According to our Saturday morning Shift Manager, Sally Brunn, there were 71 attendees at the vigil this morning…and those were just the ones who signed her attendance log! Thanks to everyone for coming out on a cold, rainy Saturday to pray for an end to abortion! Here are some pictures that were sent to me from the morning shift today:
During the second shift, from 11am-3pm, we were blessed to have our website manager and Shift Manager, Timothy on duty. I am so inspired by folks who are willing to sacrifice themselves for this cause. Just yesterday, he was in the hospital…but he insisted on fulfulling his role as Shift Manager today! Even with the cold and rainy weather, he was there! Here is a picture of him with the group from South Hills Assembly and Journey Church.
Blessings in Christ,
Story from Day 4, sent in By Susan from South Hills Assembly:
“The weather wasn’t the best with continual rain and colder temperatures. Winter boots, a long winter coat, gloves and a huge umbrella enable me to be warm and dry!
I distributed 5+ New Testaments to passersby who stopped to chat. I am always amazed at how receptive people are to being given a New Testament. Much more so than a gospel tract! Interesting, isn’t it?
I stood and smiled at people while praying under my breath. There happened to be a parade for African American Heritage Day that lasted two hours! Many of the organizations represented in the parade were christian organizations that were advertising on the sides of their vans about how they help the black community. Very nice. God is moving everywhere. My thoughts were, “I wonder if they realize that Planned Parenthood has decimated the black population over the decades?” as they passed by the very building where abortions take place.
I found that smiling disarmed most passersby, many smiled back. Later the shift manager asked me to hold a sign and I noticed that people pulled back when they noticed the sign. One group of men passed me while I was standing with 3 other vigil participants and the older man kind of smirked. The he kept looking back so I asked if he had any questions. He stopped and turned around to come back to us along with the other two men and asked why we oppose abortion. I answered that all human life is precious and valuable. He then went on to say something of the effect …1) if a child is abused by his natural parents, then it would have been better if that child had not been born, some parents are not fit to be parents, 2) if a 14 year old was raped, it would be better to abort. At the end of his conversation, the pain came out that his parents abused him and he called them ‘bastards’. He quickly walked away after that before any of us had a chance to respond. As you can see, his pain clouded his thinking in that he didn’t realize that abortion is the ultimate child abuse!
Then there was a young woman who obviously had an abortion that day and walked away in complete isolation crossing the street and going down the other sidewalk — all alone — hurting — regretting? relieved? Who knows. My heart and prayers went out to her. Another woman stood outside the clinic after her abortion and she looked a mess. Pauline tried to give her information on emotional healing but she refused. She looked so beat up and tired. I wish I could have hugged her but she had already refused Pauline’s help and we were leaving at the end of our shift.
Lastly, I thought I would like to have an opportunity to speak to the security guard who was opening the door for the women like a gentleman. What could he be thinking? He obviously thought he was helping women by allowing them access to PP. A black man too. Do they realize that Sanger wanted to get rid of all the negros via abortion? And then there was the PP employee who kept coming out and talking with him as they watched the parade. She came over and stood next to me under the dry awning and my smile opened her up. She mentioned that she thought the kids in the parade were too cute. I responded by saying, ‘all children and precious’. I don’t know if she realized that I was there praying for abortion to end. Maybe she would not have been so open.
From my experience that day, smiling made the difference! and possibly a good impression on the pro-choice folks too?
Such a great need! So many people…
Reflections on Day 4, by Margie from St. Mary’s parish in Butler:
Margie is the parish Respect Life coordinator with St. Mary’s Parish in Herman (Butler). Her parish was a sponsor at the Prayer Vigil Saturday, October 1, from 7am to 11am. This fall is the second Prayer Vigil Marge has attended. She said that she was impressed with the beauty of the praying and singing of the 25 to 35 people who attended during her 4 hours.
On the other hand, she said that the spirit of confrontation was, “Oh, my goodness, the worst I’d seen it.” A lot of people identified with Planned Parenthood shirts stood outside the front door, stood at the end of our lines “flanking us,” and escorted abortion “clients”. A police car parked, pointing the front of the cruiser at an angle at the prayer vigil participants. Two young men kissed each other on the mouth “in front of the priest” as vigil participants prayed the Rosary.
During the last week of September, Marge’s husband had surgery on his leg. She wondered if she should keep her commitment to the Prayer Vigil. She did. “I’m glad I did,” she said. “Satan never sleeps.” Marge invited parishioners to join her at the Vigil. “Few came. A lot of them are afraid. I don’t understand that,” she added. Marge is not afraid. She works at a nondenominational crisis center and has a prolife bumper sticker on her car. “Count me a prolife volunteer for as long as it takes.”
