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In Support of a Culture of Life | Resolutions of the 133rd Supreme Convention

Substitute for Resolutions 17, 29, 36, 45, 51, 71, 98,
108, 133, 136, 147, 158, 166, 179, 181, 187, 207,
211, 233, 250, 258, 264, 272, 278, 288, 301, 311,
329, 337, 344, 351 and 354

In Support of a Culture of Life

      WHEREAS, the Knights of Columbus has a deep and historic commitment to oppose any governmental action or policy that promotes abortion, embryonic stem cell research, human cloning, euthanasia, assisted suicide, or other offenses against life; and

      WHEREAS, the Order supports programs that provide women facing crisis pregnancies with alternatives to abortion, including adoption, and we promote projects that provide spiritual support to those women suffering from the traumatic emotional and psychological aftereffects of abortion; and

      WHEREAS, our Ultrasound Program has provided a window to the womb through the placement of 600 ultrasound machines in 50 states and a growing number of Canadian provinces; and

      WHEREAS, we reaffirm our commitment to building a “culture of life” by promoting policies that favor the family, and by recognizing that it is within strong and healthy families that moral values are taught and the spiritual heritage of the nation is transmitted; and

      WHEREAS, on May 13, 2015, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act which would effectively ban abortions after the 20th week of gestation, acknowledging peer-reviewed science which demonstrates that an unborn child at that stage feels pain; and

      WHEREAS, Pope Francis has called abortion the product of a “widespread mentality of profit, the throwaway culture, which has today enslaved the hearts and minds of so many;” and

      WHEREAS, we support legislation which would prohibit the more than $500 million in annual taxpayer funding going to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the largest abortion provider in the United States, which performs over 300,000 abortions each year; and

      WHEREAS, the Knights of Columbus has a long history of supporting marches and rallies for the cause of life in the countries where we have a formal presence; and

      WHEREAS, Pope Benedict XVI stated that “Catholic politicians and legislators, conscious of the grave responsibility before them, must feel particularly bound, on the basis of a properly formed conscience, to introduce and support laws inspired by values grounded in human nature;” and

      WHEREAS, in Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis reminded us that, “Among the vulnerable for whom the Church wishes to care with particular love and concern are unborn children, the most defenseless and innocent among us…this defense of unborn life is closely linked to the defense of each and every other human right. It involves the conviction that a human being is always sacred and inviolable, in any situation and at every stage of development;” and

      WHEREAS, in his most recent encyclical, Laudato Si, the Holy Father reiterated that “Since everything is interrelated, concern for the protection of nature is also incompatible with the justification of abortion. How can we genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings, however troublesome or inconvenient they may be, if we fail to protect a human embryo, even when its presence is uncomfortable and creates difficulties?”

      NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that we will continue to speak out to our elected representatives about the need to enact legislation protecting human life in all its stages and to oppose abortion, embryonic stem cell research, human cloning, euthanasia, assisted suicide, or other offenses against life; and

      FURTHER RESOLVED, that we believe women deserve better than abortion and will continue to support crisis pregnancies with alternatives to abortion, including adoption, and that we promote projects which provide spiritual support to those women and men suffering from the traumatic psychological after-effects of abortion; and

      FURTHER RESOLVED, that we call for the adoption of laws that recognize and protect in law the right of conscience for doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other medical personnel, guaranteeing that they may not be forced to provide medical services that violate their religious beliefs, and we insist on similar protection for Catholic hospitals; and

      FURTHER RESOLVED, that we call on the United States Senate to act swiftly on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act by approving this life-affirming legislation and submitting it to the President of the United States, on whom we call to sign it into law; and

      FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Knights of Columbus will continue to uphold the traditional teaching of the Church concerning the death penalty, as explained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and by Saint John Paul II in Evangelium Vitae; and

      FURTHER RESOLVED, that we reaffirm our long-standing policies of not inviting to any Knights of Columbus event persons, especially public officials or candidates for public office, who do not support the legal protection of unborn children, or who advocate for the legalization of assisted suicide or euthanasia, and that we prohibit such persons from renting or otherwise using facilities over which our members have control, or speaking at Knights of Columbus events, or bestowing on them honors or privileges of our Order of any kind, or inviting them to serve as honorary chairpersons of events, celebrations or committees, or holding any office in the Knights of Columbus; and

      FURTHER RESOLVED, that we once again commit ourselves to praying the Rosary frequently, to fasting and to doing penance in reparation for the evils perpetrated against the gift of life, and that we seek the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who herself said “yes” to life, for the establishment in our society of a “culture of life.”