Thursday, March 12, 2015

20th Anniversary of Evangelium Vitae Novena

Twenty years ago, on the Feast of the Annunciation, Pope John Paul II (now Saint John Paul II) gave a gift to the prolife movement and the whole world in the encyclical Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life). The Culture of Death had taken hold of the world after the beautiful message of Humanae Vitae, a life affirming encyclical by Pope Paul VI had been largely ignored.

The spilling of innocent blood through abortion and other atrocities can only be reparated by the pure and Precious Blood of Jesus Christ. As a plea for healing in our world we share a special Novena here. It was an inspired group effort, initiated by my friend in Australia. Her blog, Light Up the Darkness, shares a treasure trove of prolife information. The meditations were written by her hand and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Each day also brings a relevant excerpt of Evangelium Vitae. The text was approved and foreword written by Father Vincent Edward Mark Bertrand, MA, MDiv, JCLFounder/Director of Marian Advocates for Life. My part in this endeavor is the creation of the graphics and a bit of publicity.

We will be praying daily for issues concerning the following topics relevant to the respect for life. Each day will have a unique intention and excerpt of Evangelium Vitae:

Contraception * Abortion * Euthanasia * Exploitation (embryonic stem cells, cloning, etc.) * Sex trafficking * Legislators * Clergy * Laity * Chastity

How can you participate? I'm glad you asked! Here are a few suggestions:

  • Please prayerfully consider joining us,these 9 days (March 16 - 24), in praying for the strengthening of respect for all life - from fertilization until natural death.  
  • There is a Evangelium Vitae Novena Facebook event you may join for daily reminders and the opportunity for interaction with like-minded prolife advocates.  
  • If you'd like a bit of history behind the struggle for the respect of life, check out my column at Catholic Stand.
  • The text of Fr. Bertrand's foreword and the prayer by Pope John Paul II and daily meditations can be found here and here
  • For your convenience, I will also be sharing the daily meditations as graphics daily. They will be available both on the Evangelium Vitae Novena Facebook event and on the Designs by Birgit Facebook fan page, as well as on this blog. 
  • Use the hashtag #EvangeliumVitae when tweeting about this Novena or any prolife issue during this time.
  • Use your own social media to share and promote this prolife effort.

Evangelium Vitae Daily Meditations

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 1 - Contraception

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 2 - Abortion

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 3 - Euthanasia of the Elderly and Disabled

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 4 - Commodification of Unborn Children and Mothers

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 5 - Sex Industry

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 6 - Legislators

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 7 - ClergyEvangelium Vitae Novena Day 8 - Laity

Evangelium Vitae Novena Day 9 - Chastity

Evangelium Vitae Novena 20th Anniversary - Closing Prayer

Please join us from March 16 until the final prayer on the Feast of the Annunciation on March 25. Thank you and God bless you for your advocacy for LIFE!

 In His Name for Life, Birgit J