When and how should priests and deacons preach on abortion?

Seven points to consider, whether you are a priest or a member of the lay faithful, when it comes to preaching on abortion (and other challenging topics).

(Image: Lisa F. Young/Shutterstock)

Here in Michigan, where I live and serve, voters have a duty this Election Day (November 8) to defend unborn children from being killed in untold numbers by the enshrinement of nearly unlimited abortion as a constitutional right.

With the overturning of Roe v. Wade and the subsequent advancement of state legislation attempting to legalize abortion throughout the United States, Michigan’s Propsal 3 serves as an extreme example of the grim reality across the country.

The lethal consequences of Proposal 3 should make the blood of any thinking and feeling person run cold. Even those who, tragically, support abortion should shudder at the gruesome extremeism of the proposal, which would allow unfettered abortion for all three trimesters of pregnancy–including partial birth abortion, undercut parental rights and the protection of young expectant mothers, and notoriously would allow non-medical professionals to perform abortions in facilities that are not accountable to cleanliness standards.

As an aside, a good friend of mine recently told me that this past summer she was legally obligated to accompany her seventeen year-old daughter so that her daughter could get her ears pierced. Yet under Proposal 3 even younger girls could get an abortion without parental consent.

Given the clarity of the evil threatened by Proposal 3 and similar proposed legislation in other states, is it not equally clear that priests and deacons ought to preach strongly in opposition to such proposals? Absolutely, but when and how they preach on this topic are somewhat more complex questions.

I teach a course in homiletics, on the nature of the homily and practice of preaching homilies during Mass and other liturgical celebrations, at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. Recently, my students and I discussed strategies for preaching on Proposal Three, and I hope that the considerations I offer below faithfully represent at least some of the ideas that emerged in that conversation, as well as in my own praying and thinking about such preaching.

Here are some things to consider, whether you are a priest or a member of the lay faithful, when it comes to preaching on abortion (and other challenging topics):

1). The homily is always a liturgical action, rooted in the word of God and part of the Sacred Liturgy itself. A preacher must strive to offer God’s message to His people about the topic in question, rather than giving a political speech informed by his own opinions. A homily can and sometimes should apply to political attitudes and action, since the political sphere is part of human life and has moral weight and consequences. But the homily must always be a function of the Liturgy of the Word, not a “stump speech.”

2). The Gospel of Life is truly “good news.” I have preached about abortion and other difficult topics many times, and it is always intimidating to do so. It is not easy to preach a word that will challenge so many people. We are all called to repentance and conversion, but it can be very difficult to speak sharply on an issue as fiercely contested as abortion. But upholding the dignity and sanctity of human life is truly good news, and allowing the Lord to remind me of the freedom and life that preaching this challenging word brings to His people gives me confidence and hope.

3). Both “full-on” issue-centered homilies and homilies that refer to an issue have their place. A threat as grave as that posed by Proposal 3 requires at least one homily fully dedicated to the issue. In fact, the priests and deacons of the Archdiocese of Detroit are receiving resources to help preach up to seven Sundays on this urgent topic. But such “full-on” homilies are often well complemented by homilies in which the preacher makes either a substantial or even a passing reference to the issue. There is an old saying that “repetition is the mother of learning.” Repetition also reinforces the people’s sense of the preacher’s own conviction about the seriousness of the issue. No matter what, parish priests should ensure that all of their people are equipped with all of the preaching they need to act as holy, well-informed citizens at the polls on Election Day.

4). Preaching happens in a larger context of evangelization, catechesis, and pro-life advocacy. It is impossible, even in the most complete homily, to say all that needs to be said about a topic such as abortion. Priests, deacons, and other pastoral leaders need to devise strategies to inform and motivate their people in a variety of ways. Informational evenings, bulletin articles, and information available at church doors and on parish web sites are a few of the ways to get the word out. In preparing homilies, preachers should take such efforts into consideration, but must also keep in mind that the Sunday homily is a supremely privileged mode of parish communication. The homily’s power as a liturgical act, rooted in God’s word, its reach to vastly more people than any other mode of parish communication, and the level of dedicated attention given to the homily by people who desire to be formed by God’s word to them all make the ministry of homiletic preaching extremely and uniquely important.

