Day 40: Thank you, Catholic Charities; St. Regis Catholic Church, Trafford; Holy Trinity Ukranian Catholic Church, Carnegie; Individual Prayer Volunteers

fall blog 6 peace-dove-2667123_960_720

 War memorial cemeteries are built

 to honor those who have sacrificed their lives during the war.

America’s Wars (1775 -1991)

216 years

651,031 Battle Deaths

___________________________________

America’s Abortions (1973 – 2015)

42 years

58,586,256 Baby Deaths

Where is the cemetery families can use to bury the body of their aborted child?

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

fall blog 6 family

Ordinarily when a family member dies the rest of the family has a grief process.  If successful, the grief process “closes the wound.”

Our culture resists, and is even hostile to, admitting the reality that abortion kills a child, a member of a family.

___________________________________

America permits abortion to

kill their child

wound the mother

strip the parental rights of the father.

___________________________________

If a man’s pregnant partner seeks to have an abortion, the father’s consent isn’t legally required.

A woman may choose to terminate a pregnancy against the objections of the father.

The father does not have a legal right to be notified of an abortion.

If a prospective mother seeks to abort a pregnancy against a father’s wishes, an attorney may be able to draft an agreement where the father agrees to pay the costs of pregnancy and obtain full custody after birth.

http://family.findlaw.com/paternity/fathers-rights-and-abortion.html

___________________________________

Arthur Shostak (Bachelor of Science, 1958, Cornell University; Ph.D., 1961, Princeton)  accompanied his partner to a well-groomed suburban abortion clinic in the early 1970s.

They had both agreed abortion was best.

Sitting in the waiting room proved to be a “bruising experience”.

When he left the clinic, he was shocked by how deeply disturbed he had become.

Shostak spent the next ten years studying the abortion experience of men. His study, published in 1984, covered 1,000 men who accompanied their wives or girlfriends to abortion clinics. This study is still the benchmark study in the field.  Here are some of his discoveries.

___________________________________

BIG BOYS DON’T CRY

fall blog 6 boy,dad

 

Abortion rewrites the rules of masculinity.

While a man is expected to be strong, abortion makes him feel weak.

A man is expected to be responsible.  Abortion encourages him to act without concern for the innocent.

It encourages him to destroy any identifiable and undesirable outcomes of his sexual decision making and/or attachments.

They feel sad.  They feel curious.  They feel a lot of things.

But usually they have talked to no one about it.  It is taboo.

More than one in four equated abortion to murder.

Slightly over 80 percent said they had already begun to think about the child that might have been born.

29 percent said they had been fantasizing about the child “frequently”.

68 percent believed men involved in abortions “did not have an easy time of it.”

47 percent worried about having disturbing thoughts afterwards.

Many men began to cry during the interview.

When asked if the man and woman should have an equal say in the decision, 80 percent of married men agreed.  Fifty-eight percent of single men agreed.

Many expressed frustration and anger about the failure of women to consider their wishes and feelings.

In a subsequent interview Shostak said:

Most of the men I talk to think about the abortion years after it is over.

With a man, if he wants to shed a tear, he had better do it privately.

If he feels that the abortion had denied him his child, he had better work through it himself.

He does not share his pain with a clergyman, a minister.

He does not share it with a close male friend.

It just stays with him.

And it stays for a long time.

According to Dr. Vincent Rue, one of the nation’s most experienced psychologists in the field of post-abortion issues:

Typical male grief responses include remaining silent and grieving alone.

A guilt-ridden, tormented male does not easily love or accept love.

___________________________________

Men have reported a large number of problems that they claim were a direct result of their abortion experience. These include:

broken relationships,

sexual dysfunction,

substance abuse,

self-hate,

risk taking and suicidal behavior,

increasing feelings of grief over time,

feelings of helplessness, guilt, depression,

greater tendencies toward becoming angry and violent, and

feelings connected to a sense of lost manhood.

___________________________________

If we listen to the national professional mental health organizations, abortion carries no psychological health risk, certainly none greater than child birth.

This flies in the face of thousands of stories that I have heard – the stories that you hear from women and men impacted from abortion, both in this country and abroad.

Post abortion treatment is a human issue because abortion represents to those who are negatively impacted by it an intentional death experience.

 The American Psychological Association, in 2008, provided a report to the American people that basically says that abortion carries no increased relative risk.

I would submit to you that this is incorrect.  It is incorrect scientifically and there is abundant research, some 385 studies, that would ague in opposition to what the APA said.

“Project Rachel: The Psychoanalyst’s Role.”  Vincent Rue, MSW, PhD

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jsys38RNBkw

fall blog 6 baby cutie

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

Jeannie, designer of this happy note,  continues to grow in wisdom and grace.

fall blog 5 i'm with her

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

NOTES FROM THE OTHER SIDEWALK

PAT 7-9 SHIFT MANAGER

Today was the day I signed up my parish, St. Regis in Trafford, to stand from 7-9 AM…and I worried.  I worried about the weather forecast (scattered thundershowers).  I worried about the fact that the EQT 10-Miler would close down Liberty Avenue “sometime around 7 AM”.  And I worried that Jeff, who was bringing the materials to the sidewalk for Diane today, might not get in before Liberty was closed down.  In short, I forgot that TRUST was the theme for this campaign.

All worked out better than I could have reasonably expected.  Steph, my wife, decided late that that she would come with me.  Two of my brother Knights of Columbus, Mike and Albert, came.  Albert’s wife, Yolanda, and their daughter, Susan (from Saint John XXIII Parish), also came.  We had a good mix of prayer and good conversation.  Many thanks to all  of you.

Mike, Susan, Albert, Yolanda and Steph
Mike, Susan, Albert,
Yolanda and Steph
Susan, Yolanda and Vince. Vince is leading the Rosary meditations.
Susan, Yolanda and Vince.
Vince is leading the Rosary meditations.

____________________________________

MARSHALL 9-11 SHIFT MANAGER

Today was one of the most interesting experiences I have had at 40 days.  It was the day of a 10 K race that goes right through the 40 days site, so just to get down and travel through the city was a minor miracle.

There was a “pro-choice advocate” cheering on the runs while she held a sign proclaiming her support for PP.  God gives us the grace to work for His cause, the cause of Life. She was loud, and I believe that we were prayerful.  Many runners, especially women supported her and thanked her, so we are reminded to pray for our nation.  Hopefully, they act in ignorance.

I am grateful for Kathy, Vince, Theresa, and Bill for standing for 40 days for Life.  It rained during the entire two hours, and it was quite heavy by the end.

___________________________________

MAGGIE 1-3 SHIFT MANAGER

Praise God good weather for my shift.

I had a wonderful family with 6 kids keep me company and they prayed one rosary after another. I had a few individuals join me for the end of my shift.

Praise God for all his love and care!

fall blog 1 maggie 3 20171001_130046

FALL BLOG 6 MAGGIE 2 20171105_143302

FALL BLOG 6 MAGGIE 1 20171105_144133 (1)

___________________________________

DAVE 3-5 SHIFT MANAGER

Bill and all these people filled the sidewalk with life and prayers. Not only was the weather warm but, so were the hearts!

Angy, Father Jason, Natalia, Martha, Patty Holy Trinity in Carnegie
Angy, Father Jason, Natalia, Martha, Patty
Holy Trinity in Carnegie

 

Prayeer witnesses: St. Bernadette, St. Madonna Del Costello, Family from Holy Trinity Ukrainian Catholic Church
Prayer witnesses:
St. Bernadette, St. Madonna Del Costello, Family from Holy Trinity Ukrainian Catholic Church

 

George and Friend St. John's
George and Friend
St. John’s
Aileen, Martha Father Jason
Aileen,  Father Jason, Natalia

 

Bill, Prayer Witness, Shift Manager
Bill, Prayer Witness, Shift Manager

___________________________________

And God saw that it was good.

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

Day 33…Good Works

THANK YOU

HOLY CHILD CATHOLIC CHURCH, BRIDGEVILLE

SAINT MARY CATHOLIC CHURCH, HERMAN

INDIVIDUAL VOLUNTEERS

DAUGHTERS OF MARY, MOTHER OF MERCY COMMUNITY

WAOB (We Are One Body) 106.7FM

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

{LIFE IS DIFFICULT}

fall blog 5 family cartoon 3

For all its strength, comfort and sublimity,

human friendship has about it the frail delicacy of old lace.

It is never a rugged thing

because of our inability to share our inner self.

We cannot give ourselves away utterly

because we do not belong completely to ourselves.

Betrayal of a friend is a kind of a suicide.

Walter Farrell O.P.

___________________________________

Frederica Mathewes-Green (October 27, 1952)

celebrated her birthday recently.

Highlights from an article she wrote 24 years ago

offer refreshing reflections

for those of us dazed and dusty from the sidewalk.

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

{EVIL CAN MASQUERADE AS GOOD}

The abortion debate seems like an unresolvable conflict of rights between the right of women to control their own bodies and the right of children to be born.

In a culture that treats pregnancy and childrearing as impediments, abortion surgically adapts a woman to fit in.

In college I advocated the repeal of abortion laws and supported my friends who traveled for out‑of‑state abortions.

For years I bought the line that the unborn was just a “glob of tissue.”

An unplanned pregnancy felt like an invader, an evil alien bent on colonizing one’s body and destroying one’s plans. The first right must be to keep one’s body safe, private, and healthy.  Without that, all other rights are meaningless.

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

{GOOD CAN UNMASK EVIL}

fall blog 5 beaby

It is because I still believe so strongly in the right of a woman to protect her body that I now oppose abortion. That right must begin when her body begins, and it must be hers no matter where she lives—even if she lives in her mother’s womb. The same holds true for her brother.

When I ran across a description of a mid‑pregnancy abortion, I was horrified at the description of the syringe’s hub jerking against the mother’s abdomen as her child went through his death throes.

I learned that early abortions are no more kind.  The child is pulled apart limb from limb and sucked through a narrow tube into a bloody bag.

Dr. Willard Cates of the Centers for Disease Control estimated in 1981,  that 400‑500 times a year children are born alive after late abortions and then made to die.

Even if there were any doubt that the unborn was a person, if I had seen someone doing this to a kitten I would have been horrified.

The feminism that hoped to create a new just society had embraced an act of injustice as essential.

___________________________________

The average woman does not gain, but loses when she has an abortion.

She loses the cash.

She undergoes a humiliating procedure.

The delicately‑balanced ecology of her body is disrupted.

Nicks and scratches in the uterus can cause scarring which may lead to endometriosis.

Damage from an abortion that goes unnoticed until she is far into a later, wanted pregnancy, can cause a miscarriage.

If those scars are near the opening to the fallopian tube, the opening can be partly obliterated and lead to an ectopic pregnancy.

Alternatively, the scarring at the tube’s entrance may be complete and the woman is sterile. She thought she was aborting one pregnancy, but she was aborting all her pregnancies for the rest of her life.

Abortion can kill a woman.

The last loss is the loss of her peace of mind. Many women grieve silently after abortion, their sorrow ignored by a society that expects them to be grateful for the “freedom” to abort.

Her most devastating loss

She loses her own child. This child is as much like her as any child she will ever have, sharing her appearance, talents, and family tree.  In abortion, she offers her own child as a sacrifice for the right to continue her life. It is a sacrifice that will haunt her.

