On this special day as we pray for the protection of the unborn and honor God’s gift of Life, we remind ourselves that Life is so much more than just physical life. Indeed, it is every individual’s ensoulment at the moment of conception that renders abortion so tragic and indefensible. And it is the immortal soul and its eternal destiny—along with that of the resurrected body—that is at the heart of our prayers today. In this sense, our prayer for the protection of all life, incorporates ourselves as well, as we struggle to reach what Saint Irenaeus described as the human person fully alive, thereby glorifying our Divine Creator. Life envisaged in its complex totality is thus under threat from many and varied quarters—beginning with the physical threats against the unborn and the aged, but also incorporating the many spiritual assaults on that equally vulnerable divine life imperceptibly begun in baptism. As Pope Francis reminds us, we are again in an age of martyrs with the present distressing and escalating persecution of Christians around the world. Add to that the less obvious assaults on life in our increasingly secular and consumerist society with its growing indifference to God and the eternal life he offers. It is likewise this selfish consumerist society (increasingly severed from a life-giving relationship with God) that helps perpetuate the poverty and destitution that threatens the lives of so many millions, deprived of the basic necessities of that Life that Christ came to bestow on us in its fullness. So, although our special focus today, is on the unborn, let us also incorporate prayers for the protection against all the daily and constant assaults on Life (in its fullest sense) that none of us are immune from.