Just When I Needed You Most…
I woke up at 4 am last Friday morning and couldn’t get back to sleep, so I decided to just have some extended prayer time. I ended up spending two hours listening to an audiobook entitled, “The Passion, as Dictated by Jesus to Catalina” (CLICK HERE FOR THE PDF). It seems that there is a woman in Bolivia to whom Jesus has been giving messages since the 1990’s. This book is an actual transcription of Jesus’ account of His Passion, from the Last Supper, the Garden of Gethsemane, his arrest and torture at the home of Caiaphas, his appearances before Herod and Pontius Pilate, his scourging, carrying of the cross and his crucifixion. It was very intense listening to it, but the part that made me cry the most was when Jesus described His feeling of total and utter abandonment in the Garden of Gethsemane. Here is a little excerpt from it:
“In spite of everything, the enormous burden and the dreadful fatigue, together with the sweat of Blood, I had been overwhelmed in such a way that when I went to look for My Apostles, I felt tremendously exhausted.”
“Peter, John, James! Where are you that I do not see you alert? Wake up! Look at My face! See how My body trembles with this confusion I experience! Why do you sleep? Wake up and pray with Me; for I have sweated blood for you!”
“Peter, my chosen disciple, do you not care about My Passion?…James, to you I have given so much preference, look at Me and remember Me! And you, John, why do you let yourself plunge into sleep with the others? You can bear more than they can…Do not sleep; keep watch and pray with Me!”
This is what I obtained: seeking comfort, I found bitter affliction. Not even they are with Me. Where else will I go? It is true; My Father gives Me only what I knew to ask of Him so that the judgment of all humanity would fall upon Me. My Father, help Me! You can do all; help Me!The Passion, as Dictated by Jesus to Catalina
As I thought of Jesus in his most desperate moment of need, and the way that his chosen disciples abandoned him in that moment…to leave him in his confusion and suffering without any human comfort or consolation, an old song came to mind. It was a one-hit wonder from the 70’s but I always liked it. Whenever I hear it from now on, it will have a new meaning for me. Do you remember it?
Of course, as always…my thoughts were led back to abortion…and how the tiniest of our brothers and sisters are abandoned in their most vulnerable moment…just as Jesus was. Just as Jesus was abandoned by his closest friends …these little ones are abandoned by the very people that they should expect to do just the opposite! Their own mothers and fathers…who should protect and defend them…hand them over to be killed. There is a passage from today’s first Mass reading that speaks to this:
But Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me; my Lord has forgotten me.” Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.”Isaiah 49: 14-15
The only reason that ANYONE can say they support abortion is because abortion is not seen. It is hidden. Even the abortionist does not see the child until it is already dead…and seeing a dead body does not elicit the same feelings of compassion as seeing a living human being struggling to survive does. I have often wished that it were possible for pro-abortion people to see a living fetus…outside of the womb; to actually hold one in their hands; to feel that tiny warm body move and struggle…to watch its heart beat. If that were possible, I would ask that pro-abortion person...as that tiny baby was in their hand...if they could kill it. Could they grab that little head between their thumb and index finger and crush it, as they might crush a bug? Could they themselves take a hold of the little arm or leg with their fingers, and twist them off, while the baby was still alive? Could they watch the baby quiver in pain and confusion as it bleeds out and dies?
If they could…I would argue that they would have to be a psychopath, on the same level as the Nazi doctors who did experimentation on Jewish concentration camp prisoners.
No…I believe that almost 100% of the world population would be pro-life if they could see a living, growing fetus outside of the womb. How much more would the child’s own mother and father reject abortion if they could see and hold their tiny baby!
These little ones are abandoned and rejected just like our Lord was. We are helpless to save them, but as Jesus wanted his friends to comfort him during his agony…not to save him…so we go to offer our consolation to those who are being killed. I believe they see us as they are being carried to Heaven, and they know they did not go through their agony alone.
We are now down to our final ten days of the campaign. I encourage you to come to the Garden of Gethsemane in front of Planned Parenthood. Offer comfort and consolation in your prayers for those being led to the slaughter. Offer hope and love to those who do not know what it is that they are doing. Maybe one of them will see you and that will be enough to convince them that their child is worth saving. Be there when they need you the most.
Read on for today’s shift reports:
7-9 am – Mark & Claudia
What a difference a week can make in Pittsburgh. Anton, Claudia, Pete and I enjoyed the warmer weather outside (we missed you Cathy!) Unfortunately, there seemed to be more than usual staff and volunteers going in this morning, in addition to several women. We prayed for each person that entered and entrusted them to our Lord. Lord have mercy.Mark
9-11am – Dean & Nikki
It was so nice to have warmer weather! Sadly there were many abortion-bound couples entering the doors of Planned Parenthood. It was sad to see a teenage girl entering with her father and bewildered boyfriend, who told me that he had no say in the matter. Another very young teenager entered with her mom. I pleaded with her, telling her how much joy my grandkids bring to my life. Our offers of help went unheeded, sadly. Although one couple did exit the clinic too early to have had a surgical abortion. Although they gave us no indication that they had changed their minds, I saw the man tenderly rubbing his girlfriend’s back as they walked toward the parking garage. Could this have been a saved life? Or will they be back another day? We will likely never know. We did all that we could do. On an interesting note, Pittsburgh’s Homeland Security Office of Emergency Management went into Planned Parenthood (three officers) and stood in the entry way for a long time, speaking with Planned Parenthood staff. They eventually went upstairs and had not left when I ended my shift at 11. Something must be up…are we being targeted for our peaceful prayers?Nikki
11 am – 1 pm – Maggie
We were blessed with some wonderful, humble, and stalwart prayer warriors from St. Agnes and Raphael the Archangel churches today!
