Sunday, January 25, 2015

In Praise of Catholic Motherhood

By Rachel Lu
Crisis Magazine

This is a week for celebrating life. In Washington D.C., the March for Lifecontinues its long tradition of marking the anniversary of Roe v Wade with a massive demonstration in remembrance of the unborn. Appropriately enough, Pope Francis set the week off by affirming the Church’s stance on artificial contraceptives on his visit to the Philippines. (This of course was followed by the “rabbit” kerfuffle. I was still feeling good about the contraceptive statement, so I did myself a favor and didn’t read the cunicular details.)

Many of us are too young to remember Roe v Wade, or any time before it. It can still be interesting in this “week of life” to reflect on the origins of our own pro-life convictions, and the impact they have had on our lives as a whole.

I first started thinking about abortion during the run-up to the 1992 election. I was assigned to research the topic for my middle school civics class. Together with three other students, I was asked to prepare an informative presentation for the class. I had no views on abortion at the time, and even though my church and parents were both pro-life, I don’t remember feeling “obligated” to take a particular side. (This might partly reflect the fact that neither church nor parents had really discussed the issue with me before that time.) I read the arguments as someone ready to be persuaded.

One of my fellow group members was also a longtime friend. When I asked her opinion, she answered straightforwardly that she believed that abortion was murder. “Just because fetuses are tiny doesn’t mean they’re not people,” she opined. “We should still want to protect them.”

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Rachel Lu, a Catholic convert, teaches philosophy at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota where she lives with her husband and three boys. Dr. Lu earned her Ph.D. in philosophy at Cornell University. Follow her on Twitter at rclu.

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