THE DIOCESE OF KALAMAZOO
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OFFICE OF THE BISHOP
215 N. Westnedge Ave. ⚫ Kalamazoo, MI 49007-3706 ⚫ (269) 903-0153 ⚫ FAX (269) 349-6440

Jesus said: “I have come so that they might have life, and have it more abundantly….I am the Good Shepherd; I know mine and mine know Me.”(Jn.10:10,14)

“Do not conform yourselves to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind that you may discern what is the will of God.” (Rom.12:2)

September 21, 2022
St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

As People of Faith, we know first-hand that the “ways of the world” in which we live are not always consistent with the “ways of God”; more often than not, they contradict God’s ways. Jesus has come into the world to save the world from sin, and to lead us to “the more abundant life” of Eternal Salvation.

In Michigan, we are faced with making a very significant decision as we approach the November elections and must consider what is known as “Proposal 3-Reproductive Freedom for All”, a Ballot Initiative to amend the State Constitution. While it is being presented by its proponents as enshrining access to abortion as a constitutional right, which would be immoral, “Proposal 3” would do so much more than that. It would allow for abortions, the killing of an unborn baby in his/her mother’s womb, any time (up to the time of delivery), anywhere, for anyone (including minors, since there are no age limitations on “every individual”), by anyone, for any reason. In addition, the proposed amendment defines this constitutional right of “reproductive freedom for all” as “all matters relating to pregnancy, including but not limited to prenatal care, childbirth, postpartum care, contraception, sterilization, abortion care, miscarriage management, and infertility care.” It will likely also overturn laws requiring parental consent for medical treatment of a minor, the informed consent of the women having the abortion, clinic safety and health regulations, will remove the requirement that a doctor be the one to perform an abortion, and will allow taxpayer funding of abortions.

If this Constitutional Amendment is successful, Michigan would have the most extreme anti-life position in the country, and, indeed, most of the world. This is not only a contradiction of God’s ways; it’s an assault on the precious Gift of Human Life which comes from God, Who alone determines when life begins and ends. I want to make very clear that contrary to popular and mass media claims, this is not a partisan issue; rather, this is clearly the most significant moral issue of our day.

I have asked our priests and deacons to provide educational information and other helpful resources to you over these next seven weeks leading up to the election on November 8, 2022. I also urge all our Faithful to become as informed as you can be about the grave implications of “Proposal 3”, if passed. I urge all of us to pray fervently, so that we can remember the basic tenet of our Faith that God is the Author of all Life, and that His Son Jesus has come to bring us into the “fullness of Life”.

At this critical time, let us stand up for Life; let us protect every human life, from the moment of conception until natural death, and at every point in between. Let us unify in prayer and fasting for an end to all misguided efforts to think that we have a right to destroy those whom God has created in His image. Let us pray that God’s Holy Spirit will “renew our minds”, so that we “may discern what is the will of God.”

Guided by our Faith, and united in the Truth that every human life is sacred, please “Vote ‘No” on Proposal 3”.

Faithfully yours in Christ,
Most Rev. Paul J. Bradley
Bishop of Kalamazoo

This weekend Bishop Boyea issued a pastoral letter to be read at all Sunday Masses across the Diocese of Lansing in which he warned of the extreme nature of the proposed Reproductive Freedom for All constitutional amendment which will appear on ballots in November’s election as Proposal 3.

“I want to be clear,” said Bishop Boyea, “The Reproductive Freedom for All initiative is the most extreme abortion proposal this country has ever witnessed.”

Bishop Boyea noted that the Governor of the State of Michigan has said repeatedly that she, and her allies in the pro-abortion lobby, will, quote, “fight like hell” to prevail on the matter of abortion.

“How then do we respond to those who fight like hell?” asked Bishop Boyea, “Simple: We fight like heaven. What does that entail? First: We have to employ the three great spiritual weapons of the Christian life: Prayer, fasting and almsgiving.”

“Second comes action,” he added, “The most important frontline in this battle for life and love, however, will be the local parish. It will be you. If each of us does what we can – including prayer, sacrifice and action – we will overcome this attack on life. It’s as dramatic and as simple as that.”

