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December 1, 2021

Courtesy of the Respect Life Office

On December 1, the Supreme Court of the United States will hear oral arguments in the case of Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization. At issue is a 2018 Mississippi law that prohibits abortion after the first 15 weeks of pregnancy. The question before the Court is: Are all pre-viability bans on elective abortions unconstitutional? Nine justices will make this life and death decision in June 2022. What can we do?

Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant Christians across the country are praying for the Dobbs case. This is the case that could overturn Roe v. Wade – the Supreme Court decision that made abortion legal in all 50 states. Together, we will pray for an outcome that protects millions of babies and their mothers. There are resources posted at prayfordobbs.com.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) began a prayer and fasting campaign, “On Our Knees,” from October 2021 through June 2022. For the past 49 years, January 22 has been a date of prayer and remembrance for the loss of 50-60 million babies due to legalized abortion. Many travel to DC for the annual March for Life to commemorate the January 22, 1973 Roe v Wade Supreme Court decision that began abortion on demand in our country. In these next 9 months, make the 22nd of each month a day of prayer and fasting for the Dobbs case and our Supreme Court Justices. On the 22nd, fast from large meals or fast from social media or tv - something you normally enjoy daily.

Mass, Rosary, Holy Hour
On the 22nd of each month, host a Mass, rosary or holy hour. Encourage your pastor to offer a “Mass for Giving Thanks to God for the gift of Human Life”. Lead the rosary at your church with the intention of protecting all human life or sponsor a holy hour for life, remembering to pray for those on the Supreme Court.

Perhaps before the 50th anniversary of Roe v Wade (Jan 22, 2023), this deadly law that led to the loss of 50-60 million babies, will be reversed.

Much has changed since 1973 when Roe v Wade was decided.

Ultrasound Advancement
We can now see a baby in the womb through advanced ultrasound technology. The term a “blob of tissue’’ no longer covers the lie that it’s not a baby. In 1973, knowledge of prenatal development was very limited. Now we have a “window to the womb” where we can see that a heart begins beating at 15 weeks, brain waves are developed, there are eyes and teeth, fingers and toes.

Viability changes
Viability is an arbitrary dividing line in abortion law. It’s ever-changing. At the time Roe was decided, viability was usually week 28. Today we know that viability may occur at week 24, and there have been cases of premature infants surviving following a birth at 21 weeks. The defense of human life should not depend on such a vague standard.

Legal protection
The United States lags behind most of the western world, where abortions are generally not permitted in the second and third trimesters. In this “Land of the Free” unborn children deserve the same equal rights under the law that all of us enjoy. It is doesn’t make sense to exclude them from legal protection.

Women don’t need it
It was once thought that women needed abortion to achieve in life. Time has shown this is not true. The social and economic progress of women over the past 50 years hasn’t been dependent upon access to legal abortion. Women can enjoy it all - motherhood and employment. NYS has one of the longest maternity leaves in the nation, 12 weeks at 67% pay. (Recently increased from 6 weeks and 50% pay.)

Bad decisions happen
The Supreme Court has overturned wrong decisions before and this one was a flawed decision. In 1954 Brown v Board of Education, the court overturned a ruling from 58 years prior (Plessy v Ferguson) that upheld racial segregation in public schools. Roe vs. Wade is a fatally flawed decision that should be overturned.

Will of the People
Perhaps the most compelling reason of all is because it’s what the American people want. Most Americans oppose the broad “right to abortion” under Roe v Wade which allows abortion for any reason through all nine months of pregnancy. 65% of Americans think abortion should be illegal in the second trimester, 81% think it should be illegal in the third trimester (Gallup). Our law was designed to be guided by the will of the people and it used to be guided by faith and morals as well.


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