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Broken? Stanza IX – Part II

June 21, 2013 by  
Filed under Becky Ward, Broken

Broken?

But peace cannot be found this way,
nor will lasting joy be had.
Only temporary pleasures,
self put first in a world gone mad.

pieta4A sad irony in the debate about abortion is the fact that women are asking, no,  demanding, to be abused. Abortion is abuse, plain and simple. It is a violation of the dignity of a woman’s body, which was created to participate in the mystery of creation. God made us His special helpers. He made us with the ability to nurture and bring forth new life. We have rejected this gift! We have undergone surgical procedures, taken chemicals or allowed foreign objects to be inserted into our wombs to prevent life from starting or growing, and when these methods fail (or we don’t even bother with them), we submit to invasive procedures in filthy establishments that are under little, if any, form of government regulation to resolve the ‘problem’. Veterinary clinics are regulated; abortion clinics are not. (“Lime 5- see below”) Baby puppies are protected; baby humans are not – unless, of course, their parents want them.

And that is the crux of the matter – not what a woman has a right to do with her own body – but whether or not she (or her partner) is willing to accept and deal with the consequences of their actions when sexual encounters result in unplanned pregnancies.

Proponents tell us that abortion is a medical procedure, yet a medical procedure is something done to aid the body in doing something it normally does on its own. In stark contrast to this, abortion stops the body from doing something that is perfectly natural.   When a pregnancy is interrupted by artificial means, there are consequences that you won’t hear about on the news at night.

One of the most well documented books I’ve ever read takes a close look at the abortion ‘industry’; and make no mistake, there is big money being made in the abortion business! The title of the book is “Lime 5” by Mark Crutcher of Life Dynamics.com and I share this from the back cover:

This is a compelling 320-page expose' of the American abortion industry. A unique and uncensored look at our nation's most wrenching social issue.

It fully documents how women are being sexually assaulted, mutilated, and killed inside perfectly legal abortion clinics. It also shows how pro-choice groups have used raw political power to fight off regulation of the abortion clinic business and exposes a massive cover-up of abortion clinic disasters being carried out by an agency of the U.S. government.

Other subjects include: the medical evidence of a connection between abortion and breast cancer, the toll that working in this industry takes on abortionists and abortion clinic workers, and the barriers faced by women injured by abortion who seek compensation in the courts.

This was a difficult book to read, and I am still shaking my head in dismay wondering how things like this can actually be happening in a country that was founded upon the principles of Christianity. It is tempting to blame it all on the devil as there is no doubt that this is his handiwork. But another quote comes to mind here;

The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to remain silent (do nothing)” Most often credited to Edmund Burke

This cuts right to the heart of the matter – Christians are not living in a manner that invites or compels others to imitate our ‘way’. We are not being the light that Jesus calls us to be. We are not the salt of the earth as Jesus admonished us to be, and therefore evil has gained a foothold. Yet there is still room for hope. My spiritual director told me once; “Just remember, the darker the night sky, the more brightly shine the stars.”

As I finish this post we are six days from Pentecost, still in the Easter season. As dark as things sometimes look when we are intently focused on, or submerged in, ugly matters, I cannot think of anything to rival the darkness of Good Friday, and look what came of that!

My heart aches thinking of the babies that die every day….many of them, like my own aborted daughter, were here and gone without anyone even knowing they existed! For thirty years she has been praying for me, and I firmly believe that millions upon millions of these pure, innocent children form a white army in heaven that will trounce the devil’s plan to destroy souls. Jesus offers forgiveness, hope, and healing to all who want it; but we are too often quiet and fail to speak out. We share the message, “Abortion Kills”, but hesitate to share the one that says, “Jesus forgives”, and “Jesus saves!”

We are taught to help those of our brothers and sisters who are the most vulnerable and in most need. I do not deny that this includes providing for the physical needs of the poor…food, clothing, shelter, etc. But it also means opening our eyes to the millions of souls, both women and men, who are dead inside because of the effects of abortion, pornography, fornication, etc. – the spiritually poor; those without hope. Those whom the devil accuses daily so as to convince them; “God won’t forgive you. Are you kidding? God is good and holy, why would he pay any attention to you?”

Real love means ‘to will the good of the other’. We would not hesitate to stop a baby from poking its finger into an electrical outlet, or yelling “Fire” to get people out of a burning building. So too must we learn to see the dangers to our salvation and be willing to act and speak out for the ‘good’ of our brothers and sisters who are in spiritual peril. We must be ready and willing to share Jesus’ message of love and mercy with all those we meet. This is where they will find lasting peace and joy!

“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

Love & Prayers,

Becky

This post is part of a series. The introduction and other articles from the series can be found here once they have been published.

