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Peace & Life Connections #291
December 18, 2015


Holiday Issue
 
Note: Due to the holidays, Peace & Life Connections will not be published on the next two Fridays, and will start the new year on Friday, January 8. 
 
We have our list of activities for the Roe anniversary marches, walks and conferences up on the web.
 
 
Holiday Movies
 
         It’s not often that Hollywood covers consistent-life heroes, but now playing in theaters is a movie called The Letters deals with the life of Mother Teresa. She said in a National Prayer Breakfast meeting: "Any country that accepts abortion, is not teaching its people to love, but to use any violence to get what it wants."
         The critics have mostly panned the movie, but then, it doesn’t have any car chases in it. Those who appreciate charity and nonviolent confrontations will find it moving.
 
         For those getting videos to watch at home:
 
∞ Another that covers a consistent-life hero is Gandhi: "It seems to me clear as daylight that abortion would be a crime." (from All Men Are Brothers, Autobiographical Reflections, New York: Continuum, 1980, p. 150)
 
∞ Yet another is covered in Entertaining Angels: The Dorothy Day Story. She and the Catholic Peace Fellowship drafted a marvelous consistent-life statement
   
Dead Man Walking about the death penalty was based on a book by Sr. Helen Prejean, enthusiastic CL Endorser.
 
Amazing Grace covers the anti-slavery adventures of William Wilberforce with his many nonviolence and social justice interests; a descendant of his relates this to today’s issues.
 
∞ For one with a specific Christmas theme, Joyeux Noel is an excellent dramatization of the great spontaneous Christmas Truce along the frontlines between enemy soldiers in World War I.
 
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Interfaith Joy of the Season
 
         Considering how much of the news involves astonishing bigotry against Muslims – including among politicians who by virtue of stated pro-life beliefs really ought to know better than to use dehumanizing and “eradication” terminology – we cover a sampling of some Muslim groups working toward nonviolence.
 
Pro-life Muslims, who explain opposition to both abortion and euthanasia, quote from Qur’an 5:32: “whosoever saves a life, it is as if he had saved the life of all mankind.” A similar thought is found in the Jewish Mishnah Sanhedrin 4:9. The idea covers the entire consistent life ethic well.  
 
Pro-Life Muslims
 
Among the many efforts to counter war are the Muslim Peacemaker Teams.
 
Dr. Khaled Abou El Fadl has written a book chapter on an Islamic perspective against the death penalty.
 
A Muslim vegetarian group is called Islamic Concern.
 
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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 commnted on 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 quote 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.
 
In 2013, we shared several quotations reflecting on Christmas
 
In 2014, we offered a quotation from a lesser-known Christmas novella of Charles Dickens and noted the treatment of abortion in the Zoroastrian scriptures, since that would have been the scriptures of the Magi of the nativity story.
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