(April Frigge, CFC FFL Iceland)
I think I always knew that abortion was the killing of an unborn child, but I never really gave it much thought for the first forty years of my life….I was 13 years old when abortion on demand was essentially legalized in my home country of America, and I just took it in stride along with the Women’s Liberation movement. I don’t remember ever having a discussion about the rightness or wrongness of abortion before the year 2000, by which time I was married and had five children, and we had moved to Iceland, and Mike and I had entered formation to become Lay Missionaries of Charity. One of the things Mother Teresa’s Sisters asked me to do was teach Natural Family Planning, which we had practiced all through our marriage. As I studied the topic more deeply, I learned that contraceptives such as the Pill (and Patch and Depo-Provera, for example) and the IUD (coil) can actually cause the death of newly-conceived babies–these are abortions that the mother never even knows about.
Our parish priest was also bringing up pro-life issues from time to time, and in 2004, he told us that he believed God wanted to begin to address the issue of abortion in Iceland, and he invited Mike and I to help establish a pro-life group in our parish/diocese. In all honesty, I can’t say that at that point I felt passionately about the need to fight abortion; but I knew logically that abortion was killing someone, so it made sense to join.
In the years since then, I have done a lot more reading about abortion and other anti-life issues, and God has gradually softened my heart so that I realize I HAVE TO speak up on behalf of the more than 50 million innocent children who are being killed each year world-wide because their parents don’t want to be bothered with the costs and/or inconveniences of raising a child. (99% of abortions are done for social reasons like these.) I know that SLAVERY is wrong; I know that the CONCENTRATION CAMPS of World War II were wrong; so how could I continue to live in a country where those practices were legal and just keep quiet about it? I’d HAVE TO say something–and the same holds true for the issue of unborn children being killed through abortion.
Just like you and I, each newly conceived human being has been in the mind of God since before time began, and is made in the image of God, intended for a life of loving and being loved. No one has a right to kill that child–whether he is 2 hours old and only has a few cells, or 12 weeks old with all of her body parts already present but needing to mature, or 9 months old and waiting to be delivered….Suppose that two hours after giving birth, a mother decides to suffocate her baby because she is not “ready to raise a child”…wouldn’t you be horrified?! It is crystal clear–she has murdered her child. But ask yourself this–if it is clearly wrong to murder a baby AFTER its birth, how can it be okay to kill the baby BEFORE it is born? The truth is, abortion is the murder of an innocent human being, and even if the law of the land declares it legal, it is STILL WRONG–“Thou shalt not kill!” We HAVE to speak up on behalf of those who cannot speak up for themselves! And we must anchor our efforts in prayer, since only God can break down the walls of deceit and darkness that lay behind the anti-life forces supporting abortion, euthanasia, contraception, etc.
We offer ourselves to God to be used as His arms and voice to proclaim His message of life and love to the world. In Iceland, members of our pro-life group pray daily for an end to abortion, we dedicate an hour of Eucharistic adoration each month for pro-life concerns, and some of us are able to gather weekly in front of the women’s ward of the national hospital to pray the rosary, asking God to bring an end to abortion in Iceland.
I am so thankful that God has patiently been working on me, changing and opening my heart and giving me the desire to do my part to help establish the Culture of Life. And I thank Him too for opening my heart through my Natural Family Planning studies to welcome another child into our family–our sixth child was born in 2003! Life is a gift from the Author of Life–let us treasure it and defend it!