This August students from 10 different countries across Europe, including 3 students representing oxford students for life, came together to share and discuss how they are fighting to promote a culture of life in each of their respective countries. The event was hosted aptly in the City of Love, Verona, which had recently declared itself a city for Life. The event was composed of a series of talks on the pro-life cause from many different experts from across Europe.
One thing came across from all these talks and that was the importance of understanding why abortion, euthanasia and other right to life violations are occurring in our countries due to the “Culture of Death”. Different countries in Europe have different social and economic problems but all suffer from a common problem. That abortion or euthanasia ends up being the only “choice” for mothers or terminally ill people when they are most in need of help.
The solution to this problem is not an easy one and will require lots of work but fortunately many great people across Europe have already begun addressing the issue. Hospice care in the UK is helping the terminally ill to be able to face death with confidence and to say their final goodbyes to family and friends in peace. Meanwhile, crisis pregnancy centers are helping mothers who are either facing financial or great emotional difficulties in their pregnancy to receive the support they need both during and after their pregnancy.
One of the most profound things I remember from the symposium was the message that we should not be defending life. We should be promoting it! In each of our countries, so often when we are trying to talk about life issues we are condemned for our ideas. This can mean that we respond by focusing on the destruction that is caused by the Culture of Death. While this is necessary to make people aware of the evils that are being encouraged. It can leave people disorientated as it leaves them with no direction as to how to move forward helping mothers or terminally ill people who are still in very hard situations which do still require solutions. People therefore out of confusion and fear continue to resort back to what they know and remain entrapped by the lies promoted by the Culture of Death.
Instead we must come forward with the beacon of hope that is Life. So often, in difficult times people fall to despair and fear leads them into awful situations. Here true compassion is needed in order to offer support and show people the great beauty and joy that a Culture of Life will create. Life is constantly creative, and its beauty shines forth wherever it may be. It cannot and should not be confined behind our walls and defenses but instead must ride forth from the gates into the world to bring hope to those in despair and Life to those who have been wounded! #YoungEuropeansForLife