There is a Deadly Cold Coming To Our Illinois State Laws
By Bishop David J. Malloy
At this time of year, we in Illinois are used to cold winds that chill completely through. In some ways they chill not only the body but also the soul. 
Unfortunately, this year a different kind of deadly chill has come upon us. It is the cold wind that attacks the life of children not yet born.
Prominent in the news of late was the ghastly celebration that took place in Albany, N.Y., as Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a bill that stripped protections and dignity from unborn children in their mothers’ wombs. 
Even more, that bill was signed on Jan. 22, a day significant to the pro-life movement because it was the 46th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion in our country. 
A week later, a similar bill was introduced in Virginia. There, Gov. Ralph Northam has been roundly criticized after an interview defending provisions of the bill that would have allowed a child who is deformed to be put to death after birth, even after having been resuscitated. 
This week, that deadly cold front from the east swept into Illinois. 
That happened when Democrats in the Illinois House introduced two bills to expand the availability and provision of abortion in our state.
One bill, entitled the Reproductive Health Act, would, according to the Chicago Tribune, “…repeal the state’s so-called partial-birth abortion ban, which placed restrictions on the procedure later in pregnancy. In addition, the act would require private insurance plans in Illinois to cover abortions the same as contraception, fertility and maternity care, as well as allow advanced-practice nurses to perform abortions.”
In a single bill, several steps are being proposed that are hard to imagine for anyone listening to their conscience flowing from faith or basic human reasoning. 
For example, the repeal of the ban on partial birth abortion ignores the horrifying and grisly procedures that are required for late term abortions. 
Additionally, the advance of neo-natal science continues to move back the age of viability. Such science also has shown us the life, the reactions and even the precise facial features of the child in the womb waiting to be born.
The requirement that private insurance plans cover abortions continues the attacks on the consciences of all of us who respect the gift of human life at all stages. 
In September of 2017, Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a bill to expand the use of tax dollars to subsidize abortions in Illinois. Now it is proposed that private insurance plans have no choice but to engage in this deadly activity. 
No religious exemption or exemption for conscience is included. 
A second bill, introduced at the same day, repeals Illinois’ parental notification law. With this change the parents, the natural guardians and protectors of their under-age child, need not even be alerted or consulted before such a traumatic and life-altering decision as abortion is made.
In truth, what is at issue here is not simply politics or law. It is the moral and spiritual vision of who we are, as individuals and as a people.
We are not simply an accident or a choice. Rather, every human life is a part of God’s creation and His love. Each of us carries the image and likeness of God. This is true of the child waiting to be born as well.
Because we are joined with all others in carrying God’s image, we are united by our humanity in a call to love and sacrifice for each other. No one needs to prove that they are worthy of life, or that they are not a burden to others — least of all our brothers and sisters waiting to be born.
These bills represent a cold and biting spiritual and cultural wind that numbs the soul. We are better than this. 
In the coming days and weeks, we will need deep prayer and a committed voice so that these awful proposals do not become a reality in Illinois.