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Do your thing: respect life!

Jan. 22, 2014

by Kathleen M. Gallagher

I am not a marcher. I never have been. I don’t participate in Life Chains or pray the Rosary outside in front of clinics. It’s just not my thing.

Nevertheless, on Sunday, January 12, I marched. I marched with the Champlain Valley Right to Life organization in Plattsburgh at their annual March for Life. I was thoroughly impressed with the dedication and passion of this group of people. These are believers who are literally willing to “walk the walk,” and their public witness sends a strong message to the community.

But you know what? Marching is still not my thing.

I’m a writer, and a speaker. That’s how I choose to promote the pro-life cause.

As St. Paul says to the Corinthians:
“There are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit; there are different forms of service but the same Lord; there are different workings but the same God who produces all of them in everyone

Indeed. As we commemorate the 41st anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision that legalized the tragedy of abortion-on-demand, let’s each ponder our individual gifts, and ask God what we might do to help protect moms and their babies. The list of “things” is endless:

·         If you’re a marcher, by all means, march! Get out there and be a peaceful, prayerful witness to the sanctity of human life.
·         Perhaps you’re a writer like me. Please pen some letters…write to your elected officials. Write to the editor of your local newspaper. Both things are easy to do through the New York State Catholic Conference web site at www.nyscatholic.org. Write to local organizations and businesses and ask them to sign on as supporters of New Yorkers for Life ( www.nys4life.com ).
·         If you’ve got the “gift of gab,” spread the pro-life message by talking it up. Just talk to your neighbors, your co-workers, your bowling buddies. Educate them with a gentle tone and a loving heart. You never know where you might plant a seed.
·         Do you enjoy politics? Think about organizing a voter registration drive or becoming more active within your chosen political party to try to influence their platform. Consider running for public office yourself. 
·         Maybe you’re a compassionate person with a good listening ear; you could volunteer at a pro-life pregnancy center or a post-abortion healing program. 
·         Got organizational skills? Can you knit or crochet? The Gabriel Project is always looking for more ‘angels’ to help create baby blankets, organize and deliver gifts for pregnant women in need.
·         Pray. 40 Days for Life is a focused pro-life effort of prayer and fasting where you can pray with others. Or you can simply pray in solitude at home.
Each “thing” a grace. Each is a form of service. And God is at work in each of them.

What’s your thing? How are you going to make a pro-life difference in the coming year?

We’ve come a long way since 1973, and things look bright: fewer and fewer doctors are performing abortions. In some states, abortion facilities are becoming harder to find. Greater and greater numbers of young people are proclaiming pro-life beliefs, and sharing them. More pro-life laws were enacted across this country in the past 3 years than in the entire previous decade! Modern medicine keeps pushing the envelope in terms of what we can do to save the lives of the unborn. It’s a good time to be pro-life.

So do your thing. Use the gifts that God has given you to spread the good news and make a difference. Get involved and stay involved. For more information about pro-life efforts in the north country, contact Colleen and John Miner, Diocesan Directors of Respect Life Ministry, at cminer@dioogdensburg.org.

Photo by Colleen Miner
Kathleen Gallagher, director of pro-life activities for the New York State Catholic Conference, and her husband Joe, traveled from Schenectady to take part in the annual March for life in Plattsburgh Jan.12. The march began at the Newman Center and concluded at St. John the Baptist Church where Mrs. Gallagher was the featured speaker.


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