Why we must ‘fight like heaven’ against Michigan’s abortion proposal

3 mins read
Abortion Michigan
A banner opposing Proposal 3, Michigan's so-called "Reproductive Freedom for All" constitutional amendment, is seen next to crosses representing thousands of abortion victims in Michigan outside St. Paul on the Lake Parish in Grosse Pointe Farms, Mich., Oct. 2, 2022. The bishops of Michigan's seven dioceses sent a letter to 236,000 households in the state urging Catholics to vote against the proposal, which they called the "most extreme" proposal on abortion ever seen in the United States. (Courtesy photo)

“Wouldn’t it have been wonderful if the Church had led the Supreme Court? But the Church didn’t lead, and it didn’t follow. We lack the moral courage to act.”

Benjamin Mays, president of Morehouse College, spoke these convicting words at the 1957 Conference on Christian Faith and Human Relations during the civil rights movement. More than 4,500 clergymen were invited. Only 300 attended.

Fast forward to the future, where a new rights movement has been underway for 50 years — the basic human right to live.

While the pro-life movement won a tremendous victory earlier this year with the overturning of Roe v. Wade, the fight clearly isn’t over. As the issue of abortion goes back to the states, there may not be a more vicious battle going on than the one in Michigan. The eyes of the other 49 states are watching to see if Proposal 3, a proposed amendment to the state Constitution, is voted into implementation. According to the Michigan Catholic Conference: “Proposal 3 goes far beyond just keeping abortion legal or reinstating the now overturned Roe v. Wade decision. It would allow abortions to be performed by anyone, at any point in pregnancy and for any reason. It would throw away state laws regulating quality, safety and inspections for abortion clinics. It would remove parental consent requirement for teens seeking abortions, and also teens seeking gender reassignment surgeries.”

Additionally, it threatens to throw open wide the doors to other major moral issues. Proposal 3’s language is vague and could have serious future applications, such as allowing minors to seek help with gender reassignment and hormonal therapy without parental knowledge or consent. In the words of policy advocate for Michigan Catholic Conference, Rebecca J. Mastee, “It goes way beyond what Roe v. Wade ever permitted.”

Bishop Earl Boyea of Lansing put it well, saying Proposal 3 is “the most extreme abortion proposal this country has ever witnessed.”

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has promised to “fight like hell” to pass Proposal 3. It seems the cards are completely stacked against those who value human life at all its stages.

At least, this is what the devil wants us to believe.

As children of God and members of the Body of Christ, we must see all circumstances and events with eyes of faith, asking: “How does God see this? What is he asking of me to do in response?” Here are four ways we can spiritually engage in this battle.

    • Pray — Bishop Boyea had a simple response to Gov. Whitmer’s proclamation to “fight like hell,” saying, “We will fight like heaven.” Join the 54-day Rosary novena (even if joining a little late) to pray against the passing of Proposal 3 in Michigan and similar proposals in other states. Similarly, pray for those who seem to be our enemies in this fight, and remember: They, too, are made in the image and likeness of God.
    • Fast — “This kind does not come out except by prayer and fasting” (Mt 17:21). As the 50-year-long fight for life is sent back to the states, we must strengthen our spiritual response by adding fasting or acts of penance to our efforts. We also should fast for those who are not yet convicted in the truth of the sanctity of human life. In those moments, we must also sacrifice and pray: “Father, forgive them, they do not know what they do” (Lk 23:34)
    • Almsgiving — Today, political campaigns are driven by money. More than $10 million has been spent to promote Proposal 3. Jesus calls us to “Be shrewd as serpents and simple as doves” (Mt 10:16) As we live in a culture where ads are seen by millions of people on their screens, we need to use this tool to share the truth, but this requires the funds to do so. Donations can be made to Citizens to Support MI Women and Children at supportmiwomenandchildren.org/donate.
    • Preach — “Preaching” may sound old-fashioned, but this does not exempt us from speaking truth. Jesus calls us all through the Great Commission to “Go … and make disciples of all nations” (Mt 28:19) Not some, not when it’s convenient, but ALL. Whether your family or neighbors are pro-life or pro-abortion, they deserve to know the full truth about Proposal 3, especially the facets concerning parental consent and late-term abortions. If you live outside of Michigan, spread the word so proposals and laws like this don’t pass in other states.

As with all responses, we must always speak and live out the truth in charity to our neighbor. But we should not be captivated by the fear of offending others. Christ has affirmed us: “Your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father” (Mt 5:16)

We must be shining examples in the darkness plaguing the world, and voices for the voiceless. During this critical battle in the fight for life, may the opposite of the words of Benjamin Mays, declared 65 years ago, be said of us: “The Church led, and the Church followed. They had the moral courage to act.”

To read the full text of Proposal 3 and an analysis of this amendment, please visit supportmiwomenandchildren.org. To read Bishop Earl Boyea’s call to “Fight Like Heaven”, please visit dioceseoflansing.org.

Allison Barrick is a marketing specialist for OSV.

Allison Barrick

Allison Barrick is a marketing specialist for OSV and a catechist for Christ the King parish in Ann Arbor, Michigan.