Respect Life Week, a joint project of the Department of Catholic Schools and the Office of Life, Justice and Peace, takes place Oct. 6-10 at schools in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles — a prelude to the annual Christian Service 4Life event Oct. 14 in Carson.

During Respect Life Week, Catholic elementary, middle and high school students are immersed “in the understanding of the dignity of every human person and our call to proclaim the Gospel of Life in our community,” said kathleen-domingo, LIFE Coordinator in the Office of Life, Justice and Peace.

“Students are surrounded by a culture of death and hopelessness,” she noted. “With images of war on the nightly news, dramatic increases in teen suicide, human trafficking second only to drug sales in gang activity, and millions of women grieving from past abortions, our world is in need of hope and healing. 

“Respect Life Week invites students to spend a week exploring a world that values every human life and challenges students to get involved in proclaiming the Gospel of Life here in Los Angeles.”

In 2014, Respect Life Week will explore the themes of forgiveness and mercy. Through curriculum, prayer, special projects and service, students in grades K-12 will reflect on the infinite love of Christ for each person.  

As a cross-curricular program, teachers, campus ministers and administrators are encouraged to work together to make the week meaningful and impactful for students. To date, nearly 40 elementary and high schools in the archdiocese have signed up to participate in Respect Life Week.

On Oct. 14, Christian Service 4LIFE returns to the StubHub Center in Carson, with junior high and high school students invited to attend. The event, part of the Respect Life Week curriculum, is presented by LIFE SoCal, a locally-based prolife organization, and the Office of Life, Peace and Justice.

This year’s featured speaker is Rwandan genocide survivor Immaculée Ilibagiza, who has presented her story at parishes and schools throughout the U.S., including several locally. Archbishop José Gomez will be present to encourage youth to take positive steps to promote a culture of life.

More than 8,000 students are expected to attend the event which will also feature music, activities, and food.

For information on Respect Life Week, contact kathleen-domingo, (213) 637-7236, [email protected] or For information on Christian Service 4LIFE, call (626) 755-7323 or [email protected]