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A variety of news sources are available to keep informed about issues related to life, marriage and the family. 

The following websites may be of interest to you:

Life Site News

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National Catholic Register

Catholic News Agency

National Right to Life

Marriage In the News (from For Your Marriage)

National Organization for Marriage

Heroic News

Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute

Family Honor


Family Research Council

AUGUST 2013 | VOLUME 5.8


GOOD NEWS: 42 Abortion Clinics,
24 Planned Parenthood Centers Have Closed This Year

The abortion industry recently has suffered a series of legal and legislative setbacks. From mandatory ultrasounds to fetal pain bills to entirely reasonable clinic health and safety regulations, the womb is a bit less unsafe for thousands of unborn children. Here are summaries of some recent wins for life and human dignity:

According to one review, “at least 24 Planned Parenthood sites have closed so far in 2013. This number includes 3 surgical abortion clinics, 3 clinics that dispensed abortion pills, and 19 offices that referred for abortions.”

The pro-abortion-on-demand Guttmacher Institute reports that during “the first six months of 2013, states enacted 106 provisions related to reproductive health and rights; issues related to abortion, family planning funding and sex education were significant flashpoints in several legislatures”. MORE


News Briefs


Christian Comics

For Your Marriage

Life Issues Forum

Respect Life Program

Great Quotes




Court: Christian photographers cannot refuse gay ceremonies

(CNA/EWTN News) - The New Mexico Supreme Court has ruled that a small Christian-owned photography business does not have the right to decline on religious grounds to shoot a same-sex commitment ceremony. Scholar Ryan T. Anderson, writing in National Review Online, said the Aug. 22 decision “highlights the increasing concern many have that anti-discrimination laws and the pressure for same-sex marriage will run roughshod over the rights of conscience and religious liberty.” “If marriage is redefined, then believing what virtually every human society once believed about marriage — that it is the union of a man and a woman ordered to procreation and family life — would be seen increasingly as an irrational prejudice that ought to be driven to the margins of culture. MORE

GOOD NEWS: Pro-life petition could spark European legislation, debate

(CNA) - A citizen-led initiative in Europe is nearing the one million signatures needed to prompt a discussion on human life and push for an end to funding of abortion and embryo-destroying research.  The initiative, called “One of Us,” seeks to protect the “dignity, the right to life and the integrity of every human being” at all stages of development. It asks the European Union “to end the financing of activities which presuppose the destruction of human embryos, in particular in the areas of research, development aid and public health,” according to the organizers’ website. The petition was introduced as a European citizens’ initiative, a participative democracy project in which the people can submit legislative proposals to the European parliament if they can generate one million signatures from citizens within a year.  MORE

Mother Awakens From Coma Pregnant, Rejects Abortion to Birth Miracle Baby >>

Ohio College Sued for Subjecting Pro-Life Students to “Free Speech Zones” >>

California Senate Approves Bill Allowing Nurses to Do Abortions >>

Eight Facts Most People Don’t Know About How Abortion Hurts Women >>

Scientists: Brain Wave Patterns Show Unborn Children Recognize Words in the Womb >>

Scary Brave New World: Here Come Woman Fathers and Male Mothers >>

A Cure For Down's Syndrome: Fact or Fantasy? >>

Walmart to offer same-sex domestic benefits >>

What to Expect When No One is Expecting: America’s Coming Economic Disaster >>

Charity 5K takes on new meaning as family preps for adoption >>

Quest for ethical stem cells prompts moral questions >>

42 Botched Chemical Abortions Reported to State Medical Board >>

Ohio Department of Health to Close Toledo Abortion Clinic >> Belgium: 95 Percent of Euthanasia Requests Get Rubber Stamp OK by Doctors >>

Bishop Olmsted: Jesus ‘Not an Elective’ for Catholic Universities >>

Cardinal Wuerl: Catholic Schools, Church Support Martin Luther King’s ‘Dream’ >>

Faith can overcome secularism, Archbishop Chaput tells Latinos >>

GOOD NEWS: Five Inspirational Moms Who Rejected Abortions on Kids With Down Syndrome

(LifeNews.com) - Ninety percent of unborn babies diagnosed with Down Syndrome are aborted. That’s not a typo — 90 percent. This distressing statistic makes the following mothers even more remarkable for choosing life for their beautiful children who just happen to have an extra chromosome. Mayumi Mitogawa, 52, Japan From Japan Times, on her 14-year-old son, Yutaka: “He just loves to make people laugh,” Mitogawa said, smiling affectionately at her son — who was born with trisomy 21, which causes Down syndrome — as he fooled around mimicking the motions of famous Japanese comedians. “I know that some people refer to children with Down syndrome as angels, but I don’t see my son like that. He is just human.” Catherine Moore, 19, Great Britain… MORE

