|Mission Report: Albania: June 2010|
Missionary Trip to
|Joannes Bucher (right) with Bishop Georg Frendo of Albania.|
In the afternoon, we spoke with the Right Reverend Georg Frendo. This auxiliary bishop praised how determinedly pro-lifers are fighting the “Death Peddlers” (abortion promoters) in
We spent the evening as guests on the radio station Radio Maria, asking our listeners to pray and fast in order to help women and men welcome the fruit of the womb. We also tried to enlighten our listeners on fundamental pro-life matters.
On Friday, June 18, we saw the beautiful northern part of the country. We gave a lecture to the medical doctors in Materniteti Mbreteresha Geraldin, discussing bioethics and taking questions for a full hour. Our discussions really showed me how critically important it is to discuss pro-life issues with medical professionals.
One of the things we have learned from the worldwide abortion debate is that it has been largely a battle over words. There is a rule in political science that says: “Verbal engineering always precedes social engineering.” This means that if you are going to manipulate people, you must first influence their speech habits. The mass media avoid words like “the killing of unborn children,” “rejecting a gift of the Lord,” and “the fruit of the womb.” Instead, they use phrases like, “interruption of pregnancy” or “termination of pregnancy.” Such phrases cause reality to slowly disappear under a blanket of semantic sophistry, having an impact on the whole society.
Valiant PRO-LIFE Apostles
Mother Teresa’s sisters in
abortion mill. When she found out that she had developed cancer,
|A talk given in the Basilica of Tirana, Albani|
she said, “Jesus, I give you my cancer, I don’t want to be healed, but please close this ´killing center.´” She died on Childermas Day (Holy Innocents Day, December 28, which commemorates the slaughtering of the infants by Herod), and, amazingly, the following day, the abortion clinic was shut down, due to deplorable and unsanitary conditions. We must remember: every small or great suffering endured and every small or great sacrifice offered in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ will have an unbelievable impact on the culture of life.
After Holy Mass at the Heart of Jesus and
The Urgency of the Hour
If we realize the weight of the tragedy of 55 million abortions around the world every year, we can also understand what Msgr. P. Reilly said: “Behind abortion is a spiritual war – it is evil!” John Paul II coined the words that epitomize the enemy’s fruit in this war on life when he called it a “culture of death.” This Holy Father saw the whole picture, not just the visible but also the spiritual reality taking place. He warned us in his Encyclical, Evangelium Vitae, that “urgent prayer is needed” (no. 100).
Msgr. Reilly of
Family Planning, God’s Way
Another point for reflection is that, although the world promotes contraception, Catholics must be cognizant of the fact that it is a sin, fostering promiscuity and ultimately the culture of death. If we separate sex from love, the final consequence is often abortion; a large number of pregnancies and abortions happen because contraceptives fail. A pronounced contraceptive mentality fosters a frivolous abortion mentality. We must furthermore be aware that a lot of contraceptives are actually abortifacients! We cannot even know how many children are killed by “contraceptives.”
Albania gave the world an incredible saint, Mother Teresa, who was always ready to speak in defense of life and to promote Natural Family Planning (NFP) to couples. If a couple really does need to avoid pregnancy for a time, the Church allows for NFP, which, unlike artificial contraception, respects life and spouses and allows every marital act to remain open to a new child, in accord with God’s design. Notably, Catholic couples using NFP have a less than 1% divorce rate. NFP also has a success rate far superior to that of artificial contraceptives; science has shown that 1 condom out of 12 fails and that condoms do not effectively prevent sexually transmitted diseases.
On Sunday we had the opportunity of giving a lecture after Holy Mass, and Archbishop Rrok K. Mirdita was kind enough to welcome us. Dr. Antun discussed with him how an organization called the Anti-Life Agenda works for the glory of death in
We have to face the truth about the silent war against unborn babies. Who will take care of them? Who is going to unmask the deceptive
|Joannes speaks to medical doctors in Albania.|
technical term “sexual and reproductive health?”
Albanian Christians will have to stand up and fight for their children. HLI is eager to help! To start, in a few months we will print 5,000 copies of the booklet, Miriam Why are You Crying? In
It will also be important to build a crisis pregnancy center in
So, let’s fulfill with all zeal and love what a great pope once called us all to do: “You are called to stand up for life! To respect and defend the mystery of life always and everywhere, including the lives of unborn babies, giving real help and encouragement to mothers in difficult situations. You are called to work and pray against abortion” (Pope John Paul II).