February is Black History Month

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During the month of February, our nation celebrates Black History Month- recognizing the accomplishments, and being honest about the sufferings, of the black population.  The abortion industry has targeted the poor and minorities. A young, female PP volunteer told me today that the fetus inside the womb is a parasite.  Who taught her that?  PP teaches that and so does our nation’s collective silence on the evils and acceptance of abortion.  (Things are changing though.)

 

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I am a child of God.

 

I have a dream speech-  Martin Luther King Jr

 

Today, while editing this post, I read that the woman behind the name  “Roe” died at the age of 69.  Norma McCorvey,  a white woman, has a story as summarized here by The New York Times (click on Norma’s name).  A Supreme Court decision, Roe vs Wade to which her name will be forever attached, is based on lies.  The ruling has led to the slaughter of millions of unborn children of all races.  Norma McCorvey regretted her involvement with the court case and the pro-abortion industry.  Today, although she was repentant, she met her Maker. May God have mercy on her soul. May God have mercy on us all for the things we have done and have failed to do for our unborn brothers and sisters.

 

PP has made a deliberate attempt to groom the minority population into believing abortion is not only a right, but is right.  Fortunately, the black population has people who know the truth.  Please read about Mildred Jefferson and listen to what she has to say in the video below.  Then take time and watch the pro-life documentary, Maafe 21- Youtube link.   The word maafa   “(also known as the African Holocaust) is derived from a Kiswahili word meaning disaster, terrible occurrence or great tragedy.[1]” African Holocaust

 

 

You will not regret listening to the messages.

Psalm 139:13

“You formed my inmost being;

                                      you knit me in my mother’s womb.”

 

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Planned Parenthood and the impact on black history:     Maafa 21

 

The Radiance Foundation:  a viewpoint on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.   The documentary, Maafa 21, brings to light how Planned Parenthood used the black ministers to groom women and men to accept abortion as a moral right. They got it wrong, and many still get it wrong.  Abortion kills the human body and spirit.

 

This baby has a dream.

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“……I say to you today, my friends, though, even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up, live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.” I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood……”

“I have a dream that my four little children  will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character… I have a dream..(Copyright 1963. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.)”

Abortion kills the dreamer.

Saturday’s Protest pp Rally Big Success

IMG_2061They came from the East. They came from the North. They came from the South and West. Over 200 of the faithful (according to local TV) came to witness, pray and protest outside of planned parenthood, our nation’s largest provider of abortions and performer of a significant number of unethical things including shielding child predators, defrauding Medicaid and harvesting human tissue for profit. By our presence we asked our government to defunds pp of taxpayer funding and those fIMG_2064unds be redirected to other Federally Qualified Health Providers, of which there are 12 who don’t perform abortions within a 5 mile radius.

Our witness was IMG_2070powerful, prayerful and peaceful with the curbs on both sides of pp being lined with dozens of the faithful of all ages holding signs and praying. The Jericho March had around 80 people walking and witnessing on the streets surrounding the abortion center. We were filmed and interviewed by KDKA, WPXI and WTAE and were featured on TV throughout the day on both Saturday and Sunday.

IMG_2067While there was a small group of counter protesters we were protected by St. Michael as well as the Pittsburgh Police who had a strong presence. It also appeared that the counter protesters were part of us as several pro-lifers mixed in with them with better and bolder signs.

Pastor Joe S. opened the protest in prayer and Father Jason C. closed it in prayer.

This day we stood strong for life. This day we worked in HIS vineyard and the labors were many.

In the closing remarks the large group was asked to do three things:

  1. Pray to End Abortion
  2. Contact your senators and congressman in Washington and demand pp be defunded of our tax dollars
  3. Continue to witness for life and participate in the upcoming 40 Days For Life Campaign beginning on March 1.

God bless you and God bless America!

Tim B.

Do the Right Thing

Our local, 40 Days for Life Pittsburgh, theme this year is gentleness, not weakness.   Speak out AND often  for the right to life for babies in the womb. Speak up for  the health and well being of the baby’s mother and the father. These are the right things to do. There is nothing right about abortion. There is nothing gentle about abortion. God is not in the violence.  Babies have the inalienable right to life from The Creator- God.

 

SPECIAL DELIVERY

 

A mother is standing in her home and is smiling while holding her sleeping baby.

 

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FLOWER CHILDBABY WITH FINGER IN THE MOUTH

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DO THE RIGHT THING,   YOU WON’T REGRET IT.   