St. Mary’s in Herman, Butler
Wow, what a strange night at the vigil! I was only there for the last hour, and I will tell you all about the surreal event that was taking place inside of Planned Parenthood tonight, but first, here are some photos from the vigil this morning, which was maintained by our shift managers, Sally and Al Brunn, and members of St. John Neuman parish from 9am-11am, and then Shift Manager Jim Flaherty and St. Joseph’s parish in Cabot from 11am-3pm.
As I was saying, I was only at the vigil for the last hour tonight, and what a strange hour it was! The cultural district was bustling tonight, with the “Gallery Crawl” being hosted by many businesses. I guess Planned Parenthood thought they would take advantage of all this publicity, and decided to open it’s doors to draw a crowd as well. They had the doors propped open, with a sign that said “Free wine, cheese and Condoms”. How’s that for hospitality? Silly me, in all my years of hosting parties…I never once thought to offer condoms with the wine and cheese! Here are some photos from tonight:
Anyway, one of our dedicated prayer warriors (and shift managers), Melissa…along with her mother, decided to go into Planned Parenthood (after all, it WAS an OPEN door!) to see what was going on inside. They said there was obsene artwork for sale, pictures of female genitalia, along with tributes to Margaret Sanger and “Choice”…which somehow didn’t suprise me. But, it struck me as very strange…macabre and twisted…for an ABORTION CLINIC to host an art showing! This just goes to show that they really believe that what they are doing is perfectly legitimate! They believe that they are an up-standing business, just like all the rest, and can join in with the Gallery Crawl. I think our group of 9 people, holding signs and praying audibly put a slight cramp in their style tonight. Many people entered Planned Parenthood tonight for the Gallery Crawl, and they all saw us praying before they walked in. We were the voice for unborn life tonight, saying “This is not a legitimate business and this is not okay!” I am glad there were a large crowd of us there tonight to be a witness for Christ, at such an evil place, to do our part in pulling back the false image that Planned Parenthood tries to portray to the community. I admit that it was very strange, and there was much distraction, and it was hard to focus on prayer. I wish there had been a pastor there, to lead us. But, I am glad we were there. Thanks to Sheila, our Shift Manger tonight, for standing in the cold rain and being there for the last shift tonight. May God bless her, and all our Shift Managers, and all the folks who are sacrificing their time, comfort and pride to represent Christ at our 40 day vigil at Planned Parenthood!
What a blessing today was at the vigil! I knew that St. Louise de Marillac always has a great group of people, so I expected it to be a good morning, and it was! One of the biggest blessings of being involved in 40 Days for Life is getting to meet so many selfless, dedicated Christians! This is truly a gift from God! By praying together, sharing stories and Christian fellowship, we sharpen each other as iron sharpens iron. Here are some photos from today:
We are off to a good start on day #1! I was blessed to begin our 40 day vigil at Planned Parenthood, sharing it with three dedicated warriors for life from St. Albert the Great in Baldwin. Here are some photos of them:
The next group to hold our vigil was the CIM (Cultural Impact Ministry) at Christ Church Grove Farm, lead by Pam Olivieri. What a blessing to have met her! Here is a photo of the first to arrive from her group:
As more photos and stories come in, we will be sure to post them here, to keep you connected to our vigil here in Pittsburgh!
Our 40 day journey of intense prayer, fasting and vigil to end abortion begins tomorrow! Have you decided what to fast from?Tens of thousands of Christians in over 300 cities will be participating, and I have no doubt that hundreds of babies will be saved! Here in Pittsburgh we have 82 churches and/or groups that have committed to participate in our vigil at Planned Parenthood, and many individuals have also signed up to help us fill our 40 day vigil! As of now, we have 100 hours still uncovered at the vigil. I hope some folks will go to our website, www.40daysforlife.com/pittsburgh, and click on the vigil schedule link and sign up for some hours! Especially this Friday from 3-7 we really need help! Also this Sunday afternoon we need help.
I will leave you with this thought to begin our 40 days with; the battle to end abortion is a difficult one. As Americans, we are used to having things “pre-packaged” and “convenient”. 40 Days for Life can appeal to that part of us that likes things to be neat and tidy…easy and convenient. But let’s not be deceived…this battle is not neat or tidy, it is difficult and can get dirty. So let’s not be suprised if we encounter opposition and persecution. I don’t want to discourage or frighten anyone away, I just want us to be prepared. Make sure to put on your spiritual armour before coming to the vigil. Make sure to remain peaceful and non-confrontational at all times. The enemy wants us to react in anger, so we can be stereotyped as violent, condemning, narrow-minded pro-life extremists. Therefore, we must bend over backwards to show the peaceful love of Christ to those who call themselves our enemies. And above all, let’s not get discouraged or give up. Let us remain in God’s word and in prayer, asking the Holy Spirit to continually renew and refresh us when we are tired.
God bless you,