Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Fr. Paul CB Schenck

5/2/2014 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Athanasius calls us to a Life of Heroism for Life

Athanasius vigorously defended the divine personhood of Christ, even when it seemed the majority of the Church had accepted Arius's error. Athanasius contra mundum - it was Athanasius against the world! So it is in our pro-life effort today. The denial of the personhood of the preborn child is a denial of the sanctity of human life and the dignity of the human person who is created unique and unrepeatable in the image of God.

Fr Paul Schenck

Fr Paul Schenck

Highlights

By Fr. Paul CB Schenck

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/2/2014 (2 years ago)

Published in Christian Saints & Heroes

Keywords: Athanasius, Defenders of Life, counter culture, Pro-Life, Anti-Abortion, Culture of life, Fr Paul Schenck


HARRISBURG, PA (Catholic Online) - My Jewish father and I had a more than thirty year conversation focused on the Incarnation - Dad would say, "I can accept Jesus as a son of God, but not God the Son." - he could not accept that the Infinite God could restrain himself in the form of finite man.

As he was dying, I prayed a Rosary each night at the foot of his bed for his conversion. I kept Holy Water by his bedside all during his illness and finally, after an hour's face to face talk, Dad surrendered his opposition to the Incarnation and requested baptism. I baptized him, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, just 24 hours before his death!

The Letter to the Hebrews says, "When Christ came into the world; he said, "Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body you have prepared for me." That, or this Body was the whole key to salvation, to eternal life, to the whole meaning of life itself. In the infamous Roe V Wade decision, Justice Harry Blackman admitted his and the majority of the Court's ignorance of the meaning, even the definition of life. Blackman wrote -

We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins. When those trained in the respective disciplines of medicine, philosophy, and theology are unable to arrive at any consensus, the judiciary, at this point in the development of man's knowledge, is not in a position to speculate as to the answer.

Now today we know, with certainty, that a new human life comes into existence at conception, which is when a human male sperm unites with a human female oocyte (egg), and two sets of chromosomes become one new set.

Based on universally accepted scientific criteria, a new cell, the human zygote, comes into existence at the moment of sperm-egg fusion, an event that occurs in less than a second. This is now the point in the development of man's knowledge. It is the battle over this truth that we are currently engaged in.

Saint Athanasius was the champion in a similar contest over truth. The followers of an Egyptian priest named Arius promoted the false doctrine that Christ was not God come in the flesh, that he was created and not co-eternal, not consubstantial with the Father, in other words, less than God. Denying God in the flesh was a denial of the Gospel, a forfeiture of the Truth.

Athanasius vigorously defended the divine personhood of Christ, even when it seemed the majority of the Church had accepted Arius's error. Athanasius contra mundum - it was Athanasius against the world!

So it is in our pro-life effort today. The denial of the personhood of the preborn child is a denial of the sanctity of human life and the dignity of the human person who is created unique and unrepeatable in the image of God.

At times it seems the whole world has bought the lie, has embraced the fallacy, has followed the error. But that's no reason to give up - Athanasius contra mundum!

I'd like to propose a new motto for this Feast of Saint Athanasius, this Pro-Life pilgrimage in Washington and throughout the world -

Vita defensores contra mundi!
Defenders of Life against the world!

"The Father who sent me commanded me what to say and speak.And I know that his commandment is eternal life.So what I say, I say as the Father told me."

-----

Fr. Paul Schenck, a Priest of the Diocese of Harrisburg, PA., is the founding Director of the National Pro-Life Center (NPLC) on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The Center gives the Justices of the Supreme Court, their high level staff, members of the federal judiciary, members of the US Senate and other public policy makers the information, education and inspiration they need to better form their consciences so they will make better decisions. He is a Champion of the Pro-Life movement.

---


'Help give every student and teacher Free resources for a world-class moral Catholic education'


Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for DECEMBER 2016
Universal:
End to Child-Soldiers: That the scandal of child-soldiers may be eliminated the world over.
Evangelization: Europe: That the peoples of Europe may rediscover the beauty, goodness, and truth of the Gospel which gives joy and hope to life.



Comments


More Christian Saints & Heroes

Quotes of the Saints - Five saints have a message for you on this Thanksgiving holiday Watch

Image of Let us remember to give thanks for this day the Lord has made.