GENTLENESS is the Theme for these 40 days!

lamb among wolves

I’ve been thinking a lot about what may be in store for us on the sidewalk during these coming 40 days (beginning March 1st).  With the political climate being so divided right now, I wonder, will we face more hostility than usual?  Will more people come to argue with us or to counter-protest us?  

Jesus told his disciples that he was sending them out “like lambs among wolves”.  Sounds pretty scary, doesn’t it?  How can a gentle little lamb defend itself against a ferocious wolf?  Why would Jesus do this to us?

As I sat on a bus travelling to Washington DC last week, headed to the March for Life, I was reading from my Magnificat devotional magazine.  Near the back of the magazine, there was a quote from St. Francis de Sales.  It said, “There is nothing as strong as gentleness.  Nothing is as gentle as true strength.”  I was so struck by that quote that I read it out loud to my friend who was sitting next to me, and I told her that I think this would be a great theme for our 40 days.  You can imagine my surprise, when I got to the March and was listening to Mike Pence’s speech..and near the end of his speech he actually said, “There is nothing as strong as gentleness!”  WOW!  Was that confirmation, or what?

Yes, I believe that GENTLENESS is EXACTLY what we are called to bring to the anger and division that we may face on the sidewalk.  It is our best defense, actually.  Nothing diffuses anger as quickly as gentleness.  And truthfully, we should feel compassion for those who are spiritually blind, and cannot tell the difference between good and evil.  We must be gentle with them and pray for them.

So fear not!  Trust that this battle is the LORD’s and that He will protect us.  Our 40 Days for Life vigil is less than half full…WE NEED YOUR HELP GETTING IT FILLED!  If your church has not selected a time slot yet, go to http://40daysforlifepittsburgh.com/vigil-schedule/ to see which times are empty, and then email me at nbruni@40daysforlifepgh.com to get signed up.  Or, to sign up as an individual, sign yourself up at https://40daysforlife.com/local-campaigns/pittsburgh/

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I also think that it is more important than ever to add FASTING to our prayers!  Jesus said that some demons can only be driven out by prayer AND fasting!  St. Augustine said that fasting and almsgiving are the two wings that carry our prayers to God!  If you haven’t done so yet, be sure to sign up HERE to help us fill our 40 day fast!

We have lots of 40 Days for Life flyers and bulletin inserts left!  Email me at nbruni@40daysforlifepgh.com  if you would like some to spread the word at your church!  To view them, click HERE.

Finally, I want to pass along THIS LINK to the Defunding Planned Parenthood Nationwide Webcast and encourage you to listen to it, and to participate in Pittsburgh’s Defund Planned Parenthood Rally and Jericho March THIS SATURDAY, February 11th from 9:00 – 10:00 am.  Just show up at Planned Parenthood at 9am.  Signs will be provided.  Go to http://protestpp.com/#home to find out more about the nationwide event.

Hope to see you soon!

Your sister in Christ,

Nikki

Stand against evil and Join vigil to Protest planned parenthood

“The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing” E. Burke

Join us downtown Pittsburgh for one hour outside planned parenthood in a nationwide effort to pray for the end abortion and defund planned parenthood Saturday February 11 from 9 am to 10 am.

Pgh flyer R6The time has come to defund America’s abortion giant! Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion chain, killing over 300,000 babies each year nationwide and 2,300 downtown, and nearly half of their billion dollar national budget comes from our tax dollars.

But now the new 115th Congress is moving to strip Planned Parenthood of that money! On February 11, pro-lifers like you will take to the streets to demand our government stops funding an organization that specializes in killing children.

Please join us at the Planned Parenthood downtown Pittsburgh from 9 am to 10 am at 933 Liberty Ave as we protest and pray for an end to Planned Parenthood’s massive government subsidy, and an end to abortion in our country.

No need to sign up, just show up and bring a friend. Signs will be provided. You can also walk in a Jericho March.  Also see the flyer in our “About – resources” section.

Visit the Protestpp website to learn more about the nationwide effort: http://protestpp.com/#home

See you on Saturday Feb 11!

PS If you haven’t signed up yet for the upcoming 40 DFL Spring Campaign, please consider doing it now.  Visit SCHEDULE.

 

March for Life 2017

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Is it just my imagination, or were the Sunday readings for today perfectly applicable to the pro-life movement??  I will be referring to these passages from today throughout this post.

 

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This year’s annual March for Life marked the 45th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and the 44th anniversary of the March.  Over the span of those forty-four years, millions of pilgrims have walked the streets of Washington, D.C., praying, lobbying, and hoping for some change in our country’s heart when it comes to the issue of the sanctity of human life.