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About Becky Ward

Becky is a wife, mother of four (One in heaven), grandmother of five, and a "re-formed Catholic" who, after receiving the gift of a deep conversion in 2006, and working through the Disciples of Jesus and Mary faith formation program, now considers herself to be "fully Catholic" What this means is that she now, at last, understands and appreciates the beauty of the Catholic faith in such a way that she wants to share it with everyone. "I've heard that the Blessed Mother told a visionary, 'If Catholics really lived their faith, the whole world would be Catholic.' I see the truth in this, and it is my deepest hope to be a living example that draws others to Jesus. Given the nickname Rebel-Becca by her mother, Becky strongly identifies with St. John the Baptist and his call to "make straight the path of the Lord", and with his role as "Friend of the Bridegroom". The poem, "Broken?" written through her hand, is a reflection of the journey of the soul, and Becky explains what the Holy Spirit is teaching her as she writes posts for each stanza.

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  • Camila

    Dear Becky,

    I really and truly do not want to be a sore, but there is a problem with what you say here. “My heart aches thinking of the babies that die every day….many of them, like my own aborted daughter, were here and gone without anyone even knowing they existed! For thirty years she has been praying for me, and I firmly believe that millions upon millions of these pure, innocent children form a white army in heaven that will trounce the devil’s plan to destroy souls.”

    The problem is this. If the goal is to get to heaven and you believe that aborted babies are in heaven then you shouldn’t be sad about abortion. These souls according to this thinking are in union with God for eternity. Why mourn? B Abortion mills are not baptism fonts – thus the tragedy, great tragedy. This issue is complex and I don’t know that the Church has pronounced herself on this issue (I claim ignorance). I’m simply raising the problematic thinking around this.

    There are many levels of problems:

    1) One must be baptized to enter Heaven. Aborted infants weren’t baptized, so how can they enter Heaven?

    2) On the idea of baptism by desire, one needs to have the right disposition to will salvation. This is made upon the use of reason, which the infant does not yet possess (ie the Church considers 7 years old the age of reason). Yet, the infant has inherited original sin – thus the need for infant baptism.

    3) It is hard to make the case that the parents would have wanted the child to be baptized, since these are the one killing the child. It is hardly the case that a parent who wants their child dead naturally would want them alive supernaturally, right? (So for example, it is easier to make the case of children who died in the womb to Christian parents who desired the birth of their child – these children would truly have been baptized by water had they been born. Not so with aborted babies, no?)

    Becky, do you know of any official church document that states that aborted babies go to heaven?

    • LizEst

      “Nothing graces the Christian soul as much as mercy”
      (Saint Ambrose, “On the Duties of the Clergy” chapter 11, paragraph 38).

      • Camila

        What do you mean LizEst?

        • LizEst

          Exactly that. A merciful approach is best here. Though you may not have meant it as such, the content of your words insinuate that Becky, who has publicly confessed her aborted daughter, would wish her child not to be in heaven. I was shocked and prayed for you at Mass this morning. Please be more careful in the future. She has done plenty of grieving on her own and on this site and needs to be given the opportunity to heal.

          While technically and legalistically correct about the Church’s teaching, your response reflects a limited understanding and/or appropriation of the Lord’s compassion and his instruction on it, of the compassion He calls us to, and of a pastoral approach to this issue. We know that God’s mercy is infinitely greater than ours; it is fathomless. In fact, His Sacred Heart is love and mercy itself. And, we know that nothing is impossible for God. Because God exists in both eternity and time, we know that He could, and did, apply the fruits of Christ’s Paschal Mystery to the Blessed Mother beforehand so that she was born without the stain of original sin. Who, then, is to say that He would not apply the fruits of the Paschal Mystery to those aborted and stillborn babies at the moment of their deaths? After all, Christ did say, “Let the children come to me and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these” (Matthew 19:14) and “Their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father” (Matthew 18:10b). The Hail Mary says, “Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.” Because we as Church pray as a corporate body, would not our prayers also include prayers for those with original sin who, through no fault of their own, had no access to baptism? Would not our Blessed Mother pray for these who are also her spiritual children? Would not her Son hear her?

          Jesus had much to say about God’s Mercy. And, while the Church cannot officially pronounce about the ultimate “location” of these little ones, She also, following Jesus’ lead, has much to say about mercy: From the Divine Mercy devotion and the life and diary of Saint Faustina, to Blessed [soon to be Saint because of the second miracle recently attributed to his intercession] Pope John Paul II’s 1980 encyclical “Dives in Misericordia” to the corporal works of mercy to the Catechism of the Catholic Church as some have quoted here and the Rachel’s Vineyard Ministries Becky wrote about above. Scripture is replete with references to God’s mercy. “The Lord is compassion and love, slow to anger and rich in mercy…He does not treat us according to our sins nor repay us according to our faults…As far as the east is from the west so far does he remove our sins” (Psalm 103:8, 10, 12). “Mercy triumphs over judgment” (James 2:13b). I’ll continue to pray for you; please pray for me as well…and may the Lord bless you and give you peace.

