Today, and Every Day, Pray for the Legal Protection of Every Unborn Child
January 22 marks the anniversary of the Supreme Court decision that allowed abortionists to kill unborn children at any point during a mother’s pregnancy. It is a day that forever changed America. Just as America’s original sin, slavery, denied the personhood of human beings and stained our nation from its inception, so too has the unfettered murder of unborn children by abortionists.
Since that horrific day, more than 63 million babies have been killed. This number is so large, it can be difficult to imagine that each of these children is not simply a statistic, but actually a person.
When I was in second grade, my teacher, Sr. Rose, wanted to instill in each of her students a love for the unborn and a recognition of their humanity. Each morning, after praying the Our Father, our class would recite, “Dear Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, I love you very much. I beg you to spare the life of the unborn child I have spiritually adopted who is in danger of abortion.”
While most of my second grade classmates likely didn’t know what abortion was, I knew. I knew that there was a building my dad would take us to on Saturday mornings to pray that the mommies and daddies going in wouldn’t allow the abortionist to kill their babies. That every October, during Respect Life Month, we would line the streets with hundreds of other people from our town, making a chain to pray for life. And that every January we would make the trip to Washington, D.C. to join thousands and Nellie Grey for the March for Life.
I knew what abortion was, but as a second grader, I couldn’t comprehend it. And now, as a mom, I still can’t.
How can we live in the greatest country in the world and allow abortionists to kill babies? How can we mourn the loss of an unborn child through miscarriage and stand idly by as Planned Parenthood actively takes millions of lives through abortion? How has the place where a baby is meant to be safest — her mother’s womb — become the place where she is most in peril? How has over half the country voted time and time again for politicians who have voted for policies that allow unborn babies to be killed up until their first breath? How do we have politicians who seem to support infanticide?
Perhaps the evil of abortion is so great that none of us can clearly comprehend it. Perhaps we allow ourselves to be blind to the truth because if we truly understood that abortion kills a sweet, innocent baby, we would be forced to live our lives differently.
Monday is the anniversary of Roe, but it is also the day of prayer for the legal protection of unborn children. A few months ago, my family moved, and we joined a new parish. The first day we were there, we were thrilled to learn that at the end of Mass, the entire congregation, in unison, recites from memory the prayer for the unborn. Today, I hope you’ll join me in vowing to do more for the unborn every day by praying, marching, voting, and standing for life. And perhaps together we can start today with the prayer for the unborn:
“O God, who has given us the great gift of life, we ask you today to bless all unborn babies. Watch over them as they grow and develop in their mother’s womb, that they might be born healthy and happy and be welcomed with tender love and deep joy. In a special way, we ask you to bless those babies who are unwanted and may never be born. Welcome them into your loving embrace that they might find their home in you. Bless and guide all pregnant women that they might respect and cherish the gift of life growing within them. May they accept their child as an irreplaceable gift from you.”
Mary Szoch is the Director of the Center for Human Dignity at Family Research Council.