 

I was one of those fortunate ones to attend the March this year.  Allow me to share some photos from the day.  First are some photos from the morning Youth Rally and Mass for Life at the Verizon Center:

 

Bishops and priests during the Mass
Bishops and priests during the Mass

 

The crowd.
The crowd.

 

Some photos from the outdoor rally before the March:

 

President of the March for Life, Jeannie Mancini
President of the March for Life, Jeannie Mancini

 

Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump
Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump

 

One of the more notable quotes of the day came from Mrs. Conway, above, who said to the crowd, “We see you… we hear you… we respect you… and we look forward to working with you.”

 

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My family and I have gone to the March for many years, but this year, as most of you know, was particularly special.  For the first time in the history of the March, a sitting Vice President came and spoke to us at the rally before the March.  This news was made public only the day before, and so many things had to be altered and put into place in order for this to happen smoothly.  People seemed very patient with the earlier Mass times, and longer wait times to get through security, because we all knew that it was for a worthwhile reason: to see and hear Mike Pence speak to us.

 

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Pence was, as usual, calm, eloquent, and charitable.  His love for Our Lord and the American people came shining through in his words to us.  What a blessing to have such a good and faith-filled man as our second-in-command.

 

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But the Vice President’s presence was not the most important presence that day, of course.  The Lord’s Presence was there, as always.  This is why many begin the day of the March with Mass or some other type of prayer.  Without the Lord, we can do nothing.

In fact, one of the things that came to my mind as I was listening to Mike Pence, and observing the people around me cheering for him was a paraphrased line from Scripture: “Put not your trust in princes.”  And then, this morning (Sunday) in Morning Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours, what did I read?  “It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in men; it is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes.” (Psalm 118:8-9)  I believe that at Friday’s rally, the Lord was gently reminding me that in the midst of all the excitement about Pence’s arrival (and rightly so), there was something bigger to be aware of: the LORD is in charge.  Not our politicians- even if they are going to deliver on their good promises.  We must still put ALL of our trust in the Lord.  As is said in the first reading today:

But I will leave as a remnant in your midst
a people humble and lowly,
who shall take refuge in the name of the LORD:
the remnant of Israel.

Zephaniah 3:12-13a (emphasis added)

 

At the same time, I would like to remember something that Nikki recently sent in an email to our 40 Days team.  She said:

“I read a quote that I loved in this month’s Magnificat from St. Francis de Sales yesterday while I was on the bus, on my way to the March.  Ironically, Mike Pence used the same quote a few hours later in his speech!  He said, ‘Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength.’  I think that should be our motto going into this Lenten campaign!”

So certainly, our Vice President’s words were not without the power of the Holy Spirit behind them.

 

mfl 2017 st francis de sales

 

Another speaker at the rally was Abby Johnson, former Planned Parenthood director in Texas.  Most of you know that she is now a well-known pro-life advocate and founder of “And Then There Were None,” a ministry to help abortion workers get out of the abortion industry.

 

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Abby on stage with many former abortion workers and other post-abortive women

 

Abby is a great example of those who are persecuted for the Lord’s sake.  Our Lord in today’s Gospel has these words for us:

 

“Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you
and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.
Rejoice and be glad,
for your reward will be great in heaven.”

Matthew 5:10-12a

 

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Why the crown of thorns?  Because we are soon about to enter into our Lenten campaign for 40 Days for Life.  And it will be a time for us to focus more on the passion of Our Lord.  Let us be willing to not only focus on HIS passion, however, but on our own.  We are all able to enter into His suffering in a unique way when we stand for Him and for His little ones on the sidewalk.  Let us be unashamed and unafraid… for we belong to HIM, so we have nothing to fear.  If we are persecuted for HIS sake, then we will truly be blessed.

ALL IN

I have a confession to make.  For the past year, I have been feeling a lack of “passion” for this struggle against abortion.  I remember when God first broke my heart over abortion in 2009, I was bursting at the seams to do everything possible to join in this fight.  Back then, my heart hurt so badly…the only way I could bring it any relief was to work relentlessly.  Calling pastors, gathering team members, joining pro life groups, witnessing at PP, participating in Face the Truth and Magee Pickets, the March for Life in DC and everything else I could think of.  God has blessed me beyond measure through this work, and so I felt terrible about losing my passion.

Well, I am writing to tell you that I had a realization.  Through prayer, I came to realize that my lukewarmness could be harmful to our 40 Days for Life effort in Pittsburgh.  I needed to make a decision…to be either ALL IN, or ALL OUT.

