God is the answer when faced with fear

  • January 5, 2007

TORONTO - Normally, Lillian Gomez of Toronto would not attend Mass on a Thursday but she did on Dec. 28. What compelled her to attend Mass that cold Thursday was the theme of the service.

Every Dec. 28, the archdiocese of Toronto celebrates the Mass for the Unborn and Gomez, an unmarried low income worker, is three months pregnant.

"I got rid of my previous pregnancy through an abortion because I knew I would not be able to take care of it. This time I want to have the baby and raise it, but I am still to overcome my fear of the problems that come with having a child," said Gomez.

"This is why I came here tonight," she said.

Gomez was one of hundreds of Catholics who thronged St. Michael's Cathedral in downtown Toronto to listen to Bishop Peter J. Hundt, auxiliary bishop of Toronto. Hundt celebrated this year's Mass for the Unborn, a service that is part of the Feast of the Holy Innocents, observed during the Christmas week.

The Feast of the Innocents is in remembrance of the male children who were killed by King Herod who was seeking the newly born Jesus whom he had been told was King of all Kings. When he could not find Jesus, Herod ordered all male children under the age of two to be killed because he was afraid of losing his power.

Hundt said "fear is the evil force" that drives people to commit such crimes as Herod's. This is the same fear that afflicts people who abort or those who advocate abortion of the unborn children.

"We live in a time when people are very fearful and are grasping for control. When fear takes over, the only recourse is to have faith in God and to accept that He is in control," said Hundt.

"Faith over fear is the message I grasped from his homily," said Gomez.

"I felt like he was talking to me when he said the Mass for the Unborn should help us focus on the gift of life that God gives us unselfishly."

(Madawo is a freelance writer in Toronto.)

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