5). Every priest and deacon has his own set of strengths and weaknesses. Some priests and deacons are highly articulate, while others do best to keep their homilies simple and to-the-point. Some preachers are impassioned, while others are more emotionally sober. Some are great at analytical and nuanced thinking, while others struggle to express all the logic and subtlety of their inner convictions. Preachers need to be patient with themselves, even as they challenge themselves to do more in their preaching than they will find comfortable. People need to be patient with their priests and deacons, even as they respectfully encourage them to embrace this sacred duty of preaching.

6). People are complex. Homilies express God’s covenantal word to His people. God calls His people to be His own, to become and remain faithful to Him in all times and ways. In most Sunday congregations, there are wildly varying degrees of fidelity. Priests and deacons need to take this into account, neither caving in to the sinful attitudes of those who doubt the Lord and His Gospel nor turning the homily into a pep rally for the self-righteous among us. God’s word, and the homily that explains and applies this word to the lives of His people, should inform, enlighten, challenge, console, guide, and motivate all of those present to the highest degree possible.

7). Homiletic preaching has two ultimate goals: the glorification of God and the salvation of souls. What message will give God the most glory this Sunday? What message will help the most people get to heaven? These are the guiding questions any homilist should ask himself every week. And when it comes to glorifying God and saving souls, priests and deacons must think not only of the people in their congregation, but those who may be influenced, helped, or (God forbid) hurt by those people. And so it is completely correct for a preacher to consider how his homily can help to glorify God by protecting unborn children from murder, making it possible for them to be born safely and to receive the saving grace of baptism.

All of us, priests and people, need to pray for each other and for our country during this difficult time. We must pray that all of us will have the charity and courage to speak up and stand up for life and protect the most vulnerable among us, loving and protecting unborn children and their mothers in every way possible.

May God be glorified and Christ’s saving work be advanced in every homily, and in the response of every person who hears the preaching of God’s saving word of life.

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About Fr. Charles Fox 80 Articles
Rev. Charles Fox is an assistant professor of theology at Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit. He holds an S.T.D. in dogmatic theology from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum), Rome. He is also chaplain and a board member of Saint Paul Street Evangelization, headquartered in Warren, MI.


  1. Abortions occur because of unwanted pregnancies; unwanted pregnancies occur because children and young persons are not taught anymore about chastity, virginity and waiting for marriage. I saw a truck and on the back window were big letters saying” “Chastity rocks!” “Chastity is a moral virtue. It is also a gift from God, a grace, a fruit of spiritual effort. The Holy Spirit enables one whom the water of Baptism has regenerated to imitate the purity of Christ.” (CCC 2345)

    • A lot of abortions are due to extreme pressure from the relationship’s male.

      Women who work can also be looked down upon if they get pregnant. Women have to work because the cost of living is atrocious.

      Society centered around cheap goods, Amazon etc.. BTW, Amazon is one of the corporations pledged to paying for employee transport to another state for a legal termination.

      • Yup. feticide benefits employers & trafficker. Also, men who want to escape child support. A trip to Planned Parenthood’s a whole lot cheaper than 18 years of enforced child support.
        Someone said that direct abortion treats women like rental cars that can be vacuumed out & leased over & over again. No commitments.

  2. Thank you, Father Fox, for the most complete and insightful analysis of this subject I have ever seen.

    I returned to the practice of the Catholic faith on 8/8/88, and have heard only one sermon on this subject since then. I sent the priest a link to your article.

  3. Unfortunately homilies that directly on abortion are very, very few. Don’t know why, but here in the NW Chicago area have not heard a homily on abortion in years. If anything the closest the issue is brought up is in the context of the importance of life, but the evil of abortion is not directly addressed. My impression is that too many priest won’t or do not want to touch the issue with a ten foot pole. Not suprising though, since Illinois is loaded with essentialy pro abortion Catholic politicians.