I really believe we are at a very exciting, dangerous and challenging time.  It is exciting because we have a pro-life president who is promising to defund Planned Parenthood.  It is dangerous because there are a lot of very, very, VERY angry women (and men) right now.  It is challenging because the closer we get to attaining our goal, the more we have to lose if we fail.

After seeing reports that 2.5 million people marched on Washington for the so-called “Women’s March” yesterday, I was discouraged. The faces of angry women and the vulgar and profane messages on the signs they carried were a reminder of what we are up against.  Such a stark contrast to the joyful, family-friendly March for Life that I attend each year!  Sadly, we have never seen numbers like the one they achieved yesterday.  It’s true…anger is a powerful motivator.  We don’t have anger…they do.  We don’t have hate.  They do.   So, 2.5 million people show up once, and every national media outlet covers the story extensively.  On Friday, about 400,000 peaceful Christians will march and the media will completely ignore it.

On February 11th, pro-life organizations around our country are planning a nationwide “Protest PP” day.  They are calling for peaceful protests to take place in front of Planned Parenthood facilities all across our nation.  Pittsburgh will be participating. But how many people will come out for this?  I doubt we will even come close to the number that the “Women’s March” enlisted. I heard on the local news that they estimated 25,000 people took part in the women’s march in Pittsburgh yesterday.  We will be lucky if 100 people show up for the Protest PP event on February 11th!

It is easy to get discouraged when we look at the comparison…their numbers to ours.  But we really can’t compare the two because the source of OUR strength is the opposite of the source of theirs!  Their strength is in their anger, which is like gasoline.  They explode violently…but burn out just as quickly.  Our strength comes from God, who gives us the peace to persevere.  The pro-life movement has persevered for 44 years…and will persevere for another 44 if necessary.  We simply won’t give up.  Ever.

Now I come to the point of this post.  This is where I make my decision to either be ALL IN or ALL OUT.

I decided there is only one cure for luke-warmness…and that is to turn up the heat.  So I decided that I would give it all I have during this next 40 days.  I will do my best to personally fill each and every empty  hour at the vigil (when I am not working at my job)…when our shift managers are in danger of being alone. Being in charge of filling the vigil is usually pretty stressful to me, because I know that if no one else volunteers…it is up to me.  But this time, I am looking at it as an opportunity to test my resolve.

As of today, we have only about 150 hours filled, with 330 hours left to fill.  If you would also like to test YOUR resolve…to see if YOU still have the passion…I ask you to help me.  Go to the schedule page of this site to see what hours need filled, and let me know what hours you can fill.  Or go to www.40daysforlife.com/pittsburgh to sign yourself up for hours.  Consider making a weekly commitment during the 40 days if possible…especially during the times when you see no one else is signed up.

Remember to use our 40 Days for Life flyers or bulletin inserts in your church to let your parish or congregation know about this up-coming campaign.

At this crucial time in American history, I have decided that I am going to be ALL IN.  I hope you will too.

Your sister in Christ,

Nikki

 

 

How did Jan 22, 1973 affect you?

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In January 1973 I was a senior at Bishop Canevin high school and filled with the joy and anticipation of being done with high school and the mixed excitement and fear for what was ahead. Prior to January 22, 1973 I wasn’t the least bit aware of what was taking place within the Supreme Court. And when they announced their decision in the Roe vs. Wade case, it never hit my radar.

However, I was fortunate. I had a courageous English teacher who brought it to the attention of our class and then polled the class on our positions on the decision. Sadly at that moment my knee jerk, uninformed position was a reflection of the changing popular values of the late 60’s and early 70’s. On that day, this hormone enraged teenager saw this decision as an enabler of the “unconditional love” pop culture of the “Sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll” times. (Writers note: I am not confessing to sex or drugs but will admit I liked rock ‘n roll). When asked, I saw pregnancy as something like a light switch. It could be on or off and now off rather easily.

Fortunately for me, I didn’t hold this position for very long. Our teacher simply explained the facts of what pregnancy and abortion really are and talked about the physiology and spirituality of life beginning at conception. It was like being hit by a lightning bolt of truth. Just like that, my naive misunderstanding of pregnancy was shattered and my “hall pass” for uncomplicated sex was taken away within one class period.

That day planted a seed. One that would take some time to grow and blossom but one that was firmly planted and through God’s providence and the examples of others was watered and began to grow albeit very slowly.

Although 1973 was a long time ago, I didn’t realize how profound an effect it would have on me. (I’ll skip my personal journey to the present time.) Now in the new millennium I am a “pro life activist”. Beyond the joys of my vocation as husband and father, I find meaning and purpose in my efforts to end abortion and save lives through prayer, witneTim Barrss and counseling outside of an abortion center.