ABC link explodes in Asia; coverup continues in the West

(National Right to Life) - Some epidemic diseases are caused by bacteria, the smallest of living things. Some are caused by viruses: rogue bits of DNA or RNA; non-living, but nonetheless infectious bits of destructive information. We are all familiar now, of course, with computer viruses that act in the same way. Breast cancer, on the other hand, is one of those “epidemic” diseases believed not to be infectious. But infectious bits of destructive information are viruses indeed, and they don’t need computers to be carriers. The bad information can be in any language. Suppose one were to introduce cigarettes to a population that had never smoked, along with the instruction: “Smoking cigarettes is not harmful to your health.” MORE

Pennsylvania Faces a New Threat: Assisted Suicide 

(LifeNews.com) - Euthanasia is something I don’t think about too often. Maybe it’s because I’m under 30 and healthy. Maybe it’s because assisted suicide is illegal in Pennsylvania and most of the U.S. But now that there’s a euthanasia group lobbying here in Pennsylvania, I’ve been reading more about this pro-life issue. In his book “Assisted Suicide & Euthanasia: Past and Present,” Dr. J.C. Willke wrote that the problem with assisted suicide is that it judges that human life has only relative value, not absolute value. Just take a look at Oregon where physician-assisted suicide is legal. According to Oregon Right to Life, the top reasons people request assisted suicide are losing autonomy, decreasing participation in activities, and loss of dignity. These are value issues. MORE

National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children

(National Right to Life) - On Saturday, September 14, 2013, Citizens for a Pro-Life Society, Priests for Life, and the Pro-Life Action League are calling on pro-life Americans to participate in a National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children to honor the grave sites of our unborn brothers and sisters. Solemn prayer vigils will be conducted at these grave sites, of which there are 33 across the United States. The date of September 14, 2013, was chosen for this event because it marks the 25th anniversary of the burial of several hundred abortion victims in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Why Visit the Grave sites of the Aborted Unborn? When people become aware of the reality of abortion, they can more easily cut through the lies by which some try to justify it, and the natural apathy to which human nature is inclined. MORE

Pope calls for anti-human trafficking meeting at Vatican

(CNA) .- At Pope Francis' request, Vatican experts will gather this upcoming November with the aim of better tackling the growing scourge of human trafficking. “We must be grateful to Pope Francis for having identified one of the most important social dramas of our time and that he has had enough trust in our Catholic institutions to ask us to arrange this working group,” said Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, chancellor of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. The bishop's academy along with the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences and the World Federation of Catholic Medical Associations will meet to discuss a Vatican action plan to help combat what is often referred to as the modern slave trade. MORE

Women say contraception mandate takes jab at motherhood

(CNA/EWTN News).- Women from around the country gathered in front of the White House on August 1 to protest national policies that are “hostile” to the ideas of family, motherhood and religious liberty. The federal contraception mandate, issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, presents “a very hostile message about whether or not we are welcome as mothers,” explained George Mason University law professor Helen Alvare. She told CNA on August 1 that policies regarding women need to take into account “the fact that a majority of women will become mothers.” Alvare also stressed that “religious freedom is distinctly important to us,” and that the contraception mandate poses a threat to religious liberty. MORE



Copyright © Gospel Communications International, Inc -

Used according to permission guidelines.

Intercultural Marriage: Making It Work

by Josh Noem, M.Div.

When nurses call out Becky Wang’s name in waiting rooms of doctors’ offices, they usually get a confused look when she stands up. “I can tell they are looking for someone Asian and when they see me they have to re-shift their thoughts,” she said. Her husband, Dennis, is Chinese American, and she is from a white family. “A lot of people assume you are a matched set. They don’t expect me to be Caucasian.” MORE

Copyright © 2013, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
All rights reserved.


Stand with Sr. Jane Marie (en español)

By Deirdre A. McQuade

Cathy, Sr. Jane Marie, and Christine are three Catholic women whose freedom to work according to their faith is being severely threatened. In March they traveled to Washington, DC, urging Congress to pass the Health Care Conscience Rights Act (H.R. 940, S. 1204), which would protect their freedom of conscience. Now they need your help: read their stories below, watch and share the brief video on their stories, and stand in solidarity with them by contacting Congress today!  MORE




Life Matters: Marriage, the Sanctuary of Life (en español)

Professor Helen Alvaré, Esq. contrasts the Catholic vision of marriage, where children are welcomed and spouses grow in selfless love, with the view prevailing today, that marriage exists for one's personal happiness alone. 

Pamphlet: English / en español

Bulletin Inserts: English / en español

Text Only: English/ en español

Order: English / en español



“The measure of the greatness of a society is found in the way it treats those most in need, those who have nothing apart from their poverty!”

- Pope Francis (World Youth Day 2013)

“What do I expect as a consequence of the Youth Day? I expect a mess. There will be one. There will be a mess here in Rio? There will be! But I want a mess in the dioceses! I want people to go out! I want the Church to go out to the street! I want us to defend ourselves against everything that is worldliness, that is installation, that is comfortableness, that is clericalism, that is being shut-in on ourselves. The parishes, the schools, the institutions, exist to go out!”