___________________________________

Do women want abortion?

Not like she wants a Porsche or an ice cream cone.

Like an animal caught in a trap,

trying to gnaw off its own leg,

a woman who seeks abortion is trying to escape a desperate situation

by an act of violence and self‑loss.

Abortion is not a sign that women are free,

but a sign that they are desperate.

Frederica Mathewes-Green

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

{GOD DOES NOT PLAY HARD TO GET}

If we say, “We are without sin,” we deceive ourselves,

and the truth is not in us.

If we acknowledge our sins,

he is faithful and just

and will forgive our sins

and cleanse us from every wrongdoing.

1 John 1:8-9

___________________________________

 

fall blog 5 rachel vineyard A logo

Theresa Karminski Burke, Ph.D., started one of the first therapeutic support groups for post-aborted people in 1986, after founding The Center for Post Abortion Healing.

Theresa adapted and expanded the curriculum into a format for weekend retreats, Rachel’s Vineyard.

Do not continue to live in the shame, fear or numbness – call our toll-free national hotlines:
Rachel’s Vineyard: 877 HOPE 4 ME (877-467-3463) – National Hotline for Abortion Recovery: 866-482-LIFE (866-482-5433)

http://rachelsvineyard.org/

___________________________________

Co-founded in 2003, the Silent No More Awareness Campaign responded to a need for a pro-life ministry in which men and women who had had experiences of abortion could offer and gain support.

http://www.silentnomoreawareness.org/
fall blog 5 , men regret lost fatherhood, silent logofall blog 5 women do regret 2212WD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

Sister Mercy Maria Egbeji, Superior of Daughters of Mary, Mother of Mercy, Rankin, reports that she and the sisters will pray for us during their Holy Hour of Adoration.

WAOB 106.7 FM broadcasts 40 Days for Life participants praying the Scriptural Rosary every month.  Tune in and pray with us!

___________________________________

fall blog 5, jeannie

French from the Bench

Last week, I saw X-rays of my broken collarbone.

First was the Emergency Room photo— “the original”- how beautiful the human body is as planned by God- I could see the break in my collarbone – a clean sharp swatch separating 2 parts of “the architecture”.   The next image was a few weeks after the break — what had resulted from the break—the 2 bones reminded me of train cars in a bad accident—one slides up and over the other.   The damage to the beautiful architecture was dramatic!

I think the embrace of the evil of abortion has really disrupted God’s plan for mankind.  From the horrific violence in the clinics to senseless mass killings here and around the world, we truly have broken with God.

Like my impatience with my own healing, I am impatient with our long struggle to end abortion and return respect for human life.  But, we really have a “train wreck” here.  It is going to take time, skill, patience, and God’s guidance to fix.

Let us heal together with Him who heals us all!

___________________________________

NOTES FROM THE OTHER SIDEWALK

JEN 7-9 SHIFT MANAGER

How beautiful our 40 Days for Life family is!

Peggy, Dan, Judy, and Vince all answered the call to come and pray on a cold, wet Sunday morning.  Vince led us in a very powerful and emotional Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary, meditating in detail on the suffering of our Lord.  It struck me that I often forget one of the most important reasons to take part in this vigil–in reparation for the agony that abortion caused our Savior, agony that He willingly suffered for me and for each person who passes through the doors of PP.

Thank you to Diane and Tom for getting us started this morning with all the needed supplies…the umbrellas and hand warmers came in very handy today!  God bless Bill, who wasn’t feeling very well when he made his morning prayer visit.  And thanks to Ken, who came from quite a distance to lead the next vigil shift!

Peggy, Judy, Dan, Vince Sunday Sidewalk Witnesses
Peggy, Judy, Dan, Vince
Sunday Sidewalk Witnesses

___________________________________

KEN 9-11 SHIFT MANAGER

A peaceful Sunday morning.

Made more peaceful because this abortion facility is closed today and no one was harmed.

A quiet and prayerful time with Patti, Mark and Andrea.

Also prayed with a family from St. ELIZABETH ANN SETON.

Patti, Mark and Andrea
Patti, Mark and Andrea

 

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish Family
Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
Parish Family

 

Faithful Prolife Witnesses
Faithful Prolife Witnesses

___________________________________

MAGGIE 1-3 SHIFT MANAGER

We had an awesome time today. A group from Zion Church in Brookline sang hymns in Spanish, made a mini Jericho March back and forth around the semicircle and had their pastor Frank ask that this Planned Parenthood be closed! Alleluia!

We also had a group from a parish in Bridgeville praying the Rosary along with the Parochial Vicar there, Father Joe.

God is so good!

Shift managers Audrey and jim, Father Joe and faithful witnesses
Shift managers Audrey and jim, Father Joe and Holy Child Parishioners

 

Zion Church in Brookline came to pray out loud in downtown Pittsburgh.
Zion Church in Brookline came to pray out loud in downtown Pittsburgh.

 

Everybody praying for Life
Everybody praying for Life

___________________________________

JIM AND AUDREY 3-5 SHIFT MANAGERS

Despite the chill and dampness in the air, what a blessed day!  During the earlier shift, a large congregation from the Zion Church in Brookline was a lively, energized Hispanic group.  They circled seven times to replicate the march at Jericho – praying to let the walls fall.  Their song, dance, and prayers spoke loud and clear of their faith in the Lord.

Holy Child, Jim’s and my home parish in Bridgeville, took the 1 to 3 p.m. shift.  Father Joe inspired us as he lead us in prayer joined by Thomas from Holy Child and Colleen and Dick from St. Winifred.  Regulars Margie and Larry from St. Mary’s faithfully prayed and kept us warm with their love.  As I was standing there praying today and looking on at the facade of Planned Parenthood, I saw the bricks were in the form of crosses, many crosses – representing the many tiny souls that are lost there every week….

Another best of the day was an unplanned visit from alumni and students from Franciscan University.  The young men just happened to be walking down the street and saw our vigil and became part of our witness.  The young women were inspired by their Mom – a regular 40 Days vigilant.  We prayerfully said the Rosary over and over again….  The response from the few passersby was that of support and thankfulness.  God is good.  Sometimes the most inspiration comes from the heartfelt discussions on the sidewalk.  We pray, we share, and we witness!

Jerico March
Jerico March

 

Shift Manager Jim Holy Child parishioners
Shift Manager Jim
Holy Child parishioners

 

Shift Manager, Audrey with Holy Child parishioners
Shift Manager, Audrey
with Holy Child parishioners

 

Franciscan University Alumni and Students
Franciscan University
Alumni and Students

 

Bricks, form of crosses representing many tiny souls lost there to abortion.
Bricks form crosses representing many tiny souls lost there to abortion.

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

Wisdom is bright, and does not grow dim.

By those who love her she is readily seen,

and found by those who look for her.
Quick to anticipate those who desire her,

she makes herself known to them.

Watch for her early and you will have no trouble.

You will find her sitting at your gates.

Of her the most sure beginning is the desire for discipline.

Care for discipline means loving her.

Loving her means keeping her laws.

Obeying her laws guarantees incorruptibility.

Incorruptibility brings near to God.

Wisdom 6: 17-19, 12-14

And God saw that it was good.

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

Check back for more NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK!

DAY 26: THANK YOU, Bellevue Knights of Columbus, Saint John Fisher Parish, Richmond OH

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.

Oscar Wilde 1854-1900

___________________________________

I fled Him, down the labyrinthine ways of my own mind; and in the midst of tears I hid from Him, and under running laughter.

Francis Thompson 1859-1907

___________________________________

To clone a person, you would have to clone their parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles, first grade teacher, next door neighbors and so on until you have included all their people.

Lewis Thomas 1913-1993

___________________________________

In our audacity, we witness in prayer to change hearts.  We know that heart changes are difficult and painful and take a lifetime.

History gives us a glimpse of the heart of the person who wrote “The Importance of Being Earnest”.  Reading it, you can’t stop thinking about Jesus holding his arms wide open on the Cross.

___________________________________

Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde was baptized as an infant in the local Church of Ireland (Anglican).

Wilde’s mother was a lifelong Irish nationalist.  She wrote poetry for the revolutionary “Young Irelanders” and read their poetry to Oscar.

The movement of the “Young Irelanders” may be said to date from the founding of the Nation newspaper, 1842.  “Educate that you may be free” was the keynote of the new journal, which was destined to find its way within a year into nearly every household in Ireland. It preached temperance, patience, energy, and resolution. It held up the spirit of the people while it taught them tolerance and union.

Jane Wilde attended Mass with her sons in a chapel where Father Prideaux Fox, a Catholic priest, was the celebrant. Father Fox said, “I am not sure if she ever became a Catholic herself, but it was not long before she asked me to instruct two of her children, one of them being the future erratic genius, Oscar Wilde. After a few weeks I baptized these two children, Lady Wilde herself being present on the occasion.”

Wilde’s father, Sir William Wilde, was a well-known surgeon. Anti-Catholic, he bitterly opposed Oscar’s interest in the Church. “I am sure that if I had become a Catholic at that time he would have cast me off altogether.”

In his student days at Oxford, Wilde met fellow student, Sir David Hunter Blair.  Blair became a Catholic, joined the Benedictines, and eventually became Abbot at Dunfermline Abbey.

In his book, Victorian Days, Blair wrote that Wilde asked him many questions which revealed “how genuine were his own sympathies with Catholicism.”

Hunter-Blair’s evangelizing efforts had no immediate effect, and the two men parted, Hunter-Blair taking Holy Orders and Wilde turning to the literary world of London. Wilde was forthright about his motives. “To go over to Rome would be to sacrifice and give up my two great Gods: Money and Ambition.”

“I suffer a great deal from my Romish leanings, in pocket and mind. And now my best friend turns out to be a Papist!” One of his first friends was Robert Ross, a Catholic.  Ross was with him at the end.

In October, 1900, Wilde sent a telegram to Ross. “Terribly weak. Please come.”

Ross went and later told how, after he arrived, “he rushed to the Passionist Church in Paris and brought back Father Cuthbert Dunne to attend spiritually” to Wilde.  Father Dunne recorded following.

Robert Ross knelt by the bedside, assisting me as best he could while I administered conditional Baptism, and afterwards, answering the responses while I gave Extreme Unction to the prostrate man and recited the prayers for the dying. As the man (Wilde) was in a semi-comatose condition, I did not venture to administer the Holy Viaticum; still I must add that he could be roused and was roused from this state in my presence. When roused, he gave signs of being inwardly conscious… Indeed I was fully satisfied that he understood me when told that I was about to receive him into the Catholic Church and gave him the Last sacraments… And when I repeated close to his ear the Holy Names, the Acts of Contrition , Faith, Hope and Charity, with acts of humble resignation to the Will of God, he tried all through to say the words after me.

The next day Oscar Wilde died.

After he was laid out, Father Dunne “placed a rosary in his hand and put palm branches over him.” Father Dunne said the Requiem Mass at Saint Germain-des-Prés.

___________________________________

I fled Him, down the nights and down the days;

I fled Him, down the arches of the years;

I fled Him down the labyrinthine ways

Of my own mind; and in the midst of tears

I hid from Him, and under running laughter.

