The gospel reading for today (January 31, 2020, Friday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time) points to why I think biology points us to the fact that life begins at conception and is to be cherished.
In this gospel speaking of the Kingdom of God, we read, “It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth. But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.” ” (Mark 4:31-32).
That mustard seed has everything it needs in genetic makeup to become the mustard plant. It is full of “potential”. All it needs is nutrients to grow. Every living thing, no matter what stage of life, needs nutrients to live.
So, it is when the egg from a female and a sperm cell from a male come together to form a new living creature. That newly formed cell has a unique genetic makeup that will never be seen again. Human beings may be alike but each is unique. From the moment the egg from a human female and the sperm from a human male come together at conception, it has all the potential it needs to grow into an adult human being with dignity given by God. This new human life is “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” (“U.S. Declaration of Independence.) Nothing can change that.
Yes, it needs nutrients to grow but so does every living thing. It is a life to be cherished from the moment of conception to the moment of natural death.