- Pope Francis (World Youth Day 2013)

“But there is another form of poverty! It is the spiritual poverty of our time, which afflicts the so-called richer countries particularly seriously. It is what my much-loved predecessor, Benedict XVI, called the "tyranny of relativism", which makes everyone his own criterion and endangers the coexistence of peoples.”

- Pope Francis

“Love is the key to the mystery. Love by its very nature is not selfish, but generous. It seeks not its own, but the good of others. The measure of love is not the pleasure it gives-that is the way the world judges it-but the joy and peace it can purchase for others.”

― Fulton J. Sheen

"Faith in action is love, and love in action is service. By transforming that faith into living acts of love, we put ourselves in contact with God Himself, with Jesus our Lord."

- Mother Teresa


Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College  The Cardinal Newman Society, dedicated to promoting and preserving authentic Catholic identity in higher education, publishes a guide of recommended Catholic colleges and universities.  Learn about faithful Catholic colleges on their website here.

 NCBCLooking for Catholic Bio-medical Ethics Information?  FREE consultations are available from the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC).  Established in 1972, NCBC conducts research, consultation, publishing and education to promote human dignity in health care and the life sciences, and derives its message directly from the teachings of the Catholic Church. According to their website, they guarantee that a credentialed ethicist will be available 24/7 to assist any person with those most difficult moral health care decisions one must make from the beginning to the end of life. In 2012 alone, the ethicists of the Center helped over 1500 individuals in their time of need; free of charge. Read more about them on their website.

CPYUThe Center for Parent/Youth Understanding is a nonprofit organization committed to building strong families by serving to bridge the cultural-generational gap between parents and teenagers. At a time when an already confusing youth culture is changing quickly, CPYU helps parents, youth workers, educators, and others understand teenagers and their culture so that they will be better equipped to help children and teens navigate the challenging world of adolescence.  They offer a free e-Update and many other resources.  Read more on their website.


Family Honor, Inc.  Rooted in Blessed John Paul II's Theology of the Body, Family Honor seeks to empower parents to educate and guide their children according to God's plan.  Family Honor offers a variety of programs and resources for parents, as well as programs for parents and teens together.  Learn more from their website. 



Dump Starbucks The National Organization for Marriage is urging customers across the globe to 'Dump Starbucks' because it has taken a corporate-wide position that the definition of marriage between one man and one woman should be eliminated and that same-sex marriage should become equally 'normal'.  As such, Starbucks has deeply offended at least half its US customers, and the vast majority of its international customers.  On January 24th, 2012, Starbucks issued a memorandum declaring that same-sex marriage 'is core to who we are and what we value as a company.  Learn more about the position of Starbucks and the petition here.


FAFOur First American Freedom  The National Catholic Register writes: The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has created a new website dedicated to encouraging education, prayer and public action to protect religious freedom at home and abroad. As our first American freedom, religious liberty is “a founding principle of our country, protected by the First Amendment in the Bill of Rights,” said the U.S. bishops on their new website.




marriage videoThe Case for Man/Woman Marriage  There is intense pressure in Ireland and other countries to redefine marriage. A new video from The Iona Insitute sets out the case for man/woman marriage and how marriage as presently defined is our most vital and child-centred social institution. We believe our video is one of the shortest (less than two minutes long!), most succinct and user-friendly on this matter anywhere. We urge you to watch it, to email it to your friends and to post it on your Facebook page and elsewhere. 




Decent FilmsThe Decent Films Guide is the online home of the film writing of Steven D. Greydanus. Steven is film critic for the National Catholic Register and writes regularly for Catholic Digest, Christianity Today, Catholic World Report and other venues. He is a member of Online Film Critics Society. Steven has contributed several entries to the New Catholic Encyclopedia, including “The Church and Film” and a number of filmmaker biographies. He has also written about film for the Encyclopedia of Catholic Social Thought, Social Science, and Social Policy.  Read his reviews here.



The Culture of Life Update is a monthly email newsletter of the Culture of Life Ministry of St. Mary Parish in Marietta, Ohio.  A key goal of the Culture of Life Ministry is to help people become better informed about life, marriage and family issues.

The sad reality is that many people simply are not aware of the attacks on life and the family.  Nor are they aware of the many positive actions that are being taken to defend life and build up the family. Here's where our monthly email newsletter can help.

Designed for busy people, the Culture of Life Update provides a once-a-month overview of news stories related to life, marriage and the family.  It's a great and easy way to get informed. For the current and past issues, please visit our website!

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STATEMENT OF PURPOSE AND DISCLAIMER: The purpose of this newsletter is simply to inform the public about issues related to life, marriage, and the family. The inclusion of any article is not meant to be an endorsement of a particular author’s viewpoint, nor it is meant to be an endorsement of the organization providing the information. St. Mary Parish Culture of Life Ministry follows the teachings of the Catholic Church, and is subject to the authority of the hierarchy of the Church.