Respect Life Month
Re-Sensitizing Our Culture
Central to Jesus’ life and teaching is the recognition that human life is sacred. This is the foundation of all of the principles of Catholic Social Teaching. In his Theology of the Body, Saint Pope John Paul II stated, “The opposite of love is not hate, but rather using a person as if he or she were an object.” We are not meant to be used but loved. “The human person is a good toward which the only proper attitude is love.” (Saint Pope John Paul II).
Every form of abuse and exploitation has at its core the objectification of the human person. In general, abuse and exploitation involve an imbalance of power and an emphasis on one’s own needs or desires over the needs of others. Most forms of abuse, exploitation and violence are related to one another, perpetuate one another, and are fueled by a culture where human persons are treated as commodities.
Healing and prevention requires more than punishing offenders and making restitution to those harmed. Healing and prevention entails stopping the demand, re-sensitizing our culture to the value of every human life and re-claiming the status of every human person as sons and daughters of God. The real solution does not lie outside the Church, but in answering our universal call to the vocation of love and communion – to self-giving fruitful love in imitation of the Lord. To combat the evil of abuse and exploitation and restore human dignity, we must in every encounter with every person, in every decision, in every setting be Intentionally Catholic - To know Christ and make Him known. To love Christ and live His love.