Thank you so much to Our Lady of the Angels (Lawrenceville), St. Mary of the Assumption, and Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal parishes. We were blessed to have you come and join us in prayer.
Shift Manager Ginny was there to welcome our first group:
These are the pictures from first shift today. The group was from ” Our Lady of the Angels.” Very nice group.
Shift Manager Marilyn shared about her time today:
Today was wonderful. So many people at the vigil.
Those I did not get to photograph were Ginny and Marie from St. Mary’s, Carol from North American Martyrs, Rick from Assumption and Mimi, from, as she says, all over. Mimi was very inspirational, so devout in her prayer life.
I was blessed to be able to give out information to a couple looking for resources to adopt. We had a good discussion about life and when it begins. It amazed me when I learned that they didn’t even know that partial birth abortion was legal. So many people just do not know what is going on in our culture. I am realizing more and more that it is our job to bring to light the darkness in our world. Only when the Light from above shines down and touches souls can change occur. God truly works through all of us to reach others and bring them to Him. To everyone who comes to pray at an abortion clinic: YOU are the light that the world needs to see! Never, ever give up!
One touching moment at the vigil today – we were praying the Prayer to Close an Abortion Center and a young man stopped in his tracks, bowed his head and joined us. He then went on his way. So many folks acknowledged us and were glad we were there. It was very uplifting to join so many pro-lifers in prayer today.
I (Lisa) will share a bit about my shift as well:
As for me, I would say that it was an “ordinary” shift, except for one thing. Near the end, Shift Manager Lindsay and I chatted with a young woman, who SEEMED to be in agreement with us…. She seemed to be pro-life, and pro-adoption…. But then, she kept asking about whether PP did pregnancy tests. I tried to explain how the pregnancy care centers we recommend will care for women much better than PP does. To make a long story short, she ended up going in to PP to find out for herself. This was after quite a long chat. It was “disturbing” for me. I felt like I had been “fooled” or something. It did not leave me feeling at peace at the end of my shift. But we can still continue to pray for her.
Later in the day, Shift Manager Lindsay came and shared much about her shift:
Yesterday, March 7, 2013, was a very special birthday for me, praying with my beloved priest, deacon, fellow parishioners and my husband of exactly 16 years today (3/8) at 40 Days for Life. I truly “celebrated Life” on my birthday! It was a wonderful day made warm by the fellowship, devout faith, and prayerfulness of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Church (OLMM) from Meadow Lands, PA.
Father Carmen gave me a beautiful and profound laying-on-of-hands birthday blessing, right there “on the sidewalk”. It meant the world to me, as this was the first birthday since my father died, and also I was a bit sad that day that my 82 year old mother who has been very ill was unable to call me for my birthday this year. As many of us have experienced, it leaves a huge gap in all of our hearts when we reach that difficult point in our adult lives when our parents are no longer there nor able to wake us up with a phone call first thing birthday morning with the “I remember the day you were born…” birth-day story! Fr. Carmen’s blessing brought upon me Christ’s Peace, and a deep sense of gratitude and love for the Church and the preciousness of Her priests.
Later (and I have to apologize for the lack of photos after the sun went down), Bob Zimmerman from OLMM came to pray (that’s “Brother Bob” to me, because we are in the same Legion of Mary praesidium and are lay apostolate brothers and sisters to each other). He told me that a few years ago he, his wife, and several of his younger children were nearly run over by an irate “pro-choice” man who jumped the sidewalk with his car (intentionally) while his family was praying outside the Planned Parenthood in Bridgeville, so I have to respect the extra bit of courage and trust in God that “Br. Bob” exhibited by his prayerful presence yesterday. It also served as a good reminder to me that vigil participants need to be very prayerful during their time “on the sidewalk”, because although situations like physical danger are very rare in Pittsburgh, anytime Christians do God’s work publically we are somewhat vulnerable and in need of God’s constant protection. But, as Br. Bob well knows, this is what the Legion of Mary is all about: Putting yourself “out there” publically with the guidance of a priest, to try and lead “souls in peril” back to Christ through Mary. The Legion of Mary is a “spiritual army” fashioned after the perfect Roman legion model, with Mary as our “General” in Christ’s Great Commission, and yesterday it was pure joy to be at the “front lines” with my brother Bob and our fellow brother/Spiritual Director, Fr. Carmen, in the endless spiritual battle for souls which rages on…until Christ’s glorious Second Coming.
I want to thank also Earl Elder who came by after a full day work for an hour or two prayer time. Earl is a “regular” participant and his dedication to pray for the end of abortion, and his unwavering faith in the Lord, is deeply inspirational. Special thank you to William Harrison, too. Finally, I should note the heroic dedication of Vigil Shift Managers Dee Gallagher and Jeff Burgman, who even though they could have taken the “day off” from their usual Thursday vigil shift which I was covering for them (so I could be there with my parish OLMM), they still chose to come pray with me despite the raw cold. I was especially grateful for Jeff’s prayerful presence during that lonely last hour; the hardest, darkest, coldest hour. By his profound example, Jeff inspired my husband and I to make that last hour our most prayerful together. We prayed that abortion-day-Friday would result in NO abortion procedures whatsoever, and that many babies would be allowed to celebrate their own happy birthday celebrations of life 7-8 months from now!
Thank you all. We look forward to what the Lord will continue to do as we move forward in this spring campaign!