  4. I don’t think of the Archdiocese of Detroit as particularly pro life. That would be less of a problem if the more rigorously pro life and Orthodox priests did not tend to be disciplined and discouraged in various ways. The quality of preaching is not nearly as important as the consistency and doctrinal rigor of the homilies. I don’t know how you accomplish that in the 21st century Church. A certain kind of priest is often described as “too rigid.” The message seems to be essentially Anglican, the via media, the middle way. No priest should feel intimidated. Priests who didn’t talk about abortion were suddenly liberated to do so after the Dobbs decision. I’ve had at least one upper middle class cradle Catholic shout at this convert that the Church permits abortion. And you know what, he seems to be right. In every election, the majority of American Catholics vote pro choice. Justice Samuel Alito’s decision seems almost miraculous. But the Archbishop of Detroit’s shocking treatment of the former pastor of Assumption Grotto, a “rigid priest” indeed,takes my breath away. Personnel remains policy. Perhaps even doctrine.

  5. Clearly, preaching on abortion is a topic that people yearn to hear about. Why? Because people are wired by God for Truth. The time I preached on abortion at two Sunday Masses I received this response: from the earlier 8 am Mass at which most attendees were barely awake the response was vigorous, loud and prolonged applause; at the 10 am Mass which was the equivalent of a “High” Mass, the attendees gave a standing ovation after the completion of the homily. Now, granted, I was highly impassioned in my delivery because I truly believed in the words I was speaking. But I like to believe that the response was due mainly to people starving to hear the truth.

  6. “Faith without works is dead.”
    Ask a parish priest to come to Planned Parenthood and bring some parishioners along.
    See what happens.
    Is ‘homiletics’ simply self virtuous navel gazing?
    Abortion is seldom condemned from the pulpit and usually obscured by a palliative phrase of respect for life including illegal immigration.
    We must pray constantly for the purification of our suffering Church as she struggles in her Passion on the Via Dolorosa savaged by corrupt clergy and corrupt government.

  7. “In most Sunday congregations, there are wildly varying degrees of fidelity.” Therein lies the problem. We have done a horrible job of catechesis when fidelity to Church teaching is a question rather than an answer. It is not “self-righteous” to believe in and live the Catholic faith. Shame on anyone who thinks that devout Catholicism could even be considered as “self-righteousness.”

  8. “Yet under Proposal 3 even younger girls could get an abortion without parental consent.”

    What if the 12-year-old child is estranged from her parents?

    • 12-year olds aren’t eligible to be considered emancipated minors so unless they’re in some other legal status, parents are still in charge of their welfare.
      And if a 12-year-old girl is expecting, then there is the welfare of two lives to consider.
      I’m a descendant of a 12-year-old bride. So, whenever that age is used in a discussion about feticide I think of my fearless great grandmother & the 9 children she successfully raised during wartime & under all sorts of privations. She’s my personal hero & role model of an amazingly strong, resourceful woman.

  9. My parish is on the edge of a major blue city. I have NEVER heard a sermon on the sin of abortion. My guess is, thats because such action would result in parishioners of a leftist persuasion complaining to the Bishop or withholding donations. Possibly such persons would even actually leave the church. My opinion is that we would be better off without them, as they are not dedicated Catholics anyway and their ability to pretend to be “devout” Catholics ( like Biden and Pelosi) has a generally corrosive effect. Leftists in my parish, from Synodality survey comments recently published, would be comfortable with the German Bishops, regarding support for those practicing prohibited sexual activity. I am sure they know better. I am equally sure that since sexual sins are never preached about in church, they feel free to ignore the teachings or have convinced themselves such sins no longer matter.

    • Good preaching purifies the church by separating the wheat from the chaff. The church is always better off – always – when people who are basically unbelievers leave. People’s eternal destinies are hanging in the balance. It’s no time to be playing games.

      • Very true. How do I know? Jesus showed us in the Gospel of John Chapter 6. Jesus knew he couldn’t keep everyone in the fold. And he’s the Second Person of the Holy Trinity. We’re not only fooling ourselves, but perhaps we’re even engaging in the sun of pride, if we think we can do better than Jesus did.

  10. This is not a very difficult question. Of course there cannot be a constant drumbeat on the issue, which can be counterproductive due to dull expectations from years of feel-good homilies. Aside from a select few priest friends of mine, active in pro-life work, I haven’t even heard the word sin mentioned a single time in a homily in forty years, not even on Good Friday. Our morally desensitized culture can be discussed in numerous ways in homilies in the context of almost any Gospel reading, but it rarely is with most priests.

