Day 25, Madonna del Castello, Word of God and Guardians for Life of Westmoreland and Indiana Counties!

Today was a beautiful day to stand up for life in downtown Pittsburgh!  It just doesn’t get any better than this….weather-wise!  Enjoy these wonderful photos taken by Pamela of the vigil participants early this morning:

Lisa and Maryann
Fr. Tim's Group

Saturday morning "regulars" Matt & David

Shift Manager Sally wrote the following about the first shift of today:

“We are grateful to God for the beautiful weather and the fact that we had no trouble with drunks on our shift.  We did have a little trouble from a man who came out of the bar on the left side.  He was carrying an “I love Obama” sign & insisted that a man who
came with Fr. Tim move from in front of the bar window because “it’s the bar’s sidewalk”.  The man did not move, and the other man went down the street yelling that “homosexuals are going to take over the world”.

“Showing how wrongly young people think, a group of late teen girls went by in their green clothes and decorations and the one girl said, “Why are they protesting here? What could be wrong about abortion?” I had only seconds to say, “Abortion hurts
women” before she was gone. They have been told that abortion is a good & necessary part of “women’s health care”. They believe that, because nobody has ever told them otherwise.  That’s why we MUST do what we do….all year long.”

“We had about 35 people, including children, from Fr. Tim’s group and many other churches.  To avoid problems with the bar & the bookstore, we moved to the right side at 11 a.m. and sang songs as Chaplain Steve played.   Then we left Timothy & a few others, including Susan, to carry on the vigil.”

“The mid point rally was very nice.  Bible reading, singing, and prayer focused on praying that our clergy will “be not afraid” and will stand up against the mandate.  Fr. Tim had an excellent talk (as usual) from Jeremias, showing that God was not pleased with
the way His people were behaving and that they had to go into captivity in Babylon because they so badly offended God.  He urged all of us to repent, because our culture offends God in so many ways, starting with the pagan way we celebrate Christian feasts of St. Patrick’s Day, All Hallow’s Eve (Halloween), Valentine Day, etc., and how we are so materialistic and pleasure seeking,  etc. As usual Meredith’s sidewalk counseling session was very helpful.  We always learn so much from her.”  Sally

Tom Venditti was also there during the first shift…and he wrote:

“Saturday, St. patrick’s day, at Planned Parenthood was very interesting. There were many vistors to Pittsburgh walking around and observing our prayer witness at PP. There were many opportunities to witness about what 40 days is all about.  I was able to talk to one gentleman who initially was staring Down Father Tim who was leading prayers, I approached him and began talking to him about abortion, faith etc….   He told me that life didnt start until 40 days. I said, then you are against abortion after 40 days? He said yes, but it is still a woman’s choice. Hmmm, well he started to realize that his arguments were full of contradictions and actually respectfully listened as I explained when life truly begins. Father Tim noticed his whole demeanor changed and when his friends tried to lure him back into the bar, he wanted to stay and talk.  Eventually he admitted to having particpated in an abortion. Please keep Tim in your prayers. “

“A short time later, a young man left the clinic for a cigarette. I invited him to look at some pictures I had of babies and after a few minutes came over and we began talking. He had taken a friend for an abortion and also paid for it. He felt her life was so messed up and she was pregnant because of a date rape that they were justified. I offered to adopt the child he felt was unworthy of life.  He sat down, put his head down and began to share about his term in Iraq, he showed me his wounds. We talked about faith. Eventually he went back in and he didnt come back out while I was there. I believe these conversations are important because the escorts and clinic employees see we are engaged in meaningful dialogues with their customers. Obviously we are also planting seeds in these people that we can pray for and hope bear fruit. “

“We prayed deliverance prayers at the beginning of the mid point rally in front of PP. We sang Battle Hymn of the Republic and then marched to the Catholic Charities building where Shari Lewis, Pat Molyneaux and Father Tim led prayers and shared from Scripture.Chaplain Steve led the music and he was wonderful. It was a wonderful day and the joy of celebrating the life of Saint Patrick was very present. “

Tom Venditti, Youth and Young Adult Coordinator, 40 Day’s for Life

Chaplain Steve is the Shift Manager during the third shift…and from what I have heard from him so far, the passer-bys are getting a little disrespectful.  He has been spit on twice so far.  He will report the happenings after his shift is over.  Here are some photos he just texted to me:

Vigil participants during the third shift

One thought on “Day 25, Madonna del Castello, Word of God and Guardians for Life of Westmoreland and Indiana Counties!

  • March 20, 2012 at 1:44 pm
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    The following comment was sent to me by Suzanne: I was there for 5 hours with 2 of my older daughters. We decided to stay at the vigil rather than attend the rally. We were there from 11:15am to 4:30pm. It was quite challenging due to the sheer number of drunks out that day…lots of persecution. We were sworn at repeatedly, cursed, called horrible names, and forced to witness obscene sex acts that a group of gay men from the nearby bar decided to engage (almost continuously) directly in front of us. HOWEVER…..we were able to witness to and evangelize numerous young folks. My daughters held signs advocating adoption rather than abortion and they were both repeatedly verbally attacked for this. I was so proud of them as they spoke to several loud and angry young people about their own adoption. Nikki it was awesome……we saw at least 3 groups of people CHANGE THEIR VIEWS after listening to my girls tell them their own story and explain to these folks that Planned Parenthood does not support or suggest adoption as an alternative. I also have a bit of news. I told you that I purchased a half dozen of Abby Johnson’s book “Unplanned” to give away. Well, I had 2 with me. At 4pm, the staff began leaving the clinic. God pointed one person out to me in particular and said, “THAT’S THE ONE! OFFER IT TO HER!” She was now standing across the street at the bus stop. I dashed over to her, introduced myself, explained about the book and who Abby is(only by saying she was a former Planned Parenthood director), and said I felt that I should give it to her. Well, ultimately she didn’t take the book, but much to my surprise, she did look at it as I held it for her, and she asked me a couple brief questions and made a couple brief, appropriate comments. I was able to make lots of eye contact with her and I could see the Holy Spirit working on her heart. She was extremely polite, and did react with surprise to hear that we were handing out a book about a Planned Parenthood employee! (Hee-hee!) For a minute she appeared to think of reaching for the book, but she stopped and ended up saying, “Thank you but I don’t think so.” She also was very aware that other Planned Parenthood employees were in the area outside still. If I see her again…..I think I will try to give it to her again!! I really believe that God is working on her heart. On another topic…..I would like to give one of the vigil shift managers a lot of credit. I believe his name was Tim. (Tall, lots of brown hair, very quiet/humble, Catholic gentleman) He did a fantastic job of keeping things organized and going as smoothly as possible under the chaotic circumstances. He organized us into small circles and we stood and prayed together several times, ass all the jeering/mocking/swearing went on around us. He did a simply fantastic job. Anyway, the day was surely intersting and challening. My 16 yr old summed it perfecftly when, on the way home, she said “Thanks for taking us with you today Mom. Even though it was a TOUGH day, it was a very GOOD day!”

    Because of Jesus,
    Suzanne

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