"Those of us 50 years and older can all probably recall exactly where we were and what we were doing on that fateful day in 1963 when President Kennedy was assassinated, not far from here. Practically all of us can remember with great clarity the day in 2001, we have come to know by its date, “September 11th”. I have another date etched in my memory, January 22nd, 1973. I remember it well. It continues as a wound upon my heart. I carry it like the Hebrew Phylactery inscribed on this bracelet on my wrist, not for show, but that I may humbly remember.
I long ago accepted that I could never forget.
On that day, when the court case that began right here at this courthouse was decided I lost a measure of my youthful innocence, and so did our nation. On that day, this nation, which I had always believed to be the most righteous and just nation the world had ever seen – a nation founded upon holy principles of respect for the dignity of every person and care for the weakest person – a nation that struggled to correct her faults and live those principles – shattered in my eyes. From that day to this one – 34 long years – she has taken scalpel in hand and legally torn her youngest members asunder – and her virtue as well.
But I have not lost hope, because I believe in a God who can restore to me my innocence and the nation’s as well. I believe in a God and a Redeemer who, with a word, can raise us to life.
To the One who alone can make us whole again, let us pray:
Good Lord of life, as we gather at this place dedicated to justice, but where a most unjust decision has its roots, we turn to you in somber recollection of that day, 34 years ago, when we as a nation betrayed our very selves. We recall in sorrow the lives of our unborn children, destroyed; the nurturing role of mothers and fathers, rejected; the conscience of a nation, deadened.
As citizens of this nation, members of this society, overshadowed by the culture of death, we beg for your mercy. As people of hope, inspired by your Gospel, we implore you, Jesus, to speak over us your words of life. You said to the little girl, “Talitha Koum” and she arose from the dead; to Lazarus you shouted, “Come out!” and he emerged from the tomb. Care for the millions of innocents who have been killed, that they may live in you; speak words of tenderness to mothers and fathers who have chosen death for their children, but who seek your forgiveness; raise up our nation to be true to herself and to you, O great Lord of Life.
In Jesus’ name we pray. AMEN!"
© 2007 Catholic Pro-Life Committee of North Texas. All rights reserved.