Memorial Mass for the Unborn: Remembering all those hurt by abortion and miscarriage
Several hundred people from around Sydney will come together this Friday evening to pray for all those hurt by abortion at the fourth annual Memorial Mass for the Unborn. It will be celebrated by Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP.
The Mass will take place on Friday 11 September at 7pm in St Mary’s Cathedral. Students from Catholic schools in the Sydney Archdiocese along with university students, and representatives of pro-life and pregnancy support organisations will all be in attendance.
The Mass is an opportunity for the community to come together in solidarity with bereaved mothers and fathers to recognise the profound loss of life and hurt caused by abortion.
It is reasonably estimated that 82 lives are lost to abortion every day in NSW alone. In commemoration of this loss, 82 candles will be taken up by members of the congregation and set near the altar. A single blue candle will also be taken up in recognition of the lives lost through miscarriage.
Following the candle procession, 82 seconds of silence will be observed to prayerfully recognise the pain abortion has caused. At the conclusion of the Mass, the 82 candles will be taken outside to the steps of the Cathedral and placed in the shape of a cross, where they will remain overnight as a public witness.
The Mass is an opportunity to reach out to people who have been impacted by abortion, to grieve and to pray in solidarity with the community for this profound loss.
University student, Claire O'Brien, will be attending the Mass again this year and she reflected that “there is always a sense of peace during this Mass, as though our hearts were being filled with mercy and love, it is open for all who seek understanding and healing.
“The Memorial Mass helps me understand the importance of having a compassionate heart for all victims of abortion. It gives me sorrow yet it gives me hope, to see so many united in prayer together.”
Chris Meney, Director of the Life, Marriage and Family Centre that hosts the annual Mass, said, “There is a real cloak over the issue of abortion. There is a reluctance to talk about it and to look seriously at how widespread it is and how much harm it causes especially to women and children. This is not an evening that in any way makes a judgement of women. But it is certainly a reminder of the horrendous harm that comes when we can find no other way than to destroy a human life.”
Mr Meney added that “in this Year of Mercy, when Pope Francis has reaffirmed that the arms of the Church are always open to all women and men seeking God’s forgiveness and mercy after an abortion, this Memorial Mass for the Unborn is an opportunity for a journey of hope and healing to begin.”
The Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney welcomes the presence of all those who wish to attend this Memorial Mass and requests their sensitivity around the difficult and often painful subject of abortion.
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