Friday, October 31, 2014

From 40 Days For Life: DAY 38: Unsung heroes

40 Days for Life
Dear Deacon John,
We are winning the battle for life at the local level. Abortion facilities continue to close at a record pace ... including 87 closures in 2013, which is the most since Roe v. Wade.

40 Days for Life has worked closely with pregnancy resource centers ... by partnering with them locally and speaking at their events, highlighting the need for their life-saving work.

These wonderful organizations are the unsung heroes of the pro-life movement as they offer free alternatives to abortion, including ultrasounds, pregnancy tests and materials for newborn babies.

Pregnancy help centers now outnumber abortion facilities in the United States 3 to 1. Praise God!

When 40 Days for Life campaigns work closely with pregnancy care centers, it saves lives. Here are just a few examples.
St. Louis, Missouri

One of the vigil participants in St. Louis tells of a young woman whose unborn baby was diagnosed with a heart defect. The doctor told her that might be an indication of Down syndrome, so she was encouraged to have an abortion.

She didn’t want that, but she had no insurance and nowhere to turn.

But when she and a relative approached this volunteer outside Planned Parenthood, he directed them to the pregnancy care unit across the street. As they left later, he asked if they’d found the help they needed. They smiled and gave a big thumbs-up.

“Simply hearing this story moves my heart with gratitude,” said Brian, the 40 Days for Life leader in St. Louis. “What a blessing … to affirm the life of this woman and her child, even when others refused to.”
Fort Myers, Florida

An abortion-minded young woman arrived at the pregnancy help center that’s across the street from the Planned Parenthood facility … which is where the 40 Days for Life vigil is in progress.

She asked the help center’s staff, “What are those people doing on the sidewalk? Are they always there?”

“She was told that they are 40 Days for Life volunteers who are praying for her and her baby,” said Paula, the local coordinator in Fort Myers. “By the time she left the clinic, she had told the staff that she’d had a change of heart and decided to keep her baby!

Paula said the vigil’s prayer location is far from Planned Parenthood’s front doors, and it’s often difficult to reach out to women on their way inside. “So it means volumes to our team to hear this good news.”

Boise, Idaho

40 Days for Life participants in Boise have been praying for a 19-year-old who was 15 weeks pregnant. Karen, the local leader in Boise, says the teen and her mother went to Planned Parenthood to ask about an abortion.

However, they also went to the pregnancy help center next door to get a free ultrasound. “In spite of compassionate care and counseling,” Karen said, “the mother took her daughter back to Planned Parenthood, where they discovered the abortion could not be performed there this late into the pregnancy.”

Planned Parenthood referred her to another abortionist, who could only offer the girl and her mother a list of late-term facilities in other states.

“All this time,” Karen said, vigil participants “were praying and praying — and asking if we had heard anything.” The director of the pregnancy care center stated in touch with the girl and her mother. The girl said she had been taking prenatal vitamins, which the director saw as a positive sign.

The mother finally acknowledged that her daughter would not be having an abortion and was going to have the baby.
It took a lot of work – but obviously, it was worth it!

Here’s today’s devotional from Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life.
Day 38 intention

Pray that we become vessels of hope to all around us, especially to those who minister in the pro-life movement.

On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen!”

— Luke 24:1-5

This meditation, based on a sermon I once heard, is adapted for pro-life concerns.

It's Friday. Jesus is on the cross. He has been killed by his enemies; he is off the scene. But that’s because it’s Friday. Sunday’s comin!

It’s Friday. Abortionists continue their work 3,300 times a day, tearing off the arms and legs of little babies and crushing their heads. But that’s because it’s Friday. Sunday’s comin!
It’s Friday. Pro-abortion groups receive blood money from billionaires who are as deceived as they are. But that’s because it’s Friday. Sunday’s comin!

It’s Friday. Liars attempt to speak for all women and hide the pain of abortion, and ignore the evidence of how it harms women, and call abortion a blessing. But that’s because it’s Friday. Sunday’s comin!
It’s Friday. People of hardened hearts guard the clinics and usher desperate women in to have their abortions, while keeping them from the pro-life people who want to give them hope. But that’s because it’s Friday. Sunday’s comin!

Hope does not mean that we ignore or minimize the evils around us. It means, rather, that we see the whole picture, which is that evil is conquered because of what happened one Sunday morning. The power of sin and death has been broken by the Resurrection of Christ. We are called to proclaim, celebrate, and serve that victory, waiting in joyful hope for Christ's return and the full flowering of the Culture of Life! Indeed, Sunday’s comin’!

Lord, fill your people with new hope. Make us vessels of hope to all around us, especially to those who minister in the pro-life movement, that as we engage in the difficult work ahead, we may experience the peace and joy that come only from you and that nobody can take away from us. We ask this through Christ our Lord, Amen.
Printable devotional

To download today’s devotional as a printable PDF to share with friends:
For Life,
 Shawn Carney
Campaign Director
40 Days for Life