An initiative of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Friday Fast: January 24

Intention: May we accompany women facing crisis pregnancies with the compassionate and merciful love of Christ.

Reflection: In his homily at the Opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life, Cardinal O’Malley said, “The feelings of the woman in the Gospel must be like the young woman caught in a crisis situation of an unwanted pregnancy.  She feels overwhelmed, alone, afraid, confused. We must never allow that woman to perceive the Pro-Life movement as a bunch of angry self righteous Pharisees with stones in their hands, looking down on her and judging her.  We want the woman to experience the merciful love of Christ.  Jesus does not condone the woman’s fall, but He does not condemn her.  He invites her to make a new start, to know that she is forgiven and loved.  Pope Francis urges us to practice ‘the art of accompaniment’ which teaches us to remove our sandals before the sacred ground of the other, in this case, the woman in crisis.  This accompaniment must be steady and reassuring, reflecting our closeness and our compassionate gaze which heals, liberates and encourages growth in the Christian Life.”

Did You Know? Today is Day Seven of 9 Days for Life, but it’s not too late to participate! Join thousands of people across the country praying the U.S. Catholic bishops’ novena for life through a free app, email, text message, and more. http://www.9daysforlife.com

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