Calendar of Activities
- Sept 27- Nov 5. 40 Days for Life Vigil- Protect mothers and children by joining this worldwide mobilization to pray and fast for an end to abortion! Reserve your slot to pray, today at www.40daysforlife.com/aurora
- Sept 30 & Oct 1. Respect Life Ministry at Welcome Center – Stop by the Welcome Center after all masses and grab a Pro-Life Rosary to pray the Rosary with your family during October
- October 1st, Respect Life Sunday – Join our St. John Neumann Respect Life Ministry at the Life Chain in Aurora, from 2:00 to 3:30 p.m., meet at Waterleaf, 3055 E. New York St. Aurora, to stand for life! Signs will be provided
- October 7, Breakfast with Babies – Bring your donations of baby items to room 216 during office hours or after Mass
- October 13-21, Respect Life Novena- Help build a culture of life by praying this Novena with a different pro-life prayer intention each day. Register at www.respectlife.org
- October 27, St. John Neumann Day of Prayer at 40 Days for Life Vigil. This is the day that our parish is committed to have prayer coverage! Join us by praying at Aurora’s Planned Parenthood. Pick your slot to pray from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. at www.40daysforlife.com/aurora
- October 28, Pro-life Rosary Workshop. Join us for a morning of inspiration and prayer as we make together pro-life rosaries and pray. All materials will be provided! Meet us after 8:30 a.m. mass at the Hoffman Center. This is a family friendly activity.
- Nov.4, Diocesan Holy Hour for Life – St. John Neumann will be the host of this Diocesan event. Join us at Our Lady of Guadalupe Chapel after 8:30 a.m. Mass for a Holy Hour of Adoration for Life.
Prayer for Radical Solidarity
O Blessed Mother, at the angel’s word you went in haste to the aid of your cousin Elizabeth. Although pregnant yourself, you placed her needs before your own.
By your example of radical solidarity, teach us to reverence and protect those in need, without conditions or expectations. Ask your Son to give us unfailing determination to witness to the profound dignity of every person, at every stage and in every circumstance.
In that first Eucharistic procession, you carried Jesus to Elizabeth in her time of need. Obtain for us the grace to bring Christ to any expectant mother who is alone and afraid.
May our support help them to find hope and strength in the Lord.
Copyright © 2023, USCCB, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.
Radical Solidarity 2023 Respect Life Reflection
In the Gospel of John, shortly before he is to suffer his Passion, Jesus proclaims to his disciples: “I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another” (Jn 13:34). And it is love for one another that Jesus says will be the identifying characteristic of his disciples.
The Church’s entire social doctrine is guided by the fundamental principle that every human life has innate dignity and incomparable value: “Every human being is the object of God’s infinite tenderness, and he himself is present in their lives.”i As disciples of Christ, we are called to make a sacrificial gift of ourselves for the sake of our neighbor, for “to love someone is to desire that person’s good and to take effective steps to secure it.”ii
Fulfilling Christ’s command to love one another takes shape in our practice of solidarity. Solidarity is the means by which we put our love for others into action, making the good of others our own. Solidarity “is not a feeling of vague compassion or shallow distress at the misfortunes of so many people… On the contrary, it is a firm and persevering determination to commit oneself to the common good…to the good of all and of each individual, because we are all really responsible for all.”iii
In reaction to the overturning of Roe v. Wade, some areas of the country now protect the child in the womb, while others are doing all they can to increase access to abortion. At this critical moment, we have been entrusted with new opportunities and new responsibilities to build a civilization of authentic love. Our culture claims to offer women so-called “choice,” but ultimately abandons mothers to make tragic and painful decisions alone. We must lead the way in showing the alternative: “In firmly rejecting ‘pro-choice’ it is necessary to become courageously ‘pro woman,’ promoting a choice that is truly in favor of women. … The only honest stance, in these cases, is that of radical solidarity with the woman. It is not right to leave her alone.” iv
Experience shows that when a mother is supported, “she is even capable of heroism.”v Radical solidarity compels us to come alongside vulnerable mothers in profound friendship, compassion, and support for both them and their preborn children. It requires us to address the fundamental challenges that lead an expectant mother to believe she is unable to welcome the child God has entrusted to her. We must do all we can to provide mothers, children, and families with the support they need to flourish. This cannot be accomplished by laws or policy alone, but requires the continual transformation of our own hearts, recognizing in every person the face of Christ, and placing their needs before our own.
