US Bishops Announce October as Respect for Life Month with Free Resources - Links
WASHINGTON— Cardinal Timothy Michael Dolan, Archbishop of New York and Chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Committee on Pro-Life Activities, issued a statement today for Respect Life Month. New resources have been developed around the theme "Every Life: Cherished, Chosen, Sent" and are available at www.usccb.org/respectlife. Respect Life Sunday is October 7.
Cardinal Dolan's full statement in English and Spanish follows:
"My dear friends in Christ:
The month of October is annually observed by the Catholic Church in the United States as Respect Life Month. We are called to cherish, defend, and protect those who are most vulnerable, from the beginning of life to its end, and at every point in between.
Yet this year, as we approach Respect Life Sunday on October 7, our hearts are heavy with revelations of how those who should be most trustworthy have not only failed in this regard but have inflicted immense evil. As USCCB President Cardinal Daniel DiNardo expressed, 'the Body of Christ is lacerated.'
At such a time as this, we become even more aware of the need for messengers of God's love and instruments of His healing. We realize again, with renewed urgency, our personal call to help others encounter God's transforming, life-giving love and to defend the sanctity of every person's life, at every stage and in every circumstance.
This year's Respect Life theme is "Every Life: Cherished, Chosen, Sent," highlighting our call to build a culture of life as missionary disciples. Drawing upon the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego, this theme is briefly unpacked in a short reflection. I humbly invite you to read and reflect on it this Respect Life Month (www.usccb.org/respect-life-reflection). (There are also many other resources at www.usccb.org/respectlife that are available for use this month and throughout the year.)
In his first letter to the Corinthians, Saint Paul tells us, "As a body is one though it has many parts, and all the parts of the body, though many, are one body, so also Christ. …If [one] part suffers, all the parts suffer with it" (1 Cor 12:12,26).
We are called and sent to be messengers of God's love, treating one another as cherished and chosen by Him. In doing so, we help build a culture that respects all human life. The Body of Christ needs you. The world needs you."
When is Respect Life Month, and what is the theme?
Respect Life Month is observed annually in October. This year's theme, "Every Life: Cherished, Chosen, Sent," is featured October 2018 - September 2019.
Where can I find resources for Respect Life Month?
We've highlighted several resources on our Respect Life Month page, and we invite you to continue using these and other materials throughout the year.
The annual Respect Life Program is a year-round, nationwide effort to help Catholics understand, value, and become engaged with building a culture that cherishes every human life.
Although sponsored by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Respect Life Program is essentially comprised of the efforts of leaders throughout the Church like you—parish priests, staff, and volunteers; teachers and school administrators; diocesan leaders; and so many others.
The U.S. bishops produce these materials to assist you in your efforts. Instead of acting as stand-alone resources, they are designed to be brought to life as tools in your hands—build off or adapt them to fit your specific needs!
The materials are developed especially for use in parishes, schools, and faith-based ministries, but can also be used by other groups or individuals.
Whether you're simply taking a personal interest or you're serving in a parish, Catholic education, faith formation, communications, pro-life, youth/young adult, or campus ministry—there's something for you!
How do I use these materials?
The Respect Life Program materials are intended to help leaders integrate respect for human life into their respective work and/or ministries. Action ideas and customized suggestions are provided in the leaders' toolkits, but anyone is welcome to build off or adapt what is offered.
When do I use these materials?
The annual cycle of the Respect Life Program runs from Respect Life Sunday (the first Sunday of October) through the following September.
Specific dates are sometimes recommended for a particular resource (like homily helps), but any of the materials can be used at any time—after all, we cherish God's gift of life year-round!
Also, we recommend that you build off the current theme, which we're highlighting from October 2018 – September 2019: "Every Life: Cherished, Chosen, Sent." However, if something from a previous Respect Life Programis helpful, you're still welcome to use it!
Where can I preview the materials before ordering?
Visit our "Articles & Resources" page, scroll through the page, and click what you'd like to preview.
May I reproduce text from the 2018-2019 Respect Life Program?
The text of all the 2018-2019 Respect Life Program materials may be reproduced in whole or in part without alteration or change without further permission, provided such reprints are distributed without charge and include the following notice:
Each webpage for the articles and reflection have Microsoft Word files posted in English & Spanish that may be reproduced without further permission, provided the guidelines for reproducing text are followed. The Respect Life Month statement from Cardinal Dolan, Chair of the USCCB Committee on Pro-Life Activities, will be posted on the Respect Life Month page as soon as it is available.
Bulletin insert versions of the reflection and articles can also be reprinted without further permission, provided the guidelines for reproducing PDFs are followed.
Are the materials free?
You can either order print versions of the 2018-2019 Respect Life Program materials from the USCCB Store, or download them for free from our "Articles & Resources" page! Additional, online-only resources like Respect Life images can also be found on the same page.
Each year, a new set of articles on life issues is published in a variety of formats.
SUMMARY SHEET English: Color | Grayscale Spanish: Color | Grayscale Full-color, double-sided summary sheet featuring the 2018-2019 materials and abbreviated, 1/4 page versions of the six articles.
The 2018-19 Respect Life Program articles are available as 1/4 page abbreviated versions for use in church bulletins, e-newsletters, and more.
MICROSOFT WORD English | Spanish These Microsoft Word documents each contain four formats of the bulletin boxes: MS Word text boxes, MS Word un-formatted text-only, color JPG files, grayscale JPG files. MICROSOFT PUBLISHER English and Spanish Publisher files with pre-formatted text boxes are available upon request. Please email email@example.com.
You are welcome to use and reproduce these and many other images, provided they are reproduced in their entirety without any alteration or change beyond adjustment in size.
You can use as your cover photo and profile picture on social media, reprint in your bulletin, include with one of the new articles in your diocesan newspaper, or use them in another way to share the Gospel of Life.