Respect Life Apostolate

Respect Life Apostolate

Two national pro-life events coming to St. Louis/Kansas City in June!

View the video from our 2018 Breast Cancer Healing Mass (courtesy Tina Hogan)!

Read the 2018 Respect Life Creative Writing Contest scholarship essays here.

The Respect Life Apostolate (RLA) promotes the Catholic Church’s teachings on respect for and legal protection of every human life from conception to natural death by coordinating educational, spiritual, pastoral, and public policy advocacy efforts with particular focus on those issues in the culture that threaten life - abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, and unethical advances in scientific technology.

Upcoming Events

Project Joseph Support Group - Monday, June 4

Breast Cancer Healing Mass - Saturday, June 9

Naming & Commendation Rite - Saturday, June 9

Helpers Mass & Rosary - Saturday, June 16

National Pro-Life Women's Conference - June 22-24

Project Rachel Support Group - June 28

National Right to Life Convention - June 28-30 (Kansas City)

Looking for options? We can help!

Project Rachel & Project Joseph Ministries 

Right START Educational ProgramSign-up for our e-mail newsletter

Latest News

New Pro-Life Law Goes Into Effect, Despite Attempts by Planned Parenthood to Block its Enforcement

By Jennifer Brinker | jbrinker@archstl.org | twitter: @jenniferbrinker

As a judge denied Planned Parenthood's request to block a portion of Senate Bill 5, demonstrations were held in front of five Planned Parenthood locations Oct. 24 to shine light on Missouri's newest pro-life law, which went into effect the same day.

Jackson County Circuit Court judge Judge S. Margene Burnett denied a request by several Planned Parenthood branches and the ACLU of Missouri for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction of parts of SB 5. The lawsuit, filed Oct. 10, targeted the state's 72-hour waiting period, which they noted will result in "extreme delays" of three or more weeks for women in areas not close to an abortion clinic. The law requires the same physician who will provide the abortion to also give information on the medical risks at least 72 hours earlier.

Pro-life advocates held press conferences Oct. 24 outside of Planned Parenthood locations in St. Louis, Columbia, Kansas City, Springfield and Joplin. Planned Parenthood has resumed offering abortions in Kansas City and Columbia, and has said it would seek to resume abortions in Springfield and Joplin. Speakers at the St. Louis press conference included Sens. Paul Wieland and Bill Eigel, Pam Fichter of Missouri Right to Life, Reagan Barklage of Students for Life of America, and Stacy Washington of radio talk show Stacy on the Right.

At the event, pro-life advocates drew attention to the 67 ambulance visits to Planned Parenthood in St. Louis since 2009. Participants dressed in all white to symbolize the number of ambulance calls to the facility. Karen Nolkemper, executive director of the archdiocesan Respect Life Apostolate said that while there are many unknowns about the calls — including the circumstances that bring women there and what complications they might have experienced — pro-life laws such as SB 5 and witnessing outside of abortion clinics will shine a light on the darkness of abortion.

"Health care is life-affirming," she said. "Health care promotes physical and mental well-being. Health care restores. Abortion is and does none of those things." 

Read the rest of the St. Louis Review article here.

Photo credit: Students for Life

RLA 2017 Award Winners Are Building A Culture of Life!

Each year, the Respect Life Apostolate recognizes indivdiduals and groups who are making outstanding contributions to building up a Culture of Life in St. Louis through our Cardinal Carberry (life-time achievement), Bishop McNicholas (youth group) and Pro-Life Video Challenge (youth and young adults) Awards. Thank you and congratulations to our three 2017 RLA award winners:

Cardinal John J. Carberry Award

Steve Rupp received the 2017 Cardinal Carberry Award, presented to an individual or group who has made a significant contribution to the pro-life cause over a life time. As the president of Missouri Right to Life, Steve has been at the forefront of upholding respect life ethics in both the local and state legislature.

He is also a Right START teacher with the RLA, plays Santa Clause for babies and famlies in Mercy's NICU, and is the manager of member support with the Society of St. Vincent de Paul of St. Louis, which offers tremendous help to those in need throughout the archdiocese.

Bishop Joseph A. McNicholas Award

St. Joseph Academy in St. Louis was the recipient of the Bishop McNicholas Award, presented to a Catholic high school or parish youth group taht exmplifies a consistent respect for all life. The academy was noted for their pro-life campus ministry, overseas mission, and homelessness awareness efforts. In addition. proceeds from their Cup of Joe coffee house go to respect life efforts.


Pro-Life Video Challenge

The Youths of St. Ignatius, six students from St. Ignatius Parish in Marthasville, MO won the 2017 Pro-Life Video Challenge Award. Chloe, Cole, Alex, Kali, Jacob, and Hannah's inspirational video was played at the RLA convention. It celebrates the fundamental right to life at all stages: from the unborn and older children to families and seniors. View it here.

2017 Creative Writing Contest Winners Announced

On May 13, 2017, 121 finalists in the RLA's Respect Life Creative Writing Contest gathered at the Cardinal Rigali Center to be recognized for their outstanding entries.

These finalists, representing over 70 different Catholic elementary schools, parish schools of religion, and home schools, were selected from over 1000 entries. Finalists received a certificate of commendation, T-shirt, and book and were recognized by Archbishop Robert J. Carlson. Open to eighth graders in the archdiocese, the contest asked students to respond to the prompt: Explain why living the virtue of chastity protects us from abortion and blesses us with true holiness, health, and happiness.

Winners

From these finalists, four students were recognized as honorable mentions and six students were selected as scholarship winners. Honorable mentions received a $500 award; the scholarship winners received a $2000 scholarship to be applied to their Catholic high school of choice. All honorable mention and scholarship winners als so received three tickets to the Annual Respect Life Convention in October, hosted by the Respect Life Apostolate.

2017 Contest Winners   

  • Bishop Edward J. O'Donnell Scholarship: Nicole Bergen from Holy Spirit Grade School and Parish (St. Joseph Academy)
  • Mary Forrestal Hennessey Scholarship: Natalie McDonough from Holy Spirit Academy Homeschool and St. Joseph-Cottleville Parish (St. John Paul II Prepatory School)
  • Mr. & Mrs. George Kletzker Scholarships:
    • Gabriel Serri from Immaculate Conception-Dardenne Grade School and Parish (St. Dominic High School)
    • Sarah Hughes from St. Joseph-Cottleville Grade School and Parish (St. Joseph Academy)
  • Knights of Columbus Missouri State Council Scholarship: Noah Apprill-Sokol from St. Gabriel the Archangel Grade School and Parish (St. Louis University High School)
  • St. Joseph Evangelization Network Scholarship: James Brunts from the Academy of the Sacred Heart and St. Charles Borromeo Parish (St. Louis University High School)

 Honorable mention winners this year are:

  • Indira Kar from St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Grade School and Parish (Cor Jesu Academy)
  • Sarah Keys from St. John Paul II Preparatory School and Mary, Queen of Peace Parish (St. John Paul II Preparatory School)
  • Dallen Nelsen, a homeschooler from St. Gianna Parish (Homeschool)
  • John Niebrugge, a homeschooler from St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Parish (Homeschool)

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