Radical solidarity “refers to something more than a few sporadic acts of generosity. It presumes the creation of a new mindset.”vi A culture of radical solidarity “gets involved by word and deed in people’s daily lives… and it embraces human life, touching the suffering flesh of Christ in others.”vii We each have our particular gifts, role, and obligation within the Body of Christ to help build a culture of life. We must honestly ask ourselves, “What radical, out-of-the-ordinary, actions have I taken to help a pregnant or parenting mother in need, or to proactively contribute to a culture of life in some other way?”
Inspired by Christ’s own example of love, may we “enter fully into the fabric of society, sharing the lives of all, listening to their concerns, helping them materially and spiritually in their needs, rejoicing with those who rejoice, weeping with those who weep.”viii May we work together to bring about a culture of life through radical, sacrificial, Christ-like love.
To learn more about the call to radical solidarity—including ways that you can help support pregnant and parenting women in your community—visit respectlife.org/radical-solidarity.
Scripture texts in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Washington, D.C. and are used by permission of the copyright owner. All rights reserved. Used with permission. Excerpts from Evangelii gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel), © 2013; Caritas in veritate (Charity in Truth), © 2009; and Sollicitudo rei socialis (On Social Concern), © 1987. Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Used with permission. All rights reserved. Pope John Paul II. 2005. Crossing the Threshold of Hope. Edited by Alfred A. Knopf. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2023, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.
Respect Life Events
National Life Chain – Stand for one hour in silent prayer. Pro-life signs are furnished.
Pray with Us – group prayer opportunities are available here and in Aurora. On the 3rd Friday of the month, we gather at the Planned Parenthood facility in Aurora for one hour of prayer. Commitment: according to your schedule
Join E-mail Tree – Be informed and act upon proposed abortion legislation.
Respect Life Committee – help accomplish parish education, concerns, and projects.
Respect Life Helpers – Help with project details such as flowers, delivering baby gifts, assisting with Life Chain, and leading prayers.
Respect Life Prayers
- For all Catholics: during this Respect Life Month, our hope in Christ’s resurrection will strengthen us in protecting the gift of human life; We pray to the Lord,
- For women and men suffering after abortion, may the Church’s abortion healing ministry help them find peace and healing through Christ’s endless mercy; We pray to the Lord,
- For those nearing the end of life, may they receive care that respects their dignity and protects their lives as they place their hope in the promise of eternal life; We pray to the Lord,
- For those deprived of their human needs, and their human rights; that they may be given the dignity which God confers all his people; We pray to the Lord,
- For all who are forgotten or thrown away, especially for the poor, the sick and the aged, that God might change our hearts and move us to love them as the image of Christ; We pray to the Lord,
- For all who are lonely or afraid, for the people on the streets, old people in nursing homes, prisoners with no one to visit them, and all whom the world has forgotten; that Christ might lead us to them, We pray to the Lord,
- For every person who suffers from violence, and especially for women whose pain breaks their hearts, that through the intercession of she whose heart was pierced with a sword, they might know peace and strength, We pray to the Lord,
- For families and individuals who have left or fled their homes, seeker safer and better lives. We lift up to you their hopes, fears and needs, that they may be protected on their journeys, their dignity and rights; We pray to the Lord,
- That on this Respect Life Sunday we may recommit ourselves to upholding the dignity of every human life; We pray to the Lord,
- That the life of every human person, from conception to natural death, might be protected in our laws and cherished in our hearts; We pray to the Lord,
May God grant us the wisdom and courage to lovingly protect His gift of human life at every stage, in sickness and in health; We pray to the Lord. Amen.