Today, October 1, many of our Catholic brothers and sisters celebrate the feast day of St. Therese of Lisieux. One of the things she is known for is her “Little Way.” To read a general explanation of the Little Way of St. Therese, see the following link: http://www.littleflower.org/therese/st-therese-faqs/#what-is-meant-by-her-little-way
But one of the things that I learned about the Little Way was this, that I heard on a podcast this morning. I felt that these words were highly appropriate for what we do at 40 Days for Life:
from The Theology of Littleness: a reflection by
Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI
The Theology of Littleness is a basic category of Christianity. After all, the tenor of our faith is that God’s distinctive greatness is revealed precisely in powerlessness…. So in order to show who He is, God consciously revealed Himself in the powerlessness of Nazareth and Golgotha.
Thus, it is not the one who can destroy the most who is the most powerful. In the world, of course, destructive capacity is still the real proof of power; but on the contrary, the least power of love is already greater than the greatest power of destruction.
So… in those moments when we might feel like a tiny little “David” with not much to do in the face of a powerful Goliath like Planned Parenthood (as Nikki so eloquently analogized in an earlier email)… we must KNOW and BE ASSURED that our smallest measures of love we can offer to passersby are the very “stones” we need to utilize. Planned Parenthood will not be destroyed by violence. After all, it is a factory of violence itself. Instead, perhaps it is one of those “demons” that can only be driven out by PRAYER and FASTING (cf. Mt. 17:21). And what are prayer and fasting, but little acts of love?
Shift Manager Reports:
Today was my first shift of this campaign and I was immediately joyful to not be in layers and layers of clothes. It was chilly…but chilly I can do! The street at 7AM is so peaceful you can lose sight of the reason we are there. One of the deceptions of the devil. Traffic was lighter than I remember and relatively friendly, except for the usual head shakes and a few situations…one person approached Dick and said, “The Bible lists ten ways to kill babies,” and kept walking. A second person hit the bottom of the attendance sheet holder while Rose was signing in…not a child, but a grown man, nicely dressed. I was joined by calm, prayerful people who kept the Mission in the forefront… Dick, Michelle, Sue, Miriam, Bill, and Rose and Joan who were early for the next shift. No churches but lots of Warriors.
A young lady stopped by and looked at the fetal models, and she told us that her mother had forced her to have an abortion when she was a teenager. She said that she would like some information. I gave her some Rachel’s Vineyard brochures and 40 Days for Life brochures. She said she was going to come by tomorrow and pray with the group that is there; let’s pray that she does.
Thank you to the prayers who came from St. Alexis today! I was also blessed to have a mom, Phoebe, with her new baby and toddler. It is such a witness to have a baby at the vigil. Thank you for bringing your beautiful children!
My shift was interesting- which isn’t always the case on a Thursday afternoon. (Not sure if that’s good or not!)
Sadly, we had some folks who were a bit antagonistic. The usual comments and facial expressions, but also some spitting today- three times- one time where the spit landed on a dear woman’s shoe who was praying with us. She, however, was unfazed. What awesome people we are honored to stand and pray with!
On the positive side, we had two people who were VERY excited to see the fetal models. I gave little 10-12 week models to them to keep. They were fascinated. One of them, a man, said that many of his family members were in the medical field, and he was going to show the model to them. He was even getting choked up just looking at the display. It touched my heart.
I am particularly thankful to Thomas, a young college student who joined me at 2 to pray. He was a blessing, and had such a peaceful and prayerful presence. Thank you, Thomas!
Finally, I met Robert, the photographer, who I had not realized was our official “interesting person” this campaign- as I told him. 🙂 Apparently, he enjoys taking candid photographs without permission. He has been following our campaign each day and reads our blog. (Hi, Robert.) Although I do not desire MY photo to be taken, I do understand where he’s coming from as an artist. But the point is, we needn’t be afraid to introduce ourselves to him. He is not interested in threatening or arguing with us. He is willing to engage in discussion if we want to.
All in all, an interesting shift.
3 to 5 shift was busy and sunny today. I was blessed to have two lovely ladies helping out, and they came in handy as we had an assortment of folks with different angles on the abortion issue. Our friend who is concerned about us having African-American babies on the signs was again there, and we had a pleasant conversation with him. In all, I was so grateful to have my sisters in Christ.
Everything went well at the 5-7 PM shift Thursday (10/1/15). Liberty Avenue was busy because of the Steeler game. I would like to especially thank Kraig from SS. John & Paul Church and Bill for their faithful witness and prayers on behalf of the unborn and mothers in need. Thanks, Kraig, for praying and witnessing for 2 hours. I would also like to thank Jeannie for her faithful witness and enthusiasm when I was beginning my shift. God continues to bless 40 Days for Life and its participants. May the love and grace of God bless all those in need who feel they have lost hope. God Bless!Rick
And… some Umbert the Unborn… just for fun: