Day 36…Thanks to St. Juan Diego (Sharpsburg), St. John de la Salle & St. Mary (Delmont/Export), Bridge City Church (New Brighton), CIM-PA (Cultural Impact Ministries) & many faithful individuals!

“Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter but will not be strong enough.” 

Jesus of Nazareth (Luke:13)


Jesus said we must STRIVE…but what does striving look like?

After 35 days of holding a prayer vigil on a sidewalk outside of an abortion facility…I doubt I am alone in feeling a kinship to the strain on this woman’s face.  She (and we) are obviously STRIVING when we put ourselves out there to be a prayerful witness to the value of every person’s life, but why do we do it?  What exactly are we striving for???  We know that Jesus paid the price of our salvation on the cross, and therefore there is nothing we can do to “earn” eternal life…so why do we strive?  Why does our Lord tell us that we must???

God knows that it is in our human nature to strive for SOMETHING.  If left to our own devices, we will strive for things we think are good for us.  We will strive for money, success, power, acceptance, praise, comfort, pleasure and ease.

God, in his wonderful goodness, knows that all those things are dead-ends.  If we spend our lives in pursuit of such things, we will end up being weak, selfish, vain little creatures that will never have the STRENGTH to enter through the NARROW DOOR that leads to eternal life!

So God commands us to strive for HOLINESS!  That simply means striving to live by his teachings and to obey his commandments the best that we can. When I strive to obey His will by standing up for the sanctity of unborn human life, it requires effort.  I have to go against my selfish desire for comfort and easeas I stand or kneel at the vigilI have to give up my desire for acceptance and esteem when passersby insult me and tell me to get a real job (or worse!).  I give up my desire for power and control, as I humbly accept the fact that I cannot save the lives of those precious babies that are being carried through those doors to their deaths…even as they are still safely tucked away in their mother’s wombs.

There is nothing more important than human life.  We can see that by watching the news. The massive flower memorials on the sidewalk in front of Tree of Life synagogue speak loudly to the value of the 11 lives that were taken so tragically on Saturday.

Those lives were important enough that the president of our country made the trip from DC to Pittsburgh, along with his family, to pay his respects to those who are grieving and to encourage those who were wounded.  Even with the hard-hearted and arrogant snubbing from our local and state politicians, and crowds of protesters with cruel messages…he stood strong in his decision to affirm the human dignity of those who were killed. 

Just as our president took time from his schedule to show his respect for eleven precious lives lost…we do the same as we pray at the site where approximately sixty precious lives are tragically and unjustly ended each and every week.  The world is rightly grieving right now…as it should!  Let’s pray that one day the world will also grieve for those who are killed by abortion and forgotten.  Those millions of little ones that have no one to grieve for them.

Strive with me until this day arrives…will you?


Scroll down for today’s vigil reports:

Cathy did a double shift today, from 7-11 am!  Thank you Cathy for your sacrifice this morning! 

Here is her report…

A peaceful morning with the company of a number of fellow pray-ers.  My fellow St. Juan Diego parishioner Mary joined me for the whole morning even though our official parish time was only 9-11.  Peg was there for 7-9, and David, Priscilla, Beth and Dan prayed at various times throughout the morning.  We got the “You should be ashamed of yourselves”  comment, and a worker from the clinic  came out and picked up flowers that were in the circle, saying that we can’t put them there.  I’m guessing they got dragged there by the foot traffic.  Also received thank yous and”God bless you”s.

Dedicated shift manager Cathy, with friend from St. Juan Diego parish and volunteer David, who came to make sure Cathy didn’t stand alone!

Hank managed the vigil from 11-1 and stood with Anna Marie and her husband Bob, from St. Mary & St. John parish in Export/Delmont.  He wrote:

It was a sunny and relatively quiet shift and little traffic into PP.  There were many passers-by from the International Convention of Chemical Engineers some of whom gave us a warm greeting and a thumbs-up.  Bob and Anna Marie from St.John and St.Mary Export were present for the entire shift and we prayed the rosary and other prayers and greeted many people. Nikki stopped by to kneel and pray the rosary and  Lisa from River City Church joined us toward the end of the shift.  Most passers-by seemed positive and only a few flashed dirty looks or made negative comments.  Praise be to Jesus, Lord and Savior.

Lisa from Bridge City Church

Chris managed the vigil from 1-3 and wrote:

I was joined by three prayer warriors from Bridge City Church- Pastor Gary, Mona Lisa, and Vicky, along with Marie from my parish, St. John Neumann.   Such joyful people to be with! 

Vicky and her faithful crew from Bridge City Church!

We received more than several “Thank you for being here” and Thank you for what you do” comments from passersby.  A man stopped by with a full bouquet of flowers, saying that his wife asked him to bring them to us!  One lady, Michelle came by to offer us snacks- she works nearby and prays at PP when she can.  Like several shift managers have mentioned over the weeks, I, too, had been hesitant to put my “Knees on the Ground”.  But today was the day, my last shift of the campaign, to trust God, kneel, and pray.  I prayed the Rosary using my special Rosary of the Unborn (pictured below) that displays an image of an unborn child in each bead.  

Rosary for the unborn…a tiny baby inside every bead!

 

Jeannie was the shift manager from 3-5.  She sent in these pictures of the faithful group from CIM-PA:

Judy, David, Linda, Jim and Donna from CIM-PA witnessed for life today!
Pat with the hat joins CIM in prayer!

Jeannie wrote:

We had a rainy but lovely time on the sidewalk with folks from   Cultural Impact Ministry- CIM. They are dedicated to bringing to light issues in the culture that Christians should be active on. What a delightful group. Since it was raining I decided to stand in front of Planned Parenthood and sing in the rain. Don’t worry, I didn’t cause any kind of scene lol.  One of my better numbers was actually a song that my son used to sing in grade school— Rain down rain down rain down your love on your people. Rain down rain down rain down your love Lord of all!!!  

Joe K. managed the vigil for the final hour:

It was a extremely quiet / peaceful, but soppy last Wednesday evening shift of the campaign.
I was joined by another large group of folk for the evening.  Led by my faithful Shift Buddies Benson (St. Anne’s) and Jim (Holy Child) as well as a wonderful couple from Cultural Impact Ministries – Linda and Dave.  The group was rounded-out with Lynda from Central Highlands United Methodist.
We shared, we prayed and before we knew it, the shift was over…

 

Day 35: THANK YOU St. Peter Catholic Church (Steubenville OH); St. Joseph Catholic Church (Cabot); and Shift Buddies!

FAQ at our 40 Days for Life Vigil

This 40 Days I have been approached several times on the sidewalk and told that Planned Parenthood does

“a lot of good”

The Planned Parenthood on Liberty Avenue reports that they do about 3000 abortions every year in Pittsburgh.

How can someone defend that statistic alone? but what is the best way to answer a “FAQ” or statement if given the opportunity?

I went to the 40 Days for Life APP…it is a really good tool to have on the sidewalk! You can download the app from the App Store or Google Play, and there is a section that has Pro-Life answers to FAQ’s. This is the response to “But Planned Parenthood does a lot of good”

Planned Parenthood does provide services beyond abortion, but no amount of cancer screenings can erase the horror of killing even one innocent baby. The taking of innocent life simply cannot be offset by any other perceived good. Planned Parenthood’s non-abortion services are meant to distract clients, community members and voters from the barbarity of abortion. Some of these other services don’t even exist. For example, while Planned Parenthood has clamored for taxpayer funding in order to provide women with mammograms, not a single Planned Parenthood facility was certified as a mammography facility [1][2]. Planned Parenthood provides fewer than two percent of manual breast exams and less than one percent of pap tests in the United States [3]. Meanwhile, the abortion giant provides nearly one third of America’s abortions [4].

[1] https://www.liveaction.org/what-we-do/investigations/mammogram-falsehoods/
[2] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2015/10/12/02/the-repeated-misleading-claim-that-planned-parenthood-provides-mammograms/?utm_term=.545b6f642a59
[3] http://protestpp.com/docs/DefundPPTalkingPoints.pdf
[3] https://www.liveaction.org/news/new-video-debunks-planned-parenthoods-3-percent-abortion-myth/

 

In addition to the above response, Planned Parenthood charges quite a bit for their services.  Follow this link to read an article that shows the price list for services provided by a Planned Parenthood.

https://40daysforlife.com/2018/10/27/day-32-planned-parenthoods-price-list/ 

 

Hopefully we are ready on the sidewalk with some answers to this FAQ and the phone number for FREE services at a Pregnancy Help Center  1-800-712 HELP or alternative clinics in the area that do not do abortions (getyourcare.org)

Continue reading for the updates from the sidewalk for today:

7-9: Joe

Joe sent in these photos from his shift:

Thanks to Joe B. for subbing as 7-9 shift manager and to those who stood with him!
humility
Prayer volunteer and sidewalk advocate Jackie
The bedrock of Pittsburgh’s 40 Days for Life, Al and Sally

9-11: Beth

How wonderful to see Tracy and Ashley from Steubenville along with Al, Sally, and Jackie when I arrived. Shift manager, Joe had everything under control. Ed joined us soon thereafter. Ed never met a dog he didn’t like and has become our Ambassador on Liberty Avenue, changing peoples opinion of pro-lifers from meanies, to people who even like pets. Beth Ann brought her friend from St. Alexis, Diane and Jaime. Thanks so very much for braving the chilly weather and standing as witness for the babies. Cecilia brought new pray-ers with her and another day at PP added more prayers to the “shut this place down” request line headed upward.

11-1: Nancy

St Joseph group

Regulars on way to work or lunch break

 

 

 

 

Powerful witnesses – Mom is 39 weeks pregnant! Sara from Eastbrook UMC

 

 

Powerful prayer warriors from St Raymond, St Florian and Our Lady of Grace.

 

1-3: Donna

It was a beautiful day to pray today. Thank you to my friends Karen and Sue from our church, St. Thomas Anglican Church in Gibsonia.

We handed out a lot of cards and 40 Days For Life pamphlets and had many positive comments and quite a few said “God Bless You”. One negative comment where someone said “Get away from me”. One passerby thanked us and walked up to PP and placed her hand on the building and prayed. A PP worker came out and told us to move a flower that was inside the yellow line. It wasn’t ours but we moved it and made sure our roses were outside the line. There was a lot of activity at PP today. One girl walked past PP and we gave her a pamphlet and card and she realized she passed it up and went in with our information. As she walked in she looked at the information and us and said huh. Someone came by and handed us the booklet that says Love The Jewish People and another man came by and handed us the card that says GOSPEL on it. On the other side is a business advertisement for a Flag Specialty Shop.

                                                                                   Earlier today I was in the Dollar Store and a women behind me asked to see the back of my God Loves You t shirt. She asked me where I got it and I told her I had them made and that I had them in my trunk if she wanted one. I explained to her why I had them made and why I was wearing it. Her name was Patti and she said she prays everyday for an end to abortion. Thank you Father for all your faithful prayer warriors.

 

3-5: Pat

Well, things were a bit eventful today.  We had Fr. Jason from the Ukrainian Catholic Church in Carnegie stop by for a few minutes to pray.  He said it was his first chance this campaign because he’s been so busy and he feels terrible about it.  We had a woman carefully study our fetal models for a few minutes and then say that she was very pleased to see that the people who are trying to spread God’s word finally have fetal models that accurately depict God’s biology.  We had an older couple tell us that they had just gone into PP to make a pledge to PP for us being there.  The woman then asked each of us individually if we had ever adopted a baby.  We had President Trump’s motorcade pass by only a block from us.  And we had the resulting back-up of traffic on the streets and people on the sidewalks (who were waiting for buses that couldn’t move).

But I think the highlight of it all was having a young traveler named Matthew stop and pray with us.  He’s from Minnesota and he’s worked with a pro-life group called Red Rose Rescue in the Detroit area.  He is traveling the tri-state area on bike and found us by looking for a Planned Parenthood.  He didn’t know if there would actually be a 40DFL vigil going on, but was pleased to find us.  What a nice surprise both for him and for us.

Picture of Matthew’s bike – note the 40DFL sticker.
Matthew from Minnesota has been traveling the tri-state area on his bike.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, I want to thank fellow SM Jeff for coming out to make sure that I wasn’t flying solo, and faithful Benson, who I was happy to be able to pray with once again.

Jeff B. made sure I was not alone on my shift. (I think the rays mean that God was smiling upon his sacrifice.)

5-7: Lisa

An evening with an international flavor.

Tonight as we spend our last Tuesday evening 5 – 7 shift for this 40 Days campaign the streets were busy!  This evening Johanna and I had more people stand with us and several very positive interactions with those passing by.  Johanna and I are very proud to be members of the Catholic Daughters of the Americas.  My court is Court Westinghouse #759 out of the Turtle Creek valley and Johanna is with Court Allegheny #664 with members from the North Side.  We were joined by the organization’s State Regent, Peg, who is a member of Ct. St. Rene #1868 comprised of ladies in the Monroeville area.  Judi joined us again for a prayer filled evening.  Jim did his usual quick stop as he is leaving the city for the evening.  Peg knows Jim as a fellow parishioner of St. Bernadette Parish in Monroeville.  Next, Peg saw a life time friend Lisa who also works downtown.
When we arrived this evening, Matthew from Minnesota was on his knees.  He was very interesting to speak with.  He advocates for Life as he free spirits along on his bicycle.  Another lady joined us for a while but I apologize that I do not remember her name.  The street was filled with a lot of people from the convention center.  Notably a young woman from Jordan and a young gentleman from Venezuela spent time with us discussing their conviction to Life in their home countries.
We had a conversation with a hurting homeless couple who recently had a baby that they were encouraged to abort because their baby boy would be born very ill.  They loving carried their child to almost term as he was born premature and lived on this earth only 8 hours.  She was able to hold him, love him and have pictures taken to have with her always.  The baby was cremated and she has kept his ashes with her.  Prayers for this sad situation.
Judi, Johanna, Peg and Lisa
One of our beautiful baby pictures reflected onto the front door of Planned Parenthood
Why we are on the sidewalk

Day 34: Weirton Catholic Churches St., Margaret Mary (Moon Twp) and Presbyterians Pro Life

“Lord, if it is thyself, bid me come to thee over the water” said St Peter. “Come” was the response.

St Peter didn’t see the violent waves and howling wind threatening him. He only saw Jesus. He didn’t cling to the boat, he jumped right in.

Isn’t this similar to what we have going on around us. The pro abortion industry, the media and so many other segments of our society all seem to be threatening us. We want to cling to our comfortable lives. Yet we jumped in. We have stood up to the world. We heard the words “Be not afraid” and we came to witness to life, despite the “world’s” opposition, the big waves and at times even in harsh weather.

WE WALK ON WATER!

“Take courage; it is I, do not be afraid”. If you haven’t yet been able to make it to the vigil, there is still time this last week of the vigil. Come even if only for a prayer or two. You might just save a life and a soul. Forward this on to your friends and family and let them experience the joy of walking on water.

And if you can’t come while this 40 DFL Fall Campaign is underway, know that there are faithful Sidewalk Advocates and prayer warriors outside of pp every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday (and Katie is often alone), Friday and Saturday mornings usually from 7 -11 am and join us.

“O thou of little faith, why didst thou doubt?” Come walk on water. Tim B.

Thanks to the faithful from Weirton Catholic Churches,  St. Margaret Mary (Moon Twp) and
Presbyterians Pro Life

HERE ARE STORIES FROM TODAY AT THE VIGIL: (this will updated throughout day)

7-9 am: While there was no church group, thank you to Rose S. who was with me for the bulk of my shift. Things were nice and quiet on the sidewalk this early morning which made praying a lot easier than it is on the Friday afternoons where I have my usual shift.

We did have one young man, “J”, who approached Rose with some questions. We found out that his girlfriend (also “J”) is pregnant and her family is pressuring her to have an abortion. This young man clearly does not want his girlfriend – and future wife, he tells us – to do this. It was unclear where the girlfriend herself was on the issue, but how about if we all try to say a short prayer today for the both of them. Pat M.

9-11 am: When I arrived for my 9 to 11 shift, I saw the earlier shift manager, faithful Pat, alone on his knees in silent prayer. That was a beautiful witness to his trust in God! His shift buddy, Rose, had to leave to prepare for Mass, but she had been with him for most of his shift. Carolina had signed up to be with me for my shift so I would not be alone. Thank you Carolina! The two of us had a very peaceful and prayerful time on the sidewalk. We got no negative comments and a couple positive ones. There were only employees going into the clinic, so we were able to focus on prayer. Carolina is from Mexico, and although she speaks very good English, when we prayed the rosary, she prayed her responses in Spanish, which was beautiful for me to hear! We truly are one body in Christ, no matter what language we speak! She was asking me what happens after the 40 days are over, and if we still have a witness on the sidewalk. I explained to her that we do not have the signs or the baby models, but there are a few individuals who do come throughout the year. We always need more though! It is so important to keep our presence there on the sidewalk! Many hearts and minds are changed because of it. I encourage everyone to keep the prayers going after the 40 days are over, and pray and ask God if he is calling you to come to the sidewalk on a regular basis even after the 40 days are over!  Nikki 

11-1 pm: Sheila and Collin from Weirton Catholic Churches prayed and passed out a lot of literature with me today.
Ginny

1-3 pm: A million thanks to the people of St. Mary, St. Catherine and St. Joseph combined parish for praying with Rose and me on a cold, cloudy afternoon. Denise and Stephen, Jackie, Robert, Dominic, Lou, Dorothy and Ralph and Maureen were joined by Fr. Frank their fearless leader as we sent our prayers heavenward from 933 Liberty Avenue. PP had few visitors, looks like it’s “get out the vote” time for them to insure they continue to receive federal and state money every day.
Big convention of chemical engineers in town; we received smiles and stares. Again, thanks, to all who came to the cold outside praying to end an even colder inside at PP. Beth S.

3-5 pm: I stood with Marie from Presbyterians for Life. We both had literature that we were handing out, but we were both aware that we are there to pray. It was the usual after work crowd queing up for the buses. In the second hour, a highschool aged boy and girl approached us and said that they support Planned Parenthood, but will give us 2 minutes to change their minds. We were right in from of the fetal models, so we discussed the scientific fact that a pregnancy is a human being. They asked us a series of questions after that like “what would we say to a pregnant woman in a very difficult situation”….to which we responded “How can we help you? What are your needs?” and showed them the resource card. They also asked us about abortion in a case where the mother’s life is in danger and our thoughts on abortion vs adoption. I told them about the documentary “I Lived on Parker” so hopefully they remember to look it up, since it is from the perspective of someone who lived the adoption experience. Here is a link if you have not seen it. https://www.ilivedonparkerave.com/ Andy came to finish the last shift of the day and when I left, Marie was praying with a man who had approached us earlier. Thanks to everyone who came today, Sue

DAY 33: THANK YOU to the People of God Covenant Community; Saints John and Paul Catholic Church, Franklin Park; Shift Buddies Bill D., Jim and Cathy S., Joe B., Marie P., Rose, Vince P; Carmelite nuns, Elysburg, PA; Catholic Charities

LET US PRAY TODAY FOR OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS WHO WERE  VICTIMS OF THE SHOOTING AT THE TREE OF LIFE SYNAGOGUE.

LET US PRAY FOR THEIR FAMILIES AND LOVED ONES.

MAY THOSE RECOVERING  RETURN QUICKLY TO HEALTH.

Set me as a seal upon your heart,

as a seal upon your arm;

For Love is strong as Death,

longing is fierce as Sheol.

Its arrows are arrows of fire,

flames of the divine.

 Deep waters cannot quench love,

nor rivers sweep it away.

Were one to offer all the wealth of his house for love,

he would be utterly despised.

SONG OF SONGS 8:6-7

40 Days for Life people are accustomed to praying together.  Shawn Carney came to Pittsburgh and  prayed with Nikki and many of us this Monday in front of PP in downtown Pittsburgh.  In their generosity, Catholic Charities let us use their resources for our reception.

In 2004, with 3 other prolife witnesses, Shawn Carney launched what became the worldwide 40 DAYS FOR LIFE.  Today he is the President/CEO of 40 Days for Life.

Shawn had parents just like the rest of us.  When you are with him you notice that he looks, walks and talks just like us.  You also notice that he talks about God.

Behind and before

you beseige me,

your hand ever laid upon me.

Too wonderful for me, this knowledge,

too high, beyond my reach. 

PSALM 139

Shawn is a walking talking example of what people are like when they let God in.

My topic today is sainthood.

What makes us holy?

Christianity from the earliest days was described

not as a religion,

not as a doctrinal program.

It was described as a way,

a path.

The walking of three basic paths;

finding the center,

knowing that you are a sinner, and

realizing that your life is not about you.

Bishop Robert Barron

Bishop Barron gave a keynote address at the Adoremus Eucharistic Congress, 2018, in Liverpool, reflecting on sainthood, sanctity and what makes us holy.

___________________________________

Check out this clip from BLUES BROTHERS 2000.  Hollywood imagines how a person who lets God in might react to His presence.    Those assembled in God’s name in this Revival tent certainly achieve the joy factor.

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

The choir is singing “John the Revelator.” This is a traditional blues song that more or less originated with Blind Willie Johnson in 1930 and is based on the Bible.  Check here for the lyrics.

http://whiskeyclone.net/ghost/songinfo.php?songID=159

The Book of Revelation describes seven seals. 

http://www.ewtn.com/v/experts/showmessage.asp?number=315342

___________________________________

Now and then he actually succeeds,

like dynamite,

in blasting a soul into the air,

and far and wide

the windows rattle and the foundations of houses quake.

Father Hans Urs von Balthasar

MAGNIFICAT October 2018

NOTES FROM THE SIDEWALK

JEN 7-9

For as quiet as the Sunday morning vigil hours have been to this point in the campaign, today was anything but.  Diane and Tom were providing for all the day’s needs at 7 AM when we were stopped by a man who was upset over the horror that took place in Squirrel Hill yesterday and a number of other things.

Before they had even finished setting up, a second man from Texas shared several stories with us, including his past involvement in the pro-life cause.  Many other people in pain and in need stopped to ask for prayers and money throughout the morning.

Faithful Bill passed by to say a prayer.

My “shift buddy,” Vince, and I managed to keep praying between all the distractions.  I’m very grateful to him for his continued presence and strong spiritual leadership.

The vigil rolled on in a powerful way at 9:00 as Shift Manager Sue and Shift Buddy Ken were joined by a wonderful group from the People of God Covenant Community.

Vince, Shift Buddy  
Jen, Shift Manager                       Early Sunday witnesses for Life

__________________________________

SUE 9-11

How wonderful it was this morning to be greeted by the spirit-filled members of the People of God Covenant Community!  They always bring such sincere and heartfelt prayer and song to the sidewalk, and today was no exception.  My faithful shift buddy, Ken, rounded out our group.

Our prayer included prayers for the Tree of Life synagogue victims and their families.

A quiet, friendly man who introduced himself as “J,” who had been walking along the sidewalk, joined us silently for much of the first hour.

I believe it was the undeniable presence of the Holy Spirit that drew him in!  He said he can see both sides of the abortion argument but leans toward being pro-life.  He said he knows that the life-of-the-mother argument, due to modern medical advancements, has lost ground over the years.  I told him that I had just been talking about that subject yesterday at the vigil with Mary Pat, a nurse, who actually had brought it up.  She said that in her work she has never seen it necessary – contrarily, she said, in fact, she has personally seen babies taken very young from their mothers’ wombs for reasons concerning the health of the mother, and both the babies and the mothers survive and do well.  We encouraged J in his faith and beliefs regarding life, and Julie even invited him to the afternoon People of God prayer meeting.

I left the vigil for a few minutes in the care of Ken as I walked “D,” a homeless lady, down the street to get a coffee.  When I returned, I found out that the man who regularly walks by on Sundays pushing his clattering cart had been by.  He had told Ken that before the vigil, he had been on the fence regarding abortion but that the vigil’s presence and participants had won him over to the pro-life side.  Praise God!!

Rosanne and Rich arrived early, as always, for their shift.

Nikki, bearing flowers and a little stuffed baby doll, showed up shortly thereafter to kneel and pray.

Just after those three arrived, a young girl in a car that was stopped at the traffic light opened her sunroof and stood up.  She stated loudly that she had had an abortion and was just fine and that we had better stop standing in judgment and teaching our children that it’s wrong.  We could see she was hurting and angry.  We told her we would pray for her, and we did, then and there.  May she allow our Loving and Merciful God to heal her.

Shift Manager Sue 
Ken and People of God Community            Lighting up the sidewalk with song

___________________________________

ROSEANN AND RICH 11-1

What a great group of people witnessed and prayed with us today. Sundays are usually quiet and peaceful for the most part but today it would not be so.

Earlier the drive-by who yelled to us from the car would show up on the sidewalk to confront us. Without getting into all the details of the conversation, we quickly learned that no matter what we said about our pro-life views would change her mind. All she wanted to do was justify her own abortion and to have everyone else agree with her even though she professed to be open minded.

So we began to pray and refuse to engage any longer. She is in desperate need of our prayers.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I love you. Save souls.

Joe, Volunteer
Pat and Rich
Saints John and Paul, Catholic Church
Joy and Rachel
Saints Peter and Paul, Franklin Park
Panorama view
Fran
Faithful Witness for life
Jim
Sunday witness

_________________________________

Kathy K. 1-3

Many prayer warriors lined both sides of the circle when I arrived.

Joy and Rachel had a confrontation before I arrived. The aftermath provided good conversation . They followed by a Rosary on one side.
Jim and I prayed on other side.
Homeless woman, Gabby, shared her abortion story with Jim and me. She was forced to have abortion in the early 70s by her mom. She forgives her mom.
Busy sidewalk.

Welcomed more prayer warriors for next shift.

Judy, Rachel and Joy

___________________________________

Stay tuned for more Notes

__________________________________

PRAYER OUTREACH

DEE

Carmelite nuns

Elysburg, PA

Praised be Jesus Christ!  May Jesus be in your soul and make you very holy.

And may He reward you for all the beautiful work you do for the Pro Life movement, saving the lives of the innocent unborn babies.

Know that we are praying very much for you and this intention, confiding everything to our Blessed Mother’s love.

In the hearts of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph,

Your Carmelite nuns

 

 

And God saw that it was good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 32: Thanks to BELLEVUE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS all day and Individual Volunteers

 

LOOK OUT – THE ABORTION FREIGHT TRAIN IS COMING!

After a trying week on the sidewalk, I think we all need to understand that those of us in the 40 Days for Life movement are attempting to rescue lives —– from in front of a moving freight train!   

That Freight Train is the well funded, Madison Avenue Scripted, Hollywood Star -Studded, Millionaire Financed BIG BUSINESS of Abortion … It is lethal , and it moves FAST.

So… IMAGINE  you are in your car and you approach a railroad crossing gate which has descended, signalling a train is imminent.

Suddenly, you notice child playing innocently on a train track unaware of the imminent danger.

WHAT do you do?

YOU shift your car into park, unbuckle your seatbelt, open your door, and  run, yelling, to help.   You search for anyone who might be able to lend a hand, you wave your arms furiously, you call out to the child….. you do whatever you possibly can to change the the course that life appears to be on for that child.   You do your best…

Unfortunately, the odds of all ending well are against us in these situations: 

MOST TIMES we are simply not able to safely make the rescue ….  We watch as the pregnant mom enters the abortion clinic.  We are too late, too unconvincing, too outnumbered …. to succeed.

SOMETIMES we ourselves will be “injured” attempting to help.   We are mimicked, ridiculed, scorned, verbally abused  —- even as we use our powerful and peaceful commitment of PRAYER!

but…

EVERY ONCE in a great WHILE, through the Grace of God & often with the help of others,  we are successful :  We can push that child off the track — and work to embrace him and (re)unite him with those who love him.  We are able to offer REAL CHOICES to women who are abortion-minded —-natural choices that do not involve violence or death.

THIS IS a pretty MIRACULOUS outcome—  we call them SAVES!

Heaven knows it is difficult, but please continue to answer God’s call to be pro-life, and to answer His call to put yourselves in the physical path of the Abortion Freight train.   We know our work results in MIRACLES called SAVES.   I am honored to stand, and kneel with the pro-life community in Pittsburgh.

 


  WITH DEEP SYMPATHY for the FAMILIES and COMMUNITY Grieving Today … 

Before I share today’s reports, Let us all take a moment to pray for the victims of today’s violence in Squirrel Hill.  With heavy hearts we have learned of the hateful acts of a man who randomly, callously and purposefully took the lives of gentle souls united in prayer at Tree of Life Synagogue in Squirrel Hill.  

I was within one mile of the Tree of Life Synagogue this morning.  As I pulled over in my car in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood to offer a rosary, an Orthodox Jewish man and his son walked unknowingly and peacefully past my car on the sidewalk.   

It brought the heinous reality of the massacre up close-  Every living human person is beloved by God.  May God have mercy on the souls of the departed and provide aid to the injured.  May His peace flow like a river in this city of rivers….. 


Shift Manager Reports:

Sunrise Crew welcomes God into the day

 

7-9 am Shift Manager Tim reports:    

We were blessed to have Jill and Betsy in the Choices mobile sonogram, the year round Saturday morning Sidewalk Advocates and the Bellevue Knights of Columbus. Sadly it was a busy morning at PP. Yet we prayed and God heard our prayers.   Tim B

 

Good Morning Jill and Betsy!

 

9-11 am Prayer Warriors between raindrops

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9-11 Shift Manager Sue Reports:

Charlie and his Knights of Columbus, along with Mary Pat, were holding down the fort when I arrived.  Shortly afterwards, as Joe K. was still there after his 7-9 shift as a Sidewalk Advocate, we noticed a couple standing in the circle in front of PP, shuffling their backpacks and bags and not particularly looking as if they were preparing to go in.  Joe, however, thought he would approach them anyway to offer them information.  Before I knew it, he was leading them across the street to the mobile ultrasound unit!!!  They entered, and all indications were that they received services there, as we did not see them exit before the mobile unit left quite some time later (although we’re certain they must have left the unit at some point due to the fact that the mobile would not drive off with them inside).  Praise God for this bright spot on an otherwise very sad morning in Pittsburgh.

Shortly after Joe led the couple to the mobile, Joan showed up to pray along with Tish, Lisa, and Bo, all from St. Patrick in Canonsburg.  Mary and Arlene from St. Maurice arrived soon afterwards, along with Rose from St. John XXIII.  They did a lot of praying.  Several couples and singles entered the clinic, unfortunately not responding to our offers of help and literature.  We prayed for each one.  At 11:07, which at that point was officially Dean’s shift, I received a text from a friend who was lunching in Squirrel Hill, telling of the horrible news and asking us to pray.  We all prayed together.   Dear Lord, please send out Your Spirit, and renew the face of this city, this country, and this earth!

Tish, Lisa, Bo, and Joan from St. Patrick in Canonsburg, with Bill H.

 

11-1 Shift Manager Dean Reports:

Our prayers go out to all of those people effected by the killings at The Tree of Life Synagogue in Squirrel Hill today. I saw many of the first responders en route as I passed through that area on my bus trip to 40DFL this morning. All killing effects all of us.

Knights of Columbus Bellevue and Verona

 

 

1-3 Shift Manager Billy Reports:

 

Tom and Jenny

I was shift lead today with 2 knights  of Columbus AJ and then Kurt, along with Tom  and Jenny.  Tom began reading  the passion of Jesus. I also noticed  there was  a rainbow flag around the tree with our choose life sign and what came to my mind was Noah finding mercy from God. I was thinking  we are being the merciful choice for the babies. We were accompanied by a sidewalk ad vocate. We also got visits from Mimi  and Rick who prayed the rosary for us.

I noticed  we had seen people accidentally mistake planned parenthood for another place, and also a few women were having issues with the door.   Our  side walk advocate gave a  would -be client information and that person  went on !!  Other than that we did not have any issues

.

 

3-5 Shift Manager Kathy Reports:  

Quiet rainy prayerful shift: grateful to Ken, Jim, Rick, sidewalk advocate Marian .

Prayer Warriors

Day 31:  Thank you to ECC Students for Life, St. John the Baptist Parish, Living Hope Church, Shift Buddies, and Individual Volunteers!

Lately, we’ve been acknowledging some weariness in praying for the closure of PP and wondering when God will answer.  It seems to hit us at this point in the campaign.

Shawn Carney spoke to this issue on Monday, reminding us to put all our trust in God and His plan even though we don’t know its details.  Many of the good things that have come from 40 Days for Life campaigns have taken the participants by surprise, at least in terms of timing.

By the grace of God, the Gospel readings for daily Mass this week have been very appropriate to the situation.  Taken from Chapter 12 of the book of Luke,  they contain many important lessons, including the importance of staying ready since we cannot know when things will happen.

  • Jesus tells a parable of a rich man who built enormous new barns to hold his bountiful harvest so that he could take it easy for the rest of his life, not knowing that his life would end that very night. (Lk 12: 16-21)
  • Jesus exhorts His followers to be like vigilant servants awaiting their master’s return from a wedding even though they didn’t know when he would arrive. (Lk 12: 35-38)
  • Jesus points out that a man was unable to prevent a break-in because he was unaware of the hour when a thief was coming. (Lk 12: 39-40)
  • Jesus explains what happens to a prudent steward who faithfully continues in his task even when his master is delayed, and what happens to a foolish servant who turns away from the job at hand and is then caught off guard when his master returns at an unexpected time. (Lk 12:42-48)
  • Jesus chides His listeners for figuring out when the weather will change but not realizing that their lives would soon change, too. (Lk 12: 54-56)

God knows what He is about.  He knows when PP will close.  I need humility to accept that I am not in charge of the details.  I just have to stay vigilant and keep praying until He takes me by surprise—because He will.

Come and join us on the sidewalk at 933 Liberty Avenue in Pittsburgh as we pray for an end to the violence of abortion and reach out to our hurting brothers and sisters.  Use this link https://40daysforlife.com/local-campaigns/pittsburgh/to choose a time or simply show up between 7 AM and 7 PM from now until November 4th.  (Please note that we will end the vigil at 5 PM tomorrow, Saturday 10/27.)

~Jen


Here are the reports from today’s vigil!

7-9 AM, Barbara and Richard:

Crossing the Veterans Bridge on our way into town, again we noticed the Church on Mt. Washington and the moon…both brightly beaming.  God is in His heavens.  All is right with the world.  Diane supervised and we helped arrange supplies.  Pat came to pick up the mobile supply unit.  I think that’s what he and Diane call it!  Sally and Al, our shift buddies, give us street cred.  These guys have been showing up, outside, all seasons, all over the county, for pro-life events for decades.  “I love to stand outside wearing cold wet shoes,” Al declares as his reason for their fortitude and perseverance.  Sally has reasons, but her smile says it best.  About 4 sets of young women went in looking dressed for a really bad decision.  It always feels bad.  When they repent, God will be ready.  A young woman stopped and asked me to pray with her.  Today she will quit her job.  She was not interested in advice.  Prayer is what she wanted.  People passed, nodded, thumbs up, smiles and accepted “God bless you,” with a return blessing.  Kathy came and accepted the lanyard.  Being part of 40 Days for Life challenges me to be my best self.  What a blessing.

Al, Sally, Richard praying on the not-yet daylit avenue.
Fetal models, 40 Days for Life info, Just the Facts: Pro-life praying points
Yesterday’s rose petals. On the pavement they mix with cigarette butts and tiny bits of refuse. The aborted babies’ bodies are treated as carelessly.

 

9-11 AM, Kathy:

Spent time in prayer.  Passed out “Your Biography” and yellow cards.  Many passersby accepted lit.  One man stopped and asked what I was doing.  I explained while he looked through the handout “My Biography.” He replied that he doesn’t agree with my viewpoint but will read the material.  A few negative comments but nothing unusual.  A large student life group from St Mary’s, PA arrived and filled and lit up the sidewalk.  Thank you for traveling such a distance to witness for life!

St Mary’s student life group
No water spilled on this sign 😉

 

11 AM-1 PM, Marie:

Had a great group from St. Mary’s, PA and Elk County Catholic High School.  One of the mothers told me that today is 17 years to the day that Magee Women’s Hospital tried to convince her to abort her baby.  She resisted – even though they were very persistent.  During the story she was looking at her beautiful 17-year-old daughter who is alive today because of her parents’ courage.

1-3 PM, Dave and Noreen:

Dave and I were at PP from 1 – 3 today and St. John the Baptist had people there.  It was nice because that’s our parish so we had some familiar folks with us.  In the picture is Dave with Frank.  Our friend Mary was there earlier but I completely forgot to take her picture!!  AAAHHH!

Dave and Frank

 

3-5 PM, Pat:

A few weeks ago I talked about how it was frustrating it is – but also a lesson in humility – that one can’t really pray and pass out literature at the same time.  We need to choose.  But this time, as I was trying to spend as much time on my knees praying as I reasonably could, a new thought occurred to me.  When you pray on your knees people who pass by look at you in a different way than they do when you are standing and praying.  So as I watched the people passing by look at me I realized that a powerful message was getting across to them while I was engaged in prayer.  And I think that message is as simple as this:  “Wow, those people really are serious about stopping abortion.”  And that vision won’t soon leave them either.  It becomes a seed in their mind which God can work with.  Perhaps the next time they are confronted in some way with the topic of abortion, their reaction to it will be a little different than it would have been.  Perhaps it will be a little less abstract to them.

As for my shift, I was glad to be with the good people of Living Hope Church in Whitney.  They’ve been here before and come a long way (about a 1.5 hour drive).  So thank you.  Thank you also to Walt, from St. John’s in Plum who was with me for the first hour.

And finally, a note to self and to my fellow shift managers.  While I’m betting all of us regulars have become a lot better over the years at being disciplined about not reacting to those who hurl negative remarks at us, I think it would be good for me/us to get into the habit of mentally preparing those who come to pray with us – right after we introduce ourselves – for these situations and instruct them that we do not want to engage in any way with these passersby, but simply ignore them.

 

5-6 PM, Kathy:

Thanks to mother and son, Marlane and John, from St. John the Baptist Church in Plum.
Faithful Benson also stopped by briefly to join us in a prayer.  A few folks accepted lit.  A light rain started and soon Nikki came to SM the last hour.

Marlane and John

 

6-7 PM, Nikki:

I filled in for the last hour of the vigil and was blessed to pray with Peggy from St. John the Baptist Church in Plum. It was sad to see so many women  leaving the clinic, most likely post-abortive. I couldn’t help thinking about their poor little babies being left behind. I hope that my witness  on my knees and my prayers helped show that each one of those little ones was worthy of someone’s prayers and sufferings.

Nikki and Peggy from Saint John the Baptist Parish

 

 

 

Day 30: Thank you to Lincoln Place Church of the Nazarene, St. Richard (Gibsonia), and all of our Shift Buddies and prayer volunteers!!

 

40 Days for Life

 

Now to him who is able to accomplish far more than all we ask or imagine,
by the power at work within us,
to him be glory in the Church and in Christ Jesus
to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. 

Ephesians 3:20-21 (emphasis added)

 

The part of this passage that stands out to me today is the part with added emphasis in verse 20.  God is able to do…. anything.  What a tremendous concept.

When I look at 933 Liberty Avenue these days, I BELIEVE that God can and will close it down.

He can.  And He will.  Do we trust Him?

