The Diocese of Des Moines
Bishop at Witness to Life rally
July 28, 2015
Written By: Anne Marie Cox

Bishop Richard Pates made the following remarks at the Witness to Life rally today. #WomenBetrayed

Good afternoon, I am very happy to be with you.  Great commendation is owed to the students of Iowa State University who call all of us together to witness the value of human life.


Women Betrayed Pro-Life Rally

July 28, 2015


Open Our Eyes O Lord

To the Crown of Creation

Open our eyes, O Lord, to see in each human life the imprint of your very self

Open our eyes, O Lord, to your presence in the poor

Open our eyes, O Lord, to your presence in the sick

Open our eyes, O Lord, to your presence in the frail and elderly

Open our eyes, O Lord, to your presence in the disabled

Open our eyes, O Lord, to your presence in all who suffer because of war, persecution, injustice, abandonment, lack of care and love . . .

Especially today open our eyes, O Lord, to your presence in those most helpless of all – the unborn.  From the moment of conception you privilege a man and woman to serve as co-creators with you in the coming about of a person made in your image and likeness.

This person in integrity, body and soul, has an eternal destiny to be with you forever.

Open our eyes, O Lord, to this most basic reality of life and endow all with reverence toward the unborn individual.  Open our eyes, O Lord, and let all see the remarkable gift of another person willed into existence by you and destined to live forever in your love.

Open our eyes, O Lord.




Women Betrayed Pro-Life Rally

Bishop Richard Pates

July 28, 2015

Pope Francis from the very beginning of his ministry as Successor of St. Peter has called for the reverence of human life – of the responsibility all of us have to safeguard the crown of creation – from the moment of conception until natural death.

The Pope so frequently talks about a world-wide culture as a throw-away society.  He speaks about the refugees escaping hunger, oppression, and war who are abandoned on the high seas.  He calls our attention to the hungry millions when indeed there is the possibility of food for all.  He highlights our lack of care for creation and the accompanying devastation of human ecology.

In this throw-away culture he identifies the most innocent, defenseless victims of all, the unborn child – so often described as unwanted.

Today, according to presumably credible reports, the unborn child is not to be thrown away intact but preserved, ironically with care, because of the value of his or her component parts.  The person is denied but his or her body parts apparently have worth in the market place.

In addressing human need we see and recognize the value of medical science and its legitimate application in human advance.

How beautiful is the sharing of human life with consciously, freely made decisions to provide a kidney or even a cornea or a heart at the end of life.  We also recognize the tremendous benefit that is being achieved from the utilization of adult stem cells.

Moreover, the total human person, especially the unborn and the infant are earnestly desired to be adopted in our society.  Literally hundreds of couples wait in line, with great frustration, to welcome a child into their homes where they will be cherished, loved.  The adoptive parents are prepared to render great sacrifice.

What we come to say today is very clear.  We come in support of the human person, in defense of the most helpless of all, the child in the womb. 

And thus, we insist that harvesting the parts of the child for utilization of these component parts is an unspeakable travesty on the identity of this child as one created in the image and likeness of God with an eternal destiny.  The sum of all our bodily parts is the human person.  May each person be always revered and preserved in his or her full and true identity. Save to


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