The Council for Life of the Irish Bishops’ Conference yesterday launched a 9 day Novena of Prayer for Life which will run from Monday 23 May until Tuesday 31 May (Feast of the Visitation). The Pray for Life Novena and its associated website www.prayforlife.ie will give people an opportunity be an active part of this new initiative to pray for the protection of human life and to build a culture of life.
Bishop Kevin Doran, chair of the Council for Life, said: “The Feast of the Visitation has particular significance when it comes to celebrating and giving thanks for the gift of human life. It is a moment of encounter between two women (Mary and Elizabeth), each of whom is unexpectedly pregnant. It is an encounter in which each woman is supported by the other in facing the challenges of pregnancy. It is a graced moment in which each woman acknowledges the child in her womb as a gift from God.
“The Council for Life, drawing on resources originally prepared by the US Bishops’ Conference, has developed an online Novena around the days leading up to the Feast of the Visitation. Every one of us has a right to life. The direct and intentional taking of human life at any stage is gravely wrong and can never be justified. We hope the Pray for Life Novena will help people to celebrate and protect the gift of life and to be more conscious of the practical support that they can offer to women for whom pregnancy is experienced as a crisis. We invite you to join people across Ireland during this last week of May to pray for the protection of human life.”