 

 

Shift Manager Reports

 

Nikki:

 My shift buddy Peggy and I had a very prayerful time on the sidewalk this morning! I like the early morning shift best because it is much calmer than the afternoon hours. Passersby are still half asleep, and since there is little opportunity for outreach or interaction, it lends itself perfectly to prayer. And it works out well, since I miss my normal morning prayer when I have to be on the sidewalk so early.
Peggy and I prayed on our knees facing the doors for the rosary. Then we also prayed the Saint Michael chaplet and I had the idea, which someone from Elk County had suggested to me, to live stream from a perpetual adoration chapel. So, Peggy and I prayed on our knees the Divine Mercy chaplet and the St. Michael Chaplet while looking at Jesus exposed in the monstrance. It was just like being in an adoration chapel! Looking at Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament was so comforting and calming, I could sense his presence there on the sidewalk with us. I am going to have to remember to do this more often when I am there!
It was wonderful to see the saints from Lincoln Place Church of the Nazarene arrive for the 9 to 11 shift. I am so grateful for all of them! God bless everyone who is praying and fasting and being a witness to life!
Shift Buddy Peggy and Shift Manager Nikki– THANK YOU!!

 

Nikki and Peggy’s makeshift “adoration chapel.”

 

The “prayer posse” from Lincoln Place Church of the Nazarene, along with Sidewalk Advocate Katie (left)

 

Judy:

Lincoln Place Church of the Nazarene was represented by Pastor Joe and Judy, Meredith, Jessie and Chuck. Katie joined us…and provided colorful chalk messages on the sidewalks.

Before we arrived for our shift, a number of the staff from PP came out carrying things for some sort of event. There were still some more staff leaving the building and heading in the same direction as we arrived. There were no abortions…or any other services at PP today. So there was much praying going on.

One staff member came out to cross the street and had to wait beside Katie and me before crossing. Katie approached her and offered material, and I told her that I was praying for God to find her a job that doesn’t kill babies…but she just ignored us.

Here’s my funny story. About the middle of my shift, I was kneeling in front of PP praying for a while. As I finished praying and looked up a young man was coming out of PP, I got his attention and he came over to me and I was offering him the resource card (which he took) and explaining the abortion business going on at PP. He seemed very interested in everything I was saying, and then he said, “I’m just reading the meters.” He was the meter reader!!!!! (haha, that’s what happens when your eyes are shut…I didn’t see him reading all the meters before he went in to PP). But then he told me the story of his cousin who had had two devastating miscarriages and she just found out that she is pregnant again. He was clearly very excited about it. So I was able to rejoice with him and pray a blessing over his cousin. He definitely valued life and it turned out to be a positive experience.

Toward the end of our shift, two staff came out of the building with glasses of water and put it on Katie’s chalk words in front of the building and erased as much of the words as they could with their feet. I told them “God bless you and God loves you.” Katie and Jessie quickly grabbed the chalk and put the words right back!

I praise God that no babies lost their lives here today!!!

Thank you, Meredith and Pastor Joe!!

 

Thank you, Katie, for your sidewalk chalk creations! They are meaningful and helpful.

 

 

Thank you to Katie and Jessie for re-writing this message of truth and inspiration!!

 

Lisa K:

I am so thankful for the lovely group of people who prayed with me today.  A former Shift Manager, Marilyn, came with a group from St. Richard’s, and it was wonderful to see her again!  And thank you to Cheryl and Margie who joined her.  Thank you also to Bob, who comes so regularly, as well as Mike and his wife, who happened to be downtown for another reason, but wanted to stop by and join us for a time of prayer.

I am especially thankful for the blessings of these dear people, and those who came for the shift following mine, because today there seemed to be a lot of negativity from passersby.  I would never respond with negativity in return, but it does make me sincerely wonder WHY people have to be so mean.  Why can’t they simply disagree with us, and move on with their lives?  I suppose too many of them have been hurt by abortion themselves.  God help them.

 

One of the negative things that occurred before I arrived: PP workers grinding the memorial roses into the ground with their feet. These rose petals made me think of drops of blood that are shed by the millions in that building.

 

Bonnie and Mike, thank you so much for stopping by!!! It was beautiful to pray the rosary with you!!

 

Helen:

Shift Buddy Anita came with Barbara and Connie from St. Paul in Butler and Cathy from St. Mary. Our ever-faithful Benson took his place near the fetal models for a sunny but chilly afternoon. This group never stopped praying for the two hours of the downtown “going home” shift.

A group of about six young women went into PP. We don’t know why. We can hope they were curious enough about our presence to ask a lot of questions.

Dear M. braved the traffic at this crossing, and she made a cushion of the kneeling pads while she prayed.

As we got close to the end of our final rosary, a young couple stopped to look at the fetal models. I walked over and said, “You’re looking at a version of your former self.” The lady smiled. The young man smiled, too, and said, “It’s good these are here. I survived an abortion.” As I gasped and told him how wonderful it was to hear that news, he said, “Yes. That’s why it’s good that you are here to pray.”

As we blessed ourselves, everyone wanted to know what the young man said to me.

And that beautiful news from him is what makes every person, every prayer, every moment of 40 Days for Life the most precious time we can spend in downtown Pittsburgh.

A few minutes before 5:00, Bill arrived in response to the call for a Shift Buddy. Charlie and his bride came at that time, too. Thanks be to God.

 

Thank you to this wonderful group of prayer warriors, including Shift Buddy Anita (in the 40 Days for Life shirt)!!

 

The 3-5pm group praying the rosary. Thank you all!!

Charlie:

 

Quiet night.  My wife, Any, was with me, along with Bill.  A few people were a bit negative but all and all good night.  Just stood and witnessed.  Thanks to all from St. Bernadette’s.
Any and Bill

 

 

I look forward to seeing how God will work. 

And I can’t wait to see this sign on that door:

 

 

 

Day 29…Thanks to Guardians for Life, St. Paul Cathedral and many dedicated individuals!

Tomorrow is day 30.  We are now three-fourths through our 40 Days for Life vigil.  Ten days ago, when we hit the half-way mark, I said to my husband, “Wow, I can’t believe it is already half over…it has gone so fast!”  Now, on day 29, I have changed my mind.  September 26th seems like an eternity ago, and another 10 days seems like it may as well be a year.

This is when the exhaustion sets in.

I shouldn’t feel discouraged.  God has blessed our efforts during these 29 days. There has been good participation at the vigil, and our team has been united and joyful!  We have seen three women choose life at the last minute, after seeing our prayerful witness at Planned Parenthood, and we have found out about another two babies that are alive today because their mothers saw our witness during past campaigns!  So, why am I struggling?  I think it is a spiritual struggle that is going on.  Discouragement is Satan’s most effective weapon and he uses it well against us.

If you are feeling tired as well, if you are wanting to retreat from the battle to end abortion…I would simply like to use this blog post to exhort you to pray more.  We really need to increase our reliance on the supernatural power of God if we are going to be able to persevere.  God knew what He was doing when He came up with 40 Days for Life. By putting prayer first…by relying TOTALLY on GOD to end abortion…and by limiting the campaigns to a 40 day time frame, (thereby giving us periods to rest in between)…we are able to continue this fight without burning out or giving up.

Getting into the disciplined routine of daily prayer is VITAL to our spiritual strength.  We simply MUST have a daily prayer life if we are going to be able to endure and continue to be effective in this battle. 

Good intentions only go so far.  Loving God and hating abortion is not enough.  If we try to rush into the battle unprepared…

We will be crushed.

God wants to use us to save lives and draw lost souls back to Himself.  But we need to be strong in HIM in order for him to use us!  We need to be GOD STRONG!  Daily prayer, fasting and offering our sufferings for his purpose will make us fit instruments in his hands.  

When we are spiritually strong, God will use us to save the weak.

I intended to write this blog to exhort those of you who are feeling tired…but I think I wrote it mainly to encourage myself.

If you have not already committed to a regular prayer time each day, please begin now.  If you are not fasting on a regular basis, please try to incorporate some sort of sacrifice into your eating habits if possible.  If you have avoided coming to the vigil at Planned Parenthood to pray, please ask God to give you the courage and the selflessness to come.  

We need you.  The babies need you, and their families need you.