          • Jeanette

            Beautifully said!

          • LizEst

            Thanks Jeanette…the credit, of course, goes to the Lord…and to His collaborators: a holy lady named Jo, from my parish, who I spoke with after Mass this morning and the Blessed Mother, and to God’s Holy Spirit who inspired during the rosary today.

    • Jeanette

      See Catechism of the Catholic Church 1261:
      As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus’ tenderness toward children which caused Him to say: “Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,” allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church’s call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.

    • Becky Ward

      Dear Wretched,

      Thank you for your questions. I’m not sure I can answer them all to your satisfaction but I will try.

      1- My heart aches for the babies who die from abortion, not because they are not happy in heaven, but because abortion is an offense against God and neighbor. I am also sorrowful that these children were not given the opportunity to live, to be held and cuddled and loved by their parents, many of whom suffer deeply and have no where to go for help because people, even good caring people, do not understand the depth of their pain. We can’t, unless we have been there….or have been trained to see what happens to people spiritually and psychologically after an abortion.

      I spent this past weekend as a team member in training on a Rachel’s Vineyard Retreat. There is a priest and a certified counselor on each team as well as others from various backgrounds. Each of whom has been on a retreat themselves to share a story of loss prior to serving on the team. I went on my first retreat just over a year ago. As Jeanette has so graciously shared, the Church entrusts these children to the mercy of God.

      I am not aware of any official document that states that aborted babies go to heaven, but my experience at the retreat, and that of hundreds of thousands of others is that they do. We meet our children on this retreat, in the presence of Jesus Himself.

      It is a huge grace and privilege to see both men and women come to the retreat on Friday afternoon fearful and looking at the ground, barely able to speak….and on Sunday see them smiling, knowing they have been forgiven and finally starting to forgive themselves, and full of hope for the future. They have hope because God has granted them the grace through this ministry and their reaching out to Him for help, to know that their children are safe with Him in heaven.

      Now I’d like to ask you a question. Do you know of any official Church document that states that aborted babies do not go to heaven?

      The Rachel’s Vineyard Manual has both, Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur, and my posts are all reviewed specifically for conformity to Church teaching before they are posted.

      • LizEst

        You are blessed to be in training as a team member for Rachel’s Vineyard. God bless you, Becky!

        • Becky Ward

          Thanks Liz, it truly is a privilege and a blessing. I get to witness miracles of healing.

          • LizEst

            Those are, indeed, miracles. As we’ve seen in Scripture, the moving of and healing of the human heart is much more difficult than the healing of the body. God bless you, Becky.

      • Jeanette

        Becky, you are a blessing for us by your postings of Broken?. I appreciate you. Thank you for hearing God’s call to help the broken hearted in all the ways that you do!

      • Camila

        Dear Becky,

        Thank you for your reply!

        Here are two good sources that help clarify this issue. In neither is it affirmed they are in heaven. I hope this helps.

        Priests for Life

        http://www.priestsforlife.org/articles/abortedbabiesbaptism.htm

        Dr. Taylor Marshall
        http://www.taylormarshall.com/2008/10/unbaptized-babies-that-die-five.html

        Though we don’t have a clear pronouncement on this issue, we may not assume they are in heaven. This does not mean they are in pain either – both articles explain this. This does not mean God is lacking mercy by not allowing them in heaven. He is God, perfectly merciful and perfectly just.

        • Becky Ward

          From the first article you referenced:

          “We are free to believe that they are in heaven with God….”

          There are spiritual realities that we do not understand, or even know of unless or until the Lord grants us the grace to do so.

          I know what I know; and it is not the desperation of a grieving mother in despair for the salvation of her child, but first-hand experience of God’s love and mercy, freely given without my having asked for it.

          You are free to believe what you will, kindly respect the right of others to do the same.

          • Camila

            Dear Becky,

            Yes, we are free to believe that they are in heaven. This however does not mean they actually are in heaven. It’s like me believing that my 95 year old grandmother is in heaven or that anyone that died is in heaven. I can’t AFFIRM with certainty that they ARE in heaven. I can only say I BELIEVE they are in heaven. It’s personal opinion – not doctrine.

          • Becky Ward

            Please show me where I said it was doctrine.