From those strong Feet that followed, followed after.

But with unhurrying chase,

And unperturbed pace,

Deliberate speed, majestic instancy,

They beat – and a Voice beat

More instant than the Feet –

‘All things betray thee, who betrayest Me.’

Whom wilt thou find to love ignoble thee,

Save Me, save only Me?

Rise, clasp My hand, and come!

THE HOUND OF HEAVEN

Francis Thompson

___________________________________

Lewis Thomas, 1913- 1993.  The Medusa and the Snail: More Notes of a Biology Watcher.

Francis Thompson, 1859-1907.  The Hound of Heaven.  YOUNG IRELAND AND THE FENIANS, Taken from A History of Ireland by Eleanor Hull

https://www.catholiceducation.org/en/culture/art/the-long-conversion-of-oscar-wilde.html

http://www.libraryireland.com/HullHistory/Fenians1.php http://www.pioneerassociation.ie/pioneer-magazine/151-oscarwilde-nov2010 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oscar_Wilde

http://www.bartleby.com/236/239.html

___________________________________

___________________________________

NOTES FROM THE SATURDAY SIDEWALK

Barbara 11-1, 3-5 (Saturday) Shift Manager

Holy Wisdom, Saint John XXIII and Saints John and Paul (Wexford) parishes filled the sidewalk with their beauty during these two shifts.  Joining us were also people from Saint Michael Parish (Wheeling) and Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Enjoy the photos.  These are just some of the people.

Chris, Bill
Chris, Bill and friend

 

Chrisline, Kathy, Craig, William Saint John XXIII Parish
Chrisline, Kathy, Craig, William
Saint John XXIII Parish

 

Craig, Doug, Tom, Bob, Jim Sts. John & Paul, Wexford
Craig, Doug, Tom, Bob, Jim
Sts. John & Paul, Wexford

 

Saint John XXIII Beautiful Families
Saint John XXIII
Beautiful Families

 

Jonathan, Killian Brady and Christine Franciscan University Steubenville
Jonathan, Killian
Brady and Christine
Franciscan University
Steubenville

____________________________________

Jeannie, Shift Manager Injured reserve

The most important task of EMTs when they reach a head or spine injury victim is to secure the victim’s head, neck and body to prevent further injury.    When this happened to me, — when my neck was braced and my cut, bruised, broken body was strapped to a hard board for transport to the trauma center, I could not believe the pain.  It felt like there were nails on the board, particularly behind my head.

Just then, I had a glimpse of Jesus on the cross—his beaten, whipped, scourged body would suffer the further insult of being lashed to a hard, unyielding splintered piece of wood. During my 40 minute bumpy ride to the emergency room, every Pittsburgh pothole drew tears.  Tears of pain, yes, but of grateful joy for what our Lord endured for me, his precious child.  I was able to offer my suffering up because I know His Story! It changed everything.

That is what we are doing on the sidewalk—telling HIS STORY; bringing the redemptive, powerful love of Jesus to each of his beloved children, whether they are vulnerable mothers, scared friends, lonely fathers or misled abortion workers, our knowledge of the vast and enduring love of Jesus is the answer!

I pray we continue to keep telling HIS story!

___________________________________

NOTES FROM THE SUNDAY SIDEWALK

___________________________________

JEN 7-9 SHIFT MANAGER

Diane and Tom beat the sun to the sidewalk this morning, supplying and setting up all our vigil’s needs before dawn. The Bellevue Knights of Columbus were well-represented by Charlie, who also blesses the pro-life effort as a sidewalk advocate.

Devoted despite feeling under the weather, Vince arrived with his beautiful Scripture readings for each mystery of the Rosary, which we all prayed together.  Jim, Charlie’s fellow Knight, joined us later and stayed on as Sue came to lead the next shift. She mentioned a woman who appeared nervous and defensive as she protested the vigil the day before. Sue astutely pointed out that the woman’s agitated demeanor may have been a sign that she was troubled by what she was doing, and that her heart may soon be ready to accept the truth. Sue graciously lead us in prayer for the woman’s conversion.

Charlie and Vince
Charlie and Vince

 

Jim and Vince
Jim and Vince

___________________________________

SUE 9-11 SHIFT MANAGER

Yet another beautiful day to be outside.  The sidewalk was very quiet this morning, likely due to the later Steeler game today.  I was joined by Jim from the Bellevue Knights of Columbus, Regina from St. Clare of Assisi, Mary Jane from St. Francis of Assisi, Kelly from St. John Capistran, and Patty from St. Bernadette.

Patty pointed out that today in the Catholic Church is the Feast of St. John Paul II.  We asked his intercession and prayed the Rosary, for saved lives, changed hearts, the closing of PP and Allegheny Reproductive, and the ceasing of abortions at Magee.

At one point a man walked by and said, “You’re here on a Sunday morning?  Now that’s persistence!”

YES sir, persistence is what we are all about!  We will persist in our vigil until abortion comes to an end in our great city — indeed, in God’s world!!

Regina, Patty and Jim
Regina, Patty and Jim

___________________________________

MAGGIE 1-3 SHIFT MANAGER

Quiet. Peaceful. Prayerful.

Even though we had many travelers passing on their way to the Steelers game I felt calm. I had great people to pray with!

A man from West Africa commented to a fellow prayer that he doesn’t understand how abortion exists in our country when there are so many resources to help women.

A young man yelled to us from his car, “Thank you! Thank you! My mom chose to keep me!” And then, he started to cry.

It was beautiful!!! And, finally, Ann uttered to us “Blessings, blessings, blessings”.

Thank you Jesus for a great shift!

fall blog 4 1better

fall blog 4 1-3, 2nd

fall blog 4 john maggie20171022_130757 (1)

___________________________________

KEN 3-5 SHIFT MANAGER

This is my first shift manager assignment, and I was a little nervous going in. I sent a group text to immediate family for prayer. God is good. It truly was a peaceful, prayerful vigil.

I arrived to a warm greeting from the previous shift manager Maggie.

Father John from Saint John Fisher (Richmond OH), and Megan, from Mother of Sorrows (Murrysville), were my first prayer partners.

Prayer Partners for Sunday
Prayer Partners for Sunday

 

Father John and Megan
Father John and Megan

fall blog 4 ken with bill

____________________________________

JOE W. 5-7 SHIFT MANAGER

I was warmly greeted by our new SM Ken, Fr. Jack, and the women from Catholic Family Land. They were prayerfully singing.  It was so
beautiful it brought tears to my eyes.  What a blessing.

The Starr family, from Catholic Family Land, arrived for the 5-6 hour, prayed fervently and ended in song.
The men from Catholic Family Land, arrived for the 6-7 hour ready to
serve our Holy Family.  They prayed joyfully, sang joyfully and
amazingly( I’m jealous), and after my shift was over, prayed over me
joyfully. I’m grateful.
Catholic Family Land participants traveled from Brookdale, Ohio (a
long way). They came armed with the spirit ready to do battle for the
lives of our brothers and sisters. It was as authentic a witness as I’ve
experienced in my journey with 40 Days for Life.
Soooo, I would like to give yinz a Howard Dean campaign shout out,
“YaaaaaaaaaaHHaaaaaawwoooo awesomely well done.”
Thank you Jesus.

Rock, Jack, Gary Catholic Family Land
Rock, Jack, Gary
Catholic Family Land

 

Jack Starr Family Catholic Family Land
Jack
Starr Family
Catholic Family Land

 

Catholic Family Land
Catholic Family Land

___________________________________

And God saw that it was good.

fall blog 3 baby

___________________________________

 

 

 

 

DAY 19 THANK YOU, People of God Covenant Community; Saint Bernard Parish, Mount Lebanon; CMU Catholic Newman Club; Saint Gregory Roman Catholic Church, Zelienople; Carmelite Nuns of Erie; Carmelite Nuns of Loretto; Passionist Nuns of Pittsburgh; Vincentian Sisters of Charity of Nazareth

Let’s listen to what some great minds have said about the mystery of BEAUTY   

To me, team work is the beauty of our sport, where you have five acting as one.  You become selfless.

Mike Krzyzewski 1947

Everyone needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.

John Muir 1838 – 1914

I am among those who think that science has great beauty.

Marie Curie 1867 – 1934

O, thou art fairer than the evening air clad in the beauty of a thousand stars.

Christopher Marlowe 1564-1593

A great book that comes from a great thinker is a ship of thought, deep freighted with truth and beauty.

Pablo Neruda 1904 – 1973

By plucking her flowers you do not gather the beauty of the flower.

Tagore 1861-1941

Poetry lifts the veil from the hidden beauty of the world, and makes familiar objects be as if they were not familiar.

Percy Bysshe Shelley 1794 – 1822

___________________________________

This is the beauty of the soul

  • the splendor of the light of human reason,
  • of divine reason and wisdom,

breaking forth from the soul to give life and beauty to the actions of man.

Walter Farrell, O.P.

___________________________________

fall blog 3 woman

The soul has a double principle of order;

  • the reason of man
  • the reason and wisdom of God

Both of these carry with them the notion of light, of clarity, of splendid illumination.

  • The one is the light in the hands of a wayfarer, guiding each of his steps, sweeping about the dark world around him in a constant revelation of truth, of goodness, of
  • The other is the powerful creative beacon that calls into being the path followed by the pilgrim man, that creates the beauty he sees, and that calls him home to the source of all beauty.

Walter Farrell, O.P.

Sin is the enemy of beauty, for sin is the enemy of virtue.

Walter Farrell, O.P.

We can picture venial sin graphically as the ropes that securely bind the hands and feet of a man; they do no intrinsic injury to man’s ability to act, but certainly they hinder his activities.

There is, then, a grave danger in venial sin, the grave danger of slipping bit by bit into mortal sin and so into the eternity of hell’s punishment.

Walter Farrell, O.P.

___________________________________

These statements are based on the SUMMA THEOLOGICA by Thomas Aquinas, O.P. (1225 – 1274).  They are not easy reading.  Chesterton can explain why this complexity is inevitable.

When once one believes in a creed, one is proud of its complexity, as scientists are proud of the complexity of science.  It shows how rich it is in discoveries.  If it is right at all, it is a compliment to say that it’s elaborately right.  A stick might fit in a hole or a stone a hollow by accident.  But a key and a lock are both complex.  And if a key fits a lock, you know it is the right key.

G. K. Chesterton  ORTHODOXY

___________________________________

One early Friday morning this fall I was witnessing at PP.  I noticed a young woman standing alone nearby, finishing a cigarette.  I removed my prolife sign and walked over.  As we talked, I offered her our little yellow and black card that outlines Pittsburgh area free help for crisis pregnancy.  Although she accepted the card, she walked into PP telling me that she “was just going in for a checkup.”

Was it was outrageous of me to bother this young woman whom I did not know?  But I do know her.  And, what I offered her was just a pin point of light.

I offered her our quite small, two sided, 2 x 3 ½ inch black and yellow card.

fall blog 3 side 1 card IMG_5391

fall blog 3 card side 2

The light of hope offered on this tiny card is available due to the beauty of the love of too-numerous-to-count volunteers who stand ready to help her and her baby in their crisis.

