I believe Advent is truly a season of LIFE, though trees are bare and days shorter. How can we not be touched by Mary and Joseph waiting to welcome a child into their lives? Faced with countless challenges, they are ready to do everything to protect this fragile new life.
Life issues abound these days. It was the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin who spoke of the need for a “consistent ethic of life” that includes many issues, such as genetics, abortion, capital punishment, and modern warfare. Working out the details, he said, belongs to “philosophers and poets, theologians and technicians, scientists and strategists, political leaders and plain citizens”. This includes all of us.
The Sant’ Egidio Community in Rome recently held a conference “A World Without the Death Penalty: No Justice Without Life“ on one life issue. Every year on November 30, they celebrate International Day of Cities for Life, when 1600+ cities around the world illuminate a public monument as a symbol that they are against the death penalty. More than two-thirds of the countries of the world have abolished capital punishment either by law or in practice. The USA is the only member of the G8 to continue the practice, with more than 3,000 on death rows.
This Advent, it would be good to take some time to ponder the gift of life and the many life issues facing us today. Choose one and make an effort to learn more about it.