When you rejoice in the birth of the Christ Child, please pray for this fighting-for-his-life six inch baby
I promised an update on the Catholic lady – a good friend of a journalism colleague – who had been planning to have an abortion after learning of her surprise pregnancy. Let’s call the lady ‘S’. ‘S’’s situation is so ambiguous that I was never sure that I could write ‘she has not had an abortion’ – for fear that she would have 'the procudure' while I was typing. ‘S’ is still pregnant, but has not decided against abortion. ‘S’ was in blind panic and had been going to have an abortion as soon as she could lift the phone to arrange an appointment, spring to the clinic with her NHS number handy and later go to confession ‘to make it all alright’. But between her hysteria at learning of her unexpected pregnancy and today Christmas Eve – it’s almost as if she has ‘forgotten’ that she’s pregnant. Her housemates do not know that she is pregnant and her employer is oblivious to the fact that if she keeps the baby, that she may not show up for work on the day of delivery, sometime in May. ‘S’ has decided to overlook the pregnancy for the time-being, a sort of, ‘it things get better then I’ll have the baby’ and ‘an abortion might feel better tomorrow’.
‘S’ is now a little less than 18 weeks, so the little babe now weighs a little under 190 grams, about the same weight as the very heavy piece of Christmas pudding that I’ve been promising myself, or the weight of 28 Euro coins. ‘S’ boyfriend is indifferent; he has stuck with her but has said, ‘anything that she decides is alright with me.’ To be clear; ‘S’ may have an abortion if life becomes tougher, but if life becomes easier then this will be her ‘sign’ that she may continue the pregnancy.
It is certain that ‘S’ will not go for an abortion tomorrow. She will be at Mass and will celebrate a turkey dinner with her friends, who do not know that there will be a secret guest present as they pull crackers and drink red wine.
I feel an urgent call to ask you for prayers for ‘S’ tomorrow – that the image of Baby Jesus in the crib will kindle in her heart thoughts of making a definite decision to keep the baby. If ‘S’ continues to plan that she may have an abortion when times turn harder, then it’s as if the sword of Damocles hangs over the little mite.
Life has such highs and lows. There will be challenges ahead for ‘S’, who is very vulnerable to any instability. ‘S’ may get a big bill, receive a cross word from her employer and have a falling-out with a friend, all these could cause her to rush into an abortion.
One fact about abortion in British society that I have learnt from bitter experience is that – it does not prize reflection on the major decision: ‘S’ might run into a clinic as soon as she says that she wants an abortion – they will ask her for her address and date of birth and then take her to a room for a scan that won’t be shown to her and then to another room…
There are lots of festivities going on in my house for Christmas Eve, we had a delicious salmon supper with sauvignon blanc and someone dug out a Cliff Richards’ record and we were serenaded by Mistletoe and Wine. We’ve been having a jolly, grand old time of it. But, truly, I feel an urgent need to ask for your prayers tomorrow; that we may join in prayer and that we will be like a chorus, with each new voice making our petition more distinct.