diofav 23

Catholic News Herald

Serving Christ and Connecting Catholics in Western North Carolina

This particular morning, as I eased my husband’s truck down the road, I witnessed the early morning sky lit only by the Super Blue Blood Moon hanging low in the horizon. The trip to Atlanta was to be a simple one: take two ultrasound units and place them on a shipment container filled with collected donations headed to Ghana for a springtime delivery.

Not 20 minutes into my journey, I came upon what seemed to be dozens of red flashing lights piercing the eerie, early morning winter fog. At first glance, it looked akin to the scene of a horrible accident or a police investigation involving dozens of emergency vehicles. A surfeit of hazard lights made the entire sight overwhelmingly alarming.

After a taking a second, longer glance, it became clear. Instead of an accident, I was happening by an elementary school with almost a dozen buses letting school kids off at the door. “What an impressive sight to behold,” was my initial reaction as my heart swelled with pride at the vigilance of our society. “What an amazing demonstration of how much we value our children – our government enacting these strict safety regulations on even our buses to protect our precious ones!”

Now on a typical morning, I would have glanced at such ado and put it all out of my head, but the cargo of my truck and the purpose of my trip weighed on my heart. The entire spectacle provided mental fodder for the day.

Our family has been involved in international mission work for almost two decades. In addition to this, we involve ourselves in pro-life work with a focus on helping both the mother and the pre-born child. These varied passions found a natural blend with our pro-life medical work in Ghana. So when two of our allied crisis pregnancy centers offered to donate their recently upgraded old ultrasound machines, we were elated to be the recipients on behalf of the Ghanaian people.

Destination: Atlanta! Beaming with excitement, and maybe a bit jittery from an extra shot of caffeine for the road, my thoughts raced from daydreams to wonder about just what miracles might be achieved in Ghana at the skillful, gentle hands of a doctor there, blessing mothers and defending vulnerable angelic-like perfections.

021618 HarrisonThese ultrasound machines had been used to save pre-born babies from abortion in North Carolina, and would next save babies from the slaughter of abortion a world away.

As I thought about the giggling boys and girls exiting the buses, I wondered how many of those little ones had been miraculously spared from abortion.

“How is it,” I pondered, “that our society places such an obvious value on children who have been selectively spared from destruction, and yet we cannot see the child in the womb as warranting the simple protection of the law? Have we become a society so shallow that we feign deep reverence for life greatly received, or have we been dangerously fooled? Why do we hide our sins of disobedience under the cloak of lawful vigilance by protecting our kids, but then disgrace God’s gifts in a deep mire of selfish ambition, shrouded in justified reasons?”

In the words of Søren Kierkegaard, “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what is not true; the other is to refuse to accept what is true.”

By refusing to “accept what is true,” refusing to grant a child in the womb his or her justly deserved unalienable rights, our society has been skillfully duped into embracing the notion that our lives are our own, fertility our right, and children a commodity. Morality becomes a societal subjective truth, the natural end being overall contempt for authenticity, and loathing of a Supreme Moral Authority. “I am undoubtedly the maker of my own destiny!” we bitterly convince ourselves.

The grim reality of this truth was on full display on Jan. 29, 2018, when 14 “Catholic” U.S. senators openly rejected a ban on abortions for fetuses past 20 weeks’ gestation. While this seemed to be largely a symbolic vote or litmus test which was expected to fail, it laid bare the reprehensible ambitions of the culture of death, inasmuch as pro-choice proponents refused to defend the fetus capable of pain.

Maybe they voted out of pride, vanity or blind political ambition? Maybe the vote was quite disconcerting to each senator, made with tremendous trepidation. Only God knows. But the senators’ votes stand in direct contrast to 2,000 years of Church teaching and violate a direct command from our Lord: “Thou shall not kill.” We live under His mandate and we would be circumspect to take note: “See that you do not despise one of these little ones; for I tell you that in heaven their angels always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven.” (Matt 18:10)

We have been created from God’s great pleasure and delight. As mere creations, God allows us freedom to either humbly submit to or reject His authority. Still, both in life and in death we belong to Him, and we marvel at His creation. “You were bought at a price; therefore glorify God with your body.” (1 Cor 6:20).

In meekness and without pretension, we are asked to submit to the Church under whom His authority has been placed. “For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and have not wickedly departed from my God. For all His ordinances were before me, and His statutes I did not put away from me. I was blameless before Him, and I kept myself from guilt. Therefore the Lord has recompensed me according to my righteousness, according to the cleanness of my hands in His sight.” (Psalm 18)

As we witness to our Catholic faith with words, actions and votes, the world watches. And while the world looks on and jeers, our children watch, too. They count on our courage to stand and defend the sanctity of their lives. They watch while we fight for the despised and condemned. They learn by watching how we treat the unfortunate and the bruised. They understand the bleak connection between “choice” and “condemned” for the pre-born infant in the womb. And most assuredly as we load our boys and girls on buses rightly replete with caution lights, they will do as we do toward the least of our brothers.

Kathleen Harrison, RN, MSN, FNP, and her husband, Dr. Matt Harrison, have worked with Helping Hands Medical Missions since 2003 and have been involved in pro-life work since 2002. They are members of Sacred Heart Church Salisbury.