Respect means speaking and acting according to our own and others’ rights, status, and circumstances. While modesty enables us to regulate the attention we draw to ourselves, respect aids us in moderating our speech and actions towards ourselves and others. It is a word frequently used and yet often not fully lived. With so many opportunities to give our opinions by commenting, liking, following, completing surveys, and tweeting, etc, it can be easy to forget the ‘face’ of the person receiving the comment. In fact, we may never see their face.
Around the country this week, thousands of people will gather to show their respect for the sanctity of all life from conception to natural death. They will be a voice for the most vulnerable whose ‘face’ may never be seen. Therefore, let us all make an effort to pause before we speak or act rashly towards another person and try to visualize their face and then respond. Recalling to mind the words of Christ, “For from the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).