Blessed the man who follows not
the counsel of the wicked
Nor walks in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the company of the insolent,
But delights in the law of the Lord
and meditates on his law day and night.
One of the saddest scenes I see on the sidewalk is a man accompanying “his woman” to her scheduled abortion. Americans are free to choose abortion as the solution to their crisis pregnancy.
According to Bishop Robert Barron, our country defines “freedom” quite differently than the Bible does. Here is a quote from the Supreme Court decision, Casey v. Planned Parenthood, 1992.
It belongs to the very nature of liberty
to determine the meaning of my own life and
my own existence and,
the meaning of the universe.
Here’s the Biblical understanding of freedom.
Freedom is about the disciplining of desire
to make the achievement of the good first possible;
and then, effortless.
Bishop Robert Barron
For freedom Christ set us free;
so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery.
Saint Paul’s Letter to the Galatians
When love first beckons a couple, they experience beauty and joy. Consider this scene from a Christmas classic movie, HOLIDAY INN. Fred Astaire and Virginia Dale dance in delightful synchronicity with each other and with the music. Watch and listen as Astaire leads with dazzling masculine confidence and charm.
I could dance nightly just holding you tightly,
I could keep right on because you’re so light on
You’re easy to dance with.
There is no doubt in the way we stand out in
Though it’s called dancing, to me it’s romancing
You’re easy to dance with.
Loving you the way I do
makes you easy to dance with.
That is why I’m always right on the beat.
All those charms in one man’s arms
makes you easy to dance with.
I can hardly keep my mind on my feet.
Let’s dance forever.
Come on, say we’ll never
It’s so easy to dance with you.
The joy and finesse Astaire and Dale celebrate are elusive.
Initially couples dance together so easily.
They do not understand the magnitude of their undertaking.
They do not realize that their feelings might bring them to a life or death decision.
They do not realize that choosing abortion will bring death to each of them as well as their child.
We are wired for God.
Bishop Robert Barron
Since the beginning, God has shared all the information any couple needs as they share their love welcoming His company.
For this command which I am giving you today
is not too wondrous or remote for you.
No, it is something very near to you,
in your mouth and in your heart, to do it.
Jesus answered and said to him,
“Whoever loves me will keep my word,
and my Father will love him,
and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him.
Gospel of John
PRAY FOR FAMILIES
NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK
Warm hearts on a cold street this morning…Diane and Tom came to supply all our vigil needs; while Shift Buddy, Vince and Dan from St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church in Bloomfield were there to pray for an end to abortion.
Vince has prepared beautiful booklets with Scriptural reflections on each of the 40 mysteries of the Rosary followed by the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. He uses them each Sunday morning in May and June to hold vigils at PP in honor of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. We were happy to be able to pray through them today.
Most people passing by seemed indifferent to us today, with the exception of one friendly woman who requested a Precious Feet pin. And faithful Bill stopped by on his way to Church–always a blessing to speak with him.
We left the vigil in good hands as Sue came to welcome parishioners from St. Kilian in Cranberry, including Lori and “F”.
God bless you all for sacrificing your time and comfort to pray for and reach out to those in danger and pain!
SUE M. 9-11
The sidewalk was quiet and peaceful today, as it is on many a Sunday morning, and even more so with no big home games happening today. The kind of quiet peacefulness that could easily lure one into a temptation to believe all is right with the world. We know, however, that all is not right with our world as long as abortions are being committed in our hometown (really, of course, anywhere). And so we continue to appear and fast and pray, and await that great day when there will be no more abortions in our city.
This morning was the first time during this vigil that I’ve felt ….chilly. OK, I’ll be honest and go a little further ……. COLD. We broke out the hats, gloves, scarves and winter coats, and also stood on the kneeling pads. Yikes. 80 degrees to this, so quickly!
Yet our group was warm and friendly. The prayer within our group was warm, and so were our heartfelt discussions about faith and issues surrounding abortion.
I was joined for my entire shift by Gerry and Lori from St. Kilian, along with “F”, a first-timer at the vigil who told us he had only decided for sure this morning that he was coming down and was feeling the first-time apprehension about praying on the sidewalk that we’ve all felt. (He did give me permission to tell that little story about him!)
I hope to have the honor and pleasure of praying with all three of them again soon!
ROSEANN AND RICH 11-1
We are blessed to have such faithful souls to pray with us at 40 days.
It was a quiet Sunday afternoon with no negative feedback. A couple people thanked us for being there which is always encouraging.
One woman stopped to ask for some material on birth control for her daughter and we were happy to oblige. She thanked us and was grateful.
Parishioners from Transfiguration Parish in Russelton stood with me today from 1 to 3.
Thanks to Joe W for switching 5-7 shifts with me so I could be with my family Saturday night (last night). Committing to 40 Days as a shift manager has the benefit of a 40 Days family to back you up when you need it. It makes me want to back them up when they need it. That is how I ended up covering 1-3 and 5-7 today.
I got to see Judy from Transfiguration along with her crew as well as Cathy and Jim from Saint Gregory’s, all great folk I met through 40 Days for Life on the sidewalk.
Lots of positive comments from passers-by help to bolster my committment to the pro-life cause. You don’t get that sitting at home watching the news, pettin’ pussycats. You can see hope on that sidewalk alongside the hopeless, people lifting you up and others tearing you down…..making you stronger in the process. You hear the arguments against life that you need to be ready to defend at a moment’s notice. Your confidence rises as no one can present a pro-abort argument that can make you doubt yourself.
You witness what would happen if you weren’t on that sidewalk….people passing by without giving life a second thought….no seed of doubt planted in an angry pro-abort. Children wouldn’t be staring and commenting on the fetal models, seeing what preborn babies look like before someone tells them what to think about it (usually accompanied by an adult uncomfortable with the encounter). Pittsburgh’s 40 Days family never knowing you cared the way they cared. God not knowing you cared…..the way He cares. For you.
Let God see you…on that sidewalk. You got family waitin’ there.
Praised be Jesus Christ!
Your request for prayers and fasting for 40 days for Life Pittsburgh came just as we were beginning the fast
of our Order (September 14 – Easter Sunday). We are only too glad to add your intentions for Life to our prayers and sacrifices, especially now when it seems the devil is throwing all he has at his disposal to stop pro-lifers from getting a foothold in his domain.
Pope Saint John Paul II once said, “I plead with you – never ever give up on hope, never doubt, never tire and never become discouraged. Be not afraid.”
Seventeen campaigns to close a clinic/mill on (of all places) Liberty Avenue can seem daunting, but your efforts will not go unrewarded.
May God bless and Mary keep you for all you do for His little ones and their mothers!
Sincerely, in Jesus, Mary and Joseph,
Your devoted Carmelite Nuns,
Carmelite Nuns of Erie, PA
And God saw that it was good.