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Honoring Life

By Jordi H.

What is honoring life? How can someone like me help honor life? These two questions do not have simple answers. First, if I genuinely want to honor life, I must first look back at important figures in history who have taken on the role of protecting life, such as St. Gianna Beretta Molla. I can then take charge in the world and protect vulnerable people by standing up to unjust actions. The vulnerable people I will protect are preborn children, the elderly, and the homeless.

Now, the saint I chose was St. Gianna Beretta Molla, the patron saint of mothers, physicians, and preborn children. She was born on October 4, 1922, and was the tenth of thirteen children. She decided to put her values into a career in medicine. In 1949, Gianna graduated with degrees in medicine and surgery and opened up her own pediatrics office in the year of 1952. In September 1961, at the age of 39, St. Gianna was pregnant with her fourth child when physicians diagnosed a tumor that required surgery. The surgeon suggested that Gianna, in order to save her own life, undergo an abortion. Gianna, though, out of love for her child, made her decision prompt and decisive: “I shall accept whatever they will do to me, provided that they save the child.” She bravely underwent the surgery, but her fate was soon sealed. The following year, on Good Friday, Gianna was admitted to Monza Maternity Hospital, where her fourth child was born the very next day. Sadly, her time expired seven days later, on April 28, 1962. St. Gianna, with these actions, became one of the many figures who have honored life throughout our history.

So, now that I know how an important figure in history could honor and protect life, how can I protect vulnerable people? I can first start off by standing up to unjust actions like abortion. To do this I can participate in movements like The Walk for Life and pray to God that one day we will rise up to these actions and protect God’s creations, just as St. Gianna did. Secondly, I do things like supplying food to the homeless. One way I can do this is to go to groups and meetings like Feed My Starving Children. These actions can help the poor and homeless in need of food and shelter. Lastly, a third way I can help the vulnerable is to visit and pray for the elderly. Some elderly people have no one to pay them a visit, so I think if I did that, it would really brighten their day.

The next vulnerable groups I will protect are preborn children, the elderly, and the homeless. Why do these groups require protection? Well first, the preborn child might be the most vulnerable stage in the human life cycle. In this stage, a child really has no awareness of an attack on their life, such as an abortion. So, I will do whatever I can to stop these attacks on a helpless life such as a preborn child. I will speak my opinion on this matter to others and strive to reach a point in the world where the rights of a preborn child can be protected. Second, the elderly require protection because they might not be as strong and decisive as they were before, so they may need an extra hand to guide them. Some ways I will do this is to visit them and ask them how life is for them, making sure everything is all right in their lives. Plus, I could support them with their average daily things like groceries, cooking, and the dishes. The reason I could do this is that as they are entering their old age, these things might not be as easy as they recently might have been for them, so an extra hand could really help them. Lastly, the homeless need protection because they do not have resources like shelter and food as we do, so they need protection against things like starvation. I will protect the homeless from things like starvation by working in food drives and donating money and supplies to them. If I can do this, then they can have the comfort of a full stomach, just as most of us do.

So, in conclusion, I want to see a world where we honor and choose life, just as St. Gianna did. I want to see a world where people like the preborn child, the elderly, and the homeless are protected.

Jordi H. won an honorable mention in the middle school category of the Culture of Life Studies Program’s 2022 Pro-Life Essay Contest.