A new headquarters of pro-life missionaries in India has brought organizers renewed enthusiasm to promote a culture of life, and has received high praise from an Indian government commissioner.
Human Life Goa (HLG), an affiliate of Human Life International (HLI), inaugurated its Pro-Life Centre in the city of Margao, Goa, India on June 26, 2011. Goa Commissioner for NRI Affairs Eduardo Faleiro said that there is a great need for such centres to help educate people on life issues, thereby creating a better society and a better world.
Mr. Faleiro said that the Pro-Life Centre was God’s gift for the people not only of Salcete or Goa, but also adjoining states of West and South India. He applauded the actions and dedication of Goa pro-lifers, including participation in international seminars and conferences, and called on others to support the Centre’s pro-life activities.
Mr. Milagres Pereira, President of HLG, whom Mr. Faleiro praised at the ceremony for his hard work and dedication to promoting life, said that the inauguration of the new Centre was a “shot in the arm” of enthusiasm for Goa pro-lifers.
After a Mass celebrating the inauguration of the new building, Fr. Tony Rebello, SVD, blessed the Centre, and urged the people to stand up for life and the protection of the unborn, and to resist the temptations of contraception. Fr. Rebello told the crowd of about 130 that he regularly tells his parish youth to “use common sense, not condoms.”
The issue of “gendercide” in India has been the subject of numerous news articles of late. Though it is illegal under Indian law, pregnant women often undergo tests to determine the sex of their unborn child, with many women procuring abortions for female babies.
“I recall seeing first-hand this bias against girl children during my trip to India in late 2004,” according to Joseph Meaney, HLI’s Director of International Coordination. “One aggravating cultural problem in India is the traditional Hindu burden of providing a marriage dowry for daughters. In the early 1990s those who sold sex detection tests advertised on thousands of billboards around the country; ‘Pay five hundred rupees [US$14.00] now rather than five lakhs [500,000 or $14,000] later.’”
Organizers of HLG’s Pro-Life Centre hope to inspire the people of India to respect and protect all human life.