She and I had just begun to talk about beauty.  She deserves that as much as I do.  It is what her Father created her for.

fall blog 3 mom dad babyIMG_5382

___________________________________

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

JEANNIE Shift Manager/ Injured Reserve

A month ago I was cycling and was hit by a car.  Lying on the pavement immediately after the accident I was acutely aware of my surroundings—noises of traffic and pedestrians (a few had stopped to assist me), horns and radios…  I also heard the hysterical voice of the driver who hit me screaming that she had just “killed someone on a bike”…. I tried to do my best to let her know I was alive, but all I could utter was “I’m OK.  I’m OK.”  It was a truly chaotic situation.

As I lay waiting for help, and aware that I was unable to move,  I purposefully envisioned handing God my broken body.  I entrusted Him (again as always), to care for me in that very moment and all that would follow.   I suddenly felt a wave of peace.  I had no idea how hurt I was, or what lay ahead for me.  All that mattered was that God was in charge, and I trusted Him. Everything was going to be OK!

The EMTs soon arrived and the severity of my injuries became clear as I described my pain to them.  Trust in the Lord prevailed and allowed me to calmly explain who I was, what had happened, and who the police should be in contact with.   I’ve always believed I’ve trusted in God, but that evening, as I lay broken on the pavement, trust in Him brought me holy peace in body and soul.

As my fellow shift managers witness for life on the sidewalk, I pray that you can each feel the true peace that comes from turning this effort for LIFE over to God.  Place into God’s hands all those who the devil has conscripted – He alone can bear the burden of this holy battle; TRUST HIM alone!

With gratitude for the prayers of my brothers and sisters in Christ, I unite my daily prayers to yours as we labor to build the Kingdom of God on the sidewalk at Planned Parenthood.  Trust brings Peace!

In Life

___________________________________

DEE sends us GOOD NEWS.

The Carmelite Nuns of Erie PA

Praised be Jesus Christ!!

We are remembering the 40 days of Prayer in our prayers this month, grateful for all the prayers, efforts and sacrifices made by the participants on behalf of God’s little ones under attack in what should be the safest place for them — their mother’s womb.

Yes, our battle is not with earthly powers, but with the principalities of darkness, the kind that Jesus said could only be cast out by prayer and fasting.  God grant success to your work of love and may Our Lord ever be your strength and Our Lady your comfort in this struggle for life. The fast of our Order is September 14, until Easter, so we are with you.!!!”

Sincerely in Jesus, Mary and Joseph,

Your devoted Carmelite Nuns

Carmelite Nuns of Loretto PA 

40 Days for Life is being remembered in the prayers and sacrifices of the Discalced Carmelite Nuns of the monastery of St. Therese of Lisieux.

Be assured of our prayerful support during Pittsburgh’s 40 “Days for Life Campaign September 27 – November 5.  May St. Therese obtain choice graces to assist mothers, save babies and end abortion!

God bless you!

Mother John of the Cross, OCD, and Community

Passionist Nuns of Pittsburgh

We join with 40 Days for Life in praying that pregnant mothers will love and cherish these babies ande there will be an end to abortion.

May God bless your work and save many babies and keep all of you safe during your vigils.

While we pray for this intention throughout the day, we pray especially during Holy Mass at 8:00 and from 5 – 6:30 PM during exposition of the Blessed Sacrament every day.

Sincerely in Christ,

Sister Mary Ann, C. P.

Vincentian Sisters of Charity of Nazareth

We will be praying the daily Rosary in community for your intentions. The Sisters will do penance privately.

___________________________________

fall blog 3 baby

 

NOTES FROM THE OTHER SIDEWALK

JEN 7-9 SHIFT MANAGER

After learning several days ago that the People of God Covenant Community had adopted this morning’s vigil hours, I found myself really looking forward to my shift on the sidewalk.  It’s so uplifting to spend time with men and women who truly love the Lord and strive to live in a way that pleases Him.  Thank you to Pat, Ben, Bill, Patty, and Tom for the prayers, songs, witness, and fellowship.  And thank you to Sunday regulars Vince and Dan who have become like family…it’s always wonderful to share the vigil with you.  Lots of passers-by were happy to accept the yellow resource cards, the dear woman who always asks about Sally stopped to chat, and Bill came by to pray on his way to church.

FALL BLOG 3 JENMCD

___________________________________

ROSEANN AND RICH 11-1 SHIFT MANAGERS

Thanks to the wonderful people from St. Bernard’s who came today.

Marilyn and Thomas
Marilyn and Thomas
Phil and Rich
Phil and Rich

___________________________________

SUE 9-11 SHIFT MANAGER

I arrived to the sight of the large, very faithful “P” family who hail both from my home parish and from People of God Covenant Community. I’ve been blessed to share vigil hours with this family and Community in the past, so I knew they have a very effective way of bringing the Holy Spirit to the vigil. This time was no exception! More members of the Community joined us as the shift went on, and we sang and prayed the whole time. The light breeze blowing this morning was not the only wind blowing at the vigil today – the Holy Spirit made His presence known!

About halfway through our shift, a very nice couple respectfully approached us and asked if I could please move my van, which I had parked on Liberty in front of PP on the west side. The Acro Cats bus was back in town! I moved the van, and the couple pulled the bus up and parked it, leaving its motor running for the rest of the shift. As it did recently during the vigil, the phrase on the bus “foster and rescue” (meaning cats) struck one of our participants as ironic. We prayed that it might strike passersby the same way – specifically, how much more important fostering and adopting humans is than doing the same for cats.

A woman came by asking for literature regarding rape and domestic violence. She noted the card I gave her that listed contact info for women’s shelters and said she would try calling them, and I assured her they would have the information she needs. I did not get her name. Please pray for her.

People of God Covenant Community Faithful Prayer Warriors
People of God Covenant Community Faithful
Prayer Warriors

___________________________________

DAVE 3-5 SHIFT MANAGER

These three prayer warriors prayed the rosary with great fervency. It was like a shower of grace that people walked through as they went to the cat circus. The cat bus was pouring out some fumes but, luckily there was a nice breeze.

Saint Gregory Parish
Gary, David, Barb, St. Gregory Parish

___________________________________

JOE 5-7 SHIFT MANAGER

Regulars Jim and Cathy from St. Gregory’s in Zelienople joined me for my shift. Beautiful people, beautiful souls, pleasant shift. How delightful to witness for our Jesus.

All glory and praise is his.

___________________________________

And God saw that it was good.

 

 

 

 

DAY 12: THANK YOU, St. Monica Catholic Church, Beaver Falls; Transfiguration Catholic Church, Russelton; Individual Prayer Volunteers

MUSIC is probably the only real magic I have encountered in my life.  There’s not some trick involved with it.  It’s pure and it’s real.  It moves, it heals, it communicates, and does all those incredible things.

Tom Petty 1950-2017

Tom Petty is one of many people who feel called to muse about the mystery we call music.

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

fall blog 2 earth music

There is geometry in the humming of the strings, there is music in the spacing of the spheres.

Pythagoras 582BC-497 BC

Music is the movement of sound to reach the soul for the education of its virtue.

Plato 427BC – 347BC

I call architecture frozen music.

Goethe 1749-1832

Music should strike fire from the heart of man, and bring tears from the eyes of woman.

Beethoven 1770-1827

Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.

Victor Hugo 1802-1882

Where words fail, music speaks.

Hans Christian Anderson 1805-1875

Music is the universal language of mankind.

Longfellow 1807-1882

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.

Berthold Auerbach 1812-1882

Where there is devotional music, God is always at hand with his gracious presence.

Bach 1865-1750

I try to apply color like words that shape poems, like notes that shape music.

Miro 1893-1983

A nation that has no music and no fairy tales is a tragedy.

Ai Weiwei 1950

https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/topics/topic_music.html

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

And suddenly there was with the angel

a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

‘Glory to God in the highest,

and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased.’

Luke 2:12-14

According to the evangelist, the angels “said” this. But Christianity has always understood that the speech of angels is actually song….

And so, from that moment, the angels’ song of praise has never gone silent.  It continues down the centuries in constantly new forms and it resounds ever anew at the celebration of Jesus’ birth.

Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI JESUS of NAZARETH, The Infancy Narratives

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

The most beautiful “Ave Maria” I have ever heard is actually called, “The Most Beautiful ‘Ave Maria’ I’ve ever heard”.  Google the title or click on  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66zUY8UZn4M .

Here is the text.  Use it as you sing along.

AVE MARIA

Ave Maria,

gratia plena,

Dominus tecum.
Benedicta tu

in mulieribus,
et benedictus

fructus ventris tui, Iesus.
Sancta Maria.

Ave Maria,

Mater Dei,
ora pro nobis

peccatoribus,
nunc et in hora

mortis nostrae.

Amen.

This music video features the Visitation scene from Franco Zeffirelli’s, JESUS OF NAZARETH, 1977.

The music is the “Ave Maria” by Michael Lorenc.  Russian soprano Olga Szyrowa is singing, oh, so very beautifully.

Mary, newly pregnant with Jesus, is assisted by neighbors and sent off by her mother Ann, to visit her cousin Elizabeth, pregnant with John the Baptist.

Each mother greets the other and joy fills the scene.

I watched and learned to sing along… slowly, laboriously…loving it.

But then with a shocked wrenched heart, I remembered the rest of the story.

According to one world view, these joyfully anticipated babies came to a bad end.  Jesus Christ and John the Baptist were captured and killed.

Beauty and ferocious evil  are real.

“Therefore we must not in our own day conceal our faith in creation.  We may not conceal it, for only if it is true that the universe comes from freedom, love, and reason, and that these are the real underlying powers, can we trust one another, go forward into the future, and live as human beings.”

Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI ‘In the Beginning…’

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

Music can evoke terrible scorching longing.  This longing hurts so much that some people lock the door to their heart.  But longing can be a gift of God.  C. S. Lewis said that we must learn to eat the food of heaven or starve to death eternally.

Feeling captured by a crisis pregnancy, parents fear that letting their baby live will kill their hopes and dreams.

Trusting Goodness Incarnate, these parents must learn to open their heart to the beautiful music this new baby is created to bring to their life.

If they are unable to learn this lesson before choosing abortion, God promises to meet them in their repentance, if they choose that while they still have time.

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

….. From the 40 Days for Life Pittsburgh Bench:

This accident and the ongoing recovery has reminded me just how fragile and vulnerable a human body is— When I read the daily accounts of my 40 Days for Life  brothers and sisters in Christ during the first weeks of this vigil I feel I am transported to the sidewalk where you all stand in  faith.

Human bodies are weak and broken and needy.  Tiny ones need our voices, hurt and scared ones need our strength, the cold need warmth and many are hungry for sustenance of all types. In our Lord’s name you reach out your human hands and voices to provide comfort and hope.  Please know you do not stand alone!   Just as prayer has lifted me up during this healing time, know that I am honored and humbled to be a part of this body of Christ on the sidewalk seeking to wrap our arms around each life created in the image of God.

In Life and with Prayer, Jeannie

SM-Injured Reserve

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

NOTES FROM THE OTHER SIDEWALK

JEN 7-9 SHIFT MANAGER

Tom and Diane got the vigil rolling this morning with their daily delivery of resources and inspiration.  Talk about TRUST–giving up the time for this task twice a day for forty straight days, campaign after campaign, knowing that God will use their sacrifice for great good!

