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A reflection on the righteousness of memorials to the preborn

We choose to remember the evil afflicting the innocent in our country so that we might speak and act in love.


You formed my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. – Psalm 139:13

Praised be Jesus Christ, the Lord of the Living and the Dead.

The National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children is September 9. Because of this somber day, I have tried my best to write an article on the reasons for having memorials to the preborn.

I tried to write in the third person because, after all, this is not about me. I am not the one whose body has been ripped asunder or who has endured any other of the cruel ways innocent human life is destroyed by abortion.

I was conceived in love. I was not abandoned. I was born and cared for.

But, still, that which once would have been an easy academic exercise to explain the theological, philosophical, cultural, and human reasons for memorialization, has—at least for now—become very difficult.

And so, I write in the first person.

Perhaps, after seeing the gruesome evidence with my own eyes, after attending numerous burials of victims of the unspeakable crime of abortion, and after holding 110 of our tiny brothers and sisters in my own hands last year as I laid these victims of mass murder to rest, it is difficult to describe the experience in any way but the first person. It has left me grasping for ways to speak that which is unspeakable.

Why do we memorialize, in varied ways, those who have died through abortion?

These babies are created in the image and likeness of God. As the psalmist reminds us: They are beloved of their Creator. They are more than just a thought in His mind, and having been called into being, they will never be forgotten. They are eternally loved by the Lord.

A memorial reminds us that we, too, should not forget. These little human beings are loved by God as He loves us. They are our brothers and sisters.

In the burials and memorial services I have attended, I have seen the tears of those who have fought and continue to fight for the good of these beloved of God as they remember the dead little ones. It is striking that many who have fought for life for decades still allow themselves to hurt enough to cry. What a blessing it is to be reminded of the One who is full of compassion (choosing to “suffer with” us). We are told in scriptures that at the grave of Jesus’ friend Lazarus, “He wept.”

We mourn at these hallowed places, these burial sites, when most of the world would rather not be bothered with such so that they may go on their merry way, as if this vast carnage is of no matter. This indifference perpetuates the violence, for apathy in the face of such great evil will bring judgment on individuals and nations.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer once said, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”

We choose to remember the evil afflicting the innocent in our country so that we might speak and act in love. Perhaps our tears, our loving efforts, and our remembrance are forms of thanksgiving and reparation. Our prayers, trusting in the infinite mercy of Jesus, will find the dead babies in heaven, will help put an end to the culture of death, and will bring about repentance and healing to the moms and others scarred by the darkness in which they have participated.

It is only right and just that we remember the little ones who have perished in the war in which they had no say. A memorial, even a grave marker, reminds us that there were real victims and that there are mangled bodies here whose blood cries out to heaven. And for our own good, we remember and hope to remind others.

It is strange, though, that most memorials to the dead in massive conflicts are dedicated after the killing has ceased. We would have hoped that the memorials of the 20th century—which was bloodier than all the previous centuries combined—would have stood as a testament that we dare not forget the evils of which we are capable, lest they be repeated.

The memorials to the preborn remind us that there is an ongoing veritable slaughter on an unimaginable scale. They should serve to remind us that we are engaged in a struggle to build a culture of life—and that it is a struggle. It will take effort, it will take suffering, and it will take the grace of God to advance and to end the diabolical mess we face.

I have not much wanted to talk about the experience of seeing (and burying) the victims of a mass murder in our nation’s capital. Early on I was asked how the experience changed me. I am still trying to figure some of that out. But there is one thing I knew from the beginning: I have not done enough for God, for the babies, and for the mothers in my efforts.

Perhaps because of the observance of the National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children—and/or of placing before your mind’s eye the slaughter of the holy innocents—you too will be motivated to do more for them.

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About Fr. Bill Kuchinsky 1 Article
Fr. Bill Kuchinsky is the Spiritual Advisor to American Life League.


