So, how many women have, afterwards, got in touch with a pro-abortion provider and thanked them for the abortion, perhaps expressing their joy and gratitude that their physical or mental health had been saved from greater risk of injury (the legal reason given for over 97% of abortions in this England and Wales)? And how many offspring – as children or as adults – have gone to their parents and said they wished they had aborted them. I’ve never heard of either of these happening.
I’ve seen many photos of new born children, sent by their mum in joy and gratitude to someone who showed them love when they were at their most vulnerable, enabling them to make a decision based more on truth than fear. I’ve heard parents express their heartfelt relief that they didn’t abort. I’ve heard teenagers struggle when they found out that mum even considered having an abortion. And I’ve known adults who were very appreciative that mom didn’t go down that path, when she easily could.
The common denominator behind all this thankfulness is that, nearly always, in the moment of vulnerability, the mum was showed love, and was in a position to receive it. There are many things that unite us as humans, but perhaps the deepest is that we all long to be loved, so that we can love.
They say hurting people hurt people. Sadly, victims can easily turn into the next generation of aggressors. But at the heart of God’s plan is his belief in us that if he continues to love us, we will slowly find the vulnerability and strength to receive that love, and pass on that love.
The beautiful truth, discovered through reason and revealed by faith, is that the Father creates us out of love. You exist because you are loved completely by God. It is not surprising then, that if it is love that gives life, it is also love that gives increase of life.
The unique dignity of parents is that they can share in the love that brings their child into creation. Granted it is possible that they only physically cooperate with their child’s conception, but the invitation of God is for them to unite with him in loving them into existence too. What an amazing privilege.
What parents and all of us are called to, is to cooperate in loving every person into the fullness of their life. That’s why every life deserves love. It was formed by love. It longs for love. It is fulfilled in love. It grows through the fertility of love. Spiritual fertility is rooted in love. Spiritual sterility is rooted in individualism.
It is God’s love that is ultimately creative, but this is most naturally communicated through our love for each other. Perhaps most powerfully, God’s fertile love is most expressed in the Cross of Jesus; the forgiveness that flows from the sacrifice of love, in suffering and even death, is the source of all spiritual fertility.
We all have our part to play in loving abortion out of our land. But I firmly believe that it is the women who have had abortions, and their men who sided with this, who can lead us. Perhaps you weren’t loved by another human when you most needed it; perhaps you weren’t able to receive the love offered. But Christ offers that love to you at every second. As does your child.
I have helped many women find forgiveness after abortion, but the most important step is for mom to name their child – as parents do – after chatting to God and their child about this – and then calling them by their name and chatting to them, and asking them to forgive them. And every time I have accompanied someone who has done that, they have eventually ‘heard’ their child say ‘I already have’. So loved, mum is now freed to love again – herself, others, and even the people who pressured her to do it or carried it out. And when all those who lie in anger to promote abortion, experience forgiveness and love from those they have so deeply wronged, then they too might find peace. For they too are persons who deserve love.
Fr Stephen Fawcett