“We have less than two months before voting on November 8th. Time is short. Our task is great. The Lord, however, always provides. Therefore, let us work cheerfully and unstintingly knowing that His grace is sufficient.” Here is the text of Bishop Boyea’s pastoral letter in full:

 

Pastoral Letter by Bishop Earl Boyea of Lansing

Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

September 10-11, 2022

 

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

In 1931 the State of Michigan enacted strong pro-life legislation. This is our present law. In 1972, supporters of abortion brought that 1931 law before voters in a statewide ballot initiative. The people of this state rejected abortion. This is the last time the issue was tested at the ballot box.

Today, I call to our attention a new and grave threat to our children and to our culture of life. It is called the Reproductive Freedom for All initiative.

The Reproductive Freedom for All initiative will be on our ballots this fall where it will appear as Proposal 3. It seeks the approval of the people of this state to amend the Constitution of this State to include a so-called “right to abortion”. This effort is spearheaded by Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union. To tinker with the Constitution is very serious business. We should reject this proposal on that basis alone.

However, I want to be clear. The Reproductive Freedom for All initiative is the most extreme abortion proposal this country has ever witnessed. Based on the wording of the proposed amendment, this initiative seeks to enshrine abortion up to, and including, the day of birth in our state constitution. It also seeks to eliminate dozens of Michigan laws that presently regulate abortion. These include parental consent and notification laws; laws that prohibit partial-birth abortion; informed medical consent laws; 24-hour waiting periods; taxpayer funded abortion; laws that require abortion facilities to be licensed and inspected by the State of Michigan; laws that prosecute anyone who injures or kills a woman during an abortion; and laws that protect the conscience rights of persons who refuse to participate in abortion such as doctors and nurses.

What is more, the scope of the Reproductive Freedom for All proposal is not limited to the issue of abortion. It will also likely prohibit parental consent rights if your child wishes to pursue – or is being pressured into pursuing – medical procedures or chemical treatments intended to change the outward appearance of his or her biological sex. These include puberty blocking drugs and cross-sex hormones. Such invasive treatments for children who are gender-confused can inflict irreversible physiological damage coupled with long-term psychological, emotional and spiritual damage upon an already vulnerable young person.

It is likely that the Reproductive Freedom for All campaign will place Michigan at the national epicenter of the abortion debate. The pro-abortion lobby has already spent an estimated $10 million collecting the needed signatures. Significantly more money will be spent during the campaign with pro-abortion elected officials and advocacy groups across the country ready to bombard Michigan voters with their propaganda in the weeks to come. As the Governor of this State has said repeatedly, both she and her allies in the pro-abortion lobby will, quote, “fight like hell” to prevail on this matter.

How then do we respond to those who fight like hell? Simple: We fight like heaven. What does that entail? First: We have to employ the three great spiritual weapons of the Christian life: Prayer, fasting and almsgiving. As Saint Peter Chrysologus wrote in the 5th century:

“Fasting is the soul of prayer, mercy is the lifeblood of fasting. Let no one try to separate them; they cannot be separated. If you have only one of them or not all together, you have nothing.” Saint Peter assures us that, “Prayer knocks at the door, fasting obtains, mercy receives.”

Hence, on the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, Thursday, September 15, I am calling upon all within the Diocese of Lansing, both clergy and laity, to begin a 54-day Rosary Novena that will conclude upon the eve of polling day on November 8.

This will be 54-days of prayer, fasting and almsgiving in union with the Blessed Virgin Mary who is Queen of the Family, the mother of all mothers and the patroness of the unborn. You can sign up for a daily text providing information and inspiration across each of the 54 days by texting FightLikeHeaven to 84576.

Second comes action. The Diocese of Lansing is cooperating with the Michigan Catholic Conference and Right to Life of Michigan to oppose and defeat this ballot proposal. They have created an umbrella campaign group called Citizens to Support MI Women and Children.

