On yesterday’s feast of the Holy Family, Matthew’s Gospel speaks of a direct attack on the family: “Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.” The first signs of this war on “the child” go back to God’s words to the serpent, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, between your seed and her seed” (Gen 3:15). Satan hates woman and her fertility. For it’s through her fertility that God takes on flesh and establishes his everlasting Covenant with the human race. And, as John Paul II wrote, “Each and every time that motherhood is repeated in human history, it is always related to the Covenant which God established with the human race through the motherhood of the Mother of God” (Mulieris Dignitatem 19). This ancient war against fertility is writ large in a world that champions sterilization and abortion as global “rights.” But, like the Holy Family, we are given an escape plan. The child who survived Herod’s attempt on his newborn life will later offer himself freely for the life of the world. In that event, as was long ago foretold, the serpent “strikes at his heal,” but the woman’s offspring “crushes his head” (Gen 3:15).