A message from Archbishop Miller of Vancouver issued on pro-life Sunday (June 21):
Dear brother priests, religious, and lay faithful of the Archdiocese of Vancouver:
Life issues are increasingly being discussed and debated today in the media and even government. No issue is more important for our society and country. It calls each of us to be part of the solution to the tragedy of abortion and to the growing threat of imposed death for the elderly and infirm.
We applaud initiatives such as legislation which aims at guaranteeing respect for the integrity and dignity of pregnant women by protecting their physical and psychological well-being. After the overwhelming defeat of Bill C-384, that sought to legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide, we must continue to fight for proper palliative care.
We must contest those forces which promote hateful attacks on public and Church figures because of their conviction that every person has the right to be born regardless of the circumstances of conception. Moreover, we must oppose all efforts which confuse maternal health with access to abortion.
As Catholics, we have an obligation as citizens of Canada and as people of faith to foster a culture of life in the public arena. It is necessary to keep abreast of proposed legislation and to be involved with the political process by voting conscientiously and perhaps even running for public office.
On this Pro-life Sunday, I urge you to recommit yourselves to the sacred cause of life and to help financially equip pro-life organizations, such as crisis pregnancy centres, to serve our communities.
Even more, I urge you to become personally involved. Let us act in small and large ways – to pray, to witness, to volunteer, and to support the pro-life groups in our local communities.
We can make a difference; the time is now, and the tide is turning.
With gratitude for your support and with the assurance of my prayers, I remain
Sincerely yours in Christ,
+ J. Michael Miller, CSB
Archbishop of Vancouver