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9th-10th Grade First Place Winner: Anastasia Griesbauer

First Place Winner: Anastasia Griesbauer
Valuable and Dignified

“For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears the infant in my womb leaped for joy.” Elizabeth realized that Mary was pregnant with a very valuable and dignified human being and that she was carrying the Son of God. As pro-life people of God, we too must imitate Elizabeth and see the face of God in each preborn baby. We should make our motto, “When the message of a pregnancy reached my ears, I knew that God had created a dignified and valuable human being.” We should also protect preborn babies as our siblings and uphold their dignity as human beings and encourage our peers to do the same. I would tell a “pro-choice” peer that we should follow Elizabeth’s example and make our “choice” to uphold the dignity of every baby even when they seem to be without value or dignity.

If a peer claims to be pro-choice, I would remind him that each preborn baby is a human being who has active organs and can do most of the things we do. Contrary to what he has heard, the baby is far from just a lump of tissue. The baby’s heart beats for the first time at three weeks and it is pumping its own unique blood type. When the baby is 36 days old, his eyes have color. At 44 days, the baby has 99 percent of his muscles. At six weeks, the baby sleeps and awakens at regular hours. When the baby is close to seven weeks old, he can somersault, dance, hiccup, frown, and swim. At 13 weeks, the baby has a beautiful face and may resemble his parents. At four-and-a-half months, the preborn baby can feel pain. In addition, the baby can live outside the womb at 24 weeks. The preborn baby is a miniature human being and not a lifeless “product of conception.”

I would also tell my peer that each preborn baby has dignity and value because they are children of God. Every preborn baby is God’s son or daughter, and He loves them with immense love no matter the circumstances of their conception. God loves each one of us so much that He sent His Son to redeem us so that we “might have life and have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). As children of the King of the universe, they are princes and princesses in His family and our brothers and sisters. As members of the family of God, we should mirror the love of our Father and love each of our tiny siblings with no exceptions by following His command to “love one another.”

Because they are the most vulnerable and helpless of our brothers and sisters, they need our protection the most. While many see their vulnerability as an excuse to deny their humanity, we should see it as the duty to stand by them and protect them against abortion. Preborn babies with Down syndrome or some other disease are targeted for abortion because they are seen as without dignity or value, but God created each baby with a unique purpose to fulfill on earth. While we may want to go with the flow and think what society dictates, God calls us to do the hard task of taking up the cross and being His disciples by respecting each human being. He wants them to live their lives so that they may enjoy happiness with Him in heaven. Each preborn baby has a special task in this world, and they were all created by God to give Him glory each in their own way. The preborn babies of our time are the saints of the next generation. They may be a future scientist, inventor, musician, pastor, doctor, founder, or saint. When we end their life in abortion, we may be throwing away the opportunity to see the world change through that person.

Whether we want to admit it or not, a preborn baby is a human being with dignity and value as a child of God. When a peer is tempted to think that a preborn baby is not a child, I would tell her that God created each baby and loves him in the same way God loves her. I would pray for her that she may see the truth and the value and dignity of each human life she comes across. If she herself were expecting, I would recommend pregnancy centers where she could receive support for her and her baby. I would also ask her to pray before she makes an important decision about another’s life. May God give me the strength to bravely and compassionately explain to everyone the value of every life and never lose hope that life will always be victorious when we pray, work together, and encourage others.