What a gorgeous fall day to stand for life in Pittsburgh! Cathy was the Shift Manager from 7am-11am and wrote:
“We were blessed this morning with the presence of two babies! It really helps to bring the message home to us, and to passers-by, just why we are here. I was joined by pray-ers from Murrysville Comunity Church, St. Richard’s, Grace Church of Harmony, and Memorial Park Church. A woman who was 7 1/2 weeks pregnant with her third child stopped to talk. She also has 12 year old twins. While she is not considering abortion, she said that when she was pregnant the first time at age 25, she did. But, while sitting in the clinic awaiting her turn, she remembered a sermon she heard at age 13 that abortion was wrong, and that it would live with her for the rest of her life. A seed was planted when she was 13…and 12 years later it sprouted and grew, and 2 (3 counting this one) babies were saved from death. So keep planting seeds, and don’t be discouraged if you don’t see quick results!”
Here are some photos from this morning:
Nancy joins us from St. John the Baptist in Plum Borough
I (Nikki) managed the second shift from 11am-3pm, and had the wonderful privilege of sharing the sidewalk with members of MY church, St. Irenaeus in Oakmont! MANY people stopped to talk with us. A few women shared regrets about past abortions. One told us that she aborted her first child in 1981, after being lied to by the staff at Planned Parenthood. She said she never would have done it if she had been educated about fetal development. They told her that it wasn’t a baby, that it was just tissue. She looked at the fetal models for a long time. Most of the women accepted the post-abortion resources and our prayers. Two women ASKED us for information to give to others that were considering abortion. I was happy to load them up with plenty of resources to help their friends choose life! It is always a blessing to be used as an instrument of the Lord’s on our city sidewalk! Sometimes our instrument is a sharp sword…to those who are clinging to lies…truth hurts. Sometimes we are the loving arms of Jesus…to those who are hurting and open to receiving God’s healing and forgiveness. Either way, it is a blessing to be used!
Here are photos from this afternoon:
Thanks to Susan and Pastor Bryan for signing up to fill the third shift! Barbara wrote the following account from the third shift today:
Compunction is an act of God in us, an act by which God awakens us; a shock, a blow, a “sting,” a sort of burn, as if by a thunderclap, the attention of the soul is recalled to God.
How is this action of God accomplished in us?
By all kinds of trials, tribulation, the thousand fold sufferings of life, sin itself, and, above all, temptation.
Permission to tempt man is given by God to the demon for reasons of wise providence, because of the benefit resulting from temptation. The latter is necessary and becomes more frequent and more violent as one progresses in the life of prayer. It encourages the purification of intentions, it humbles, and it is a cure for pride. This is why God accepts the risk involved. Temptation and even sin are less grave than pride.
It is God Himself who is working in us by His mysterious action. Compunction is a gift beyond our power to understand. It induces, therefore, a purification which can be called passive. The Lord accomplishes it in us. Our part is to consent to it.
Compunction hollows us out and thereby increases our capacity for God.
Jean Leclercq, O.S.B. The Love of Learning and the Desire for God.
Day 29 of 40 Days for Life was a glorious warm day in Pittsburgh. Joining us in prayer for the third shift were Richard, Susan with her daughters Cece and Veronica, Martin, William, Reverend Bryan, Hank, Jim, Judy and Kevin.
Wednesday evening can appear uneventful. Sometimes you have a moment to stop and think. If you look at the people standing and praying, people walking by, and people going in and out of Planned Parenthood, you might wonder, could any of them be a saint? If you ask them, what might they say? “There is no such thing.” “What is that?” “Who cares?” “I hope.” Is the person witnessing in prayer on the street more loved by God than the person going in for her scheduled abortion or the people staffing the clinic?
Saint Gregory the Great is my favorite saint. He is the Doctor of Desire according to Jean Leclercq. The passages on compunction quoted above are by Saint Gregory and they make me happy. I’m no saint. “I hope.” How generous is God to invite me to stand and witness in prayer on the street about His generosity that calls me from sin to Him. How generous is He to give me, in my sinfulness and struggle, an understanding and love for the hearts of my brothers and sisters whose sinfulness and struggle mirror mine.
Life is good.