What does this mean exactly? For Catholics, it means each person has dignity, that each of us is so much more than we may appear to be at any given time. We are each created to love God more every day and find God in every person despite our differences. Unfortunately, I often find myself lost amidst today’s culture, which makes recognizing God even more difficult. I struggle to find balance in my work, my family, my social life and my prayer life. Fortunately, my family and friends continuously remind me to discern my potential.
We face daily choices of how to fulfill our individual potential (including the choice not to fulfill it). Living in a culture more confused about the truth than ever is exhausting. People, young and old, are searching for truth. When those of us who are faithful Catholics stand up for our values in the face of tough choices (whether at home or in the voting booth) we are often called intolerant. But we cannot and should not separate our faith from our ability to make crucial decisions.
Every day we are faced with choices in our relationships. Whether it be in a friendship, within a family, or in a romance, these choices affect not only ourselves but those around us. As a 29-year-old woman, I watch my peers make choices that don’t always enable them to fulfill their greatest potential. However, unlike millions of children each year, they have the gift of life to try.
My heart breaks when I hear reports of the number of abortions that take place each day in our country. We live in a great nation, one with even greater potential. Yet due to any number of reasons and a government that allows it, millions of children are not given the chance to find their potential because of abortion.
Abortion robs the dignity not only of the tiny human person who loses his or her life but of the mother and father who make this life-altering choice. The Roe v. Wade decision occurred 10 years before my birth. I shudder to think of the possibilities, the potential, of the number of my peers that didn’t get their shot at life. I often wonder how the world would be different.
My generation is full of loneliness. We are all searching for deeper community and a connection with the world. I can’t help but think that because we allow such monstrosities as abortion, this culture shift won’t change. And lately I’ve been wrestling with the intolerance of violence against children and the tolerance for abortion. To me, these things are the same.
To defeat the tolerance for abortion, we must change hearts. It is up to my generation to do so. If we recognize the potential in every life, I believe that we will live in a world where we no longer have to wonder if we are we missing a generation of friends, colleagues, leaders and heroes because of abortion.
We are each called to fulfill the potential in ourselves. It’s as simple as that. But it’s a shame a million of us each year aren’t given the same chance to live up to it.
For the week of the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, this blog is featuring guest posts by Catholic bloggers who participated in the November 2012 USCCB event, "An Encounter with Social Media: Bishops and Bloggers Dialogue."