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St. Mary Magdalen's
Catholic Church
Willesden Green
London NW10
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Friday, October 17, 2008
Whatever the result of the voting on the Embryology Bill on Oct 22nd (see white A5 leaflets at back) we will still be in a legislative and increasingly moral ‘culture of death’, in Pope John Paul II’s phrase. It would be good then to observe the 4th National Day of Prayer & Fasting for Life- Tues 28th Oct

A Reflection on the title of Pope John Paul II’s 1995 Letter “Evangelium Vitae": The Gospel of Life, from a talk by Fr Stephen Wang, lecturer at Allen Hall Seminary, to the Catholic Medical Association

“We take this term for granted now; it's part of our Catholic vocabulary – but it is a bold term to use. We might normally think that life is one of many moral issues. Human life might be a single chapter in a moral theology textbook, alongside telling the truth, sexual ethics, politics, etc. But Pope John Paul goes much further and says that the question of the value of human life is not just one of many moral issues, it's not even just a moral issue – it is the meaning of the very Gospel itself. He doesn't just put the question of abortion and euthanasia in the context of the larger gospel message, he turns it inside out and says that the gospel message, in effect, can only be understood in the context of an understanding of the value of human life. 'The Gospel of Life' is something concrete and personal, for it consists in the proclamation of the very person of Jesus. Jesus made himself known to the Apostle Thomas, and in him to every person, with the words: "I am the way, and the truth, and the life" (Jn 14:6)' (para. 29.2 of Evangelium Vitae)."

“To go against life is to go against the Gospel itself, which is the Good News that the Son of God came to share our human life and to give that life its deepest possible significance."

“Abortion and euthanasia are not just random items in the index of a moral theology textbook, they are defining issues, since there can be no morality without a foundational belief in the innate value of human life, and there can be no Christian gospel without an appreciation of the dignity of Jesus's own human nature.”

posted by Sinead Reekie at 2:10 pm