Sunday, February 22, 2015

From 40 Days For Life: DAY 5: Abortion is not "safe"

40 Days for Life
Dear Deacon John,
Abortion is often accepted blindly ... masked by vague terms such as “a woman’s choice” or “safe and legal.”

Today, we are reminded of the truth that is hidden behind the slogans. Abortion ends the life of an innocent human being who has no choice in the matter – and it can therefore never be described as “safe.”

But abortion is also not safe for the mother.

During a 40 Days for Life campaign, prayer volunteers outside abortion centers around the world sometimes witness this grim reality. We need to be there – to pray ... and to offer life-affirming alternatives to women who are told that abortion is “health care.”
Pensacola, Florida 
The volunteers praying at the 40 Days for Life vigil were suddenly presented with a reason to pray even harder. An ambulance arrived at the abortion facility, and emergency teams were called to treat a woman there.

Vigil participants say it was an unusually busy day at the abortion business and the parking lot was quite full.

“Abortion hurts women,” reads a statement from the Emerald Coast Coalition for Life in Pensacola. “Abortion is not safe. Local pregnancy resource centers provide the best care for mothers in need.”

We join the Pensacola team in asking for your prayers for the woman who was taken away in the ambulance.
Roswell, Georgia
40 Days for Life participants in Roswell are wondering if this was a mistake … or God’s plan.
The story starts out with a woman who got lost on the way to the 40 Days for Life vigil location. It seems she took a wrong turn when she walked out of the lot where volunteers have to park. 

By the time she got in touch with other volunteers to come pick her up, she had walked about two miles in a big loop and was still a mile away from the vigil.
“She cheerfully remarked that now she would not need to go to the gym today,” said Kateri, the local leader in Roswell. “She certainly carried her cross for God and the babies, walking up and down hills – in below-zero wind chill – and faithfully trying to reach the vigil location.”

But, the volunteers said, this may not have entirely been a mistake. The whole time she walked, she was carrying her sign. It read “Hurting after abortion?” and listed contact information for anyone looking for help. Many drivers were reading her sign and beeping their horns and waving.
“Was there someone on those roads she walked who desperately needed the hope and healing offered by Christian post-abortion counseling?” Kateri asked. “We’ll never know for sure, but God works in mysterious ways. I think He used her to take that message of hope to people who would never have seen it otherwise. Praise God for that!”

Today’s devotional is from Fr. Frank Pavone of Priests for Life.


May God’s people understand that the Lazarus of the 21st Century is the unborn child, and respond accordingly.


There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.

The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. In hell, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abra-ham far away, with Lazarus by his side.
So he called to him, “Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.”

But Abraham replied, “Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.

“And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.”

—Luke 16:19-31

Reflection by Fr. Frank Pavone

The rich man did not go to hell because he was rich. He went to hell because he ignored the other man. He thought that because Lazarus had less that he was worth less. He failed to recognize that Lazarus was his brother.

Lazarus was waiting at the door of the rich man for scraps of food; the Lazarus of our day, the unborn child, is waiting at the door of the womb for birth itself. God does not only prohibit aborting the unborn; he prohibits ignoring them.


Father, I thank you for the life that I possess, and for the birth that you granted me. I hear the cries of the Lazarus of our day; I see them sitting at the door. Grant that I may never ignore them, and that through this 40 Days for Life campaign, I may stir many others to pay attention to them as well. Through Christ our Lord, amen.

Printable devotional

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For life,
 Shawn Carney
Campaign Director
40 Days for Life