With the hustle and bustle of Christmas, we can easily forget the other feast days that occur during the octave of Christmas—the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day. On December 26th, we commemorate the Feast of the Holy Innocents, a special feast for the pro-life movement.
For the culture of life, abortion is one of the most grievous sins against God because we fail to show trust in His plan for humanity, and it directly rejects God’s authority over life and death. As we remember the feast of the Holy Innocents, let us also remember the millions of innocent babies who have been lost because of abortion.
After Jesus’ birth, King Herod learned from the three wise men that a new king had come to Bethlehem. Filled with jealousy and fear, King Herod ordered that every male child under the age of two in Bethlehem be put to death. In a dream, an angel warned St. Joseph to take Mary and Jesus to safety in Egypt. Christ was saved, but the other baby boys in Bethlehem perished in the massacre of the Holy Innocents, making them essentially the first martyrs for Christ.
Imagine the terror and grief the mothers and fathers felt as they lost their beloved babies to the wickedness of King Herod. This is the anguish Christ feels each and every time an innocent baby is slaughtered.
When you look at the statistics of abortion, the numbers seem cold and impersonal—especially for the incredibly large number of children who have died thus far in the abortion holocaust. Sometimes it can be hard to remember that each of those numbers represents a human being with a future.
The Holy Innocents are similar to the preborn babies lost in abortion. Each one of them had a name. Their mothers and fathers planned for their futures. Their brothers and sisters loved them. But King Herod tore them out of their mother’s arms and slaughtered them out of jealousy and selfishness.
When we hear about babies who have been saved from abortion, it can be easy to forget for a moment the millions of their comrades who were not given that chance to live. This is shockingly illustrated in a video by Life Dynamics, which gives a concrete look at what 55 million abortions looks like compared to the number of American servicemen and women who died during all of the American wars combined. This video, suitable for children who have been taught about the horrors of abortion, opens eyes and puts this number in perspective.
Abortion claims the lives of over 3,000 innocent babies every day. It is important to remember the feast of the Holy Innocents, not only because they made a special sacrifice for the Child Jesus, but also because they can offer us keen insight into how we should respond to the culture of death.
Abortion is a tragedy that must be stopped. Innocent children’s lives are lost every single day. The death count continues, even if some babies are saved. Imagine if you saw a child running into a busy street. Would you stand and watch and let someone else save the child, or would you rush to the aid of the innocent?
Here are some practical things that you can do to help save lives:
This joyous Christmas season, teach your children about the sanctity of all human beings. Read the story of the Holy Innocents, found in Matthew 2:16-18, with your children and discuss how this story is similar to the sad reality of abortion in our society. Give your children hope for the future by teaching them how to defend human beings through prayer and activism.
We are all precious gifts from God, but we must give special care to children because of their innocence and complete reliance on others. Just as Mary and Joseph rushed to save the infant Jesus from the dangers of King Herod, so too must we rush to the aid of children who are in danger of abortion.
Laura Kizior is the Digital Media and Communciations Manager for the Culture of Life Studies Program. Her work has appeared on Verily.com, CatholicMom.com, LifeSiteNews.com, Celebrate Life Magazine, TeachersSavingChildren.org, and in the Pro-Life Healthcare Alliance newsletter.