This Saturday, March 25, the Church celebrates the Annunciation when, by Mary's fiat, Jesus Christ takes our human nature. Just like all other humans, Jesus spent nine months in his mother's womb, growing and developing like us. It is precisely in taking on our humanity that Christ was able to free us from original sin and allow us to be with the Father in Heaven. So, we pray:
"O God, who willed that your Word should take on the reality of human flesh in the womb of the Virgin Mary, grant, we pray, that we, who confess our Redeemer to be God and man, may merit to become partakers even in his divine nature." In Christ,
- Collect for the Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord
The RLA Office
Euthanasia Deaths in Quebec Doubled in Second Half of 2016
Recently released data on euthanasia in Quebec shows an alarming trend. The requests for euthanasia doubled in the province during the second half of 2016. According to the report, there were 256 requests for euthanasia in the first six months of 2016 and 441 in the second half of 2016 in Quebec. Of those requests, 163 patients were actually euthanized in the first half of 2016 and 286 patients in the second half. When data was previously released for the first half of 2016, the government indicated they were three times what was expected.
According to the Protection of Conscience Project, "If Quebec's rate continues without escalation throughout 2017, it will exceed that achieved by Belgium after nine years." With the escalation in numbers, there could be increased pressure on patients to request euthanasia even if they do not want it.
On top of this, Canada is now permitting organ harvesting from people who have been euthanized. In Ontario alone, dozens who died by euthanasia have had their tissues or organs harvested for donation. This trend creates pressure on despairing people who may come to believe that they are more valuable dead than alive.
This report also comes as more Canadian physicians are choosing to not participate in helping patients end their lives. In Ontario, 24 physicians have asked that their names be permanently removed from a voluntary referral list of physicians to assist in euthanasia. Another 30 physicians have asked that their names be put on a temporary hold.
Pro-Woman Is Pro-Life
By Kimberly Baker
Recent cultural conversations on the importance of women's advancement have increasingly included abortion access, perpetuating a tragic assumption that 'pro-woman' and 'pro-life' are diametrically opposed viewpoints. This belief ignores the full reality of the beauty and dignity of all human life. To be pro-woman is to be pro-life; one cannot exist without the other.
Abortion has negative outcomes for both a woman and her child, with the two-fold loss including both the destruction of the child's very life and the destruction of the mother's well-being. The aftermath of abortion for a woman often includes psychological traumatization, and sometimes physical harm. Far from promoting dignity and freedom, abortion promotes the lie that a woman must harm herself and her child in order to be free.
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Youth Building a Culture of Life
Did you know that the Archdiocese of St. Louis has a website to encourage teens to stay active in the pro-life movement year round? GenLifeSTL365.com features tools for teens to learn more about pro-life issues, ideas for how to get involved, and resources to get help for themselves or for a friend. The blog features teen voices on topics such as starting a pro-life club at school, responding to anti-Semitic violence, why teens should care about euthanasia, and things teens should know about homelessness. GenLifeSTL365 is a collaboration between the RLA and the Archdiocesan Office of Youth Ministry.
Coalition for Life has also started LIFESQUAD, an opportunity for teens 15+ years old to get involved in the pro-life movement through monthly meetings. More information about LIFESQUAD is available by clicking here.
Sat., Apr. 1 - Sun., Apr. 16
2nd Annual Diocesan-Wide Deacon Diaper Drive
During the weekends of April 1-2 through Easter weekend, the Permanent Deacons of the Archdiocese, in conjunction with the RLA, will be collecting diapers to assist families in need. Last year over 125,000 diapers were collected. Drop off diapers at your local parish. For more information, contact your parish permanent deacon or the Permanent Diaconate Office at 314.792.7431.
Sun., Apr. 2
An Afternoon Program for Mothers & Daughters
A program for 13-17 year-old girls and their mothers is being offered through Mercy. The program focuses on dating, marriage, protection of fertility through chastity, STDs, and the sacredness of human life. The program runs from 1 to 3:30 p.m. at the von Gontard Conference Center. Cost is $50 per mother/daughter family. Reservations must be made online by clicking here. Contact Donna at 314.991.0327 for more information.
Sat., Apr. 22
Defenders of the Unborn Banquet
The Defenders of the Unborn will be hosting Gianna Jessen as the guest speaker at their annual banquet and silent auction held at the Orlando Banquet Center in Maryland Heights. Doors open at 6 pm. Cost is $35/adults, $20/students or $325 for a table of 10. Contact Mary at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sat., Apr. 29
Run For Their Lives 5K
SLU Students for Life is hosting their annual 5K run to benefit their Pregnant and Parenting Student Assistance (PPSA). The run will begin at 9 a.m. with check-in starting at 8 a.m. Pre-race day registration is $15; race day registration is $20. For more information or to register, contact Evie at email@example.com.
Sat., May 13
Project Rachel Retreat
Looking for healing from an abortion experience? This retreat is for all women, regardless of faith background or how long it has been since their abortion experience. The focus of the day-long retreat is on receive God's loving mercy. Registration and more information is available online by clicking here or by calling Project Rachel at 314.792.7565.
Project Rachel & Project Joseph
The services of Project Rachel and Project Joseph are available to anyone who has been wounded by an abortion experience and is seeking healing. Services include: free, confidential, professional counseling, monthly spiritual support group meetings, healing retreats, spiritual direction, and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.Click here to learn more.
Project Rachel Spiritual Support Group
Thursday, April 27, 7:00 pm
Contact Marisol at 314.792.7451 or by email for details.
Project Joseph Spiritual Support Group
Monday, April 3, 7:00 pm
Contact Chuck at 314.974.6787 or by email for details.