You describe yourself as pro-life. You are active in some way in protesting against abortion. Is there anything more you can actually do to turn what is a powerful tide?
When we oppose something, it seems very counter-intuitive to get very close to it and to know it intimately. Yet to overcome your enemy, you have in a sense to become your enemy first. Standing on the sidelines shouting that abortion is evil, abortion is murder does nothing and convinces no-one.
Abortion is indeed evil but like many forms on evil on the face of this earth, it is often entered into with the best – ie the most muddled and confused – of intentions. It is not entered into with hearts of stone and intent to murder. It is not entered into, often, because women don’t care. Would that things were so simple! There are some, a few – who knows, how can one tell? – women who have abortions with no conscience or caring about what it involves. They say they have a right to do what they want with their bodies and they fight for legal, easily available abortion.
But for so many women, it is not like that. If you were to hear the average abortion story, it would make you weep. Or at least I hope it would make you weep, I hope you do not also have a heart of stone. Stories of coercion, of intense conflict, of abandonment and of naivety exploited. Of lies and ignorance. Of believing that abortion is somehow the best thing, the most moral thing in the circumstances. Of seeing no better way because your world has not presented you with one – and we all so terribly, terribly dependent on each other.
Take the time to listen to women’s stories, to search them out. Men’s stories, too. Try to imagine that you too yourself might be or have been in that situation. Take the time to imagine what it might be to be that someone in that situation really needs – someone shouting that what they are doing is murder, or someone who sees and understands their fear, their desperation, their wounds? Someone who, above all, tells them that there can be another way, and who offers concrete help to facilitate that.
Let your protests be full of compassion and, like Christ, refuse to cast the first stone at the adulterous woman.