Reflections after a frustrating homily

By Julie Conway

We are facing a crisis of life, conscience, faith and human dignity on many levels.

Much attention is being given to the complex situation on our southern borders and the conflict in opinion about how best to secure our nation under the rule of law. How can the United States be a land open to the valuable contributions of those immigrants who wish to legally make a home here and also wish to contribute to our system of justice and opportunity?

We seem to have a heart and compassion for the oppressed and struggling, as they attempt to find a better life. The message is frequently that we are “obligated “ to provide a haven for ALL, even to the point of breaking laws and permitting those who might do citizens of our country harm entry without restrictions.

How can those who are supportive of unregulated immigration and protecting the lives of the immigrant not be bewildered by the lack of support for the most vulnerable immigrant of all….the pre-born infant.

We are faced with a disturbing legislative trend which removes all barriers prohibiting or restricting the taking the life of a baby at any point from conception and even during the process of being born.

This is a group of humans that for one reason or another doesn’t fit the convenient, current, progressive narrative of “protected class”.

Many are convinced that while all other classes of humans deserve their “birthright and dignity”, this class of the unborn does not.

Horrifyingly, it reminds me of another time, not so long ago, when another classification of humans didn’t fit into the plan of perfection that a certain school of thought of evil leaders coerced a population into believing was right, ethical and morally sound.

Innocent Jews, Catholics , homosexuals , gypsies, old people, the infirm and disabled were rounded up, tortured and systematically murdered horrifically so those in power could pursue a goal of cleansing a population of “undesirables”.

They didn’t fit into the profile of aryan perfection.

And so I ask myself, is the plague of abortion (regular killing of unborn babies at all stages of development) so far removed?

Will we look back on this sad era when a class of humans was singled out and murdered as unthinkably evil and unimaginable, in the same way we are disgusted and heartbroken over the atrocities experienced in previous decades?

For leaders of our faith tradition with a distinguished mandate of protecting the weak, oppressed, sick, homeless, imprisoned and hungry, I feel it is an obligation to speak courageously from the pulpit a message that is not exclusively about social justice and the plight of the immigrant but the current state of affairs regarding distressing legislation concerning abortion as well.


Julie Conway is a Catholic philanthropist and volunteer extraordinaire, Phi Beta Kappa, mother of three, grandmother of more.  She writes from Chicago.

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