BALTIMORE, Maryland, Mar 5 (  A recent message from Pope John Paul is sure to anger Christians who don’t make the pro-life issue a priority. In a letter to a meeting of the US Bishops’ Committee for Pro-Life Activities, he wrote that there is a “Christian duty to defend and promote human life from the moment of conception to that of natural death.”

In the letter the pope praised the US Bishop’s pro-life statement, “Living the Gospel of Life: A Challenge to American Catholics,” saying that “it sheds light on a matter of critical importance for society, a matter so essential that no one can remain indifferent.”

In his strongly worded letter, the pope talked about today’s culture of death, stating that “at such a time, Christians must act.” “This is a fundamental demand not only of discipleship but also of democracy, which flourishes when people of conviction struggle vigorously to advance their beliefs by every ethical and legal means at their disposal.” “Your action needs to be both educational and political,” continued the pope. Addressing his remarks to the Church’s leadership he noted that “the pro-life concern must be present in every aspect of the Church’s pastoral activity.”

See the full copy of the Papal letter.