Shift Manager Stories and Photos from Today:
Early morning Shift Manager Marian shared these photos and reflections today:
Matthew 18: 1-5; 10
The disciples approached Jesus and said,
“Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?”
He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said,
“Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children,
you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven.
Whoever humbles himself like this child
is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.
And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me”.
The early shift- Thursday, Oct. 2, 7-9 am Today is the memorial of the Guardian Angels.
The street was pedestrian today. Not many heads up. I try to look up and make eye contact. It is interesting to see how many turn away from the signs or our presence and especially our eyes.
Susan, Bill and I were the representatives today for the early shift. It was quiet but two people did stop to talk. Keyera, who gave permission to have her picture taken, walked by with a smile and said she was doing a report on abortion. She was willing to answer some questions, and as a result, she shared some of her story. Keyera is a first year student at Carlow University and has a one year old as a single parent. She had family support as she went through her pregnancy. Her choice was always to give life.
Keyera is one of the reasons why we stand out there. Our presence is affirmation to the young! After I took the picture of Susan and Keyera I noticed the picture of the smiling woman from the picture in the PP window. Two out of three of the smiling faces in the picture I took are truthful. Planned Parenthood delivers a message of death with a smile. We have to deliver the message of life with a smile.
Susan started talking to a woman who stopped with her massage chair. The woman could have waited anywhere for Brick O Lage to open, but she stood next to Susan. I thought they knew each other as they started talking. But, the massage therapist was interested in the message. She shared with us that she believes ultrasounds should be mandatory before any decision is made regarding an abortion. She took the 40 Days for Life brochure but did not take a “baby” when offered one of the plastic models. I find it interesting when people take the “baby” but more interesting when someone does not. Unless it is explained to a person about the gestational stage of the model, the baby model looks like a miniature doll baby. But, isn’t that the point.
“See that you do not despise one of these little ones,
for I say to you that their angels in heaven
always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.”
Marilyn was our 11-1 Shift Manager this afternoon. She shared the following:
It was a joy to meet and pray with the folks from St. Joan of Arc and Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. We were especially blessed to have Fr. Carmen join us. The presence of a priest praying on the sidewalk is so powerful.We did have some interesting characters stop by the vigil today with some very sad, misguided views about our Lord and eternity. I was reminded by my friend Beth Ann, who so generously comes with me for my shift, that these people are sent to distract us from our mission of prayer. It is so true. We must be on guard at all times.A woman named Tanya stopped by our display. She was very interested in the fetal models and gently touched them. I told her she could hold them and she lovingly picked each one up and caressed them. I had a feeling, so I gently asked if she knew somebody who had an abortion. She replied, “Yes, me.” I was blessed to be able to minister to her and give her contact information about Rachel’s Vineyard. She wanted to know when I would be back and I explained that someone would be here every day for the 40 Days for Life campaign. I do believe she will come back to visit our display. The fetal models are such a powerful witness. Please keep her in your prayers. May our dear Lord use our witness to guide all abortion bound women to choose life.
I (Lisa) was the Shift Manager from 1-3 this afternoon.
We had the blessing of beautiful weather, and even more beautiful company. I was blessed to have the pastor and parishioners of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal parish there to pray with me. Wow, they were SUCH a source of peace and comfort to me, with Fr. Carmen on one side of the PP doors, Shift Manager Lindsay on the other, and other beautiful women of God joining with me in prayer.
There were a couple negative remarks today… and we should be used to them by now, you know? But those comments still bite and sting, just like the perpetrators want them to. However, it’s a shame that those moments happen at all. My husband mentioned later that if we feel that someone is uninformed or misled about something, rather than feeling angry, we might feel pity. But some of these folks do not offer the “mercy” of pitying us; they are just angry. It’s their “go-to” emotion. They are not just disagreeing with us, philosophically; they are angry, but mostly because of what they THINK we stand for. While we are simply there to pray and share the truth in love, they interpret our presence as bigoted, intolerant, even tyrannical. It’s sad. But as Fr. Carmen told me at the vigil, our mere presence is still a witness to them. Thank you, God!
As Shift Manager Marian mentioned above (and included today’s Gospel), today was the Feast of the Guardian Angels, recognized by Catholics, but certainly relevant to all Christians. As my children and I shared and reflected upon that Gospel passage this morning, my twelve-year old had this insight: “It seems like children played an important role in Jesus’ life… and if He thought they were important, then so should we.” How brilliant. I told her that this really connects to what we are doing at 40 Days for Life. Out of the mouths of babes….
Jeannie, our Shift Manager from 3-5, had this to share:
I had a delightful afternoon on the sidewalk surrounded by wonderful women of faith from Steubenville, Ohio and Weirton, WV. We had a few negative comments (likely attributed to a mood-altering libation) and many, many phrases of support. Connie from OH has a wonderful sales background, and easily greeted nearly every passerby. Not only did she put folks at ease, she let them know we are just like them. She engaged them and started the dialogue— not with abortion conversation but by saying “have a nice day” or “enjoy your evening” …. It was another reminder of the humanity of the pro-life movement AND of the reality that we love all life!!
Our cohorts doing the “heavy lifting” in the sun were troopers, too… accommodating the inevitable lines of bus passengers who appear to wait. What a wonderful witness to these folks headed out of the city!
Joining me were Lori, Mary, and Paulette from St. Joseph the Worker, and their counterparts Connie and Mary (with Mimi). Thank you for allowing me to be Blessed among Women! 🙂
Shift Manager Bethany was at the vigil from 5-7 this evening. Here is what she shared:
The gorgeous weather that the Lord provided us with again this evening was not taken for granted!
God also provided five friends to stand with me for the last two hours of the day. Sheila was handing out resource sheets like she was getting paid to do it. Yahoo!
We encountered equal amounts friendlies and not-so-friendlies. One middle-aged smoke stack was puffing cigarette smoke in each volunteer’s face as he exclaimed “I believe in the freedom of choice!” My response that I kept to myself was “Yes sir, you also have the freedom to choose to reject Jesus your whole life and then spend eternity in the lake of fire. But that would be pretty harmful, so I wouldn’t advise that.” A young lady also strolled by, announcing, “My favorite place in the whole world is Planned Parenthood.”
Sheila gave me this note to pass onto you all…..”We noticed quite a few well-dressed people exiting the clinic after hours. A tall, attractive, middle-aged blonde walked out with one of the clinic directors- turns out it was Cecile Richards, the head honcho herself! They received and returned a nice smile from Fr. Tony, Mary, and Connie.”
Praying God blesses you as much as He has blessed me,
Thank you to all who participated with us today!