Now for today’s sidewalk stories…


Charlene wrote from the 7-9 am shift:

Today was such a peaceful, prayerful day. Oh, we had some negatives and it was chilly, but that did not break our mood. Peg and I started with today’s devotional, blessing PP (that everyone who enters leaves), rosaries (Peg on her knees). We were joined by Bill who does a great job greeting people and handing out literature. I noticed that Katie’s chalk message gets more attention than the sign in PP’s window. I brought chalk to freshen up the message and left some in the trunk and some in the traveling case if you are so inclined to do the same! Prayers that your shift is as peaceful and prayerful as today.

Knees on the ground…Peg in prayer this morning

Cathy had the 9-11 am shift and wrote:

It was a quiet shift.  It was a privilege to pray with Barbara, Molly and Colleen from Sts. Anne, Bernard and Winifred parishes.  I was able to share a few “Everyone’s Biography” with a resource card inside.  (These are good for leaving on the bus and in public bathrooms, etc.)

Barbara and Richard filled in for the 11-1 shift and wrote:

The sidewalk was already full as Cathy handed over the shift manager lanyard. Three women from Mount Lebanon Rosary Group were just about to leave.  Guardians for Life arrived one by one, and then more from their group, and then Father Tim.

For almost two hours, they filled the sidewalk with prayer and hymns.  We had a dozen red roses. People were invited to take one and lay it on the sidewalk in front of PP.   The roses represent the babies whose lives are taken by abortion at Pittsburgh Planned Parenthood.  

The chilly air warmed and I think the sun came out.   A Clean Water Group marched down our sidewalk, about 150 people. 

“This was organized by native Americans who came from many states,” said Carol.”I am against abortion, capital punishment and for all life issues.”  Drums accompanied the marchers.  Most of them smiled as they passed. “Clean water is a prolife issue,” they said.

Bob from St. Mary in Kittanning arrived just as we were about to leave.  “I come down when I can,” he said.  “My friends and I are scheduled for the last day of the Fall 40 Days.”

Chris came and Richard and I bade him farewell.

Changing of the guard, shift managers Barbara and Richard, with shift manager Chris and prayer volunteers Bob and Eileen

Chris wrote from the 1-3 pm shift:

When I arrived to relieve Barbara and Richard, I joined two prayer warriors, Eileen and Bob.   Eileen told me she ran a San Diego pregnancy center in the 1980s.  Toward the end of my shift, Geri, a born-again Christian, stopped by and said she’d like to volunteer at a pregnancy center.  Eileen wrote down the address for the Women’s Choice Network location on the Northside.  A man stopped by to thank us for being there, saying he had been adopted in 1961and my friend, Alex, stopped to say a prayer with us.  There was very little traffic in and out of PP, maybe six people over the two hours.  On this cold and blustery day I didn’t hear any negative comments. 

Eileen

Jeannie was the birthday-girl shift manager from 3-5 pm:

It’s my birthday and I’m here praying for others to have their birthdays too
Rose petals on the sidewalk…

It was not an uneventful day down at Planned Parenthood this afternoon. I would definitely say that our presence , including the flowers and the chalking on the street, is definitely “getting to “ those who oppose us. We had three incidents of  Pro PP people lashing out at us. Many many more were supportive of what we were doing, and when one guy acted out a couple of others said “you’re doing the right thing”.  One young woman personified every mistaken pro abortion argument: “don’t you want women to be safe ?” she asked us. We explained that women weren’t safe in abortion. “What if the baby is not going to live? “ We explain that babies who are dying do not have to be killed. “ it’s just a clump of cells” she said, But when we pointed out the 12 week  model as typical for a surgical abortion she said “no abortions are done at that time”. Her final argument was that some unborn children are actually killing their mothers and need to be aborted.  !!!!  I explained that we do not need to help a dying child die.  An employee of Planned Parenthood came out after her shift and actually poured water on to Katie’s  chalked sidewalk and message and took paper towels and tried to rub it off.  I took the opportunity while she was cleaning to talk about how I knew she was doing what she thought was right but there were other ways to help women…. Another young man purposefully stepped on one of our roses  And Wal-la when the rose became a collection of petals they filled the bumper zone. The Planned Parenthood workers had to come out walking over a bed of rose petals. How ironic as it is the symbol of the pro-life movement!  I was joined by Regis and Mary and Sarah from Saint Paul’s Cathedral and my lovely sister Claire from Saint Bernards. We were a hearty prayerful group, and it was good to be there witnessing for the unborn.

Claire, Mary, Regis and Sara

 

 

 

 

Regis and Claire, beautiful witness to life!

Joe K. wrote from the 5-7…

Wooo,…, Sooie!!!  What a ride for today’s shift – should’ve known that it was a full-moon tonight (the Hunter’s Moon)…

Started the shift greeting / serenading the birthday girl – Jeannie and was informed that it was an “interesting” afternoon.  But, little did I know that I would see it first hand…

Jeannie tried to educate a young woman with the truth who had been past the vigil a couple of times, but this time finally stopped to “talk”…  but the Kung-Fu in this young woman lept out as she sprang into action to show off her “skills”… … …

It was beautiful how Jeannie tried to reason with this person, but ugliness within in this young woman tried to rule the day – though we know the light always wins!!! 

Interesting how the roses that Jeannie had spread around that got kicked and stomped on through the day ended-up beautifully showering the entire area with rose petals – remember, the light always triumphs…

Also spread out through the area were the signs that had the baby pictures on them – Claire, Jeannie’s sister, explained that a lot of people walk past the vigil and just look down – brilliant!!!

Blessed and honored to have a full-shift of vigil attendee’s – Trusty Benson and Audrey joined Mary Jane, Regis, and Lynda for all / portions of the shift – Thanks all of “yinz”!!!

Saw a former co-worker, Bill, that stopped by to say hello / offer support.

A weekend escort of 933 Liberty walked into the building with her significant other and child…but not before tramping on a rose and looking back at me in delight – I just smiled…  The Bert Sommer (Woodstock) song Smile comes to mind:…

Smile and the world smiles with you
Smile all the love is in your hand…

Yes, my brothers and sisters it is in all in our hands how we handle the good, the bad, and even unfortunately, the ugly…The significant other, came through later and stepped on one of the baby pictures.

Please pray EXTRA for this family…

Faithful Tom packed us up for the night, but we shall persevere / return!!!

Day 28: Thank you: Clarks Mills United Methodist Church; St. Joseph (Cabot); St. Ann Catholic Church (Waynesburg)

Thank you Shawn Carney, founder, president and CEO of 40 Days for Life for visiting our vigil last night!

Pastor Joe led us in prayer during the last hour of Mondays vigil, from 6pm-7pm and said that Grace will end abortion.

We had a reception at Catholic Charities where Shawn inspired us with excerpts from his book which included stories of babies saved, abortion facilities closed and conversion of abortionists! The stories show the Power of Prayer and that we must trust in the love, truth and mercy of Christ. Our true enemy is evil and sin…and we get to go out there and offer Hope!

Shawn talked about how the location being downtown  gives our time more power because people are walking by and accessible. Abortion survives on busyness and distractions, but we are a reminder of what is going on and they will remember that impact. Although it is harder to see results from a downtown vigil, we are standing for our Lord and we are not alone. One guarantee is we have solidarity with the babies who are losing their lives.

Nikki mentioned how this is the 17th campaign that has occured at Planned Parenthood and is requesting for all of us to fast however you can on the last day, beginning at 7pm on Saturday, 11/3 and ending at our closing rally at 7pm on 11/4!

Let’s finish strong!!!

Pastor Joe and team members prayed over Shawn and then Nikki and Jeanne presented him with a Pittsburgh gift! It was a blessed night, God is good!

