Day 10…Thanks to St. Matthew Parish & 40 Days Team & Volunteers!

One cannot go through the season of Lent without being made aware of the Passion of Jesus- the scourging at the pillar, the crown of thorns, the mocking by the soldiers, the carrying of the cross on the road to Calvary, and the nailing of His hands and feet to the cross.  His willingness to take on humanity’s sins- yours, mine, everyone who has lived.

His burden was great, ours not so much.  We are asked to take up His cross daily, to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.  One of the ways we can do that is to bear witness on Liberty Avenue that all Life is God-given, sacred, and begins at conception.   

During the Spring Campaign, we take up His cross, one hour at a time, to be His hands and feet on the sidewalk, to try and save the little lives in the womb from destruction.  We stand, pray, and counsel pregnant women with a “passion” for them and their pre-born child.  Numerous free services are available in the local area to help women with a crisis pregnancy, ultrasounds, housing, clothing, and adoption services.  Local pregnancy resource centers are ready and more-than-willing to “walk the walk” of life-giving care for the pregnant mom and her child.  And the care doesn’t stop after the child is born.

“If anyone wants to come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me.  For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.” 

Matthew 16:23-24

The sun was out, so that certainly helped. There also was very little foot traffic, however it was very noisy because of the trucks and buses, more so than normal.


My sidewalk companions this morning  were Larry, Randy, and Mark.  Bill H. stopped by to ask for prayer.  Toward the end of my shift Brian and Terry showed up to pray and Jericho walk.

Mostly slow morning for clients during my first hour.  Activity increased during second hour with clients arriving and leaving pp.  One or two clients accepted resources.  One of the women who did was “T.” She is considered to have a high risk pregnancy so I gave her the brochure and showed her the number to call.  She thanked me before entering building. Not sure what her decision would be if her pregnancy is intact.  Praying for her.

Another interaction I had was with a male passersby I’ll call Andy.   Andy gladly accepted resources that I was passing out and told me that he was conceived from rape. He shared that during his youth, he was angry about the incident and felt he was to blame.  He fell into addiction for many years and is now rehabilitated and finds support from others’ testimonies and God. I also shared briefly with him about Ryan Baumgartner and his website. 


Planned Barrenhood was sadly busy today, with many victims passing through its dreadful doors.  Especially worrisome were a  young girl who looked very sad to be brought there by an older woman and a couple who appeared as though they could be a trafficker and his victim.  We offered material help and pleas for mercy but with no apparent success.

Our best sidewalk counselor, Katie, was home today recovering from flu. Brian came to pray a fervent Rosary, while also calling out kindly offers of help.  Arlene from St. Joseph the Worker Parish prayed sweetly and lovingly, taking time out to converse at length with a young woman who stopped to encourage us but also may have needed to share from her own life-journey with such an obviously kind soul as Arlene!  Beverly  handed out literature to passers-by and those going in and out of the death mill.

Soon Donna, Fran, Bernadette, and a nice, prayerful group showed up for the next shift.  Like Beverly, Donna came armed with DIAPERS!!  This is a great idea!  If you have the means to do so, please consider bringing diapers, pull-ups, or baby wipes the next time you come out to the sidewalk.  Your 40Days shift manager will know where to take them.  These supplies (especially in larger sizes) are needed badly by Catholic Charities and the great local pregnancy help centers, as well as by Gift of Mary (Divine Mercy Parish’s new ministry to abused and/or homeless women and their children).  Maybe ask your fellow church members to donate supplies too!


Beautiful day in Pittsburgh with faithful friends. Fran, Bernadette, Mary Ann, Frank & Bob. We were also joined by a beautiful family, Nicole, Bill and their girls from Lady of the Lakes. Fran prayed and our St. Matthew friends prayed the rosary and a Chaplet. Information was given to many passersby and one going into PP and one coming out. I had a great conversation with the young girl who came out. She was sweet and had a tattoo of 333 above her eye. She said it meant angels. I had a conversation with Glynn, the security guard. It was a continuation from another time. He knew that I believe abortion was murder  and he said he thought it was something else. I asked him what that was and he said “necessary “. I asked why and he said in the event of rape. I asked, “what about those that were conceived by rape that are living now and why would you perform a violent act when one was already committed?”

He went back in after smoking. Fran was deep in conversation with a passerby. She started coughing and I walked over and gave her my water. It was a great conversation with”L”. He was asking us questions, why we come and talking about Margaret Sanger and the eugenics movement and how the black community was a target. He wants to get involved and reach people with the truth. We gave him resource brochures, a 40 brochure with the Pittsburgh information, a 40 DFL bracelet and a little 10 week baby feet. We prayed for him

and thanked him for stopping. We were blessed on the sidewalk today. To God be the glory!

Bernadette & Donna
A beautiful family makes a wonderful witness for life! Thanks to Nicole, Bill and their girls for coming to pray!

While it was great to have such nice weather in February, that better weather increases the number of people who are “not fully there” stopping to visit and “converse.”  That said, it was really nice to be able to get to know Barb and to hear a bit of her story.  Val, Mike, and I all left inspired by her willingness to follow the Holy Spirt in spite of the many obstacles placed in her way.

Thanks to the 3-5 crew, Pat, Barb, Mike & Val!

7 thoughts on “Day 10…Thanks to St. Matthew Parish & 40 Days Team & Volunteers!”

      1. I’ve never seen it, to be fair. I was always a little naturally wary of it. But I’ve been reading articles like this one recently that make convincing arguments that it could be dangerous to a Catholic’s faith. There’s a reason why Holy Mother Church has always portrayed Christ in the dignified, Kingly manner that She does, and not a joking, jovial buddy. Of course He laughed, but that’s not what God in the Gospels or the Church in Her wisdom saw fit to reveal to us. When we become more familiar with someone we once held up in high regard, and I don’t mean familiar in the sense of being accustomed to them, but too… informal, I guess I should say, we always, automatically, lose some of the awe that we once had for them. We have the opportunity to encounter the real Christ in the Eucharist. The real, living, Son of God. Why allow your relationship with Him to be clouded by another man’s likeness- an actor’s face and voice or a director’s “creative license” (a very anti-Catholic Protestant director I might add) both fallen humans like us. It can be hard to build a relationship with Jesus when you don’t see His Holy Face in the Host or audibly hear His voice speaking to you in adoration or after receiving. But a real relationship with the real Christ is worth the time and effort it takes to build it anyway

        (Hope that made at least some sense, considering I was up coughing literally all night last night!)

  1. Ditto everything Katie wrote. One of the things I have read about this show is how disrespectful it is of the Blessed Virgin. They quoted several parts of the show that were wrong regarding her virginity. They portrayed her as though she was like any other woman rather than the fact that she was Immaculately conceived and remained sinless her entire life. Another theme of discontent was, nothing in the series moves us to fear and revere the Word of God Incarnate, nothing convinces a viewer of His adorable Divine Nature. Portraying our Lord and Savior as “one of the guys” and His Blessed Mother as something less than what she is, is disrespectful at least but more like blasphemy.
    I have not seen any episodes of the show but have read a lot about it. Also, I saw the Christmas movie some years ago that apparently was very much like this TV show. I thought I walked into a production by Jack Chick while I sat in that theatre. From the opening scenes Our Lady is a disobedient and defiant young woman to her screaming in agony during labor, to her talking to a fortune teller on the way to Bethlehem. I wish if Hollywood would stay out of portraying Our Lord and His dear Mother. They have clearly demonstrated over many decades they hate everything about them.

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