Were there to be no support in the whole history of ethical and moral thought, were there no acknowledged confirmation from medical science, were the history of legal opinion to the contrary, we would still have to conclude on the basis of God's Holy Word that the unborn child is a person in the sight of God. He is protected by the sanctity of life graciously given to each individual by the Creator, Who alone places His image upon man and grants them any right to life which they have.
Monday, March 30, 2015
From 40 Days For Life: DAY 41: 402 babies spared - it worked!
Dear Deacon John,
Children who were scheduled to be aborted are alive today ... because over these past 40 days, God blessed your prayers and peaceful vigil.
In fact, we know of ...
… 402 babies saved from abortion during this 40 Days for Life campaign! As we enter what’s often called “the week that changed the world,” we journey through the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Our Lord and Savior’s victory over death is the source of our hope – hope for ourselves ... and hope for our culture. Thank you for being that witness of hope in a culture of death! This campaign showed how brightly light can shine when it is courageously brought into the darkness.
We have a final devotional for this campaign today … and, as always, a few stories to share.
Grand Rapids, Michigan
“It worked!” Those were the words of a young woman who had been sitting in her car in the parking lot of the abortion center in Grand Rapids, talking with a friend who had an abortion appointment.
Lisa, the local coordinator in Grand Rapids, said this woman then went to tell the sidewalk counselors that her friend was not going to keep her appointment. “After picking up a baby gift bag,” she said, “they simply drove away … which was the answer to so many prayers.”
What exactly was it that worked? “The prayer volunteers were praying, the sidewalk counselors were standing by, the friends were talking in the car …and the Holy Spirit somehow used it all to touch the heart of this young mother,”Lisa explained. “What joyful news and what an awesome God!”
Michelle, the 40 Days for Life leader in Montgomery, said prayer volunteers witnessed two saves on one day. One of them did not come easily.
“This had to be the hardest fight I think I had fought here,” a sidewalk counselor said. “This young woman kept going in and out as her boyfriend tried to stop her, only to end up crying at the side of his car. You don’t see many dads this brave at this place.”
Eventually, the woman walked out to the car where her boyfriend was crying. “Facing each other,” Michelle said, “he gently reached for her hands.”
As they talked quietly with the counselors, a man whose child was being aborted inside the building angrily approached the couple and insisted that she go through with the abortion.
“We have no idea why he was interfering and so adamant,” Michelle said. “All we know is that when the sidewalk counselor said ‘in the name of Jesus, get away,’ he fled immediately.” Finally, the couple drove away. They did not have the abortion.
“Continue to pray for this new family,” Michelle said, that they may “love their baby … and be not afraid.”
Unfortunately, not every story has a happy ending. But God is in control.
Sean in Roanoke says the 40 Days for Life team was asked to pray for a woman planning to abort twins. But a few days later, the woman went through with the abortion.
“I am mourning this great loss,” he said.
But there is hope in the fact that God turns mourning into joy. “Though the sorrow may last for a night, God’s joy comes in the morning. Even in the midst of darkness,” Sean said, “we celebrate the light.”
On that note, we end this campaign but continue the battle, knowing in the end that Christ has already claimed the victory.
As a bonus ... here is one final 40 Days for Life devotional from Fr. Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life.
Day 41 intention Pray that the witness of 40 Days for Life bears abundant fruit, and that we begin again each day to storm the gates of hell until God welcomes us into the gates of heaven.
He will wipe every tear from their eyes. On this rock I will build my church; the gates of hell will not prevail against it.
— Matthew 16:18
Reflection by Fr. Frank Pavone
When we read this verse, we usually think that the Lord is promising that the church, which is His Body, will withstand all the attacks launched against it.
Of course, that is true. But when we think about it more carefully, we realize that in a battle, the gates do not run out into the battlefield to attack the enemy. Rather, they stand still to defend the city from the enemy attacking it.
So when the Lord says that the gates of hell will not prevail against the church, who is doing the attacking?
It is the church storming the gates!
The church, all of God's people in Christ, is called to take the offensive, to run into enemy territory, and to gain ground for Jesus Christ.
We do not wait for an invitation; we already have a command.
We prepare, but we do not wait for circumstances to be perfect; we already have one who has gone before us.
During these 40 days, we have stormed the gates. We have taken the offensive. We have pushed forward the boundaries of the kingdom. And we must keep doing so, in numerous ways.
Indeed, the gates of hell will not prevail. The gates of falsehood will flee in the presence of truth. The gates of sin will melt in the presence of grace. The gates of death will fall in the presence of the church, the People of Life!
Father, we praise you. We have heard the voice of your Son, and therefore we can make our voices heard.
We have done battle with the power of evil, and therefore we can have compassion on those still within its grip. We have been freed from the kingdom of darkness, and therefore we can bear witness to your Kingdom of Light.
May the witness of all your people through these 40 Days for Life bear abundant fruit, and may we begin again each day to storm the gates of hell until You welcome us into the gates of heaven.
We pray in the victorious name of Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.
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