How beautiful did their gentle but steady prayers sound juxtaposed against the occasional hate-filled rhetoric and vulgar curses screamed out by sadly ignorant and angry people, who, unbeknownst by them, we care about too!
By God’s grace, I was able to speak with at least three people who were involved in abortions today. Of course, our most fervent prayer is to be able to help save the lives of the unborn and help women and men find help and the grace to save the life of their children. But we must also be ready to extend mercy and help to those who’ve bought the lie and made that deadly decision. Painful as it is, we must still offer to help them carry their cross.
One very sad young man who was waiting for his girlfriend to come out he seemed so troubled and broken-hearted. I was able to briefly speak with him and gave him some literature about resources for post abortion, counseling, and healing, which he took and thanked me for.
Another woman waited inside the building with her mask on, holding a blue barf bag after her procedure. When her Uber came, she walked out, and I offered her some literature so she also knows there are genuinely caring people (post PP) who offer love and help to heal after such a terrible decision and ordeal. I actually walked across the street with her because she looked shaky.
Another couple, who came out after a few hours with a brown bag, did take the abortion reversal information, and some resources and a bag of snacks. The two seemed disoriented and in a sort of state of shock.
That’s why we are down there—not to judge the souls–we judge abortion rightly as a taking of an innocent human life , a terrible terrible thing– but we also extend prayers, love and the offering of resources, for those will have to live with this decision for the rest of their lives. As Pro Lifers, it is heartbreaking to see young women and men going into that deceitful death mill. To see the Brinks truck come up to take their money bag out of that place turns our stomachs.
Planned Parenthood degrades human life, born and unborn. Yet we keep in mind that each person is made in the image and likeness of God, and has an inestimable worth, although so many in our culture are blinded by hardened hearts. So we must take the long view. Love these souls going past us who may hate us at the moment, not understanding.
Pray to love them as Christ loves them. So that, by God’s grace, some find their way out of the darkness and recover their dignity and respect for life. Maybe even joining us one day, praying and peaceably fighting for the right to life!Maggie
1-3 pm – Chris & Judy Z
I was joined by a great group of prayer warriors today: Arlene and Laura from St. John the Worker parish and Susan, Joan, and Walt from St. Raphael the Archangel parish. A little later we were joined by Al from St. Raphael the Archangel parish, who brought copies of the Rosary for Life for all of us. What a beautiful, focused, Rosary we prayed for the Unborn. Shift Buddy Judy was ever-vigilant, trying her best to hand potentially life-saving information to PP clients and passersby. Bernie, from St. John the Worker parish, prayed the Rosary on the other side of the arc. One of the treats of the day was to see Joan’s “holy socks,” worn especially today. A passerby said to us, “Why don’t you adopt some?” When I got home, I googled, “How many people in the U.S. are waiting to adopt children?” The answer was, “There are no national statistics on how many people are waiting to adopt, but experts estimate it is somewhere between one and two million couples.” Huh, I wonder why there is a shortage of children, including babies, to adopt?Chris
3-5 pm – Eileen, Larry & Steve
It was a very good day at Planned Parenthood today. Only one or two women came out, other than employees. We were visited by at least four very friendly people. The first was a young man who asked us if we had a chain for his medals. He had a crucifix, and a miraculous medal. He appeared to be homeless. He had a chain, but it was broken. We were able to fix his chain, but it didn’t have a clasp, and we told him we could put it on for him, but he wouldn’t be able to take it off. He said that’s the way he wanted it. He didn’t want to take it off. So we fixed the chain around his neck. He thanked us and went on his way. Then another young lady was walking past Planned Parenthood, she stopped and looked at the front door. I thought she might’ve been going in, but she turned and walked towards us, and she said I have to tell you I really agree with you people. She said her mother raised her not to believe in abortion. She said she had four children early in her life and her mother helped raise them. She said all her kids turned out good. She said keep up the good work. She left us with a big smile. Then there was a guy working in what used to be the bar next-door to Planned Parenthood. He came out and said almost the same thing as the young lady, and told us to keep up the good work. He asked us who’s birthday it was today, turned out it was Pat Robertson‘s birthday today. He said Pat Robertson was 93 years old. Then we had a delivery truck drive-by, gave us a couple toots on the horn and a thumbs up. Then there was a gentleman from Butler, PA, who was running to catch his bus to New Castle. He said you guys are true warriors and God bless you. We invited him to come pray with 40 Days for Life at some point, and he said it was pretty tough living in Butler, and commuting by bus. In all it was a very encouraging day, and we were blessed to be able to pray the rosary, the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, and the prayers on back of one of the picture cards, for the mothers and little souls under our care and concern.Larry