 

7-9: Charlene and Dick

Dick and I were met on the sidewalk by Pat and two distinct signs…the signs seemed to me to represent the clash we witness everyday on the sidewalk…light and darkness…thank you Katie for providing the light!
A Tale of Two Cultures
We were joined by Pastor Adam, Sally and Al…3 other bright lights. We were speaking about the closing of Planned Parenthood and Pastor Adam said that he believes the devil has a tight hold on PP and he works on us thru the “3Ds”…”Doubt, Deception,Discouragement”…that sounded pretty true for me. Pastor Adam also reminded us that God is more powerful and when the Lord is ready, the Holy Spirit will prevail and down will fall PP. When in doubt…think of that!    Thank you, Pastor Adam.        Charlene

9-11: Beth

Today it was “Good Morning” to most, “good mourning.” to some. Ed, Adam, Mary Ann, Beth Ann, Teresa and I followed Shawn Carney’s advice, we stood in solidarity with the babies that lost their lives today at Planned Parenthood. Busy day, but we were there praying for miracles to happen. Please pray for a family, whose father brought his daughter to PP. He argued his case for the abortion, but Adam said he noticed the woman before and she looked like she was not running to somewhere but running from somewhere. Would abortion un-rape her or would an abortion seem like a second rape? Horrible situation, beautiful baby lost. We’ll keep praying; it’s our first resort.

11-1: Nancy

Cecelia and her group from St. Joe’s in Cabot

Patti and Joyce with Nancy in the background

1-3: Nikki

When I arrived on the sidewalk at 1 o’clock, I found Cecilia, Joyce and and a third faithful member from Saint Joe’s in Cabot who I am sorry I do not remember her name, all three were fervently praying on their knees facing the doors of Planned Parenthood. There was a fierce a spiritual battle going on today at Planned Parenthood. A young man was trying to talk his sister out of having the abortion. He said she was distressed and was crying and was not sure of what to do. He took all of the information they gave him and gave it to her. We all prayed that she would come out, but sadly she never did. As I was praying on my knees in the crosswalk, I was holding some of the roses that Barbara brought to our event for Shawn Carney last night. A young man was headed in the doors and I offered him a rose to give to his girlfriend, who was in there already. He took the rose and must have given it to her because when he left later on he did not have it. A third battle was being fought as a grandfather stood outside for a long time, as his daughter was inside for an abortion. She had received the information from Cecilia, but chose to go ahead with the abortion anyway. We do not know if any lives were saved today, but we do know that those who lost their lives, did not lose them alone. We were there as a witness to the amazing value of their lives, and we were praying for them and for their families.

Much prayer on the sidewalk during the one to 3 shift
Kim and her faithful group from St. Ann’s in Waynesburg

I was joined with the very faithful and dedicated group of prayer warriors from St. Ann in Waynesburg, led by the very dedicated Kim. She prayed on her knees for much of their shift, and their prayers were unceasing. At one point while Cecilia and her group were still there, a man stopped to pray for us. I really felt the Holy Spirit with us as he prayed for our protection and for help for us and for abortion to end. When he finished praying, we asked if we could also pray for him, which we did. One young woman stopped because of the baby model set and debated in a reasonable tone with me. It was a hard shift, but that is what it is to be God‘s instrument in this difficult and discouraging battle. Thank you to everyone who came and prayed today!

3-5: Michael

Sunny and cool today. I appreciated being with an outstanding group of folks from St. Ann’s in Waynesburg. See their picture on Nikki’s 1-3 shift. They travel to Pittsburgh every 40 DFL Campaign to give their time to pray and witness for the Lord and His babies. We were all once His babies and now we are His children and servants. It was very peaceful today and I could feel and sense onlookers’ support and wonder at our presence. People don’t have to say a word, but their body language speaks volumes. This is my last day at PP for this campaign as we are leaving to visit our son and grandchildren in
Florida. I will keep 40 DFL in my thoughts and prayers.

5-7: Lisa

Very grateful to Mike for staying a little longer tonight as the traffic getting into downtown delayed my arrival.  Thanks also to Mike for having his phone to take our photo for the evening.  Benson stayed on a little longer than usual this evening.  I know that young man is really making God happy with his conviction to this campaign and so many are in awe of his very rare dedication for a young person.  Benson you are an inspiration!
We had a couple walk by slowly and then walk back to us inquiring about what we were doing.
Ron and Marie were in town visiting Pittsburgh before going to a wedding in central PA.  They are celebrating their own wedding anniversary and we helped them with directions to some points of interest.   They live in Detroit, Michigan.  Marie took pleasure in and pictures of the fetal models.  They were happy to join us as we completed our recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet.  A Blessed Evening with my prayer partners, Johanna and Denise.
Lisa

 

Day 27: North Hills Reformed Presbyterian Church and Holy Apostles Parish

Predicting Success

We will succeed for two reasons…

I recently heard a psychologist speak on “Predicting Success”. She studied West Point Cadets and spelling bee contestants among other groups. She ruled out education, test scores and family income as predictors of success. Rather she said the single biggest factor for success is having the quality of “GRIT”.

Yep, she said GRIT and defined it as having a passion for something and the perseverance to overcome setbacks and failures to achieve that passion.

Hum I thought, We have GRIT. We have the passion and perseverance to end abortion with our prayers, fasting and witness in good weather and bad. I have seen it in the faces of prayers warriors and the actions of those humble enough to kneel in prayer outside the abortion center.

Plus we God on our side. So sooner or later, we will win the battle to change hearts and minds and end abortion. Not by our efforts but by the power of God. Our prayers, fasting and peaceful vigil will access God’s power to change hearts and minds and change this culture of death to a culture of life thus bringing and end to abortion.  Our GRIT + God’s power = We Succeed!

God bless you and fill you with GRIT. Tim B.

Thanks today for the faithful from North Hills Reformed Presbyterian Church and Holy Apostles Parish. Below are stories from today at the vigil including the visit by Shawn Carney, Worldwide President and CEO of 40 Days For Life.  Check back throughout the day as stories and pictures come in.

7-9 am:

I was greeted again this morning by Diane and my shift buddy Rose…we took a selfie since I won’t be here next Monday and this is our last shift together. Pictured are some members of North Hills Reformed Presbyterian Church: Bill, Sam, Charles, Jerry and Kevin who showed up promptly. They put on their signs and stood in front of the door and on the opposite side of the circle to witness. Rose and I prayed on the other side, so it was nice to have the place surrounded with prayers this morning! There was the usual traffic and regulars passing by. We kind of have a routine down with praying and Rose handing out literature! She is super joyful and talked about St John Paul the II feast day today and how he always said “Be not afraid” and that we are called to be hopeful! A handful of workers went into the building. NH Reformed Presbyterian Church pastor Derrick came towards the end of my shift as some other members had to go. It was a good morning! Thanks, Sue

9-11 am:

Thank you to Charles, Derryck, Matthew & Katrina from Reformed Presbyterian Church of the North Hills that came and prayed today. We prayed quietly and handed out quite a few cards. Derryck and Charles sang one of the Psalms and it was beautiful!

God was clearly working today when he sent “K”. “K” came up and started talking to Charles and Derrick and was asking if PP was closed today which she said she saw on their website but she came by anyway. She is pregnant and wanted to get an ultrasound to see how far along she was. She is having a lot of pressure from her mom and boyfriend to abort. Charles and Derryck ministered to her and then we all prayed for her before Charles drove her to Women’s Choice Network in Oakland. Please continue to pray for “K”.

After Charles left we had an interesting situation, a woman walked up to us and asked if we wanted to see her mark of the beast??? We were caught off guard by it but prayed for her afterwards. Thank you to Karen from St. Phillips who joined us and prayed the rosary quietly and Rosemary from Holy Apostles with her beautiful sign. Thank you Lord for your faithful servants who pray to save the most vulnerable among us! Donna G.

From Ginny 11-1 pm:

Rose was with me all morning praying. 

Jeff stopped by on his lunch hour to pray
One man stopped at the light kept yelling out the window for us to get a job. He also gave us a nasty gesture. We just remained quiet and prayed for him. But there were many others who thank us for being there.

From Beth S. 1-3 pm:

Please pray for the woman who has a friend that had an abortion. When the woman was told, she was so deeply saddened that she stopped on her lunch hour to talk with us at 40 Days. Abortion affects so many people. The woman now knows about Project Rachel and she’ll pass the information on to her friend.
Rose, Donna, and Mary Ann from Holy Apostles kept the prayer going. And after speaking with such a heart-broken woman, one can see why prayer is so necessary for what we do.