Okay…so maybe it wasn’t THIS bad…but it was COLD today!!! But the cold and bitter wind didn’t stop the dedicated members of St. Thomas More Church in Bethel Park! Lead by their fearless and energetic leader, Jeannie, they covered the vigil in front of Planned Parenthood ALL DAY, from 7am till 7pm! Jeannie actually stayed the entire 12 hours! I am inspired by her and by all of those who stood out in the bitter cold today!
The Gospel today speaks about fasting, and the connection it has to MOURNING. Jesus said, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast.” Matt. 9:14-15
So I was thinking about the way we mourn…how we show our sorrow when someone dies. My mother-in-law died a couple weeks ago (thank you to all who sent cards…my husband was SO touched!) During her month-long illness, he basically dropped everything and took care of her until she passed away. A construction job he had begun before she got sick just had to wait. During the two-day viewing, many people re-arranged their schedules to make time to come to the funeral home and to the funeral. Relatives traveled hundreds of miles. People missed work…some had to stay in hotels and spend money that they didn’t plan on spending.
Why am I writing about this to you? Because death doesn’t always happen when it is CONVENIENT. When it comes, we drop everything! We change our schedules…we miss other important things so we can show our support to the family…we inconvenience ourselves!
If we only witness at abortion clinics when it is warm and sunny…(maybe on Saturday afternoons when we have some free time and nothing else scheduled), how is that mourning? Jesus said we would FAST when we mourn. Fasting is a sacrifice, it is a small suffering.
3,198 unborn children were killed behind the doors of Planned Parenthood at 933 Liberty Avenue in 2015.
So when we mourn the loss of these precious lives at Planned Parenthood, we are sacrificing and we are suffering. What a beautiful example of true love and mourning Jeannie and the folks from St. Thomas More Church gave to our city today!
Early bird shift:
Mid-day on the sidewalk:
Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes to all that came our way today!
We kicked off the bitter morning with the 40 Day faithfuls: Al and Sally and marvelous Marion. Bob from St. Thomas More began our day’s attendees. We gathered in prayer and God provided the MOST BEAUTIFUL blue sky with a perfect slice of sunshine angled between buildings. It was 10 minutes of splendor and one more sign of Him watching.
Midmorning clouded up and the wind began to kick up— STM prayer warriors had great support from sidewalk advocates Kathy and Peggy. We welcomed 2 first time participants today—WELCOME to The FAMILY, Marilyn and Matt. We were also gifted with the presence of teen Kathryn whose sister works in sidewalk advocacy . What blessings!
The later group of STM prayer partners, Karen, Carolyn, and Terry were joined by Walt from Washington and Tim from Mt. Lebanon. We broke out more of the handwarmers as the wind kicked up and the mercury dropped. The huddled prayer circle warmed us all a bit!
The students from CAPA are always a joy to watch and today, many of them were still reacting to the return of our fetal models to the sidewalk for this vigil session—they really do LOOK at them. What an education!
Headed toward evening we were joined by first-timer Matt. This 20-something year old saw a bulletin announcement, heard a reminder, and decided to JOIN US on the sidewalk. What a WONDERFUL person he is, and we are looking forward to him stopping in another time…. Be on the lookout!