I was blessed to share the sidewalk with peaceful, prayerful Patty for the full shift.  Thank you for being there this morning and for all you do in defense of Life!

Shortly after we began, a young man stopped to talk to us.  He said that he knows abortion is wrong but that it has to be available in case of rape.  We pointed out that the abortion would further traumatize the woman and that the child conceived is an innocent victim as well.  While he wouldn’t concede either point, he was very respectful throughout and hopefully walked away with greater awareness that might one day change his mind.

Faithful Bill stopped by with an urgent prayer request for a troubling situation.  Please pray for a young woman, possibly still a teenager, who is in her second trimester of pregnancy and in the throes of addiction.  Pray for the baby, who will be born addicted, as well–if lucky enough to make it to birth at all.  And pray for Bill, who is experiencing such anguish that he is unable to help them.

One of the last people who stopped to talk was a man who said that he has six girls and is now awaiting the birth of his seventh child.  He happily accepted a yellow resource card.

Mary from St. Monica joined us at the end, planning to stay until 11 AM with shift manager Sue.  Thank you both for allowing us to pass the baton to keep the vigil going!

MARY AND PATTY
Mary and Patty

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

SUE 9-11 SHIFT MANAGER

So prayerful this morning!  I was blessed again today with a peaceful shift, along with fellow prayers Mary and Pat.  We prayed, a lot.

There was quite a bit of foot traffic — Steeler game attendees.  I always try not to get distracted (as a shift manager, this can be tricky), but sometimes I wonder what the passersby are thinking as they see our signs and hear us pray.  I noticed that one man appeared to close his eyes for the entire time he was walking past PP.  I wondered what that was all about  — and if his eyes really were closed, as they appeared to be!

A few positive responses, but mostly people were just “neutral.”  Many thanks to Pat and Mary for their faithfulness in prayer this morning.  Our Lord hears, and He is getting ready to answer us in a big way or ways!!!

Pat, Mary and Sue
Pat, Mary and Sue

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

ROSEANN AND RICH  11-1 SHIFT MANAGERS

All was quiet from 11 to 1 p.m. today. We did not have one negative comment and had several people who were happy we were standing for life.

I could call it a good day but as long as abortions are performed at 933 Liberty Avenue, I’ll reserve calling it a good day until they close their doors for good.

Thanks to all who came to pray and witness today.

Transfiguration Parish Prayer Warriors
Transfiguration Parish
Prayer Warriors

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

JEFF 1-3 SHIFT MANAGER

Cole, Bernadette, Amy, Joan, Judy Transfiguration Parish
Cole, Bernadette, Amy, Joan, Judy
Transfiguration Parish

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

DAVE 3-5 SHIFT MANAGER
Prayer Warriors Cathy, Jim, and Philline united their prayers to change hearts on the front line.
Gods’ Grace is abundant !

Cathy, Jim and Philline
Cathy, Jim and Phillene

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

JOE W. 5-7 SHIFT MANAGER

Dave hung out for half my shift evangelizing.  So good to see him and catch up. Joe prayed humbly and relentlessly for the whole shift.  Thank you Joe and well done.

I had the reward of some inspiring encounters with a fellow fighter for life, and a 16 yr old young man who was interested in the truth. God is so good.

For a losing home Steelers game my shift was fairly tame (the normal,“you don’t have a vag…” rants). Though, one man (20s) shoved his middle finger so close to my face he tickled my nose hairs. I can’t believe how fast those pesky hairs grow as I age.

It’s such a blessing to be a tiny part of this movement.

May God’s will be done in us.

Peace.

Dave and Joe Fierce Warriors
Dave and Joe
Fierce Warriors

fall BLOG 2 red line FullSizeRender (89)

 

And God saw that it was good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

DAY 5: THANK YOU, Individual Volunteers; Sidewalk Advocates; Immaculate Conception Parish, Greensburg; St. Colman, Turtle Creek; Ascension Holy Name Society, Jeannette; St. Agnes Parish, West Mifflin; St. Mary Catholic Church, Herman

fallblog1two

Two girls looking so much alike, looking at life, can be worlds apart.

 

Mind your own business.

It’s my choice. 

I can’t have this baby now.

No one will ever know.

I will get over it.

 

A mother who is absolutely sure that she cannot have this baby at this time, lives in a different world.  She cannot see the different choice.

 

This is really hard.

I’ll have a baby some other time.

I am so sorry.

 

“No man ever steps in the same river twice,

for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.”

Heraclitus, 535 BC – 475BC

 

This pregnancy is this baby.

Another pregnancy will be a different baby.

The baby you are carrying is one of a kind.

Its DNA makes it elaborately unique and irreplaceable.

000000000000000 00000 000000000000

From a single cell you built a body that has one hundred trillion cells.

You made hundreds of different kinds of tissues and dozens of organs, including a brain that allows you to do remarkable things.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/transcripts/2816miracle.html

Even using the highest estimate for galaxies and the lowest estimate for human cells, there are at least 800 billion more cells in your body than there are galaxies in the known universe.

https://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/23/science/37-2-trillion-galaxies-or-human-cells.html?mcubz=1

What makes each body unique? … Actually, it is this 0.1% which makes DNA of each individual unique.

www.quora.com/Is-DNA-unique-to-each-person

000000000000000 00000 000000000000

 

 You and your baby are God’s gift.

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,

before you were born I dedicated you….

Jeremiah 1:5

 

0000000000 0000000000 00000 000000000000

0000000000000000000 00000 000000000000

0000000000000000000 00000 000000000000

 

“In conceiving this idea of sanctity for us, God reckons with the unique nature, strength and capacity of each individual. Nevertheless, he deals with us freely, as a painter with the colors on his palette.  We cannot foresee in advance which colors the painter will prefer, which he may use up, while scarcely touching the others, or what mixtures he may decide upon to produce his overall effects.  No more is it possible, by simply assessing a man’s nature, to predict God’s gracious intentions for him, the idea of sanctity to which he must conform or the sacrifices it will require of him – though we can predict quite certainly that sacrifices will be demanded of him, since all love involves self-denial.”

Hans Urs Von Balthasar (1905-1988), Two Sisters In The Spirit

 0000000000000000000 00000 000000000000

0000000000000000000 00000 000000000000

 

I can’t have this baby now.

Then from the heart of the tempest

Yahweh gave Job his answer.

He said:

Who is this obscuring my designs with his empty-headed words?

Job 38:1-2

 

Your baby is already yours,

now and forever.

 

This is too hard. You don’t understand.

Don’t judge me.

 

You seem troubled.

Let’s slow down.

Let’s talk about why you are here.

Let’s look for the way both you and your baby can live.

You can’t see it yet.

We can look together.

0000000000000000000 00000 0000

fallblog1garden IMG_5329 (1)

“May this anagogy of light initiate us into the sublime realities at play in the mission of evangelizing: it is about nothing less than engaging all men and women of good will in passing out of darkness into the wonderful divine light (cf. 1Pt 2:9).  How to be credible in this mission? By being conformed to Christ Jesus, the Light of the world.”

“You are the light of the world!” Pierre-Marie Dumont.  MAGNIFICAT, October 2017

0000000000000000000 00000 000000000000000

 

Prolife witnesses are not geniuses or saints. Beginning with the offer of our tangible presence on the sidewalk, we try to share our world.  As a Catholic prolife witness, I am ever grateful that I can lean on the beauty I see in Catholicism.

 

0000000000000000000 00000 0000000000000

000000000000000000000000000000000000000

Jeannie is recuperating.

In her generosity, she shared a sample of her art.

 

fallblog1i'm

0000000000 0000000000 00000 00000000000000

0000000000000000000000000000000000000000

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

Jennifer 7-9 Shift Manager

The first Sunday morning of the Fall 2017 vigil was graced with the peaceful, prayerful presence of Kevin, Jean, Susan, and Matt From Immaculate Conception parish in Irwin.  We were happy to be joined by Vince, who brought blessed salt and a scriptural Rosary; and Bill, who shared his heartbreaking and yet uplifting testimony of why he goes to Planned Parenthood to pray each day.

Thanks and God’s blessings to all who carry the light of Christ to that valley of the shadow of death we know as Liberty Avenue.

Kevin, Jean, Susan, Matt and Vince
Kevin, Jean, Susan, Matt and Vince

______________________________

Sue 9-11 Shift Manager

Although downtown itself was busy this morning when I arrived and it was hard to find a parking spot (which it never is on a Sunday morning), foot traffic was relatively light during my shift today.  We were blessed with a peaceful and very prayerful, although chilly, two hours.

One man passed by and thanked us, telling us he was adopted as a baby.  Another man came by and earnestly expressed his support.  We did encounter one “dissatisfied customer,” but he eventually passed by on his way.

My prayer partners for the entire shift — Betty, Arlene, and Bill, all from St. Colman — were delightful to pray with.  The “R” family showed up toward the end of the shift for their second day in a row.  What a breath of fresh air they always are!   Thank you to all of you!

The "R" Family This is their second day in a row at the Vigil!
The “R” Family
This is their second day in a row at the Vigil!

 

Betty, Bill and Arlene St. Coleman Parish, Turtle Creek
Betty, Bill and Arlene
St. Coleman Parish,
Turtle Creek

______________________________

Roseann and Rich 11-1 Shift Managers

I can no longer claim that Sunday’s are uneventful. About 10 minutes into our shift and in the middle of a Rosary, a couple were walking by and the man decided to upset our display. He sent the fetal models flying into the street and toppled the sandwich board. Fortunately, they kept on walking because with that kind of anger who knows what might have happened. “St. Michael, defend us in battle”.

Later on a young man who claimed to be a teacher at a school just around the corner stopped to express his concern and displeasure. He said that when the school has fire drills their safe zone just happens to be where the 40 Days vigil is also. He doesn’t believe that we should hand out plastic fetal models to 11 year olds. We asked him if his concern was really about the models or if he just didn’t like the fact that we were there. He probably stayed a good 15 minutes trying to make his point although he was respectful. “St. Michael, defend us in battle”.

On a lighter note, thanks, to the good people from Ascension Holy Name Society who came to pray with us.

Ed, Rachelle, Charlene and Pat
Ed, Rachelle, Charlene and Pat

______________________________

Maggie 1-3 Shift Manager

It was peaceful.

A man said to the prayers, “If I punched an abortion doctor in the nose I’d be arrested. But he can kill the baby and nothing happens to him.” He also said he’d like to put gum and a toothpick in the lock so the key wouldn’t work tomorrow. And finally that he would like to remind the women considering abortion that their mothers chose life.

We also had a young man remove his hat and put it on his heart as he passed by the group that was praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet.

We had a man proclaim, “Blessings,” to us as well.

Before the shift started we all blessed ourselves and the circle with holy water.

The prayers sang hymns and prayed the Rosary.  It was a lovely afternoon in front of a horrific house of pain and death. “LORD have mercy!”

fall blog 1 maggie 1

fall blog 1 maggie 2 20171001_142513 (3)

Saint Agnes Parish West Mifflin
Saint Agnes Parish
West Mifflin

______________________________

Audrey and Jim 3-5 Shift Managers

What a beautiful way to start the month of October!  The glorious sun kept us warm and smiling.  The 1:00 to 3:00 pm shift was reciting the Rosary when we arrived.