    • What! Incredible. But then I haven’t, or have rarely listened to others’ sermons. Except a former bishop did speak of sin.
      As to abortion and killing, clergy have become hyper sensitized to parishioners ‘feelings’, political correctness. That includes many bishops who seem frightened of losing their tax exemption. That I’ve contested with some. This mistaken, unspoken policy is as acknowledged a cause for cynicism and empty pews.

    • 2 Timothy 4:3-4 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

      Galatians 4:16 Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?

      There are those that will say Papa eschews God’s truth! Others hold to the opinion that Papa prefers the aims of cultural Marxism.

  11. Why is the most important issue of our times rarely discussed in our churches? When our priest discusses abortion it is talked about as sanctity of life issues, not the killing of a human, why is that? When I see empty pews in our church I reflect on our lack of leadership and the lack of backbone in our churches.”Sanctity of life “ is a code word for deacons and priests that lack courage to speak to truth!

  12. Bishops, priests and deacons who preach on abortion during election campaign period, then make it appear as if it’s the only issue to be voted on, and conclude with a misleading and mistaken open partisan endorsement should be reminded that the Church’s preachers and teachers are to never become partisan even while becoming political in expounding the Church’s teaching. The distinction between political and partisan in the Church’s thought is very clear. Those ordained to preach ought to study as often as possible so as to faithfully and consistently teach the official Church teaching on the matter: the USCCB document, “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” and the official summary of Catholic Social Teaching, “Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church.” Clearly the teaching office of the Church has spoken and taught that while the issue of abortion maybe “preeminent” it does not mean it is the only issue to be considered in during election. It calls for the use of prudential judgment and conscience in voting by assessing the programs and policies of the party, politician or proposition regarding all – not just one – life issues from womb to tomb, from conception to natural death, in discerning which or who to vote for. Just by appraising Jesus’ life and message and the Catholic tradition about the spectrum of varied social life concerns, one can easily see that active care for the unborn must not be the only concern for Catholics in voting. The good news that is proclaimed, and preached by the Church embraces and stands for all of life – the unborn and the born – and now in this critical times, the very matrix of life, our planetary home. That most Catholics today are mainly single issue (abortion) voters, the fault can mainly be directed at their ordained preachers and teachers who are not sufficiently trained in Catholic Social Teaching. In turn, Catholics are inadequately formed by these ordained preachers to see, actively care for, and above all vote about the full spectrum of life. Extremely worse, a few “celebrities” among the clergy have even by default become highly partisan preachers, turning into endorsers, because of this lingering misunderstanding that only abortion matters in voting. Catholics faithful to scripture and tradition embrace and promote the full range of and matrix of life in voting and actual active care. That also holds for bishops, priests, deacons in their preaching.

    • Deacon Dom,
      How do we enjoy any social benefits when the womb becomes our tomb?
      It’s about priorities and what’s most critical. Like being born.

    • “Clearly the teaching office of the Church has spoken and taught that while the issue of abortion maybe “preeminent” it does not mean it is the only issue to be considered in during election.”

      No one is assuming or stating this, so the argument here is a straw man.

    • Deacon Dom, Could you let me know what parishes have sermons about abortion during election times. I have not observed any that even do that! In your piece you speak to the issue of abortion should not be the only reason for voting for a candidate. Talk obout politicizing an issue! I hope there are many people who take the time to read these comments and seee what has become of our Church , when a deacon (if you truly are) can place abortion in the same category as housing, roads, taxes etc, we truly are in deeep trouble. Steve

    • Where is the data, not anecdotal, that shows the clergy preaching on abortion even occasionally on Sundays???

      A red herring.

      Why are you parroting the Bernardin bullet points?

    • This no such thing as separatable “issues.” Morality is a coherent whole, and it is impossible to be wrong about abortion and be right about anything else. Indifference towards abortion by our bishops explains why they are as willfully stupid about everything else as the Democratic Party.
      Not to mention consistently wrongheaded in their scoulding condescention towards what they call the “right wing.” In fact, conservatives give more time and money to helping the downtrodden than liberals by factors of 30 to 1 to a hundred to 1 depending on the activity.

    • Following the catch-all perspective of Deacon Dom, maybe we should look for homilies not only on the Fifth Commandment, but also the other five overlooked and prohibitive Commandments. Yes, that’s it. And, propose a standard, perhaps such homilies should be delivered once every ten years, whether needed or not!

