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Peace & Life Connections #241
December 19, 2014

Note: Due to the holidays, Peace & Life Connections will not be published on the next two Fridays, and will start the new year on Friday, January 9. 
Charles Dickens, The Chimes, 1844
Dickens wrote several Christmas novellas, not just the most famous one with Ebenezer Scrooge.
Context: Mr. Filer just heard a friend explaining how terrible marriage is to a young couple after they say they’re planning to marry. The young woman’s father is also present. “Such people as those” refers to people in poverty, three of whom are in front of him listening to him say this.
        “A man may live to be as old as Methuselah,” said Mr. Filer, “and may labour all his life for the benefit of such people as those: and may heap up facts on figures, facts on figures, facts on figures, mountains high and dry; and he can no more hope to persuade ‘em that they have no right or business to be married, than he can hope to persuade ‘em that they have no earthly right or business to be born. And that we know they haven’t. We reduced it to a mathematical certainty long ago!”
The Magi were Zoroastrians
        Zoroastrianism arose from revelations to the prophet Zarathustra; it and Judaism were the monotheistic religions focused on ethics. The Magi were one of many groups of Zoroastrians and were also expecting the arrival of a savior, and so would find the Jewish events a good fit.
        Their scripture is the Avesta, and one book of it that deals with laws is the Vendidad. Abortion is covered in 15, verses 9-19. An excerpt: 
        If a man comes near a young woman . . . and she says, “I have conceived by you;” and he replies, “Go then to the old woman and apply to her for one of her drugs, that she may procure you a miscarriage.” And the woman goes to the old woman and applies to her for one of her drugs, that she may procure miscarriage; and the old woman brings her some . .. and says, 'Cause thy fruit to perish!" and she causes her fruit to perish; the sin is on the head of all three: the man, the young woman, and the old woman . . .             
        O Maker of the material world, thou Holy One! If she be near her time, which is the worshipper of Mazda [God] that shall support her? Ahura Mazda [“Lord of Wisdom” -- God] answered: 'If a man come near unto a young woman . . .  and she conceives by him, so long shall he support her, until the child be born. If he shall not support her, it lies with the faithful to look in the same way after every pregnant female.
Past Holiday Editions
In 2010, we showed “It’s a Wonderful Movement” by using the theme of what would happen if the peace movement and the pro-life movement hadn’t arisen. We also had quotes from Scrooge against respect for life and a Martin Luther King Christmas sermon.
In 2011, we covered the materialism-reducing “Advent Conspiracy” and offered two pieces of children’s literature: a 1938 anti-war cartoon called “Peace on Earth,” and the anti-war origins of “Horton Hears a Who,” whose tagline – “a person’s a person, no matter how small” - is irresistible to pro-lifers.

In 2012, we had a couple of quotes showing the pro-life aspects of two prominent Christmas tales: A Christmas Carol with Ebenezer Scrooge, and the movie It’s a Wonderful Life. We also quoted from John Dear about Jesus as peacemaker and Rand Paul about the 1914 spontaneous Christmas Truce; he then related it to the culture of life.
Happy Holidays
(Hanukkah, Winter Solstice, Christmas, Boxing Day, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Day)

From the CL Board of Directors
241 Board photo
241 board extra 2 
Top photo, top row:
Richard Stith, Bill Samuel, Tony Masalonis, John Whitehead, Rob Arner

Top photo, bottom row: Carol Crossed, Mary Rider, Lisa Stiller
Middle row of photos: Rachel Muha, Nick Neal 
Bottom row of Photos:
Rachel Leigh Peller joined the board this year; Rachel MacNair, Jim Balmer
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