My calling is to witness downtown Saturday mornings year round with my big signs. It started as one day a month, now it is every Saturday. That’s my calling. I’ll admit it’s not always easy. The lure of staying in a warm bed, having another cup of coffee or reading the sports page is always there not to mention the deterrent sometimes of foul weather. Oh well, that’s my calling.Tim selfie

 

So how did the unleashed evil of Jan. 22, 1973 affect you? Was a seed planted that is ready to grow stronger and taller? Are you being called?

OK, here comes the pitch, if you want to put your faith into action with deeds and get more involved with the pro-life movement here in Western Pennsylvania. There are lots of ways. Here are just a few to mention:

  • If you are not going to the March for Life in Washington come pray downtown either Saturday morning Jan. 21 or 28.
  • Join your churches pro life group (or form one if none exists. We can help.)
  • Participate in the upcoming 40 Days for Life spring campaign March 1- April 9 as either an individual   click HERE or with your church group: Contact Nikki at nbruni@40daysforlifepgh.com
  • Get more involved with 40 DFL and become a shift manager by committing to two hours a week for each week of the campaign: we need someone for Sunday 3-5 pm.
  • Use 40 DFL Flyers or bulletin inserts at your church to speed the word about the upcoming campaign. Visit our GET INVOLVED page.
  • Get involved with the Magee Project to end abortions there
  • Pray for the 40 DFL team, and all pro life advocates and for the end of abortion
  • Become a Sidewalk advocate and attend the training seminar (contact us for more info)
  • Stop downtown to pray at the abortion center on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday or Saturday mornings (abortion days) and join others in their witness year round.
  • Send this to a friend and ask them to join you in witnessing to the TRUTH of abortion.

God bless you in your journey and may it bring you peace and joy.

Tim B.

Prayer and Fasting

Matthew 17:21     “But this kind goes not out but by prayer and fasting.”

 

prayer requests

 

Prayer and Fasting link

 

One of the reasons why I love being part of 40 Days for Life is the peaceful, prayerful witness and the mission of 40 Days for Life.  The outreach that we do is based on knowledge of the truth of abortion presented in our peaceful and prayerful presence on the sidewalk in front of PP.  Peaceful and prayerful does not mean naive and wimpy.  It takes courage to stand in the public eye to witness for life.

Sometimes the voices of 40 Days for Life are behind the scenes giving time, talent and treasure for life.  So, I would like to highlight in this post the fasting  aspect of 40 Days for Life-Pittsburgh.  In order to do that, I reached out to Megan who manages the Prayer and Fasting link that is listed above and at the end of this post.

(also listed on the Get Involved Too page).

Megan reports:

We  have a fasting calendar where you can sign up to fast and pray during our 40 Days for Life vigils.  This is not to replace your presence at the prayer vigil. We need you out front!

  • How does the fasting calendar work?  At least 1 person signs up for each of the days during the 40 Days For Life Campaign
  • What do you do? Fast for 24 hours, either bread & water fasting or liquids only
  • When do you fast?  Pick one or more days between Tuesday, February 28th at 7 pm and Saturday, April 8th at 7 pm.  Your fast begins at 7 pm on the date you select and will continue until 7 pm the following day.  Therefore, the majority of your fast will be on the FOLLOWING day you sign up
 I asked Megan how she became involved with 40 Days for Life.   One person can make a difference?!!
Megan reports:

A friend asked me to join her for prayer in front of Planned Parenthood 5 years ago and that was my first “hands on” experience with 40 Days for Life.  As I was thinking about prayer and fasting and the incredible spiritual battle with abortion, I thought about Jesus’ life and his experience in the desert.  Jesus fasted in the desert for 40 days.  I didn’t think I could that. 

Then during Mass one day I thought, “I can’t fast for 40 days straight but 40 people could fast for 1 day”.   I knew people were fasting but thought it would be powerful to make sure all 40 days of the campaign were covered with continual fasting and everyone fasting the same way.

I didn’t know Nikki personally but I gave her a call. She thought it was a good idea and asked if I’d be willing to coordinate it and- voila, the fasting calendar was born : ).  As important as the foundation of prayer and fasting is to this battle, what’s needed is people out front, peacefully bringing the presence of Christ, as Abby Johnson will attest to.  
Megan
(Abby Johnson is a former PP director who credits her conversion of heart to the presence of prayerful witnesses on the sidewalk in front of her PP location.)

 

Thanks Megan and  all those who pray and fast for life.  I signed up for a day to fast for the first time this year.  Megan’s story inspired me!
Be inspired and inspire others like Megan and her friend!
bread and water