      Then we might conduct a synod to discern the calendar sequence of delivery, probably with flip charts and the bishops as “facilitators,” and decided by a majority vote or instead as “synthesized” later by a royal note-taker.

      • Let’s not turn to the rhetorical technique called “whataboutism,” that is bringing other issues, commonly deployed by those who do not want to take the matter on hand head on. Here I’m referring to Catholic Social Teaching – not any partisan talking point – which call on Catholics to use conscience and prudential judgment to weigh on various social concerns, not just one, when voting as to the worthiness and capabilities of parties, politicians and propositions to solve these matters that concern the society at large. The word “preeminent” was introduced into the latest edition of “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship; it is not made up. It also means that it is not to be the only issue to matter when Catholics discerning who or which to vote for. That is why this is imperative that the ordained ministers who and when they preach on abortion keep this body of Catholic teaching in mind and bring this out clearly for Catholics to understand, so that Catholics – at least many of them – cease to be single issue voters. And not only those ordained to preach and teach, but for all the baptized Catholics, we are called to unveil the treasures (by reading and studying), apply in concrete active care and in voting, and put an end to Catholic Social Teaching being “the Church’s best kept secret.”

        • Deacon Dom,

          How does any candidate’s platform become acceptable to a God-fearing Catholic if they support the heinous, gruesome murder of the voiceless and defenseless?

          All of the church’s social teachings hinge on the right to life.

          Lastly, the church must be partisan as one party’s platform is diametrically opposed to the church’s central social teachings. This is simply following St. Paul’s teaching to let the Faith permeate and penetrate all aspects of life.

          I am terribly saddened by the fact that you and so many clergy refuse to see this and lead their respective flocks into further confusion, ambiguity, or worse.

          I am praying for you…

          Ave Maria!!

          • I invite you to read and study the text itself of the official church teaching easily accessible on the internet: “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” by the U.S. Bishops. Your thoughts and questions expressed here in this comment will be clarified.

        • The Satanic lies of the seamless garment arguments are simply invitations to induce the thoughtless to travel the road to perdition. Voting for those who not only support, but propagandize, the slaughter of innocent life in the womb is a grievous mortal sin. Deacon Dom and other apologists for infantocide have allowed the Party of Death to expand their initiative from “legal, safe and rare’ to unrestricted and government financed murder right up to the moment of birth. There is absolutely no compensating moral initiative from the party of death that offsets the murder of 65,000,000+ innocent babies( in the US alone). It is not in my authority to accuse Deacon Dom but I do accuse his words of absolutely demonic in nature.

          • You are wrong. You are illogically attributing to me what I have never said and do. I am presenting the Church’s official position. It is pro-life. It is pro-life from womb to tomb, from conception to natural death. It is full pro-life! What you understand and hold is not genuine and full pro-life, it is only pro-birth or at most anti-abortion. How did you come to conclude I am for abortion? Illogical! I presented here what I hold and the Church’s teaching on the matter. Think! Think with the Church, not with your ideology or party or any other human organization’s agenda. In the context of this article and our comments here, this truly shows the importance and imperative for the ordained preachers to really and clearly teach the Church’s official teaching on this matter when they preach on abortion because of this dominant misunderstanding on the part of many Catholics like you who are single issue (abortion) voters during elections. I invite you to read for yourself the Church teaching documents I cited above and apply them when you vote using your conscience and prudential judgment and especially in concrete active care for the unborn and born: “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” and the “Compendium on Social Doctrine of the Church.”

          • Deacon Dom I think you misdirect yourself on what the 2 documents are indicating. I did read the USCCB letter and from time to time I have used the Compendium. There would be nothing wrong in prudence for a voter to disqualify an abortion politician and vote against him because of it. And no voter in good conscience may prudently vote for an abortion politician. The issue is somewhat more complicated than that and as a deacon you should pick up on it. Once elected politicians can start bargaining and then slip on defending life properly and this impacts everything such as to make the “single-issue” choke-up a mere quibble. The questions of the fortitude of the pro-life candidate as well as his milieux, should count in your deliberation. By milieux I envisage a) his depth, b) his range and c) his reach, to be able to advance the defense of the unborn.

            Somebody of some importance finds that unholy. Don’t be taken in by it.