  • Jeanette

    Yesterday, I read in the Catholic Register (Canadian) that Linda Gibbons was arrested again on June 11 while protesting outside a Morgentaler abortion facility in Toronto. She has spent 10 of the past 20 years in prison for peacefully protesting outside abortion facilities. She has repeatedly ignored a 1994 temporary court order that prohibits demonstrations outside the clinic. Days before this recent arrest, she was interviewed and said, “If God’s law is not upheld, we cannot just go along to get along. For us to do nothing is rank disrespect for God’s law.” Gibbons chided the churches for not being vocal enough in their opposition to abortion. She said, ‘When the secular society looks at the Church they say, “You know what? They really don’t have a big problem with this.’ “If I do nothing, it looks like I’m comfortable with it”, she said. “We should look like we’re very uncomfortable with it and it’s not business as usual.” Asked if she had any anxiety about possibly being arrested again and sent back to prison for continuing to take a stand against abortion, Gibbons said: “God will not take you where He will not be.”
    Words to ponder and hopefully wake us up out of our slumber. If we cannot act with such courage as Linda Gibbons, I know there are many things that we can do to help…Marches for Life, joining/volunteering at pro-life groups and their efforts and/or helping them with financial aid or our prayers, voting for pro-life candidates and “pray, pray, pray” as our Mother Mary has urged us at Medjugorje (especially the rosary). God bless you Becky for this.

    • Becky Ward

      God bless her!! Thanks for sharing Jeanette, you are correct in saying that we can all help fight this battle….especially through prayer.

  • Claire from DE

    From the Catechism of the Catholic Church 1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism,
    the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in
    her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires
    that all men should be saved, and Jesus’ tenderness toward children
    which caused him to say: “Let the children come to me, do not hinder
    them,”64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation
    for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the
    Church’s call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through
    the gift of holy Baptism.

    • Camila

      Claire,

      Would you differentiate “children who have died without Baptism” from “children murdered by abortion” at all? Or would you put them all together? Do you think it matters whether they die some natural death or whether they were intentionally murdered?

      • Claire from DE

        No, I wouldn’t differentiate. Although some were wanted by their parents and others were not or, because of the use of contraceptives, some may have been unintentionally aborted, all are entrusted equally to the mercy of God. The fact is it hasn’t been revealed to us what happens to them. I know many Catholics who feel/think/hope that after death unbaptized innocents are given a knowledge of God and are in some way given the opportunity to choose Him. The idea of Limbo, which was a theological theory (which was at some times in the past taught as doctrine but wasn’t doctrine) was an unsatisfactory attempt to answer the question. If I were the parent of an unbaptized child who died I would take comfort in the knowledge that God’s mercy is beyond our understanding.

  • kcthomas

    What is the remedy ? Teach our children what is Catholicism, its essential truths, its authenticity. Only a committed hierarchy through the parishes and the dedicated families can mould the future generation to stand against these evils. Are we doing anything towards this end ?

  • Thank you, Becky for this very moving and healing Post. However the different responses are thought-provoking indeed. My humble personal view here is to hold onto the Catechism of my ancient childhood because I am now aware that Mother Church no longer believes in the Doctrine of Limbo. Could anyone who knows that it was, in fact, solemnly and officially abrogated please confirm?

    • LizEst

      It’s a lengthy document by the Vatican’s International Theological Commission called “The Hope of Salvation for Infants who Die Without Being Baptised”, approved for publication by the Holy Father on January 19, 2007, which gives the history of “limbo” and the theology behind it. It is worth reading.

      There is a key line, in paragraph 95: “We believe that, in the development of doctrine, the solution in terms of Limbo can be surpassed in view of a greater theological hope.” And, the final paragraph 103: “What has been revealed to us is that the ordinary way of salvation is by the sacrament of Baptism. None of the above considerations should be taken as qualifying the necessity of Baptism or justifying delay in administering the sacrament.[135] Rather, as we want to reaffirm in conclusion, they provide strong grounds for hope that God will save infants when we have not been able to do for them what we would have wished to do, namely, to baptize them into the faith and life of the Church.” ([135] refers to paragraph 1257 of the Catechism). Notice that it says the ordinary means is Baptism but that there are strong grounds for hope that God will save these infants who were unable to be baptized. And, the “we” can be taken as not only the parents, but the Church universal as brothers and sisters in Christ with a responsibility for all people.

      Here is the link for the document:http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/cti_documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20070419_un-baptised-infants_en.html …and God bless you, Mary!

      • Oh, thank you, Liz. Now we can all rest with gratitude knowing the “Last Word” from Mother Church on this very vital Doctrinal Truth with regard to the Souls who daily go back to the Father before they have seen the light of this World. And I notice this finally came to us in 2007

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