The most important frontline in this battle for life and love, however, will be the local parish. It will be you. If each of us does what we can – including prayer, sacrifice and action – we will overcome this attack on life. It’s as dramatic and as simple as that.

In all we do, please remember this: The pro-abortion lobby will do everything it can between now and polling day to hide the extreme elements of this proposal. That is also why we each have the happy duty of telling our family, our friends and our neighbors the truth about this ballot initiative. At present, most Michiganders don’t know about the Reproductive Freedom for All initiative but when they do know about it? They won’t like it.

We have less than two months before voting on November 8th. Time is short. Our task is great. The Lord, however, always provides. Therefore, let us work cheerfully and unstintingly knowing that His grace is sufficient. Thank you.

Assuring you of my prayers, I am sincerely yours in Christ,

+Earl Boyea

Bishop of Lansing

 

 

 

MONTH 5 – Developing Baby                        

Mommy felt me kick today!

 

This month marks the half-way point to birth, and the baby is very active.  Sleep habits develop and his mother can feel him move and stretch, particularly when she is resting.  He is big and strong enough to kick hard against the outside uterine wall and dent it.  Up to now, although he swam with ease in his watery world, he was too small for her to detect because the inside wall of the uterus has little feeling.  Babies born at this age have survived.

 

 

  • The Urgency of the Message Seminar: Sept. 20th or October 12, 8:30am-4:00pm
  • Women’s Retreat – Rescue and Response: October 21-23, 2022
  • Men’s Retreat – Game On! October 28-30, 2022
  • Cultivating Joy – Prayer in Motion Retreat: Nov. 12th, 9:30am-3:00pm
More information and registration for any of these events can be found at www.stfrancis.ws or call 517-669-8321.
The links to our Facebook events can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/stfrancisdewitt/events

 

 

 

 

 

Join us for our annual fundraiser and enjoy good food, fun, and faith.

There are activities for people of all ages. Bring the family, have a great time, and support your parishes!

The 32nd All Saints Superfest will be held September 21, 22, and 23 on the grounds of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Battle Creek.

September Good News & Brews
Married and single young adults from college through their 30s are welcome to come enjoy discussion, fellowship and music from (newly named) Jeremiah and the Hebrews and featured speaker Sr. Joseph Andrew on holiness/vocation at Arcadia Brewing Company in Kalamazoo on Sept. 13 from 7 to 9 p.m. Future dates are: Oct. 11; Nov. 8; Dec. 13.

 

 

A special Mass for couples of the Diocese of Kalamazoo who are celebrating their 50th Wedding Anniversaries  in 2018 will be held on Sunday, October 14, 2018, 3:00 p.m. at St. Augustine Cathedral in Kalamazoo.  Couples celebrating their 50th Anniversary any time in 2018 are asked to contact their parish office so that their names can be submitted for a personal invitation from Bishop Bradley to participate in this celebration.  Invitations will be mailed beginning August 20th.

SAVE THE  DATE!

Eucharistic Adoration Fellowship & Information Potluck

 

Date:  Thursday, June 21, 2018

Time:  5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Place:  St. Philip Parish Center

Calling all past, present, and future Adorers!  We are having a celebration.  Bring a dish to pass and your stories to tell for an evening of fellowship and information.

More information to come!  STAY TUNED…

 

The Eighth Annual St. Jerome’s Council of
Catholic Women Purse Bingo will be held on
Saturday, May 19th. Doors will open at 5:30
p.m. The cost is $12.00 per person and includes
homemade desserts, 20 games for purses valued
over 50-100 dollars. The cover all purse is
worth over $300! 50/50 tickets will be sold.
Contact Pat Smith for more information at: 269-317-8514.

Are you a caregiver for a parent, relative, or friend? The Friends
of St. John the Caregiver will meet at 6pm on Wednesday, Feb. 7
in the St. Philip parish center. For more information contact John
Grap at 269-213-7604, johnnygrap@gmail.com, or on Facebook.
But you, O LORD, are my shield; my glory, you lift up my
head! When I call out to the LORD, he answers me from his holy
mountain. – from Psalm 3