The Eighth Amendment to the Irish Constitution was introduced in 1983 to prevent the violation of the right-to-life of unborn children by abortion. The amendment protects the lives of mothers and unborn children equally. It states:
“The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.”
The pro-abortion movement has long been campaigning to strip away this protection from Ireland’s mothers and children. In October 2016 a “Citizens Assembly”, convened by the Irish government, began its discussion of the future of the Eighth Amendment. The Assembly has now recommended a referendum to repeal or alter the Eighth Amendment, favouring the most radical pro-abortion stance. Leo Varadkar, the Irish Taoiseach, has announced that the long expected referendum on the repeal or alteration of Ireland’s pro-life constitutional amendment will be held in May or June next year.
Voice of the Family is therefore launching a spiritual crusade in order to obtain from God, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, that Ireland may be entirely delivered from the evil of abortion and that bishops may be granted the grace to preach the gospel fearlessly and to defend unborn children with all possible ardour.
The spiritual crusade consists of two elements:
- A 54-day rosary novena. Participants will pray three rosary novenas for the above intention and three rosary novenas in thanksgiving for the graces granted.
- Fasting. Six individuals have already committed to fasting during the one of the above nine day periods. We invite you to join them in the fast to the extent that your health and duties will allow.*
The crusade begins tomorrow, the Feast of All Saints, 1st November 2017, and ends on Christmas Eve, 24th December 2017. We encourage you to join us to the extent that you are able, and to pray also for the deliverance of your own country from the scourge of abortion.
We will be posting daily words of encouragement on this website throughout the 54-day period.
God bless you for your compassion for unborn children.
* The form of fasting which we recommend is the method traditionally proposed by the Church in the West. This consists of one meal each day, taken from late afternoon onwards, with abstinence from meat and animal products (dairy and eggs).
There are potential health risks associated with fasting. Appropriate medical advice should always be sought before undertaking a fast. The organisers of this spiritual crusade cannot be held responsible for adverse health consequences if you choose to fast. Please be prudent in your choice of penance.