, THAT THEY MAY IGNORE THE WORLD, SEEK HELP, AND BRING GOD’S BEAUTIFUL CHILDREN INTO THE WORLD.

 

 

DAY OF PRAYER FOR THE LEGAL PROTECTION OF UNBORN CHILDREN

This was on Jan. 23, Monday, but I thought you would all like to know, since the Pro Life March is coming up soon.

In all the dioceses of the united States of America, Jan 22 (or Jan. 23, if the 22nd is 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.

GOD, OUR CREATOR, WE GIVE THANKS TO YOU, who alone have the power to impart the breath of life as you form each of us in our mother’s womb; grant, we pray, that we, whom you have made stewards of creation, may remain faithful to this sacred trust and constant ion safeguarding the dignity of every human life. THROUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, YOUR SON.

WE VALUE LIFE THROUGH CONCEPTION TO NATURAL DEATH.

DO WE DO WHAT GOD WANTS US TO DO?

Consider John the Baptist: He was a fiery preacher who drew great crowds…and then everything fell apart.

Jesus, whom John had hoped would be the promised Messiah, seemed to be moving in a different direction from what John anticipated. Jesus seemed to be “wasting” his time curing people who were crippled and blind and deaf

John was arrested and thrown into jail. If Jesus was the Messiah, something wasn’t working. The Romans were still in control and there had been no great shift in power.

Then there was John’s death, as senseless as a drive by shooting: Killed for the price of a dance, because of a king who got drunk at a party and made a promise to a teenage girl… killed by some guard who grumbled about having to get up late and go chop off the head of someone he didn’t even know.

This does not appear to be the stuff of greatness. But Jesus said that John was one of the greatest who ever lived.

Where did this greatness come from?

John the Baptist tried to do what was given him to do, and do it for God, and do it with God.

And  when my efforts, insignificant as they may seem to be, are connected with God, I AM INVOLVED IN SOMETHING COLOSSAL, SOMETHING GREAT.

From the LITTLE BLUE  BOOK___________________________________

How do you know what God wants you to do? Ask Him. Here is a prayer I say now, every day. I got it from a book by Scott Hann and his wife, HOME TO ROME. Her father taught her to say this prayer and it works for me:

“Lord, let me be what you want me to be, do what you want me to do and go where you want me to go.” I love you.”

And then pay attention to your day, and what God puts before you.

 

SHE PONDERED THESE THINGS IN HER HEART, Christ, King of Each Moment

by Rita A. Simmonds, from Magnificat

In August 2012, my husband, Frank, the father of our two children, was hospitalized for severe pain in his right side. The doctors suspected he had gall stones, so he was denied food and drink for three days while they performed tests o him. The results revealed that he had large tumors on his liver and a small one on his pancreas. He then had to have another, more detailed test, still hungry and thirsty, and in a lot of pain.

That morning we waited for the scan in a very air conditioned hallway for what seemed hours. Frank was lying on a hospital bed in a gown with just a sheet covering him. I was standing beside him, holding his hand. At a certain point, he looked at me with bright eyes and said, “I have everything I need right here, right now.” These words would have been strange and implausible, if not for the overwhelming evidence of a Presence full of certainty and peace that emanated from his face. That hospital bed became a throne where Christ was proclaiming himself King.

We learned from that test that Frank had advanced stage neuroendocrine cancer, but this diagnosis did not defeat us. Why? Because each moment is a gift and the Giver is always there, handing it to us.  Christ’s presence is always present, and is more imposing than any illness. When Frank drew his last breath on January 19, 1015, the instant exploded into eternity.

_________________________________________________________________

A reading from the first Letter of Saint John, 3:1-3

BELOVED: See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope based on him makes himself pure, as he is pure. (The word of the Lord)

This is from the Catholic Mass reading, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2016.

GOD BLESS YOU ALL IN THIS CHRISTMAS SEASON.