Larry and Margie from St. Mary’s in Butler, along with Patricia from Columbia and shift manager Jim, had a prayerful vigil.

If you look closely, you can see the shadow of shift manager Audrey taking the pictureJ

Father Mark, from St. Mary’s in Butler, joined us and we prayed the Pro-Life Rosary.  It would not be a 40 Days vigil if Bill didn’t stop by to share his wisdom and love!

Despite the crystal clear day, it is always ominous to stand outside of Planned Parenthood and imagine the horrors that happen there.  One sign worn around our necks made in clear that over 2,100 abortions are committed there every year.  But as I stood and prayed, I envisioned these blessed souls floating to heaven….

fall blog 1 audrey 1IMG_9048

See Audrey reflected
See Audrey reflected
Father Mark
Father Mark

______________________________

Marshall 5-7 Shift Manager

John, Flynn, Kathy and John stopped to pray this evening.

Flynn’s mom used to pray here.

John, Flynn, Kathy and John
John, Flynn, Kathy and John

______________________________

Thank you, Sunday Shift Managers and all the generous people who joined us on the sidewalk in front of the abortion clinic to pray today.

_____________________________

And God saw that it was good.

 

DAY 40: PITT NEWMAN CLUB, PITTSBURGH ORATORY; SUE AND FRIENDS; TRANSFIGURATION CHURCH, RUSSELTON; CATHOLIC MEN FELLOWSHIP ARMSTRONG COUNTY. THANK YOU!

Thank you, Catholic Charities, for sharing your warmth with us during this Spring Campaign!

 

Our Blog tries to capture the fullness of what people see at 933 Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh.  Each of us sees at least slightly differently.  A lot of us agree that key words flesh out the bare bones of why we show up.

______________________________

OUR GOD IS A MIGHTY GOD.

­­­­­______________________________

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Now the earth was a formless void,

there was darkness over the deep, and

God’s spirit hovered over the water.

God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

…God divided light from darkness.

Exodus 1:1-3, 5

______________________________

The heavens declare the glory of God;

The firmament proclaims the works of his hands.

Psalm 19:2

______________________________

Whether describing the vastness of the stars or the microscopic intricacies of the human body, large numbers are inevitable.  These numbers are so large we cannot comprehend their meaning. But trying, we can see more clearly.

______________________________

 

How long does it take to count to a million?  Let’s estimate 2 seconds for each number.

We’d have to count day and night without break for 23 days!

How big is a billion?   One billion is equal to 1,000 million.

How big is a trillion?  One trillion is equal to 1,000,000 million.

What is a light year? It’s how far a beam of light travels in one year – six trillion miles.

______________________________

 

 

 

The Andromeda Galaxy is bright enough to be seen by the naked eye on dark, moonless nights. It is about 2.5 million light years away and is about 200,000 light-years across. It is thought to contain about 400 billion stars.

There are hundreds of billions of galaxies in the Universe.

_____________________________

What is an atom?  Atoms are collections of tiny bits of electricity.

What is a nanometer?  Atoms, the smallest pieces of everything, are measured in nanometers (nm), one-billionth of a meter.  A meter is about 39 inches long.

How many atoms are in a cell?

Approximately 100 trillion atoms are in a cell.

What is a cell?

A cell is the basic unit of life, the smallest unit capable of independent reproduction.

How many cells are there in a human body?

The estimate is 37.2 trillion cells in the human body.

______________________________

ABORTION KILLS BABIES

______________________________

Then the LORD God formed the man out of the dust of the ground

and blew into his nostrils the breath of life,

and the man became a living being.  Genesis 2:7

God created mankind in his image;

in the image of God he created them;

male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27

______________________________

 

Lennart Nilsson “Drama of Life Before Birth”

1965 Cover, Life Magazine

______________________________

ABORTION HURTS WOMEN.

______________________________

ABORTION HURTS EVERYONE ADVOCATING FOR THE ABORTION.

______________________________

 

Dr. Russell Sacco, 1970.  “All of a sudden, I saw these tiny feet; these perfectly formed tiny feet, with little toes, little wrinkles and creases and I held them between my fingers and took the picture. I was crying because I felt so bad – it just really got to me,” he said. “I really didn’t think the photo would be anything, but God must have taken the picture because it was perfect, and I knew that this would be one powerful way to send a message to the world, as this unborn baby was only about 10 weeks along.”

______________________________

 

More tortuous than all else is the human heart, beyond remedy.

Who can understand it?

Jeremiah 17:9

NATIVITY,  Giotto

______________________________

So I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; hence,

she has shown great love.

But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.”

He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

Luke 7:47-50

_____________________________

GOD FORGIVES THE SIN OF ABORTION

______________________________

Watch out, the devil exists!

The devil exists even in the 21st century.

And we must not be naïve.

We must learn from the Gospel how to battle against him.

His Holiness Pope Francis

______________________________

Then the LORD asked Cain,

Where is your brother Abel? He answered,

“I do not know. Am I my brother’s keeper?”

Genesis 4:9

______________________________

WE ARE OUR BROTHER’S KEEPERS

______________________________

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

JENNIFER 7-9

The last morning of the vigil was truly beautiful.  Sunlight seemed to linger a little longer than usual in that dark corridor of Liberty Avenue.  It warmed our faces even as the prayerful fellowship of today’s vigil participants warmed our hearts.

Diane was there even before I pulled up, ready to provide the extensive resources that make a world of difference on the sidewalk (as she and her husband, Tom, have done day in and day out over so many campaigns.)

Emily and Brother Thomas from The Pittsburgh Oratory joined Sunday “regular” Vince for prayer and witness to a steadier-than-usual stream of cars and pedestrians.

Nikki and Joe, despite having done so much for the campaign already, arrived to take the second shift in place of Sue, whose own list of “having done so much for the campaign already” is truly inspiring.

We had the opportunity to offer up a number of beautiful prayers, including a Chaplet of St. Michael which Br. Thomas graciously shared with us.  There were a few negative responses from passersby, but more positive ones to encourage us.  One man even asked if he could hold a sign and stand with us for a while.  He is going through a difficult time in his life—he and his wife have a one-year-old child but nowhere to live.  Please keep S. in your prayers.

When I went to Mass after the vigil this morning, our priest asked us to reflect on times where we could identify with various people in the Gospel account of our Lord’s Passion.  Can we sometimes relate to Peter, denying that he knew Jesus at all?  Can we sometimes relate to Judas, being overcome by despair at having fallen into temptation?  In this 40 Days for Life campaign, we may have had the chance to relate to Simon, helping to carry Jesus’ cross, as we offered help to those facing an unplanned pregnancy.  We may have had the chance to relate to the faithful women, bravely following Jesus and weeping over him, as we consoled those who have been wounded by abortion.  We thank You, Lord, for these opportunities, challenging as they have been; and we ask You for the strength to continue praying and witnessing for life in other ways until we come together again in the fall as the 40 Days for Life family!

EMILY, BROTHER THOMAS ORATORY, VINCE, REGULAR WITNESS
EMILY AND BROTHER THOMAS, ORATORY;
VINCE, REGULAR WITNESS

 

NIKKI 9-11

Thanks to my wonderful husband Joe for accompanying me as we subbed for the 9 to 11 shift this morning.

And thank you, Lord, for the beautiful sunshine and the intensely blue sky! It was a beautiful morning to witness and pray on the sidewalk! Thanks everyone for participating in this 40 days for life!

_

VINCE, JOE, NIKKI, JEN
VINCE, JOE, NIKKI, JEN
PAT, ST. BERNADETTE'S ROSEANN AND RICH SUNDAY SHIFT MANAGERS DUO!
PAT, ST. BERNADETTE’S, JOE
ROSEANN AND RICH
SUNDAY SHIFT MANAGERS DUO!

_____________________________

MAGGIE 1-3

The shift started with antagonism. A man with his around 10 year old son told him, “These are the people who use fear and religion to get people to do what they want.” I said, “That is not true!” He continued on his way saying, “If there is a hell those are the ones who will be in it.”  I felt so very sad. This boy and so many others like him are being kept in the dark. Evil is presented as good and good as evil.

Then a man in his early 30’s started in on the other prayers. I walked up to hear him say that, “Children of degenerates do not deserve to live. When abortion first began it helped lower the crime rate by 30%.” He also said, “It’s not a baby but just 2 molecules.” My religion teacher just came out and I started to discredit everything he said, but of course he didn’t hear a word I said. It was a continuance in a way of the other conversation.

Lies continue to be propagated and there seems to be more and more people believing them. Jesus is, “the way and the truth and the life.” Let us cleave to him and trust that we are on the sidewalk for a reason and God will use us if we let him. Jesus I trust in you! Jesus, Mary and Joseph save souls!

BLOG6MAGGIE1

BLOG6MAGGIE2

BLOG6MAGGIE3

 

Certainly helping with sharing the message of God’s love, these pictures show the faithful praying people who come to share God’s message.

______________________________

 

AUDREY 3-5

What a beautiful day to complete our 40 Days of Life.

The Catholic Men’s Fellowship from St Mary Our Lady of Guadeloupe in Kittanning joined our vigil.

Mary and Jimmy prayed with us.

With the sun shining on us we felt God’s love!

Amen!

 

Catholic Men's Fellowship, St. Mary of Guadeloupe; Mary and Jimmy; Shift Manager Audrey
Catholic Men’s Fellowship, St. Mary of Guadeloupe;
Mary and Jimmy;
Shift Manager Audrey

______________________________

PRYER VIGIL FINAL DAY IN LATE AFTERNOON
PRYER VIGIL FINAL DAY IN LATE AFTERNOON

______________________________

JOE 5-7

Faith filled 40 Dayers

BLOG6JOE

 

______________________________

Extra! Extra! Additional note for Saturday

MARIAN 11 to 1 Saturday
During the busy rush hours of traffic on Liberty Avenue, two prayerful woman went right to work in prayer. From St. Maurice Parish were Mary and Arlene. God, who sees the bigger picture, captured their faces. No photographer can actually capture the beauty of people praying but the women praying quietly were part of God’s plan yesterday. Sidewalk Advocates need the prayers on the battlefield for life. The prayers are the supply source of energy. Make no mistake about that.

______________________________

Stay tuned for more NOTES from today.

______________________________

Go out into all the world.

Proclaim the Gospel to everyone.

Mark 16:15

DAY 33: People of God Covenant Community; Saint Mary, Herman; Saint Gregory and Saint Matthias, Zelienople; Holy Trinity Ukrainian Catholic Church, Carnegie

LET’S KEEP THIS PARTY GOING!

A dynamo we all know, did just that, with the big assist from the Source of Everything.

 

Let me say right up front, all things considered, I am unschooled in the Bible.  Mother Angelica once said, “Read the Bible.  Let God talk to you.” I’m paraphrasing what she said, but that’s how I read and love the Bible.

 

At first, this dynamo wasn’t in a party mood. Just recently he had cooperated with the Master of Ceremonies at a tremendous competion.  Winning the contest endangered his life. He ran.

Then, he prayed, “Enough Lord! Take my life….”  He fell asleep.  Suddenly a messenger touched him and said, “Get up and eat!”