        • Yes true prudence would forestall us from becoming so entangled we lose all direction. Let us imagine a member of the youth group in the parish uncovers an abortion ring in the RCIA heretofore kept under wraps.

          So what, now they are going to say the youth has not done enough metanoia and therefore until he does more metanoia nothing should be done to stop the ring?

        • Deacon Dom: Enough of your presumption that all others have no understanding of “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship.” True in some cases, plausibly, but—All of the CST is first in support of the transcendent dignity of each person, without exception…

          This, rather than any political party, interest group, faction, nation or nation state, or Aztec slogan about “health care” as bundled into a package deal; viz, CST: BECAUSE of the central principle of each HUMAN PERSON, then to see that the FAMILY is not an arbitrary legal fiction of the State, or an exploitable market segment of “the economy”; to see that we have RIGHTS because we first have RESPONSIBILITIES (Newman); to see that while SOLIDARITY means specific human relationships are real, they are also “non-exclusionary” (John Paul II); to see that solidarity does not preempt subsidiarity (and vice versa); to see that SUBSIDIARITY means the State is neither the origin nor the sum total of human community (Pius XI, Quadragesimo Anno); to see that the contributing human WORKER is not to be objectified as only a commodity/skill-set summarily expendable (“creative destruction” pink slips); to see that the POOR of all kinds!—including two generations of the spiritually misled—are not to be triaged (neither the financially impoverished, not peripheralized traditionalist “bigots”); to see that CARE for GOD’s CREATION is to be reclaimed as a complex moral issue (rather than either endorsed or dismissed as a “tree-hugger” political religion).

          We can agree with you that the CST has breadth, but it first has a right to breath:
          So, to which version of “Forming Consciences” should we refer? How about 1998 when the USCCB (then the NCCB) said it this way in “Living the Gospel of Life”:

          “We pray that Catholics will be advocates for the weak and the marginalized in all these areas. But being ‘right’ in such matters (the CST litany) can never excuse a wrong choice regarding direct attacks on innocent human life. Indeed, the failure to protect and defend life in its most vulnerable stages renders suspect any claims to the ‘rightness’ of positions in other matters affecting the poorest and least powerful of the human community” (Living the Gospel of Life, no. 23).

          • Note, I have clearly distinguished above that this cluelessness about the Church’s teaching on the matter and particularly on the two documents I cited above, holds true for many if not most – clearly, not all! – Catholics. That is why it imperative for the ordained preachers to read and study them deeply so as to in turn be able to teach them when they preach on abortion. This way the official Church teaching can fully be received by all the faithful, stop being one issue (abortion) voters during elections and apply in Catholic faith driven concrete active care for the unborn and born. You should know, you read the latest edition of “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” so as to think synchronically with what our pastors, the U.S. bishops, think and teach for our guidance about social political issues related to the latest presidential election.

          • Deacon Dom it seems the Pope is apt to argue via one word, “synod”, what you couldn’t arrive to via the letter of the US bishops and the Compendium.

            “A Church open to everyone” as a way of preaching to abortion politicians is antithetical to everything, whether as Deacon, Dom or Pope.

            See the video in the link

            Yet the Holy Father has no qualifications offered in what he says. Somehow his position and/or, our being “on the way” would allow him to postpone naming what they are.

            Because “listening” during “walking together” with abortion politicians “is the way of the Church”, it follows that you must preach voting for them too?

            I don’t know about all that and you haven’t satisfied the queries that arise.


  13. I too have heard only one sermon on abortion ever. It was given in the context of 40 days for life by a younger, orthodox (not rigid) priest. The reaction was stunned silence. I will never forget it. Yes, people are hungry for this kind of teaching in their preaching.

  14. Regarding the abortion issue: If the church and parents would speak more about chastity and the positive reasons for it, fewer young people might find themselves looking for an abortion in the first place.That concept alone should encourage more priests to speak on this topic. Not just the sinful aspect of sexual activity outside of marriage but the positive attributes of chastity. Peace of mind is one. The value of purity and a lack of a sexual “history” is another.

