As a local precursor to the 45th Annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (CSS) will once again sponsor Luminaries for Life to remember the millions of lives lost to abortion.
Thursday, January 18, 2018
Archdiocesan Pastoral Center (Lobby)
222 North 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Reverend Matthew Guckin, Director of Catholic Mission and Identity for the Office for Catechetical Formation, and Reverend Richard Owens, O.F.M. Cap., Director of the Office for Black Catholics, will preside over this year’s prayer service and Blessing of the Luminaries. In addition, they will bless employees from the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center (APC) who will join thousands of faithful from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in traveling to Washington, D.C. for the March for Life on Friday, January 19th.
Students from John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School along with staff from the APC will light 45 luminaries to be displayed on the APC’s front portico. In addition, CSS staff and volunteers from their Community-Based Services, Housing, and Homeless Services sites located throughout the five-county Archdiocese will participate by lighting luminaries. Luminaries will remain lit overnight and throughout the day on Friday to prayerfully remember the anniversary of the tragic consequences of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton decisions legalizing abortion nationwide.
The commitment of the Archdiocese to preserving the dignity of human life includes support for women in crisis pregnancy situations as well as healing outreach to all those suffering from the decision to abort.
Real Alternatives provides life-affirming pregnancy and parenting support services for women in need of assistance during an unplanned or crisis pregnancy. Women have access to free, caring, and confidential support services, including education about reproductive health concerns, assistance in finding appropriate medical services, and referral to adoption services for those who wish to explore that option.
Project Rachel is a post-abortion ministry administered by CSS and the Office of Life and Family which provides healing to women whose lives have been affected by the decision to abort a child. It is composed of a network of specially trained clergy, spiritual directors, and therapists who provide compassionate one-on-one care to men and women who are struggling with the aftermath of abortion and seek emotional and psychological healing.
# # #
Editor’s Note: Project Rachel was founded in 1984 in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. The ministry is now active in more than 110 dioceses across the United States. For more information, please visit www.HopeAfterAbortion.org.
Real Alternatives was founded in 1995 to promote childbirth rather than abortion by providing pregnancy and parenting support service to women in crisis pregnancies. The program serves women using pregnancy support centers, social services agencies, adoption agencies, and maternity homes throughout Pennsylvania. For more information, please visit www.realalternatives.org.
To learn more about Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, please visit http://cssphiladelphia.org.
Media and Events Specialist