  1. We read: “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”

    As in the silent response to the dubia (re the natural law and moral absolutes) and, then, in the doors opened for the novelties that have followed? On too many points, even with the nodding heads of sy-nod-ality?

  2. Out there at India’s Anandwan (Forest of Bliss), the resident leprosy survivors and their differently-abled allies have developed a rose garden in memory of the unborn and the aborted kids of the world who are denied the right to bloom. Day after day in rain or under scorching sun, the caretakers of the garden lovingly water the plants, talk to the rose buds, and do togetherness with companion species like flowers and birds.

  3. The Catholic dogma of Limbo is ‘de fide catholica’ by virtue of its constant and definitive proposal by the ordinary and universal Magisterium. “…the punishment for original sin (only) is the ‘carentia visio Dei’ (the loss of the vision of God – Innocent III). The souls of these infants are in the limbus puerum – not Heaven. There they enjoy a natural knowledge of God and suffer no pain. The speculations of some 20th century theologians that they might be in Heaven has no dogmatic value. See ‘The Right of Unborn lnfants to Eternal Life Threatened by Abortion,’ by Fr. Bertrand de Margerie, published by the Daughters of St. Paul in the early eighties. Fr. John Hardon also upholds this dogma in his ‘Question and Answer Catechism (1981).’

    • I trust God to be a merciful Father to all His children & even if we don’t have it all figured out as far as Limbo goes, I know He does. And that’s good enough for me.

  4. There is no baptism of desire by proxy. That approxmates the Morman error, who engage in water Baptism by proxy for unbaptised dead adults. Pius XII taught that baptism of desire is possible only for adults who have the use of reason: ‘this way (of salvation) is not open to infants.’

  5. Thank you, Father, for that touching, heartfelt reflection. Thanks be to God there are people, like you, who pray and courageously witness for life and treat the lives of the babies with great care and reverence. You care about lives and, especially, about souls.

    Heaven knows how many lives are touched or helped by the special attention given by funerals, burials, and monuments for God’s precious babies. Funerals, burials, and monuments to passed on lives all highlight the fact that the souls go on forever. The babies are not completely snuffed out in abortion. They are being cared for by God. “Can a woman forget her infant, so as not to have pity on the son of her womb? and if she should forget, yet will not I forget thee.” Isaiah 49:15.

    Many people who regret being involved in abortion may find healing when observing the dignified funerals, burials, and monuments erected for the babies. They have a holy space or place to mourn their children and can get in touch with God. Hopefully, they can repent and make peace with God. In addition, they observe by the outward signs that people do care enough for the babies to do something extra special for them. Love begets love. Also, the dear babies, complete with everlasting souls, deserve, at the very least, that much respect.

    Sadly, pro-lifers often see a Bio-Hazards Solutions truck pulling into the back alley lot of a Maryland abortion mill to pick up a red trash bag full of dismembered, dead babies’ bodies. Each time, a driver arrives, a pro-lifer begs him to stop helping the abortion/baby-killing business. A pro-lifer explains that those innocent babies are not even given the dignity of being buried, but are dumped in the bio-hazard bag like so much garbage. Even people’s pets are given the dignity of being buried, often on the family’s property. Thankfully, a few drivers have never returned and pro-lifers hope that they’ve quit the evil business for good.

    Pro-lifers warn abortion minded women that their innocent, helpless babies with heartbeats could be tortuously killed and dumped into a bio-hazard bag, if they go through with abortion. They further emphasize that their babies, who have souls, will not even be given the dignity of being buried; the dignity often afforded to a family pet. They talk about the babies’ souls going on forever and answering to God for the innocent children.

    Hopefully, by the grace of God, the abortion-minded woman may start thinking about the other, the unborn child, rather than just herself. Once she gives life to that thought, she may decide to choose life for her baby.

    Please, pray for an end of the killing, for great respect for life, for healings, conversions, and repentance. Thank you. God bless you.

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