60 Second Reflections

January 22, 2020

Wednesday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time

Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children

Philistines come in all shapes and sizes, nationalities and religions. In the time of David, the Philistines were a tribe hostile to Israel inhabiting the land between Judea and Egypt. They were fierce warriors especially capable in battle due to their ability to forge weapons from iron rather than the less-effective bronze. And Goliath was their champion, physically intimidating in size, strength, armor and experience. No one, including Saul, the king of the Israelites, dared accept his challenge of an one-on-one confrontation. Except David. David may have been young and inexperienced in war, but that does not mean he was not strong and confident in his ability to defend his vulnerable sheep against Philistine-like predators. And he knew that the battle was the Lord’s and that God was with him. So David dispatched Goliath. In our time a philistine is defined as a person guided by materialism. As we pray today for the legal protection of unborn children, it is imperative that we recognize who the philistines are in this battle. They are not the women whom through a multitude of circumstances are faced with the hopeless and heart-rending realization that they can no longer, for whatever reason, carry within them and bring to birth the child they have conceived. No, the philistines are the people responsible for those multitude of circumstances bearing down mercilessly on those women, some little more than children. They are those who would put profit before people, who would see money spent on domestic violence shelters, sexual assault prevention programs, affordable health insurance, subsidized housing, economical daycare, and higher minimum wage as a loss to their bank accounts rather than a gain to the women they would benefit. Jesus was angry and grieved that he had to tell the Pharisees that it is always right and just to preserve life rather than destroy it. Let us remember that the lives that must be preserved are those of the mothers so they will have the ability to preserve those of their babies. Let us imitate David so that no matter what our background and experience, we defend all the vulnerable in our society against the philistines who would use their size and strength to put their financial gain before others’ basic needs. God is with us so this is a battle that can be won. 1 Sm 17:32-33, 37, 40-51; Ps 144:1b, 2, 9-10; Mk 3:1-6

Please click here to see today’s readings from the US Conference of Catholic Bishop’s website.