Pat M. is our blogger for Saturdays.
The reflection is his. The stories are yours!
Nobody likes fasting. And yet, some still manage to do it better than others.
Hello. I am one of the others.
For as long as I can remember, my fasting for these 40 Days for Life campaigns have consisted of giving up something teeny-tiny the first week, and then adding another teeny-tiny fasting to it the next week, until I’ve built-up to four or five very small sacrifices which I then continue on until the end of the campaign. I knew that it wasn’t much, but, being realistic, I kind of knew that this was just about all I had the strength to give. I also knew that something is infinitely greater than nothing and that at least I was able to give God something that He could use.
I guess it was about six weeks ago that I started thinking about how I would approach my fasting for this campaign. Would I do it in the same way once again? I think this very questioning must have left a spiritual window open. Right away I sensed God telling me that, well, perhaps I could do more this time around. Immediately, and without any hint of anxiety (praise God), my mind came up with a handful of possible sacrifices I could offer which had a little more bite to them. None of them huge, of course, but all clearly above the teeny-tiny level.
As the weeks went by, I continued to meditate and pray about this until I came up with something that feels right, something at the appropriate level of difficulty for where I am at this point in my life and my spiritual development. So for me…
…there won’t be any watching of sports until November 6.
While you may have been sleeping, Tim took the early shift! 7 am- 9am:
What a beautiful morning. The teams from St Elizabeth of Hungary and St Anne’s arrived early while it was still a starlit night and began praying almost immediately. I’ve heard that our presence and prayers have a devastating effect inside the clinic, but now I know for sure. Shortly after our prayers began, the alarm went off inside the dark abortion center and continued for about 10 minutes. The demons of darkness were in disarray. I loved every moment. Then the security company arrived and shut it off, but not before invigorating the prayer warriors, or at least me.
The sun came out and more joined us including a mom and her son. How wonderful to have young people involved.
The year round Saturday morning regulars were pleased to have so many join us in prayer in witness. I was asked about the traffic going into the abortion center and thought it might be lighter than usual. I had read this week that “no shows” go up to 75% where pro life people are witnessing outside. So, I have to think we had a powerful effect.
As I was being relieved as Shift Manager, two big groups were coming to continue the vigil. God bless them all and you.
(not pictured) Chuck, aged 39!, came down to do his Jericho Walk. His daughter and son in law have been helping out the flood victims in Texas.
Sue M. works the 9 am to 11 am shift:
I arrived to a packed sidewalk this morning! It was wonderful to see so many pray-ers, especially considering the number of PP escorts today. It seemed like the largest amount of escorts I’ve ever seen. I am on the sidewalk most Saturday mornings year-’round (as a Sidewalk Advocate), and it seemed to me that PP was busier this morning than it has been in a long time on Saturday mornings. But prayer was in abundance. A group, largely from St. Elizabeth of Hungary, along with some others, prayed the Rosary, the Divine Mercy Chaplet, and other prayers aloud on the side in front of the yellow building ….. and a sizeable group of students from Grove City College covered the other side, as well as across the street. Vocal prayer, silent prayer, singing. One student knelt in prayer for quite some time. No passer-by had a doubt as to our mission. Thank you, fellow servants, for a job well attended-to this morning, and for bringing the Holy Spirit to that dark place!
Marian had the 11 am to 1 pm shift: ( cross over shifts as some witnesses stayed through parts of the 9 am- 1 pm shifts.
When emails go out, people respond. Tracy came down to the vigil site in response to the email sent out for the 11 am to 1 pm shift. She made the trip to town from Butler. Mary and her husband, Frank, came in from Punxsutawney, Pa. Mary’s birthday is today. She actually requested to spend part of her birthday witnessing for life with us.
Saturday is an abortion day, so the traffic in and out of PP doors are always busy. Today was steady. Judy, our Saturday morning Sidewalk Advocate was speaking with PP clients and offering information for help. Sue M. stayed after shift managing the 9 am to 11 am time and put on her Sidewalk Advocate hat from 11 to 1. The Rocco family stopped by to pray the Divine Mercy prayer.
You know when we get yelled at– why don’t you adopt? Well, we know Nikki and George can answer “We did.” to that question. Today, one of the young woman from Grove City College told us that she has an adopted sister whose biological mother found an adoption website after having received rude treatment by two abortion facilities. The baby was the biological mother’s eighth child. This college student’s family is waiting to hear of a second adoption. The student gave me permission to write this on the blog and she will be sending me her testimony also about her family.
Miracles do happen.
Death does not take a holiday at 933 Liberty Avenue. Even when their doors are shut and the lights are out, their websites and advertising campaigns are still working to deceive. Thanks to all who came today to pray and witness to the truth.
We know our presence is seen from the responses, positive and negative, which we receive.
Dean battled traffic and detours to make it to the 1 pm – 3 pm shift.
It was inspiring and encouraging to be back on the sidewalk. Thank you to prayer warriors Bill, Mike and John, who prayed with me this afternoon. It was fairly quiet with not much traffic at P.P.
Kathy K. wears hats as nurse, counselor, grandma, Sidewalk Advocate for Life
and shift manager- Saturdays 3-5!
Teachable moments!! I happened to stop by when Kathy’s group was answering some challenging questions. Wow… one very brave young man told it like it is and one astute young woman drew Kathy’s attention to the woman. Do you know the question– what do you do for people— well Kathy does it!!
Thumbs up to great group! Lots of energy and enthusiasm!
This shift was blessed with students from Aquinas Academy, 2 coaches and a Dad. Prayers and singing passed time quickly . Their singing was so beautiful I thought of the Sound of Music .
Challenged by a woman passing by who asked: “What were we doing to prevent men from raping a woman, leading her to abort?”
She did not like answers that were given , twisting their meaning as she repeated them. She said we make her mad.
After she left, we reflected on:
1. Holy Spirit giving right words at right moment.
2. Courage to answer
3. How people will twist what we say.
God teaches us in many ways.
Please note: children must be accompanied with an adult and their photos will not be put on the blog without verbal permission from the adult in charge of the group or parent.
Jeff B. manages tonight’s shift from 5 pm to 7 pm.
He also substitutes for shift managers.
Nadine, who is pictured with Kathy K. above, is from Madonna De Costello parish in Swissvale. Nadine pays attention to the emails and comes when the call is put forth for prayer warriors. She is also a reader of The Word at her parish.