WASHINGTON – On January 22, 1973, the Supreme Court of the United States legalized abortion nationwide in its decision on Roe v. Wade. Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities called on the faithful to “pray, fast, and work for the day when the gift of every human life is protected in law and welcomed in love” on the anniversary of the court’s decision.
Archbishop Lori’s full statement follows:
“January 22 marks the 49th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision making abortion legal in all 50 states.
“The Catholic Church’s opposition to abortion is a response of love for both mothers and their children in the womb. The Church’s teaching proclaims a message of life, reminding us that every life is a sacred gift from God from the moment of conception until natural death.
“In remembrance of the tragic anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and in petition for full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right to life for all individuals, the Catholic Church in the United States recognizes the National Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children. We invite all Catholics and people of good will to fast and pray on this day, and frequently between now and June, when we anticipate a decision by the Supreme Court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health. We pray that this important case might reverse Roe and its unjust abortion license.
“We cannot build a truly just society and remain complacent when faced with the massive impact of Roe v. Wade, which has taken over 60 million lives since 1973. May we pray, fast, and work for the day when the gift of every human life is protected in law and welcomed in love.”