40 Days for Life
Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD;
LORD, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
to my voice in supplication.
If you, O LORD, mark iniquities,
Lord, who can stand?
But with you is forgiveness,
that you may be revered.
I trust in the LORD;
my soul trusts in his word.
My soul waits for the LORD
more than sentinels wait for the dawn.
Sometimes we feel like this… like we are crying to God “out of the depths.”
In what circumstances might we find ourselves when we are crying out to God like this? Perhaps depression, disease, financial distress, job loss, death… and perhaps abortion. Perhaps the agony of the decision as a couple discerns whether or not to bring their baby to term. Perhaps the abortion worker who struggles with her conscience.
There are many reasons for us ALL.
That next verse in the above psalm says that God has mercy upon us for our iniquities. How does that even make sense? How is that fair? If I have sinned, I deserve punishment. But according to God, I also deserve mercy… part of which MAY BE a punishment. But if so, it is all for the good of our transformation. According to one dictionary, “mercy” is kindness that goes beyond what is fair.
The last verse above speaks of our TRUST in the Lord. Yes, our theme for this fall’s campaign. TRUST. It also says that “[our] soul waits for the Lord more than sentinels wait for the dawn.” Why does someone in darkness wait for the dawn with such longing? Because they will finally be able to see clearly. To SEE what the newness of the day has in store. To bring HOPE.
40 Days for Life exists to bring HOPE. By praying each day for an end to abortion, what does that do but bring people’s awareness to the POSSIBILITY that something BETTER than abortion exists?? May we continue to help one another (especially those on the sidewalk) OUT of the darkness and into the HOPE of TRUSTING in what our God has in store for us.
Shift Manager Reports
Here are two photos from the 7 to 9 shift. It was great to see Tom and Diane and Peg when I arrived at seven. Joe came with me today. We had a peaceful, prayerful shift. It did appear that Planned Parenthood was open for business; two single girls and one couple entered while I was there. Chuck and Judy arrived for the 9 to 11 shift.
We had a good day at our vigil today. Chuck and I held down the fort with a couple special visitors (Randy & Bill). During our shift, there were 2 couples who went into PP, and we tried to offer them information about free services, but they just ignored us and went inside. They did not come out of PP during our shift. There was another lady who came out and was waiting for someone. I approached her and gave her the card with the contact information for free services. I asked her if she was in PP for an abortion. She seemed shocked and laughed and said that she was not, in fact she had 5 children.
We had a couple passersby who made quiet negative remarks or rolled their eyes about our presence there; otherwise, all of our acquaintances were very positive. One gentleman walked by us, stopped and turned around and came back, took out his phone and showed us a picture of his beautiful daughter who was just born yesterday. He allowed us to pray a blessing over his new daughter and family, and to thank God for a beautiful little life. Another young man came by and looked at the baby models, and we were able to talk to him. He had no idea that PP did abortions. He took out his phone and showed us pics of his 8 month old nephew and said there was another nephew due to be born soon. We had the opportunity to pray with him as well and prayed a blessing upon his little nephews and their family. Another gentleman stopped by, seemed to be a little troubled, but commented that he would like to get involved in 40 Days for Life once he got his life settled. So we gave him the 40 Days brochure and had the opportunity to pray over him and ask God’s blessing to work out all situations in his life.
We had a lovely surprise that Randy K. stopped by during our shift to encourage us…and it was very encouraging and uplifting to us. Bill also stopped by and joined us and encouraged us as well with a testimony of healing. We are praying that God changes the atmosphere on that section of sidewalk. Today, we noticed so many more positive responses to our greetings to people as they passed by…and the 2 negative comments and 1 eye roll were not aggressive at all, but one was somewhat polite. Thanking God for His presence and praising Him for changing the atmosphere!
Thank you so much to all of the beautiful people who came to pray today during the 11-1 shift. Thank you, Judy and Chuck, who had the shift before me and got to meet my husband. Thank you for being the prayerful, Spirit-filled people you are!! Beth Ann, our faithful “non Shift Manager” (but she kinda is) was there, filled with charity and peace as usual. Thank you!! And the group from Holy Spirit and St. Nicholas was a joy to meet and pray with. Thank you to all!!
One scene struck me as I was preparing to leave. A man was talking to me and so I didn’t feel that I could call out to the couple entering the doors to PP at that moment. It made me so sad, for two reasons: first, when anyone enters those doors, my heart is saddened. We all know the dangers, the pressures, and the influences (demonic as well) that are present in that place. I wish to see NO ONE use their “services.” So that was sad to begin with.
But then what made it more profoundly sad to me was this. As the couple walked in, the man had his hand over the woman’s back, as though her were “helping” or “ushering” her in the door. It made me ill to see how a MAN- who should be protecting women- would do such a thing… leading her and their child right into the literal jaws of death. It made me angry- maybe for the first time in a long time on the sidewalk. Our men need to be standing up for women!! Please, any men who are reading this- please continue to be the wonderful witnesses for life that the Lord has called you to be…. and that includes protecting the women in your life.
One of the sad and terrible realities of some abortion days:
Please keep the woman in prayer who was taken by the ambulance. Thank you.
The Thursday 5-7 PM shift was prayerful and somewhat different. When I arrived at 5:00 PM, there was a lady taken out of Planned Parenthood on a stretcher and put into an ambulance. Please pray that all goes well with her while she is in the hospital. Please also pray for a man who was crying because his wife had an abortion years ago.
I would like to especially thank Dave from Oil City, Billy from Plum, Jim from St. Maurice, and Jane, Peggy, Sam, and the other faithful parishioners from St. Bernadette in Monroeville for their prayers and witness on behalf of unborn children and pregnant mothers in need. Let’s keep the prayers up while at the vigil, and not let any distractions keep us from praying the rosary and other prayers.
May God bless you and your families always!
We began this post with the Scripture passage that reads, “Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord….”
Pittsburgh may not be the largest city around, but there are lots of things going on here every day. For most people who were in our city today, they did not know that preborn babies were killed. And they did not know that a woman was taken away from an abortion facility in an ambulance.
But we cry to God “out of the depths.” We cry to Him for mercy. May we entrust our city and its families, its women, its children… to HIM.