Normally the Feast of the Annunciation is on March 25. This year it was moved to last Monday, March 31, because the 25th came within Holy Week. This feast commemorates Mary's "yes" to God regarding the conception and birth of His Son, Jesus. Our Lady is our model in terms of doing what God asks. Particularly, she is a model for all who conceive new life. Even though situations may be very difficult for a girl or woman to bring the life within her to birth, she will have a great strength obtained for her from Mary. She will also have help from a number of Catholic organizations who care for those pregnant women who are in difficult situations. Moreover, she will have peace.
Also, there is help for those girls and women who have had abortions. The Church is our Mother and has compassion on all of us. Here is what Servant of God, John Paul II said to these women in his encyclical Evangelium Vitae on the Feast of the Annunciation several years ago:
I would now like to say a special word to women who have had an abortion. The church is aware of the many factors which may have influenced your decision, and she does not doubt that in many cases it was a painful and even shattering decision. The wound in your heart may not yet have healed. Certainly what happened was and remains terribly wrong. But do not give in to discouragement and do not lose hope. Try rather to understand what happened and face it honestly. If you have not already done so, give yourselves over with humility and trust to repentance. The Father of mercies is ready to give you his forgiveness and his peace in the sacrament of reconciliation. You will come to understand that nothing is definitively lost, and you will also be able to ask forgiveness from your child, who is now living in the Lord. With the friendly and expert help and advice of other people and as a result of your own painful experience, you can be among the most eloquent defenders of everyone's right to life. Through your commitment to life, whether by accepting the birth of other children or by welcoming and caring for those most in need of someone to be close to them, you will become promoters of a new way of looking at human life. (no. 99)
If anyone is troubled because of an abortion or pressure to have an abortion, she should not hesitate to call me or check out www.goodcounselhomes.org or http://www.rcan.org/life/.