A message from Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M.
The proposed New Jersey “Reproductive Freedom Act” (S3030 / A4848) is another legislative attempt to advance and expand the state’s “abortion agenda” in service to the widespread “culture of death” by eliminating the few remaining state regulations intended to protect the life and health of pregnant mothers. New Jersey already has some of the most permissive abortion legislation in the country. The “Reproductive Freedom Act,” if passed, would guarantee a woman’s right to an abortion anywhere in the State of New Jersey. That is the “freedom” it seeks to legislate.
Eleanor Roosevelt once wrote, “Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes great responsibility.” The freedom to deliberately terminate at will and with full legal protection the life of an unborn child in the womb brings with it a responsibility, an accountability, that is difficult to imagine, let alone justify.
The State of New Jersey has already legislated its disregard for human life from conception to natural death many times, last year approving the “Death with Dignity Act” to help accelerate the end of life. The current proposed legislation, under the guise of “reproductive freedom,” shifts that disregard to the earliest, most vulnerable stages of human life in the womb. How many such deaths has that “freedom” brought in the United States since Roe v. Wade? How many more deaths will this legislation bring about in New Jersey? With the freedom to terminate innocent human life in the womb, who bears responsibility? Whose life is next?
Plans for the Dec. 5 Guadalupe Procession and Mass in Trenton have been changed because of an increasing number of COVID-19 cases.
The event was to mark the closing of the fifth annual celebration of Las Antorchas Guadalupanas – Torches of Our Lady of Guadalupe, which this year has as its theme, “A Season of Remembrance.” Among the changes are:
- The procession around Trenton and Cathedral Square, in which a small number of designated followers would accompany the Blessed Sacrament and statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe, has been canceled.
- The Mass that will be celebrated in St. Mary of the Assumption Cathedral, 151 North Warren Street, is not open to the public. The Mass is open to the 17 torch captains and their families along with several key diocesan staff and Mass organizers. The Mass will be preceded by a procession of the torches into the Cathedral beginning at 10 a.m. followed by a remembrance service in which the names all deceased that had been submitted to the diocesan Virtual Wall of Remembrance will be read.
- The Mass, to be celebrated by Msgr. Joseph Roldan, Cathedral rector, will be livestreamed with links in both Spanish and in English.