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October 2, 2015

Greetings and blessings in this Respect Life Month!
By now your pastor should have received the USCCB Respect Life Program packet for your parish, and if you haven't already, I encourage you to make an appointment to sit down with your pastor to walk through the packet and determine what resources would best suit your parish.  USCCB resources for Respect Life Month may also be found online here and linked at the left sidebar.
This month there are a  multitude of opportunities  for your parish community to witness to the 2015 Respect Life theme: "  Every Life is Worth Living ".  The first such opportunity is the Fall 40 Days for Life   campaign that started last week.  Dallas'  24/7 vigil  outside  Southwestern abortion facility  is a perfect place to witness as a parish family!  Thank you to all who have adopted a time of prayer during the campaign.   If your church has not yet had a chance to adopt a time prayer, we are in   critical need of your help.   Nervous about adopting a day?  Check out these 10 easy tips for filling your adopted day.  Below is the list of days which still need to be adopted to ensure continual prayer coverage:
  • Monday, October 12
  • Wednesday, October 14
  • Friday, October 16 (midnight to 7 p.m.)
  • Tuesday, October 27
  • Wednesday, October 28
  • Friday, October 30 (midnight to noon; 6 p.m. - midnight)
Please prayerfully consider if your parish can adopt one or part of one of these days.  The Church's presences is so urgently needed,  but we can't do it alone.  To sign up your parish, please contact Susan Platt at or 
or 214-392-7545 to select your day or part of a day.   Promotional and instructional items for your parish participation are  available here .
And that's not all!  On October 17, the Dallas Diocese will mark Respect Life Month with a  multitude of family-friendly events , beginning with the   Respect Life Month Mass  at 8:00 a.m. at St. Patrick, Dallaswith a  special blessing for all persons who volunteer or work in respect life ministries .  Mass will be followed by Eucharistic Adoration and a Rosary Procession by bus to the nearby Southwestern abortion facility.  

Later that same day will be the  40 Days for Life-Dallas Family Day  beginning at 11 a.m. at Harry S. Moss Park with a picnic lunch and rally featuring Amy and Greg Michniak who will share their family's journey welcoming a child with Down syndrome.  (Bus transportation for those who participated in the morning procession will be available to return to St. Patrick before and after the rally.) I hope you and your fellow parishioners will join us for this wonderful day of family, friends and fellowship in the name of LIFE!
Also this Fall on November 14 is one of our most popular events -- the annual  Christ Child Christmas Gift Market & Luncheon  at the DoubleTree Hotel in Richardson, benefiting the Catholic Pro-Life Committee as well as other ministries supporting pregnant mothers in need. This year's luncheon speaker is Father Tom Cloherty, Pastor of Prince of Peace Parish.  As always, you may shop the market for free, without attending the luncheon.  Visit  for more details and to make your luncheon reservations.
Below are some additional opportunities to mark Respect Life Month:
And don't forget -- the last day to register to vote -- is next Monday, October 5.  Please spread the word!  And you can help your parish prepare to vote with a  Responsible Voting Seminar .  Contact Susan Platt at 214-392-7545 or  to schedule a seminar in English or Spanish.
Also this month, we will also have a one-day  Proyecto José Retreat in Spanish  for men suffering from the pain of abortion held in Spanish on October 10 and a Rachel's Vineyard™ Retreat, also in Spanish, for women and men on October 23-25 and in English on November 6-8
Finally, please mark your calendar for the next  Parish Pro-Life Coordinators Meeting  on November 7 at St. Monica, Dallas.  If you can't attend, please send a representative to receive important information about the 2016 Roe Memorial Events on January 16, plus much more!  They're right around the corner!
Amidst all these events, on October 7, we celebrate Our Lady of the Rosary.  Pope St. Pius V established this feast in 1573 in thanksgiving for the victory of Christians over the Turks at Lepanto --a victory attributed to the praying of the rosary. Pope Clement XI extended the feast to the universal Church in 1716.

The development of the rosary has a long history. First, a practice developed of praying 150 Our Fathers in imitation of the 150 Psalms. Then there was a parallel practice of praying 150 Hail Marys. Soon a mystery of Jesus' life was attached to each Hail Mary. While Mary's gift of the rosary prayer to St. Dominic is considered legend, the development of this prayer form owes much to the followers of St. Dominic. One of them, Alan de la Roche, was known as "the apostle of the rosary." He founded the first Confraternity of the Rosary in the 15th century. In the 16th century the rosary developed into its present form -- with the 15 mysteries (Joyful, Sorrowful and Glorious). In 2002, Pope John Paul II added five Mysteries of Light, or Luminous Mysteries, to this devotion. 

We can place the four mysteries in chronological order.  The first would be the Joyful Mysteries that begin with the Angel Gabriel appearing to Mary and asking her to be the mother of God.  These go through Jesus' childhood.  Next would come the Luminous Mysteries which encompass Jesus' adult life ending with the institution of the Holy Eucharist on the night before His passion.  The Sorrowful Mysteries recall Jesus' passion and death.  Finally, we have the Glorious Mysteries which encompass His Resurrection and Ascension and end with Mary being crowned the Queen of Heaven and Earth.  So they begin with Mary and end with Mary, our Mother. 

The purpose of the rosary is to help us meditate on the great mysteries of our salvation. Pius XII called it a compendium of the Gospel.  Of course, the main focus is on Jesus -- His birth, life, death and resurrection. The Our Father prayers remind us that Jesus' Father is the initiator of salvation. The Hail Mary prayers remind us to join with Mary in contemplating these mysteries. They also make us aware that Mary was and is intimately joined with her Son in all the mysteries of His earthly and heavenly existence. The Glory Be reminds us that the purpose of all life is the glory of the Trinity.

The rosary appeals to many. It is simple. The constant repetition of words helps create an atmosphere in which to contemplate the mysteries of God. We sense that Jesus and Mary are with us in the joys and sorrows of life. We grow in hope that God will bring us to share in the glory of Jesus and Mary forever.  (Plus it's a great medium of prayer while at the vigil site during 40 Days for Life!)

May you all have a meaningful and blessed Respect Life Month. Please let us know what activities your parish is planning for this month (and send us pictures to post!) to reflect and advocate for the greatest cause of all -- LIFE!
Thanks for all you do for Life and God bless, 

David Carr
CPLC Director of Parish Coordination
Catholic Pro-Life Committee of North Texas | 972-267-LIFE (5433) | 
P.O. Box 803541, Dallas, TX 75380