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"Reverence For Life"
by Deacon Stephen Bowling
It has been said that one of the best ways to become truly wise is to seek the counsel of those who have gone before. In fact, one might say that the entire philosophy of a classical education is based upon this principle.
Although wisdom originates from God, it is often transmitted to us from others. Not through "quantity," as the rise of internet discourse might seem to suggest, but more in fact through "quality," as the timelessness of so many writings come down to us throughout the ages - from the saints for example - would illustrate.
When it comes to the issue of the dignity and sanctity of life - in all of its many facets and forms, but, of course, primarily in its human one - very few people, I think, have been wiser than Dr. Albert Schweitzer.
As we observe "Respect Life Month" every October, I cannot help but recall Schweitzer's famous philosophy of "Reverence for Life." Schweitzer developed this powerful way of looking at the world - as is so often that case - by a spiritual awakening, which he believed was granted to him by God's grace I 1915. This epiphany happened to him while on a boat trip on the Ogooue River in what was at the time known as French Equatorial Africa, but which is now known as the Central African nation of Gabon.
The quotation in the graphic above is Schweitzer's own summation of the central place in which respect for life (or as he would say, "reverence for life") should occupy in all that we do or say . . .
"The Mother Infant Care Program at Catholic Charities Louisville"
by Shalah Bottoms
I am pregnant with my first child, a girl due Aug 12th, and will be a stay at home mother. I came to America with my husband alone. I had no friends or family here. When I came to the Mother-Infant Care Program, I met friends. I felt like it was a good opportunity to meet other people and I enjoy coming. I met another girl who came from Lebanon and since we were both new to the country we became friends. I also learned a lot from the program.
The Mother Infant Care Program provides support to pregnant women who have made the courageous, lifelong decision to be a mother. Fathers are also invited to accompany moms to provide additional support and learn great information and resources. Through various educational classes, case management, and essential baby items, the Mother-Infant Care Program empowers parents to raise happy and healthy babies. Topics discussed include labor and birth, breastfeeding, car seat installation, and more. Each week participants may also receive necessary items for the baby and nursery, such as infant clothing, diapers, bibs and bottles. At the end of the six week program, parents receive a crib, car seat, or other gift of their choosing.
October is Respect Life month and respecting life starts at home. There are many things you can do not only this month, but throughout the year as a family to help promote Respect Life.
Reach out to a family member or friend who may be expecting and have them share the ultra sound pictures that will spark conversation.
Assisting the elderly is another fantastic way to afford both younger and older children an opportunity to practice awareness this month. An activity such as raking leaves for the elderly or (for the older kids) offering to run to the grocery store goes a long way when it comes to respect life.
Maybe a movie night is more your style. Movies not only entertain, but also provide an excellent opportunity for discussion. A complete list of pro-life movies with discussion guides can be found on the Culture Of Life Studies Program website HERE.
"Assisting In the Foster Care Crisis"
by Ed Harpring
"Things broken in an abusive parent-child relationship can only be restored through a compassionate, caring child-mentor relationship" stated Darren Washausen, Executive Director of Orphan Care Alliance.
As one of the presenters at the Archdiocese of Louisville Foster Care Awareness Event held at Holy Family Parish on October 16, 2018, Darren continued,
"The state of Kentucky does a good job of protecting children in a family crisis, by placing children in safe residential facilities, but it is up to the Body of Christ to show mercy and compassion and care for these neglected children who find themselves in foster care. The state can protect, but it's up to the Church to love these children. Orphan Care Alliance equips the Faith Community by connecting them to opportunities to serve children in foster care."