Saturday, January 22nd marked the 49th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that essentially legalized abortion on demand in our nation. It’s always a sobering time of the year, a reminder of this horrific sin that has allowed 62 million babies to be killed legally. It’s also a reminder of the deep divisions that exist in our nation and in our world, and of our need for healing and conversion.
As people of faith, we know that sin of this magnitude must call us to prayer, both individually and collectively. (I’m especially grateful for the Monday Rosary for Life that so many of our parishioners have participated in for decades.) This year, there is reason to pray even more fervently as the Supreme Court considers the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health case, in which it will consider a Mississippi law that bans abortion after 15 weeks. This is a critically important case that could have far-reaching implications for the pro-life movement. Essentially, this decision has the potential to overturn Roe v. Wade and return the abortion issue to the states.
There are many opportunities for us to join our individual prayers with the prayers of other people of faith throughout the nation. The USCCB began a novena called 9 Days for Life, and it’s not too late to sign up at https://www.respectlife.org/9-days-signup. You can also go to prayfordobbs.com and sign up to join this prayer movement. You can also find a Novena to End Abortion at https://www.praymorenovenas.com/novena-to-end-abortion. These are just a few resources – many more are out there. The most important thing to know is that our prayers are part of something much bigger, as people of faith join together to ask God for His mercy and for the grace of conversion for our world.
I hope that this inspires us to rededicate ourselves to praying for the protection of the sanctity of all human life, from the moment of conception until the moment of natural death, and at all moments in between. As important as the Dobbs case is, we know that it’s not the end of the battle. Ultimately, an end to abortion requires the conversion of every human heart, and so our work of prayer will never end until every human being sees every unborn child as a precious gift from God.