Steven Buhagiar: Three things we can do to fight the NSW abortion bill right now

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With the imminent introduction of the proposed Bill to decriminalise abortion in NSW many are asking “What exactly can I do?” especially in the face of what looks like a bulldozer moving forward with no means in sight of halting its strident progress.

This dilemma is increasingly the norm in our so called ‘civilised’ Western society. The relativist mindset that pervades so much of our secular thinking has pervaded much of our political structures. We are now living in a society that has forgotten how to reason for the good in light of God’s revealed truth and natural law.

But it is not all bad news. As individuals, we have the right to choose to do what is right and true at any given moment in history. Each one of us can really make a difference and can live up to the responsibility we all have to defend the fundamental right to life of our fellow human beings.

what is occurring at our front door is actually the impetus some might need to stand up and defend the rights of the most vulnerable and threatened in our society.

This proposed Bill threatens the inherent right to life of the unborn child in the womb of his or her mother. At the same time it threatens the very well-being of the mother herself and the right of society to laws which respect the human person and which work only for his and her flourishing.

Following are three things that any Christian can choose to do today. To put it bluntly, this is no time for mediocrity. It is a time to put on the armour of Faith and fight the good fight in the thick of this spiritual warfare.

Feeling up for it? Well here we go.

  1. Pray and pray hard until it hurts

This is not a cliché. Prayer means hard work. It means setting aside time to converse with God. It means setting routines in place and sticking to them. In this situation, we are praying for a particular end. Pray with us that God brings about an end to this threat to unborn children and their mothers, through the intercession of Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the unborn.

This prayer request must be intentional and find its place in our hearts and with a passion and willingness to suffer on their account. Time before the Blessed Sacrament praying for open hearts so that the politicians may see clearly what it is they are voting for. That politicians are given the grace to vote with right conscience! That our own local representative is given the grace to do what is right in light of God’s law not man’s.

Our Lady has also given us the weapon with which to fight in this spiritual warfare… the rosary. In every appearance at Fatima she asked the children to pray the rosary and to tell the world that it is through the rosary and by way of honouring her Immaculate Heart, that peace would reign in the world. Here is a remedy that is too often left in the bedside drawer. Let us turn to her who is our victory through Christ!

  1. Become involved and act today

As citizens of this beautiful country, we have every right to expect our representatives to live and act by what is right. If they don’t know what is ‘right’ (and we can’t take it for granted that they do) let us have the courage to tell them. We can pick up the phone today and ask them how they will vote. Where this is not in alignment with what is truly good for society, we need to tell them that they will have lost our support. This is the heart of democracy and we should not be deterred to speak in this way.

By way of example, let us be like the widow in scripture whose perseverance forced the unjust judge to give her what she deserved. Listen to the judge’s response: “Though I neither fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will vindicate her, or she will wear me out by her continual coming.” It is our duty to speak out in the face of injustice and it has never been so necessary as it is at this present time.

  1. Encourage others by your witness for life

We must be prudent and respectful of every human being and treat them with utmost love. But we must clarify here what love is. Does love stand by as a fellow human being falls by the wayside? Is it loving to say nothing while we know that another 50 or so children will lose their lives in NSW today? Does love stay silent while another woman loses her ability to be fertile because of the inherent brutality of the abortion procedure itself where a death-dealing instrument invades the very sacredness of her womb?

Speaking the truth in love must be our way. Always. Courage it will take but speak we must about this grave injustice. The truth is that we skip past these truths because they are uncomfortable to speak about and, again, it is true that there is the very real fear that we will be labelled. In this day and age it does in fact take a certain amount of courage to share information or an event on Facebook which relates to the defense of life. We know only so well that a happy smiling image of a recent vacation will bring up an immediate one hundred or so ‘likes’ while a statement that upholds the dignity of the unborn child barely registers a moment’s notice.

So, yes, it is our choice. We really can do something today, maybe at this very moment. Pray, act, witness to life. Let us be known for our defense of the unborn. Let us be labelled and known as that person who is present at the rally in front of Parliament House, that attends the Memorial Mass for the Unborn, that speaks with others about these issues that matter at family gatherings.

Let us be those who are called into the Kingdom with the words of Jesus Christ ringing out for all the assembled to hear: “Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.”

Steven Buhagiar is the team leader of the Sydney archdiocese’s Life, Family and Outreach Office.

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