On April, we celebrate the memory of Saint Gianna Beretta Molla, Italian doctor who was declared the patroness of the unborn and mothers. So we remember the sacredness of life, from its conception until its natural death.
The legalization (and even the normalization) of abortion, today supported by a large portion of the population, would once have been unthinkable. The change in society’s mentality as a whole was implemented little by little, starting with the Critical Theory, elaborated by Marxist ideological currents. This theory, which emerged from the Frankfurt School, aims to question the status quo on behalf of the “freedom” of individuals, targeting in a special way the deconstruction of the family institution. The first step for this ideology to be perpetrated was the removal of parents from the role of primary educators, allowing this function to be exercised by agents of this movement. Once the notion of family was weakened, the individual would then tend not to worry about anything but his own satisfaction, this selfishness being a facilitator for its manipulation.
However, Marxist ideology is not the only culprit for the cultural revolution that made abortion acceptable. One must also take into account radical liberalism, which preaches a perverted notion of freedom, which, contrary to what is advocated today, is not about using free will in an inordinate way in a selfish pursuit of pleasure. In the neoliberal world in which we live, it is common to hear that the liberalization of abortion would not hurt anyone’s conscience, because what you cannot do is to restrict the freedom of others and impose a certain thought on them. However, it is evident that there is a big difference between ideological pluralism and ethical pluralism, because the former concerns mere opinions, while the latter directly affects the interests of others. It is clear that freedom of opinion cannot be used as a justification to harm the right of the unborn child.
In the light of reason, the right to life prevails over all others, since any and all rights that man may have presupposes the right to life. In the light of faith, life is sacred and inviolable, it is a most precious gift granted by God (cf. Gen. 2, 7), as well as a responsibility, since we must administer it wisely in order to make it bear fruit (cf. Mt 25,14-30). This is how the Church considers it in her bimillennial tradition, unanimously condemning abortion as a very grave sin, inasmuch as it directly offends the 5th commandment of God’s Law (“Thou shalt not kill!”), often opposing the customs and ideologies of the times. On this subject, in the words of St. Paul VI, the doctrine of the Church “has not changed; moreover, it is immutable
Paul II, in his encyclical Evangelium Vitae, alerts the faithful to what he called the culture of death, that is, the continuous attempt to deconstruct the values of life and family that society tries to impose on us. We live today what the late Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI called the dictatorship of relativism, in which nothing is recognized as definitive, the ultimate measure being one’s own self and one’s wills.
“For the desires of the flesh are opposed to the desires of the Spirit, and the Spirit to the desires of the flesh” Gal 5, 17.
With the sexual revolution and the creation and spread of birth control methods, the sexual act was separated from procreation, then making it possible for sexual pleasure to be possible with the total inhibition of fecundity. The consequence of this was the overvaluation of the pleasurable dimension of sexual intercourse, which, accompanied by an individualistic and hedonistic mentality, made the aversion to having a birth rate grow. Added to this is the fact that the economic market began to commercialize sexuality, which today is directly or indirectly exploited for profit.
From this resulted the trivialization of human sexuality, against which our co-patron fought so hard with his series of catecheses known as The Theology of the Body, in which he states that the opposite of love is not hate, but the selfish use of the other for one’s own pleasure. Couples accept the unitive function (for pleasure) but discard the procreative function, disordering sexuality as God conceived it and living it in an unruly way, without accepting the responsibilities that come with love. We see a selfish generation, more concerned with its own comfort than with the life that has been generated.
As Catholics, we are called to swim against the current and, despite the cries of the world, which disguises abortion as a defense of women’s rights, we must remain firm and increasingly active in defense of the rights of the unborn child.
That through the intercession of Saint Gianna Beretta Molla, to whom the Lord granted the courage to witness the sacredness of life through the delivery of her by her daughter still in the womb, may we defend life from conception to natural death.
All for Jesus, nothing without Mary!