He ate.  He laid down again.  The messenger touched him again and said, “Get up and eat or the journey will be too much for you!”

These are bare bones (1 Kings 18:1-46, 19:1-15) of the story of God, Jeremiah, Ahab and Jezebel.

Jeremiah accepted the invitation to keep the Celebration going.  He did not work from his couch at home. He got up, walked, endured and risked everything.

Exhausted he prayed, “Enough Lord!”

The Lord said to him: Go back!

The worthy celebration begins in eternity, continues in time and then, into eternity.

______________________________

George Weigel  in Roman Pilgrimage writes:

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Matthew 13:31).

The word – which seems almost nothing in comparison to the mighty power of the immeasurable material cosmos, like a fleeting breath against the silent grandeur of the universe – the word is more real and more lasting than the entire material world.  The word is the true, dependable reality: the solid ground on which we can stand, which holds firm even when the sun goes dark and the firmament disintegrates…. (The) word of Jesus is the true firmament beneath which we can stand and remain.

­­­­­­______________________________

FORTY DAYS FOR LIFE discipleship is a celebration worth enduring.

______________________________

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK 

EXTRA!! EXTRA!!

Bill prays the Rosary in front of PP every Saturday come rain or shine. Here is his note from the sidewalk for yesterday, Saturday 3-5.

BILL S. 3-5 Saturday

The 3-5 shift today was pretty quiet which is a blessing when you are a rookie substitute shift manager. The ritual changing of the guard took place from Dean to me and off I went.

Within a few minutes of my wondering if this would be a solo mission, Mary from St Sylvester’s in Brentwood arrived and we promptly started a Rosary.

Less than a decade in and Mike from my home Parish St. Ferdinand’s in Cranberry arrived.

Less than 3 decades in and my namesake brother, Bill, arrived and the four of us were there together for the majority of the shift.
Bill’s daughter, who is 7 months pregnant, stopped by to add some joy to our time there.

Near the end of the shift Adam, arrived followed by my relief, Jeff and the baton was successfully passed forward.

(Sorry. I wasn't able to rotate this picture for some reason. PM)
Faithful Witness Bill and his Beloved Daughter
Mike, Mary, Bill
Mike, Mary, Bill

 

 

______________________________

 

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK SUNDAY

______________________________

JEN 7-9

The blog report that Planned Parenthood was very busy yesterday sat like a stone on my heart.

When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him; but Mary sat at home.  

Like Mary, I felt discouraged, like there was no point in going out to the sidewalk anymore.

Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.” 

Like Martha, I wondered why Jesus hadn’t stepped in to stop the suffering.  But in His mercy, Jesus commanded that the stone be rolled away, just as He did at Lazarus’ tomb before raising him from the dead.

 “Where have you laid him?”  They said to Him, “Sir, come and see.”  And Jesus wept.  

Like us in all things but sin, fully human even while He is fully divine, Jesus feels anguish when His beloved children suffer.  He weeps for those seeking abortions.  He weeps for those performing abortions.  And He weeps with us as we grieve over the hearts broken and the innocent lives taken so violently.

 “This illness is not to end in death, but is for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”

Jesus didn’t mean in this context that death would be avoided.  Rather, He knew that death would not have the last word.  Neither will the current culture of death last forever.  Jesus, the Lord of Life, has defeated death!

He cried out in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!”  The dead man came out, tied hand and foot with burial bands, and his face was wrapped in a cloth.  So Jesus said to them, “Untie him and let him go.” 

Lord Jesus, call us out of deadly despair, untie us from our burial bands of unbelief, let us go so that we can live with You and for You!  Help us to persevere in the fight knowing that You have already won, even if we can’t yet see the way it will all play out.  Remind us:

“I am the Resurrection and the Life; whoever believes in Me, even if he dies, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die.”

The People of God Covenant Community provided spirit-filled, prayerful witness on Liberty Avenue this morning.  Thank you to Pat, Ben, Pam, and Daniel for standing vigil with the ever-faithful Vince and Bill!

People of God Covenant Community
People of God Covenant Community

______________________________

SUE M. 9-11

Oh, how spiritual our prayer was this morning, led by members of the People of God Covenant Community!!!

“Regulars” Beth S. and I were so blessed by the presence of Tom, Patty, Bill, Pat, Todd, and Matt, all from the People of God.  Under their leadership, we prayed and sang and praised and petitioned our God to end abortion there at 933 Liberty Avenue.  The sun joined in during its short time slot of shining between the buildings.  Margie from St. Mary, along with Sunday-morning “regular,” Patty, joined us toward the end of the shift.

The only negative comments during my shift came from a runner who ran by loudly expressing very rude rough hopes about us.  He reiterated this even more vehemently and angrily as he walked by us on his way back, adding that we were all racists.

In the most admirably, confidently, and respectfully gentle way I’ve seen, Bill asked him to come back and talk with us (which he refused).  I was so hoping he would come back, as I just knew that, under Bill’s leadership, it would have been a great discussion.  We prayed for the man both of the times that he passed by.

Keep praying!

People of God Covenant Community
Tom, Patty, Bill, Pat;  People of God Covenant Community; BethS., Sue (Shift Manager)

 

Matt, Bill, Todd People of God Covenant Community
Matt, Bill, Todd
People of God Covenant Community

 

______________________________

Maggie S. 1-3

I had a smorgasbord of prayers today. One from St. Bartholomew who is also a co-worker! Three from St. Gregory and Mathias in zelionople, six from St. Bernard including 2 kids and one from St. Sylvester! Thanks be to God for all who joined me today!

Somebody asked if the models were scientifically accurate. I said I didn’t know. She told me that they are not. That the arms are shorter as well as the legs and that they don’t have ears until later. She also said that the 10 week old should only be 1 inch. I didn’t know what to respond and just listened to her.

 

Diane is on top of it:  http://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/fetal-development-stages-of-growth.

blog5stuart1

blog5stuart2

blog5stuart3

blog5stuarta

blog5sun1

blog5sun2

Prayer witness Sunday 3-5 Smiling Faces of ProLife Witnesses

______________________________

DAVE 3-5

The sun was shining on this beautiful Day of The Lord.
This beautiful family from Saint John the Baptist / Holy Trinity church, spread prayers and smiles to all who passed by. The little lady down front is from Saint Bernard / Saint Pius X. She is a good friend of the Holy Spirit. He is working through her.

blog5dave

 

______________________________

JOE W. 5-7

Ted, Lou and Deacon Myron from Holy Trinity Ukrainian Church in Carnegie, along with Joe from Good Shepherd in Braddock, and brother soldiers Dean and David (pictured) showed up to stand for life.

Thank you, Men for your witness this evening.

blog5joe1

 

blog5joe2

 

______________________________

 

 

And God saw that it was good.

DAY 26: COVENANT COMMUNITY CHURCH, WEXFORD; SAINT KATHERINE DREXEL WASHINGTON COUNTY PARISHES; SAINT JOHN FISHER AND HEART OF MARY HOMESCHOOLERS, RICHMOND, OHIO; INDIVIDUAL PRAYER VOLUNTEERS

blog4flowercem

FLOWERS IN CEMENT

Thanks to Nikki’s audacious “Yes!” and the echoing “Yes!” of too numerous to count witnesses who come to pray with us, 40 Days for Life endures in Pittsburgh.  I see us as flowers in cement.  We pray that people cemented in fear from a crisis pregnancy will let God shepherd them in their difficulty as they choose Life for themselves and their family.

“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”

Ezekial 36:26

 

______________________________

My ancient faith talks a lot about seeing and death.

According to the Book of Wisdom, probably written between 221BC and 117 BC, the battle between life and death looked very much the same then as it does today.  Then as now, holiness could bring death.  Then as now, death in the heart caused by evil can be harder to see.

______________________________

“With revilement and torture let us put him to the test that we may have proof of his gentleness and try his patience.  Let us condemn him to a shameful death….”

Wisdom 2:19-20

“These were their thoughts, but they erred; for their wickedness blinded them, and they did not know the hidden counsels of God; neither did they count on a recompense for holiness nor discern the innocent souls’ reward. For God formed us to be imperishable; the image of his own nature he made us. But by the envy of the devil, death entered the world, and they who are allied with him experience it.

Wisdom 2:21-24

______________________________

Witnesses whose lives offer palpable evidence of “recompense for holiness” are so many that only God can count them.  Here is one.

______________________________

Father Alfred Delp was a German Jesuit priest condemned to death by the Nazis.  A selection from Father Delp is quoted monthly in MAGNIFICAT.  Notes about his trial show him condemned to a shameful death.  His letters show what a heart recompensed for holiness looks like.

 

Delp’s trial was handled with ruthless expertise and arrogance, with no serious defense allowed for the prisoner. It was held in front of Gestapo agents and an obedient jury. They could not incriminate Delp as a conspirator in the assassination plot, so they dropped those charges. Nonetheless, on January 11,1945, Father Delp was sentenced to death for high treason because of his repudiation of Nazism and his hopes of building a new Germany on Christian principles. On February 2, 1945, he died by hanging at the Plotzensee prison in Berlin.

Don’t be sad,” Father Alfred Delp wrote to a friend from a Nazi prison as he waited for his death sentence to be carried out. “God has helped me so wondrously and so perceptibly up to now. I still am not at all frightened. That is probably yet to come. Perhaps God has willed this waiting state as the extreme test of my reliance. I assent. I shall endeavor to fall into the furrow as fruitful seed for all of you and for this land and nation that I wanted to serve and help.”

 

 

 

Some people think and feel that abortion is a reasonable solution to a crisis pregnancy.  Parents leave their baby’s body behind.  They do not see how the killing tears life from the baby body.  As they walk away, they do not see how this death tears life from their heart.

We 40 DAYS witnesses passionately hope to help as God opens their eyes.

 

______________________________

 NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

______________________________

Jennifer 7-9

Our Lord gave the gift of sight to a man born blind, allowing him to see everything around him for the first time; and then the gift of faith, allowing him to see that Jesus is truly God and truly trustworthy.

May our Lord grant all people the ability to see that He is Lord of all life, to see that every human life is precious to Him from beginning to end, and to see that we have an obligation to protect one another and to bear each other’s burdens.

So very grateful for the warm, prayerful fellowship of Pastor John, Becky, Chris, and Erin from Covenant Community Church in Wexford; along with Sunday “regulars” Rose, Vince, Bill, and Sue on this beautiful spring morning at the vigil!

 

blog4jen

______________________________

SUE 9-11

What a beautiful morning to be outdoors!  I was going to say “what a beautiful day to be on the sidewalk,” but unfortunately, as nice as the weather ever is when we are on the sidewalk at Planned Parenthood, it can never truly be beautiful on this sidewalk until the day arrives that this facility is no longer in operation.

Today I was joined by Pat, Patty, and four prayer warriors from Covenant Community Church in Wexford, Erin, Melissa, Tracy, and Alice.  I was not feeling well when I arrived, but their sweet and uplifting demeanors definitely helped to make me feel better.  We prayed and discussed different aspects of being pro-life and also parenting.  Tracy is a foster mom and has been for eight years, for various teenagers.  She said it can be quite difficult at times.  She is now officially one of my heroes!  Alice is a proud grandma to a beautiful Down Syndrome baby boy.  She said that all who know him find this young baby to be the light of their lives.  Praise God!!!

