RICHMOND, Virginia (LifeSiteNews) — On January 20, just days before the anniversary of Roe v. Wade and in week two of the state’s 2022 General Assembly, every delegate and senator in Virginia was brought a rose to commemorate lives lost to abortion.
Directly before the General Assembly’s afternoon session, young life advocates visited every legislative office in the Pocahontas building to distribute the pro-life movement’s classic symbol, ensuring that Virginia lawmakers are reminded of the unborn as they begin voting on bills that could protect or violate innocent lives.
With a legislature now led by a pro-life governor after multiple terms of pro-abortion leadership, the first General Assembly of 2022 has the potential to overturn extreme abortion legislation passed in recent years in the Commonwealth.
“These last two sessions our pro-life accomplishments have disappeared,” said Louise Hartz, a former Virginia Society for Human Life president and a member since 1967.
“Hopefully we are able to restore some of them these next two years. [The Rose Day] is a small reminder, but it can also educate the new members and their aides. We have to stay present, [and] have staying power.”
Enacted by VSHL more than 30 years ago, Rose Day at the capitol remains a part of that presence.
As governments across the globe seek to mandate abortion-tainted Covid-19 “vaccines” on millions of people against their will, medical autonomy continues to diminish worldwide, setting a dangerous precedent for future generations.
In response, during this Season of Advent, we have an important petition sponsored by Deacon Nick Donnelly of England, which makes the case that reception of the COVID vaccines currently available in the Western World is “morally illicit” for virtually all, if not every individual, in ordinary circumstances.
“The Bethlehem Declaration” has already been initially endorsed by four Catholic prelates, including Bishops Marian Eleganti, Rene Henry Gracida, Athanasius Schneider, and Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, along with ten priests and many scholars, activists and journalists from the United States, Europe, and Australia.
It also provides a compelling presentation, rich with hyperlinked resources documenting that not only are these injections morally illicit, but ineffective, unsafe, and unnecessary.
Calling mandates for reception of these chemicals “acts of violence” and “criminal,” the document also encourages those facing these difficult situations to exercise the virtue of prudence to the best of their ability while providing plenty of information to assist them in doing so.
Deacon Donnelly said this manifesto received its name since the Church is presently contemplating the “baby Jesus who manifests the sanctity of life of all babies, created in the image and likeness of God.”
“Bethlehem is also associated with the massacre of the Holy Innocents by King Herod,” he said. “This petition gives us the opportunity to protest on behalf of these silenced victims of the pharmaceutical industry” who have been exploited and used for the development and testing of COVID-19 vaccines.
Another signatory, child advocate Elizabeth Yore, called the Bethlehem Declaration “an outstanding document” which serves as “the definitive response to the globalist tyrannical health Madness.” Encouraging everyone to read it, she said, this petition “must resonate strongly amidst the noisy covid clatter.”
“I so love the gravitas of this grace-filled and divinely inspired document,” Yore said.
The Bethlehem Declaration concludes with the following appeal expressing the intention of this petition:
We therefore respectfully appeal to the Holy Father, the CDF, all Cardinals, Bishops, Priests, lay faithful, and all people of good will to vehemently oppose the reception of these morally tainted, dangerous, and ineffective products, along with the gravely unjust mandates for their reception being imposed upon millions of students and workers across the Christian West.
The Bethlehem Declaration:
Challenging the moral liceity of the abortion-tainted experimental injections for COVID-19 and calling for universal opposition to ‘vaccine mandates’
'For by His incarnation the Son of God has united Himself in some fashion with every man’ (GS 22).
Whereas the Second Vatican Council rightly summarized the horror of abortion classifying it as an “abominable crime” which also encompasses a “supreme dishonour to the Creator” (GS 51 § 3; 27);
Whereas St. John Paul II taught all must oppose such deliberate “murder” of the most vulnerable with “maximum of determination” (EV, 58; CL, 38);
Whereas, the sanctity of pre-born babies, created in the image and likeness of God (Gen 1:27), is gravely violated by their utilitarian exploitation and commodification; thereby furthering the descent of the human race into “a civilization of ‘things’ and not of ‘persons’, a civilization in which persons are used in the same way as things are used” (St. John Paul II, GS, 13);
Whereas all of the experimental COVID-19 gene-based vaccines currently available in the Western world, are abortion-tainted having been tested or developed through the abuse of stolen fetal cells from the bodies of murdered pre-born children…
**Photo Credit: Mike Baumeister on Unsplash
Reversing Abortion Agendas
In 2019 Virginia Del. Kathy Tran (D) introduced an act to remove ultrasound requirements from abortion and allow abortion providers to administer late-term abortions up until birth. Tran was supported by then Gov. Ralph Northam (D), but her bill was tabled by members of the House.
On October 1, 2021, Virginia became one of a handful of states to allow doctors and nurse practitioners to prescribe deadly chemical abortion pills via telemedicine. The legislation, passed in 2020, allows approved practitioners to prescribe an abortive drug cocktail after a single telemedicine appointment, without a requirement of follow-up care.
Abortions in Virginia can receive public funding if a child is determined to have “fetal abnormalities.” Taxpayers pay more than is federally required for abortions in the state.
Pro-life delegates and senators are working to reverse radical abortion trends this session, introducing acts defunding abortion further, requiring informed consent, and protecting pain-capable and abortion-surviving babies.
“These laws would begin to restore what we lost in recent years,” said Olivia Gans-Turner, VSHL president. “They are good bills that can save lives.”
Pro-life constituents across the state are planning to congregate in the General Assembly on February 9. The event, coined Defending Life Day, will bring citizens into their representatives’ offices to advocate for life. District captains are still needed to rally their local communities and lead guided meetings with legislators. To sign up, visit the Virginia Pro-Life Day website.