November Journal, Twenty-first Sunday after Trinity, Octave of All Saints

We had a cold spell in the Bay Area this last week and suddenly our trees turned burnt orange, fiery blazes of glory in the valleys around our house. The seasons change, bursting with life, throwing off death, preparing in time for winter’s sleep, and spring’s awakening. We on Earth move in time too, humanity seeking and seeing and learning each day more about who we are, what it is to be human, our light and our darkness, even our own manifestations of holiness.

For we were created to be holy, in the image of God, to love one another and to protect one another from evil. For as the poet priest John Donne wrote in 1624:

“No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.”

We are in-relationship with all of humanity.

And so the world awaits the events in America, watching to see what the next days, months, and years will reveal. And we too, as faithful citizens of the Kingdom of Christ the King, watch and wait. For the great Holocaust, the genocide of generations unborn, shows signs of ceasing. But will the killing cease?

As Christians we pray to Christ our King to have mercy upon us for not doing enough to help others see the unborn are human beings with rights to life. We pray and protest and lobby. We establish clinics and support centers. We provide adoption services. As ultrasound images tear hearts, opening them to love, many women choose life. They never regret it.

But the Holocaust goes on: the dismemberment, the piercing of hearts of mother and child, the horror of what we are doing as a nation and what we are doing as a state, in California, where there is no sanctuary for the unborn, for the “unwanted” embryo.

I recently finished reading Francis Etheredge’s newest book, a pre-publication manuscript for review, to be published later in November by Enroute Books and Media, Unfolding A Post-Roe World. Once again, this poet-philosopher-theologian has argued a comprehensive and powerful case for granting personhood, and thus the right to life, to the embryo from the moment of conception, at fertilization. Science has shown this is when human life begins, when each one of us began, and thus these tiny human beings should enjoy all the protections we larger ones enjoy, protections we call human rights. He sees this as a worldwide cause, for we are all “in relationship” to one another as members of the human race. Our family trees are rooted in Adam and Eve, and, as John Donne wrote, no man is an island.

America leads the world. What we do to the least of ours, our most innocent and vulnerable humans, is noticed. Our inhumane treatment of the unborn is noticed by other cultures, other countries. Eventually, should we continue on this dark path, we shall find we are being treated the same way, crushed by powerful forces.

We are in-relationship with one another; we are responsible for one another.

As Christians we call this being of one flock, sheep gathered by the Shepherd. We listen for his voice, attend to his commandments, reach for his hand to touch and heal us. We know what it means to be the People of God, the Children of God. For we know Christ, and he knows us. He is in us, and we are in him.

And so St. Paul tells us today to “Put on the whole armour of God.” But it is an armour of virtue, not of steel: “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the ruler of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” We are to be protected by truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, prayer, and perseverance. (Ephesians 6:10+) We are to stand firm.

Americans cast votes on Tuesday. Whom we elect to office and what laws we support, will affect the protection or destruction of our children, will give or deny them the human rights they deserve. These unborn, allowed to live, protected by law, will be the new generation that heals America. Already, many lives have been saved in states that chose life. Many are being saved each day, each hour, each minute. Let’s save them all. Let’s role back the tyranny, push away the principalities and powers of darkness. Let’s vote for life for each of these vulnerable innocents.

(For expert testimony by a doctor as to what happens in an abortion, see:

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