"You are...God's own people,that you may declare the wonderful deedsof Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light." (1 Pet 2:9)
Collegians Activated to Liberate Life is committed to forming a culture of life, in which love for God's precepts and His peace will flourish, and where all forms of violence such as infanticide, abortion, murder, genocide, euthanasia, willful self-destruction, and all those things which violate the integrity of the human person (Evangelium Vitae, 3), will be unthinkable.
In order to form such a holy culture, we must commit ourselves to forming and becoming a people of life, committed to truth and holiness, based in prayer and charity, and willing to embrace the Cross of Christ.
In order to facilitate this sacred endeavor, CALL will hold faithfully to the following policies regarding life issues:
"It is not the will of your Father,who is in heaven,that one of these little ones should perish."
To be pro-life means to affirm, proclaim, and defend the personhood of each and every human life, born or preborn.
It is never licit to procure or perform an abortion. Life is valuable because it is an eternal gift from God, and no situation exists which nullifies this value. All preborn babies are entitled to life, regardless of the conditions under which they are conceived.
Abortion is never therapeutic, because directly killing a child never contributes to the health of the mother. Abortion is always harmful to a woman, as it is an unnatural assault on her body and the violent murder of her baby. In cases where a pregnant woman is dangerously ill, every effort should be made to save both her and her child's life.
In addition, all authority, whether secular or ecclesiastical, comes from God. It is therefore incumbent upon all those in authority to uphold God's justice for all, including each and every preborn child. To be pro-life is to have an unconditional respect for the indissolubility of the right-to-life; political expediency can never justify the exclusion of certain persons from this right.
"I praise you, so wonderfully you made me; wonderful are your works!My very self you knew;my bones were not hidden from you,When I was being made in secret"
A unique human life begins at fertilization, and at no other time (i.e., not at nidation, quickening, twinning, ex-utero viability, or at any other such arbitrarily chosen point). Therefore, any chemicals (such as the Pill or Norplant) or devices (such as IUD's) that can kill a preborn child, either by preventing newly conceived children from implanting in their mothers' wombs or by any other means, are abortifacients. All abortifacients are to be categorically condemned.
Any non-surgical method of killing an innocent human person is as immoral as any surgical abortion method.
"Thou shalt not kill."
Life is an eternal gift of God. The value of life in no way depends upon the age, health, or condition of the human person. Furthermore, the value of life is no way contingent upon an utilitarian definition of 'usefulness.'
God alone has authority over life and death (Deut 32:39). No person has the right to intentionally take his own or another's life under the guise of suicide, 'mercy killing' or 'assisted suicide.' The 'right to die' does not exist; as in the case of abortion, the authority to choose life or death does not reside with man, but with God Almighty.
CALL condemns both direct and passive euthanasia. Direct euthanasia is defined as an action taken in order to hasten death, which includes but is not limited to lethal injection. Passive euthanasia takes place when an action is withheld with the intention of hastening death, which includes but is not limited to the withdrawal of food or water.
As a people of life, we are called to love sacrificially and to embrace suffering after Christ's example. It is our responsibility to accept suffering with joy, patience, and humility, knowing that God allows it for our own good and that He will not give us more than we can bear. Furthermore, it is our special obligation to help relieve the others' suffering while respecting God's life in them. We can take joy in giving of ourselves to help those in difficulty, instead of attempting to eliminate suffering by killing the patient.
Sexuality is a gift of God, "God created man in His image, in the divine image He created him; male and female He created them." (Gen 1:27) For our physical well-being and healthy spiritual development, the gift of human sexuality should be exercised in a manner that glorifies God: with restraint, respect, deep love, and purity. Sexual intercourse fulfills these requirement only within a valid marriage blessed by God, where the spouses share a mutual respect and are open to His creative presence in their union, "God blessed them, saying, 'Be fruitful and multiply...'" (Gen 1:28).
When we misuse our sexuality and pervert God's plan for our lives, we invite disorder and fall prey to violence such as abortion. St. Thomas Aquinas, speaking about sexual vices and societal violence in the 13th century, gave us the following insight: "Impurity leads inevitably to violence." When we take sex outside of marriage, it becomes 'necessary' to sacrifice the lives of preborn children in order to continue in our sinful and selfish lifestyles.
CALL firmly upholds the sanctity of the marital relationship, and encourages young people to remain chaste for their own health, as well as for the prevention of the slaughter of preborn babies.
"Unless the Lord build the house,the builders labor in vain."
The people of life are open to God's gift of life. For this reason, CALL opposes the use of artificial contraception.
Contraception and its accompanying mentality foster a warped understanding of sexuality. Contraception encourages promiscuity, which leads to a rise (rather than a decrease) in out-of-wedlock pregnancy. In addition, many abortions take place when contraception fails to inhibit the natural creative power of sexual intercourse. Abortion is used as a 'safety net' whereby the practice of so-called 'safe sex' can continue when contraception fails.