  15. Just a few comments concerning the many unsupported statements by a person who identifies himself as Deacon Dom (hereafter DD):

    1. Documents published by the USCCB are not Official Church teaching as DD declares them to be, though such documents may include official church teaching. Any deacon worth his salt understands this reality concerning any documents published by smaller jurisdictions within the Church, because official Church teaching comes only from the Holy See. This attempt by DD to make it look like the USCCB’s letter of “guidance” is itself official Church teaching is disingenuous or remarkably obtuse…or perhaps both.

    2. To the extent that any USCCB document does not contain Official Church teaching, it can be faithfully challenged and not simply swallowed hook, line, and sinker as DD is more or less falsely proclaiming. Take the documents seriously to glean any wisdom in them, but do not ignorantly assume that such documents express the mind of the Universal Church on all things within the document, because many such documents do not do this*, and “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship” falls into this category of failing in quite a few respects (especially when it adds comments about various issues that are highly debatable, and there is no definitive Church teaching on the issues), but it does indeed contain sound wisdom when it repeats sound Church teaching in many parts of the document.

    3. The malicious charge made by DD that too many Catholics are one-issue voters is not supported by any credible evidence, and so making such rash and demonstrably false judgments is just flat out wrong…no matter how much DD believes his presumptuous narrative is correct.

    4. DD and fellow travelers write as they do to try to persuade Catholics that it is okay (and perhaps even good) to vote for people who support and promote abortion. And because of this, it is also okay (and perhaps good) to vote for “fellow” pro-abort Catholics like Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi despite their ongoing defiance of Church teaching and the Natural Law regarding human life. Indeed, DD et al. rationalize such voting by proudly declaring as if they know better (they don’t) while many others do not that “there are more things to be concerned about in the voting booth besides abortion,” so it’s “quite acceptable” to vote for the likes of Biden and Pelosi because their aggressive actions that bring about the murder of many innocent children in the womb are, “even though of preeminent concern,” still just one issue among many that should also be considered. And so if you find other things you favor about people like Biden and Pelosi (if you are really that unwise), you can ignore your objections to abortion and vote for them, and don’t worry about many more murders coming about through their actions in office.

    *For instance, one super yahoo document authored by the USCCB has been presented by another individual in CWR with Deacon in front of his name, and he presents it as more or less the last word on racism and related issues. It is entitled “Open Wide Our Hearts.” In reality, this document is heavily populated by a collection of woke/super left declarations, many of which are objectively false and should be rejected out of hand. It is actually a shameful document in many respects, yet the USCCB published it. No faithful Catholic owes any allegiance to such a document just because it was published by the USCCB.

  16. Under Fr. Fox’s Point 4, couldn’t every parish use its lawn or air space to continuously tell complicated people how simple some of the issues are? So that even if they feel complex under Point 6 they could feel confident of doing the right thing every time by defending life and forgetting themselves for the cause.

    It’s not my idea -at least, not totally; I got it from knowall’s comment in the link.


  17. As a parishoner I would be most elated to receive from the priest his own right sense of where he sees Scripture acting upon -within- the life and death issues. This selection is one perspective; it’s not exhaustive and the priest will have a fuller source of inspiration than I would.

    Lk. 1:41:44
    Mk. 10:13-16
    Ps. 127:3
    Prov. 24:11-12
    Wis. 7:1
    Eccl. 11:5
    Jer. 1:5
    Matt. 18:5
    Matt. 18:10
    Matt. 18:14
    Matt. 19:14
    1 Kg. 17:21
    2 Kg. 4:33-37
    1 Kg. 3:24-25
    Gn. 4:9
    Gn. 4:10
    Matt. 2:13-18
    Ps. 139
    Gn. 9:5.

    Bless us O Lord and all whom You will touch in the glory of Your Spirit. Amen.

  18. Life begins at conception – true yesterday, today and tomorrow.


    If it’s growing – it’s alive.

    Recommended reading – ‘Confronting the Language Empowering the Culture of Death – Studies in the Thought of John Paul II’, William Brennan, 2008, Sapientia Press of Ave Maria University.

    Very important piece – let me repeat the title – CONFRONTING THE LANGUAGE EMPOWERING THE CULTURE OF DEATH

  19. One aspect of the broader issue with respect to politics and the tragedy of abortion is the reality that in many respects for the GOP, christianity is a trojan horse used to further many aspects of their agenda that are in stark contrast to the character and message of the person of Jesus as described in the gospels.

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