Struck by the Splinters of the Cross

“Listen to me, you islands; hear this, you distant nations: Before I was born the LORD called me; from my mother’s womb he has spoken my name.” Isaiah 49:1

I usually get my inspiration to write when I am running. It is a quiet time for me where I can look at the beauty around me while feeling the breath in my own body. It reminds me of my mortality, but it is as if my soul can be quiet enough to hear God. In the rhythm of my breathing and the pounding of my feet. I sometimes listen to Gregorian chant, the melody transports me up to heaven and clears my head for the important things in life. I know, I am weird.
Sadly, for the past little while this activity has been very difficult for me. I have been suffering from Plantar fasciitis and it is painful to run, and very painful to walk the next day. I have followed the protocol to fix this, but the problem persists, so I have taken to other forms of exercise. I miss running. It also makes my inspiration to write more sporadic. Please pray for my feet to heal. I know God has a plan for me, but in my effort to control everything, sometimes I just wish he would show it to me… but I know that is not how God works.
That said, for my exercise I decided to mow the lawn. Not quiet time at all, with the loud buzzing of the mower, but none the less, I felt inspired, so here I am writing. I have so far not really delved into the modern fighting that takes place in today’s society, but I feel compelled to today. I feel compelled to tell a personal story that will touch on a hot button topic. That topic is abortion.
My story starts with my ancestry. My grandmother to be exact. When my Grandmother was in her 60’s she found out she was adopted. Her mother, the woman who raised her, never told her she was adopted and the father she thought died in a war, may never have actually existed. What she did find out was that she was born with a different name than the one she had, and that the woman who she thought was her mother was not. Many of my family members have tried to investigate her ancestry, and have pieced together some scenarios, but due to the death of the woman who raised my Grandmother as her own, and a lack of the birth records (which may have been in a fire), we will perhaps never know the full truth.
The thought that has struck me time and again is that because her birth seemed so shrouded in secrecy, there must have been shame attached to it. In today’s day and age that kind of shame, the kind that breeds secrecy like that, would make a woman abortion minded. Some of the scenarios that I have been told that surround my Grandmother’s arrival on this earth are scenarios today where people would have an abortion. Whatever the case, I can’t help but think if my Great-Grandmother had been pregnant today, she may have been a woman at huge risk for aborting her child. That my Grandmother lived, I can perhaps attribute to the fact that the LAW protected her life. I often think about this. That if abortion had been acceptable back then, I would not exist. Though I know there was probably much suffering surrounding the birth of my Grandmother, the joy that was brought forth into the world by her and her family line has been boundless. There is no shame in that.
The impact of this on my family personally, is profound. My grandmother, with her murky story of coming into existence had 12 CHILDREN. I believe there are at least 54 grandchildren, and many, many more great-grandchildren. They are Doctors, Lawyers, Engineers, Teachers, Mother’s, Father’s, brothers and sisters. If my grandmother had been aborted there are literally now hundreds of us who would NOT EXIST.
I was once told (online) that if my ancestor had been aborted I wouldn’t be around “to give a f#@k,” (his words not mine) so I should just be pro-abortion. That presupposes that my life has no meaning, that my brother and sisters, that my cousins, my nieces and my nephews, we don’t matter to the world. I know for a fact that is not true. We matter. We matter to those who love us, to those whose lives we have impacted and most importantly to God, who knew us before He formed us in the womb. Every life is precious. The impact of abortion goes far beyond mother and child, it impacts generations, generations that are lost.
My church has always stood up against abortion, and I knew intellectually, that a fetus (which is just Latin for offspring) is a baby. I was always against abortion. But after learning this, it became deeply personal.
I also came to realize that whoever my great grandmother was, she must have endured great suffering. I am forever grateful that the law protected my grandmother. I am also grateful to my great grandmother for the suffering and sacrifice she endured to get my grandmother here.
I look at our society today, and I am appalled that the best we can do to help women today in dire circumstances is to tell them to kill their child so their life can go back to “normal.” I have had many conversations with people over abortion. Many kind, wonderful, really good people, who think abortion is acceptable. We have taught our society that it is okay to kill our children, and good people have accepted this, or remained apathetic toward the issue. If you have ever watched an abortion, you know it is the killing of a person. Most have never taken the time to watch one, which can easily be done online. Many abortions are performed on Christians. As a Christian we should be helping these women in need to find a better way. We should not shame them for their sin, God forgives those who ask forgiveness. If we as Christians stood up every day and said no! Enough! We will not kill our children! We will help those in need! Abortion would cease to exist. Instead we judge, we justify, we kill.
One day, after a particularly distressing conversation I had about abortion, I went to see Dr. Peter Kreeft speak. The topic of abortion came up. I expressed my dismay that good people just accept this as okay, and that I had gotten in a fight about it and felt I would be ostracized for standing up for the unborn. He told me, “Congratulations, you have been hit by the splinters of the Cross.” All I could think, is the biggest splinters were carried by my Great Grandmother, whoever she is, who, though she may not have wanted to, said yes to the life that God created, and birthed generations. Generations who are part of history and have made a significant impact on the world.

About veilofveronica

I am a mother and wife as well as an RCIA and Adult Faith Formation catechist at a parish in the south. I have 3 children and a great husband.
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1 Response to Struck by the Splinters of the Cross

  1. Pingback: Dreams,Suicide, and Gregorian Masses | Veil of Veronica

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