Archbishop Burke Warns US Legal Infanticide, Euthanasia are Next

Calls for an awakening of the national moral conscience
Fri Jan 26, 2007 - 12:15 pm EST

By Meg Jalsevac

Archbishop Raymond Burke at Rose Dinner  WASHINGTON, DC, January 26, 2007 ( – Archbishop Raymond Burke, archbishop of St. Louis, MO, addressed the annual March for Life’s Rose Dinner and delivered a message of both encouragement and warning for the pro-life population of the United States. 

  The Rose Dinner is held every year at the Hyatt Regency in Washington, D.C. in the evening after the March for Life and, according to its website, is an opportunity “to enjoy delicious food, learn about important pro-life issues, and toast to the hope for a successful pro-life year.”

  Burke began his address reminding his listeners that another crucial front has arisen in the battle against the culture of death.  “Given the legalization of procured abortion in our nation, we should really not be surprised that now the agents of the culture of death seek a constitutional guarantee of the right to generate artificially and destroy embryonic human life.  A nation that permits abortion at any stage, including the practice of partially delivering a baby into the world in order to destroy it brutally,  has so deadened its conscience that it is no longer horrified at the thought of embryonic stem cell research, which has rightly been called Frankensteinien.”

  Referring to his home state of Missouri’s passage of Amendment 2 at the end of last year, Burke described the amendment as a constitutional amendment which “guarantees the right to clone human life and to destroy the embryonic human life created in order to harvest stem cells.”  The archbishop attributed the passage of the amendment despite Missouri’s identity as a pro-life state to the citizens succumbing “to the diabolically clever lies propagated by the financially and socially powerful proponents of the proposed Amendment 2.”

  Burke went on to describe, as an example, the actions of former Missouri Republican Senator John Danforth, a supposedly “pro-life” senator and ordained Episcopal priest, who appeared in television and newspaper ads and, according to Burke, encouraged people to “abandon the heartless moral concerns of what he calls the ‘Christian right’ and to exercise compassion for those suffering from serious injuries and grave illness by guaranteeing the right to embryonic stem cell research in the state of Missouri.” 

  Burke likened such a position to the racist ideologies that have plagued our nation in the past saying that it is “a classic example of the powerful denying the right to life to the less powerful – indeed, the voiceless.”  He went on to explain that arguments that deny the humanity of an embryo based on its size are simply a racist justification of “our manipulation and destruction of human life.” 

  Burke said that proponents of the culture of death shy away from discussing the humanity of the embryo or the unborn fetus and went on to explain the scientific basis for recognizing the human embryo as “a distinct genetic being who only needs protection and nurturing to grow and develop.” 

Archbishop Burke on the March for Life  Burke cautioned that unless there is a re-awakening of the national conscience, the United States will soon see “the move to permit infanticide up to a certain age because the small child has not yet achieved the sufficient ability to relate with others - even as we witness a growing acceptance of euthanasia in the cases of persons who we no longer consider productive and able to relate in society according to whatever standard we conveniently establish.”

  He claims that such an awakening will only come with the individual awakening of American citizens because he believes that, given the truth, the American people will not accept the killing of human life.  Burke attributed the current cultural situation to “the programmatic lying which is the condition for the existence of the culture of death.” 

  The Archbishop encouraged his audience assuring them that there were signs that the culture of life in America was winning out.  He used as one example the recent growth of the Silent No More campaign, comprised of “heroic” men and women who have previously had or collaborated in an abortion and who now deeply regret their decision. 

  He also drew attention to positive signs in Hollywood – namely, the actors and professionals involved in the production of the movie Bella.  The archbishop praised Bella saying that it is “an outstanding contribution to the new proclamation of the Gospel of Life.”

  Burke emphasized the importance of returning to an understanding and obedience to the natural moral law which he referred to as the “fundamental truth that we seek to communicate.”  He stated that only through heeding the natural moral law will our society “keep our eyes fixed on the moral principles upon which the foundation of our nation rests – those expressed eloquently in the Declaration of Independence – namely, that man is endowed by his Creator with certain inalienable rights among which the first place is held by the right to life.” 

  Finally, Burke exhorted his listeners to always pray saying, ““Only through prayer will we know the truth and have the courage to speak and defend the truth.”

  Burke concluded his talk by calling on the intercession of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Patroness of the Unborn, and reciting the prayer that Pope John Paul II used to conclude his encyclical Evangelium Vitae:

 “Oh Mary, bright dawn of the new world.  Mother of the living, to you, do we entrust the cause of life.  Look down, oh Mother, on the vast number of babies not allowed to be born, of the poor whose lives are made difficult, of the men and women who are victims of brutal violence and the elderly and sick who are killed in indifference or out of misguided mercy.  Grant that all who believe in your Son may proclaim the Gospel of Life with honesty and love to the people of our time.  Obtain for them the grace to accept that gospel as gift ever new, the joy of celebrating it with gratitude throughout their lives and the courage to bear witness to it resolutely in order to build together with all people of good will a civilization of truth and love to the praise and glory of God, the Creator and Father of Life. Amen.” 

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