Due to the nice day, we had many more passersby than usual — all positive comments except for one woman who walked by shaking her head.  Those folks, who shake their heads or otherwise indicate disapproval or disagreement as they walk by, always get extra prayers from me.  I actually stayed for a little while after 11, after Rich & Roseann arrived — it was refreshing, for the first time this campaign, not to have to run to get out of the cold!  Keep praying, faithful prayer warriors!

Erin, Melissa, Tracy Covenant Community Church
Erin, Melissa, Tracy
Covenant Community Church

blog4sue2

Sue, Shift Manager, Alice, Tracy, Pat

______________________________

MAGGIE 1-3

I had 11 people with me today from 4 different churches! It was awesome!

We prayed the Rosary and the Divine Mercy Chaplet.

A comment was made, “Why do you waste your time here?”

I thought to myself, “Because I made you think today. I agitated your conscience and if I hadn’t been here today you wouldn’t have thought about abortion.”

So let’s keep on keeping on!

blog4maggie

blog4maggie2

blog4maggie3

_____________________________

DAVE 3-5

The 3 o’clock hour was graced by this family who came all the way from St Joseph’s Church in Amsterdam, Ohio. Their priest, Reverend John, is on the left. They traveled a long way to be a force of Prayer and Grace on the sidewalk. They prayed with unison of spirit. It was like a song when they prayed the rosary in the rain.

blog4dave1

 

Bill stopped by. Always glad to see him.

blog4dave3

 

The 5:00 o’clock hour was graced by this beautiful family of Rev. John’s flock. They are from St. John Fisher in Richmond, Ohio. They brought the sunshine and many smiles.

 

blog4dave4

______________________________

JOE 5-7

What a blessing to witness the faith in action from St. John Fisher and St. Joseph of Amsterdam parish. Way to represent and serve Jesus. They drove a good distance to stand for life. These pictures display what greatness God does when we say “yes” to life.  What a treat this evening was.
All glory and praise be to God.
Thanks Stan for sharing you amazing journey with me.

 

blog4joe

______________________________

And God saw that it was good.

 

 

 

DAY 19: SAINT MARY CATHOLIC CHURCH, HERMAN; STARKDALE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, STEUBENVILLE, OHIO

 

 

A noiseless patient spider,
I mark’d where on a little promontory it stood isolated,
Mark’d how to explore the vacant vast surrounding,
It launch’d forth filament, filament, filament, out of itself,
Ever unreeling them, ever tirelessly speeding them.

And you O my soul where you stand,
Surrounded, detached, in measureless oceans of space,
Ceaselessly musing, venturing, throwing, seeking the spheres to connect them,
Till the bridge you will need be form’d, till the ductile anchor hold,
Till the gossamer thread you fling catch somewhere, O my soul.

A NOISELESS PATIENT SPIDER  Walt Whitman

_____________________________

 

 

Walt Whitman’s spider could have been a spider, tiny in the yellow brightness of a late winter pansie or a much larger spider launching its filaments between rocks and Queen Anne’s Lace near the end of summer.  It takes up to an hour for the average spider to weave a complete web.

The “bridge” for the second stanza soul  is entirely different.  In the first place, it is mistaken when it thinks that it is “…surrounded, detached, in measureless oceans of space”.  Human behavior occurs in a densely populated neighborhood.  The gossamer thread you fling, “O my soul” catches somewhere.  The somewhere matters very much.

When your decisions can generally be described as trying to “turn the other cheek” your world brightens and warms. Make a habit of decisions that generally see the people in your life as items to be managed and your world will start feeling cramped and chilly.

Are my past choices irrevocable? Can my life be warmer and brighter?  I want that!  Is it too late? Will someone help me?

______________________________

 

 

“… if you listen carefully, if you look closely, you will discover that people are hungry.  We were created to love and be loved, and there is a restlessness…,”

“The Holy Spirit (the soul of our soul,” as Pope Benedict XVI calls him) is at the source of these longings.  It is the presence of God in the most interior part of ourselves that calls us to move beyond the surface concerns of our lives, to explore and experience something deeper.”

“Our hunger is not for appearances, nor is it for the fleeting and superficial; it is for something of substance.  We are hungry for truth.”

“This yearning preoccupies the human heart, and it is neither random nor accidental; everyone has it and we have it for a reason.”

Matthew Kelly.  REDISCOVER CATHOLICISM

______________________________

“Many people consider Jesus irrelevant today because he proposes a life of discipline.  Is discipline, then, to be considered the core of Jesus’ philosophy?  No.  Christ proposes a life of discipline not for its own sake, and certainly not to stifle or control us; rather he proposes discipline as the key to freedom.”

His teachings are not complex or exclusive, but simple and applicable to everyone, everywhere, in every time in history, regardless of age, color, or state in life. Beyond life’s complexities, there is simplicity.  Beneath the chaos and confusion of life, there is understanding.  It is the Gospel, the good news.

Matthew Kelly. REDISCOVER CATHOLICISM

______________________________

 

“People have fallen into a foolish habit of speaking of orthodoxy as something heavy, humdrum, and safe.  There never was anything so perilous or so exciting as orthodoxy.”

G. K. Chesterton. ORTHODOXY

______________________________

Here we can at once say that at the very heart of sin lies human beings’ denial of their creatureliness….

They do not want to be creatures, do not want to be subject to a standard, do not want to be dependent. They consider their dependence on God’s creative love to be an imposition from without.

­­­­­­

We can only be saved – that is, be free and true – when we stop wanting to be God and when we renounce the madness of autonomy of self-sufficiency.

We can be saved only when he from whom we have cut ourselves off takes the initiative with us and stretches out his hand to us.  Only being loved is being saved, and only God’s love can purify damaged human love and radically reestablish the network of relationships that have suffered from alienation.

Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI  ‘…IN THE BEGINNING…’

______________________________

“Till the bridge you will need be form’d, till the ductile anchor hold,
Till the gossamer thread you fling catch somewhere, O my soul.”

“Come now, let us set things right, says the Lord: Though your sins be like scarlet, they may become white as snow; though they be crimson red, they may become white as wool.  If you are willing, and obey….”

Isaiah 1:18-1

______________________________

Since 1973, abortion has been legal in the United States for any reason at any time during pregnancy right up until delivery of the full term baby.

Babies are killed. Hearts are broken.

Untold numbers of people are organized to help people suffering from their participation in abortion.  Here are two.

______________________________

SILENT NO MORE 

The Campaign goal is to reach out to people hurt by abortion and to encourage them to attend abortion after-care programs. They invite those who are ready to break the silence to join us in speaking the truth about abortion’s negative consequences and the hope found in healing.

http://www.silentnomoreawareness.org/

______________________________

Rachel’s Vineyard

If the emotional and spiritual wounds of a past abortion have been sapping faith, love and joy from your life, I can promise, that if you enter this process for healing, your life will begin to change.

Rachel’s Vineyard can help you find your inner voice. It can help you experience God’s love and compassion on a profound level.

It creates a place where men and women can share, often for the first time, their deepest feelings about abortion. You are allowed to dismantle troubling secrets in an environment of emotional and spiritual safety. Rachel’s Vineyard is therapy for the soul.

Participants, who have been trapped in anger toward themselves or others, experience forgiveness. Peace is found. Lives are restored. A sense of hope and meaning for the future is finally re-discovered.

http://rachelsvineyard.org/

______________________________

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK 

JEN  7-9

Rose and Ben returned to the vigil this morning to pray, witness, and encourage.  They were a blessing to me and to all who passed by.

The weather was a little less bitter, so more people were out and willing to interact.  Many of them accepted 40 Days for Life flyers and lollipops tucked into a Precious Feet pin card.

May God use our presence on the sidewalk to make everyone aware of His tremendous love for each one of His children!

Ben and Rose
Ben and Rose

______________________________

SUE 9-11

My dear friend Dot L. graciously agreed to keep me company this morning at the vigil.  A great comfort, as I was not feeling well this morning.  We arrived to 7-9 shift manager Jen, along with Rose and Ben, praying and handing out lollipops stuck into Precious Feet cards to passersby.

Dot and I took up our post, and I have to be honest.  It got to a point at which I couldn’t stop talking to her.  She is the head of the Respect Life committee at our church, and we always have so much to talk about!  So, just like the two chatty little girls in the classroom, I had to separate myself from her and go to stand on the other side!

During the time that we were standing together, a woman came by, to whom I offered one of the lollipop Precious Feet cards.  At that, she very dramatically spit on the sidewalk in front of me.  We offered her a “God bless you” as she walked away, which was returned with an angry epithet.  We prayed for her after she walked away.

Please keep her, and all the angry passersby that we encounter, in your prayers.

In massively stark contrast, soon Patty, along with a 7-member family, arrived to offer a Rosary.  This family is one of those families that immediately upon meeting them, you feel great hope for our future world.  Each one of those 5 young children is extremely bright, polite, and respectful, and so willing and eager to pray for the unborn.  To say that they brightened my day is an understatement!  Praying with and talking with them was a huge blessing to me.  God surely treasures and hears and answers their prayers.

God bless you all, and keep praying!

Blessed Family Patty
Blessed Family
Patty

_____________________________

MAGGIE 1-3

For the first hour and 40 minutes it was Meg from Herman, PA, and me.

God blessed us with an amazing conversation with a 46 year old security guard. He told us he believed that all women should bring the child to birth but he didn’t think it was his place as a male to do so.  Women should band together. I told him I agree women should support each other but that women are also looking for strong men who will stand behind their women.

He then told us that he has adopted 6 kids and is about to adopt a 7th. This newborn is the brother of the 4 year old he has at home.  The mother is incarcerated and gave birth to this child in jail.

I told him how awesome it is that he is willing to adopt all those children. He also told us how invaluable Genesis (https://www.facebook.com/pg/GenesisofPgh, (412) 766-26930)

has been to him since he makes too much money for assistance. They provided him with clothes, diapers and baby food.

He was such an upbeat young man. He told us “thank you” for standing outside and witnessing!

I also had a pleasant conversation with a woman going to the theater who worked with mentally challenged young women who sometimes become pregnant.  She said she couldn’t understand why we won’t let them have the choice to abort. I told her that we believe once a child has been conceived there is no other choice but to allow them to be born. She listened attentively and thanked me for explaining our stance. She said she disagrees but respects our right to be there.

I felt good knowing that even on a day when PP is closed we make a difference.  It’s nice when people stop to talk in a respectful manner.

Maggie
Maggie

______________________________

MARSHALL 3-5

The 3 to 5 shift was mostly quiet.

A new pastor from Steubenville brought his wife, son and some church members. We fellowshipped and prayed the Life Stations of the Cross.

Their photo was taken by Maggie the 1 to 3 shift manager.

A man came named Nick. he shared some of his life stories. He stated he is the child of a rape. He also had other concerns. A good man he is! Hope the best in Christ for him.

Happy Sunday to all.

Steubenville Pastor with Family
Steubenville Pastor with Family

 

Nick
Nick

______________________________

Stay tuned for more notes from our Sunday Shift Managers

______________________________

And God saw that it was good.