The contraceptive mentality, which insists upon personal pleasure and says, "my body, my rights," is also the basis for the abortion mentality. The link between these two mentalities is conspicuously manifest in abortifacients such as the Pill and Norplant. Not only do such abortifacients randomly act either by preventing fertilization or by aborting a new child, they are often mistakenly referred to purely as contraceptives.
CALL recognizes the role of parents in being responsible stewards of creation. We do not oppose the use of natural alternatives such as Natural Family Planning, when they are approached prayerfully, and providing there is no "refusal to be open to life." (Familiaris Consortio, 32)
"...before you were born, I consecrated you."
Each preborn human being, from the moment of conception till birth, possesses the same fullness of dignity and physical integrity pertaining to every human person by will of the Divine Creator. Therefore, the medical establishment has the obligation to defend the integrity of, and seek the end good of health for, the preborn human, the same as any other human patient. It would be a crime to love sight of the rights of each and every preborn child in the search for an improvement in overall societal health.
Explicitly, this mean that all actions, e.g., fetal tissue research, fetal experimentation, human embryo research, embryonic organ transplantation, pre-natal genetic manipulations, etc., which do not have at their end the health and well-being of the preborn patient, shall be declared as gravely immoral.
In order to be licit and therapeutic, all medical procedures carried out on the preborn patient must continually respect the biological life and hence, inviolable right to life of that human person in its natural stage of development. Any action or omission which undermines the child's right to life and his or her integral autonomy and individuality (such as those which constitute disproportionate risks for it) will be rejected as immoral and contrary to proper medical intervention.
Furthermore, it is never permissable to use children who have been violently killed by abortion as subjects in medical research or experimentation. Such actions betray the dignity of the child's body and create an atmosphere for further exploitation.
Ethical scientific study and medical intervention will always be at the service of life and must first oppose everything that is harmful, then seek out and pursue that which is good. It thereby follows that all who defend life will insure only appropriate and licit medical interventions for the good of the preborn children and the good of society.
"Greater love hath no man than this:that he lay down his life for his friends."
The Christian is called to take up his cross and follow Christ, to lay down his life out of love for Him and His precepts. The way of nonviolence is the way of the cross. CALL therefore commits itself to building the culture of life through a campaign of nonviolence, an offering of self as a living sacrifice to God, for the love of neighbor, in reparation for sins against all human life.
A campaign of nonviolence calls not for the destruction of those who participate in the abortion holocaust, but for their conversion. Our enemy is Satan, and our battle is spiritual; therefore we will not war according to the flesh, but according to the spirit (Eph 6:12).
Nonviolence has a power greater than that of violence; the power of sacrificial love is the same salvific power of Christ's self-sacrifice on the Cross. CALL willingly and joyfully accepts this challenge to love by following Christ to Calvary, willing to die for our enemies as Christ died for us, and trusting that God's power will work through our weakness.
In Vitro Fertilization
"Truly I know you;in your inmost being I formed you"
As a people of life, CALL maintains that God has intimately linked together the very beginning of life and the marital act. These two must never be separated. In vitro fertilization takes away a child's genuine right to be the fruit of an act of mutual love and self-giving on the part of a man and a woman bound together in marriage. Because children are a gift from God and not pieces of property to which a couple is entitled, the practices or unnaturally conceiving children, freezing them until the couple no longer requires them, and killing the children, are particularly heinous and violate each child's right to be respected from the very moment of his/her conception.
All practices requiring the use of in vitro fertilization or any separation of the marital act from the procreative act (such as artificial uteruses, surrogate motherhood, and artificial insemination) are morally unacceptable. All such practices promote the idea that life is something that can be manipulated to suit man's desires, instead of affirming the truth that life is a gift from an all-powerful God.
"Let us make man in our image,after our likeness."
To understand the task facing the pro-life movement today and to be most effective in combating the culture of death, pro-lifers must not only oppose the destructive autonomy of radical individualism, but must also be able to expose the pro-abortion eugenics movement.
Eugenics, "the study of methods to improve the human race by controlling reproduction" (Introduction to Eugenics, p. 1), is a purely naturalistic ideology that values the individual human being only as a component of Society, which should be manipulated and purified.
The eugenics agenda fueled Nazi Germany's Third Reich, and its money and influence is behind the worldwide abortion movement of the last fifty years. Though it has successfully hidden itself since the second world war, eugenics is visible today through China's oppressive population policy, the International Planned Parenthood Federation, and the push for the family cap here in our country, to name only a few.
Eugenics, along with its diabolical fruits: abortion, racism, and population control, is incompatible with the Christian vision of mankind. It denies the inherent sacredness of the human person that is rooted in the transcendent nature and purpose, origin and destiny given to each of us by God our Creator.
An outward rejection of eugenics, based upon a consistent, all-encompassing commitment to the immeasurable sacredness and dignity of every human person, must be a major part of our fight for social justice and personal morality against the culture of death.