These last few days in Rome have been both difficult and edifying. As leaders come together for the Rome Life Forum and today’s March for Life, there is both a certain sense of urgency and a shared sense of faith and trust in Our Lord.
There is much to say here – far more than this space allows. So forgive me as I move much too quickly through a number of subjects whose unity I’d like to focus on today, even if we can’t get into the depth each deserves.
His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke made a stirring call yesterday for the consecration of the world
, including Russia by name, to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the Mother of Our Lord. Faithful Catholics the world over recognize the formula as the one given by Our Lady of Fatima if the worst calamities were to be avoided. It was edifying to see the cardinal set aside the controversies over previous consecrations of the world, as these are a distraction and sometimes seem to have an ideological character. In truth, there is no controversy or ideological nature to doing the will of God, including the Holy Father’s renewing the consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart
, and naming Russia as specifically requested by Our Lady. Families renew their consecrations every year. These were never meant to be a “once and done” affair, but a complete turning of hearts and minds – a giving of hearts and minds – to God that marks a permanent shift in the orientation of our lives.
By giving hearts and minds to God in consecration, we are spiritually set aside for a special purpose-God’s special purpose in our lives. We set a course toward Him both personally and for whomever we are given in our spiritual care. Mothers and fathers do it for their children, bishops do it for their dioceses and all under their care, and the pope does it for the entire world. We’ll return to this in a moment, keeping in mind the nature of consecration as an intentional act that sets the consecrated one aside, that opens us to God’s will more completely.
Stay with me as I shift gears here for a bit, before bringing everything back together. Just before the March for Life we learned that the Trump Administration had re-enacted and expanded the Mexico City Policy. You’ll recall that this is the policy that was first created by President Reagan, and that has since been revoked by every democrat president immediately upon taking office and reinstated by every republican in the same manner. And let’s be clear about this-its re-instatement is an anti-abortion act, and its revocation is a pro-abortion act.
Yes, pro-abortion. Not just pro-choice. What the executive order has done historically is to remove federal funding from groups who perform and promote abortion-the funding being from a certain set of funds administered by the State Department under USAID and similar international aid programs. But the Trump Administration has extended the order to preclude funding any abortion-promoting groups throughout all international spending – affecting a pool of money far beyond the originally limited funds handled by the State Department to all international funding, extending even into those funds spent by the Department of Defense. As we learned with an announcement from the Trump Administration this past week
, the amount of funds now containing the abortion exclusion is now over eight billion.