By Marshall Connolly, (California Network)

If you are an American, today is Thanksgiving. Hopefully today you have made a point to attend Mass and to give thanks to God for all His blessings. If you are not American, today's holiday is a reminder that God deserves thanks from all His creation. We pray you will ... continue reading


St. Ignatius of Antioch: Model of Bravery, Man for our Times Watch

Image of One of many icons of St. Ignatius of Antioch

By Billy Atwell

In the face of the current "witch-hunts" endured by some of our Bishops, let us remember a hero on October 17, the feast of St. Ignatius of Antioch.  St. Ignatius of Antioch is a bishop and martyr of the Church who died in the ... continue reading


St Francis Through the Eyes of His Friend St Bonaventure Watch

Image of Francis of Assisi in prayer

By Deacon Keith Fournier

There is so much to write about in this marvelous account of the life of one of my own personal heroes, the saint whose witness led me back to the Church, Francis of Assisi. However, I will focus on one aspect of Bonaventure's tribute to Francis. He was his ... continue reading


A Promise to God: St. Michael the Archangel, Defend Us in Battle Watch

Image of Michael is also represented in icons as standing on a horizontal body and with his left arm held high, holding a small image of a

By Youngsun Jun

Though I am not strong enough to hold the suffering souls in my arms and carry them home, I can do one thing: I can pray for the deliverance of the souls who are in the darkness. I can request help from the angels for them. I can make a 911 call for them. So again, I ... continue reading


The Feast of Sts. Michael, Gabriel and Raphael: Archangels and Powerful Spiritual Allies Sent by Love and for Love Watch

Image of

By Deacon F. K. Bartels

The Catechism of the Catholic Church informs us - The existence of the spiritual, non-corporeal beings that Sacred Scripture usually calls 'angels' is a truth of faith. The witness of Scripture is as clear as the unanimity of Tradition (328). Charged by God to ... continue reading


My Memoir of St. Padre Pio: Price of Suffering and Beatification by the Brush of Grace

Image of Padre Pio in death.

By Matt Hicks

Miraculous testimony of an elite level gymnast touched by Padre Pio: 'Pio, like all the saints, is like the window-washer that scales tall buildings to clear away the muck and allow us to see His luminous rays aflame. God sends them, as He pushes us forward, ... continue reading


Which is it? Saint Teresa of Calcutta or Mother Teresa of Kolkata Watch

Image of The icon of Saint Teresa of Calcutta.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

There is confusion over the proper title of Mother Teresa. Her name is appearing in the media as both "Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta" and "Mother Teresa of Kolkata," sometimes written with the word "Mother" and sometimes without. Which is correct? LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


The saints are real and active in our lives! Saint Padre Pio intercedes on behalf of baby with critical heart condition Watch

Image of Saint Padre Pio has been credited with intercession that saved the life of baby Caitlin Dooley.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The saints are real and active in our lives. This is more obvious than ever following the miraculous recovery of a baby in an Irish intensive care unit. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - A relic of Saint Padre Pio has been credited with a dramatic improvement in ... continue reading


Clare of Assisi as Model: Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI Calls for Women of Courage to Renew the Church Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

In her convent of San Damiano, Clare heroically practiced the virtues that should characterize all Christians: humility, a spirit of piety and penance, and charity.  Her fame of sanctity and the prodigies that came about thanks to her intervention led Pope ... continue reading


Fr. Paul Schenck on Edith Stein: Daughter of Israel, Daughter of the Church Watch

Image of St. Teresia Benedicta a Cruce, Edith Stein, Catholic feminist, philosopher and martyr of Auschwitz: Throughout her life, Edith never renounced or denounced her Jewish identity. Rather, as demonstrated in her memoir, her participation in Jewish customs at home, her letter to the Pope and in her correspondences, she spoke of her Jewish roots as intrinsic to her self-identification, to her views and even to aspects of her vocation

By Fr. Paul Chaim Benedicta Schenck

August 9 is the Memorial of St. Teresia Benedicta a Cruce, Edith Stein, Catholic feminist, philosopher and martyr of Auschwitz. In this sketch, Fr. Paul Chaim Benedicta Schenck, Jewish born priest and Chair of the National Pro-Life Center (Washington, DC), examines the ... continue reading


All Christian Saints & Heroes News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 11:1-10
1 A shoot will spring from the stock of Jesse, a new shoot will grow from ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 72:1-2, 7-8, 12-13, 17
1 [Of Solomon] God, endow the king with your own fair judgement, the son ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 3:1-12
1 In due course John the Baptist appeared; he proclaimed this message in ... Read More

Reading 2, Romans 15:4-9
4 And all these things which were written so long ago were written so ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 4th, 2016 Image

St. John of Damascus
December 4: Saint John Damascene has the double honor of ... Read More