family, life. These are the crucial
issues in the life and mission of the
Church in this third millennium. At
every turn we see the threats to and
the attacks on faith, family and life.
Many so-called Christians are today
experiencing a crisis of faith. There
are those who have turned away from
God and have left the Church. There
are those who are actively serving in
the Church, including clergy and religious,
but who do not accept, and may even
actively oppose, authentic Church teaching
on such things as contraception. There
are those who go through the motions
of Catholic life, including going to
Mass on Sunday, but who are for reproductive
health and values-free sex education.
Jesus himself said, “But when
the Son of Man comes, will he find faith
on earth?” (Lk 18:8b). The way
things are going, authentic Christians
are fast becoming the little flock.
Today the attacks on the family and
on the culture of life are vicious and
overwhelming. The forces of the enemy
are being concentrated for the final
assault on family and life in this third
millennium. Nations are falling like
dominoes before this savage onslaught,
giving in to divorce, to abortion, to
same-sex marriage. And mind you, these
diabolical forces are powerful, including
the government of the most powerful
nation on earth (the USA), including
the European Union, including elements
of the United Nations, including international
liberal media, including billionaire
forces will stop at nothing. They will
influence national referenda to defeat
pro-life provisions, by infusing millions
of dollars into the campaign chests
of anti-life groups. They will pass
laws that penalize hate crimes, while
defining hate crime as such things as
just speaking against homosexuality.
They will arrest peaceful pro-life protesters
at abortion clinics, or pro-life supporters
at university campuses. They will mount
a relentless campaign to malign the
Church hierarchy, including the pope.
They will levy fines, confiscate property,
incarcerate those who will not kowtow
to their agenda.
The crisis of faith, family and life
is all too real.
How do we respond?
is first of all a dire need for re-evangelization.
There are just too many nominal Christians.
These so-called Christians need to become
authentic followers of Christ. They
need to undergo transformation in the
Spirit. They need to grow in the fruit
of the Holy Spirit. Then they can become
authentic witnesses to the faith. Then
they can see the way to growing in holiness
and in living lives of righteousness.
Then they can become evangelizers themselves.
we must work to renew the family. The
family is the basic unit of society,
and John Paul II says that the future
of humanity passes by way of the family.
The enemy knows this as well. And so
he focuses on destroying the family
-- through divorce, separation, living-in;
through valueless sex education; through
in vitro fertilization; through same-sex
“marriage.” Many families
are today dysfunctional. Perhaps there
is only one parent caring for the children.
Perhaps there are two parents, but they
are of the same sex! So what can we
expect? The children also grow up dysfunctional.
Pretty soon, they are shooting their
classmates. Or committing suicide. Or
just being a menace to society.
Third, we must work to defend and uphold
the culture of life. Life is of God.
Human life first came to be when God
Himself “blew into (Adam’s)
nostrils the breath of life” (Gen
2:7). Life is God’s wonderful
gift, and it starts in the womb. And
so the enemy, ever opposing what is
of God, brings death -- through abortion,
contraception, sterilization; through
embryonic stem cells; through euthanasia
and assisted suicide; through degrading
the quality of life by corruption, poverty,
environmental degradation. We must oppose
the work of the enemy. We must uphold
God’s plan. We must defend life.
So how can we help bring about the restoration
and renewal of faith, family and life?
This is why we are having this HLI Asia-Pacific
Congress. There is much that we as pro-lifers
need to learn. In this culture war,
we need to be informed and equipped.
We need to know the ways of the enemy.
We need to see clearly as to developing
our own competencies and strategies.
Further, we need to grow as the body
of Christ that comes together with the
one mind and heart of God, united in
vision and mission, faithful to our
call, obedient to the will of the Father.
One weakness in the pro-life movement
is the disunity and lack of collaboration.
Pro-lifers are diverse in their gifts,
as is fitting for instruments that God
has raised. Now right there are the
resources needed to mount a strong pro-life
movement. The passion is there, but
there is much more we need to do to
strengthen our united front.
Most importantly, we ourselves need
to be continually renewed in spirit.
We not only serve the cause of life,
but we live the life of Christ. We not
only do good works, but we develop a
vibrancy of faith. We are not content
just to be good Christians, but we need
to attain to the very holiness that
is of God.