When Jesus met the Samaritan woman at the well, He challenged her to change. I wonder if she thought she COULD. But the important thing is that HE knew she could. And thus, His challenge. She did not run in anger and humiliation. Instead, she not only accepted His challenge, but she left her water jar and ran to tell everyone about Jesus.
Jesus challenged many other people in Scripture. He often challenged them to stop sinning and to change their lives. He does that continually to us as well. And He also does that for those women and men who choose abortion. He does not delight in the destruction of these little ones. But He does want their parents to repent- to change- to come back to Him.
Today’s first liturgical reading from Romans tells us a little about this, in this passage below:
Brothers and sisters:
I am speaking in human terms because of the weakness of your nature.
For just as you presented the parts of your bodies as slaves to impurity
and to lawlessness for lawlessness,
so now present them as slaves to righteousness for sanctification.
The image above depicts the Prodigal Son, returning home to his father after turning His life back to the Lord. The image shows on the scroll the words the father speaks to his son in that parable. “My son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.” There are times- like when a couple chooses to kill their child- that they are dead in their sin. They are so lost. But what a merciful God we serve. He does not want us to stay dead or lost. He knows that we can come to life again, and we can be found.
Let us pray for those who are dead or lost in their sin. May they know that the Lord loves them and desires them. May they turn back to Him and seek His mercy and forgiveness.
Reports from the Sidewalk:
I have always felt that Diane and Tom have an exceptional work ethic. Today I learned that they monitor the weather forecast daily (I was admiring Diane’s app) so they know when to take extra steps to secure and protect the displays and materials from the wind and rain ~ as is predicted for this afternoon (hopefully the forecast will be wrong.)
Before the sun came up, Anthony and three members of the Manordale Knights of Columbus: Vito, Dennis and David, joined shift buddy Peggy and me on the sidewalk for a morning of prayer. The morning was mostly pleasant with only employees entering through the doors of the abortuary.
Mid-shift, a young woman approached Peggy and said that she would like to make a donation. She shared with us that she is a lawyer from the Philadelphia area and she is in Pittsburgh for the day, and that she very much supports and appreciates what we do. We thanked her and offered a brochure with information about 40 Days for Life Pittsburgh, and suggested that she look at the blog. It is wonderful how pro-life believers bond so easily… blessings from the Holy Spirit.
Lincoln Place Nazarene had the 9 AM shift with Pastor Joe and Judy and Meredith. We were joined for a while by Bill and then Judy from St. Paul stopped by to say the rosary.
At the beginning of our shift, it was quiet, with basically no one going in for services. Then about halfway through our shift a couple ladies went in at different times, but we assumed they were going in for other services. They were not interested in receiving any information for free services.
It was a peaceful shift and we had a few passersby who were encouraging to us.
I never cease to be amazed at what the Lord can do with little people like us. As usual, I am beyond grateful for our little band of humble prayer warriors today. Thank you to Beth Ann, Barbara, Johanna, Bob, and George. I am also grateful for Andr`es, a man from Mexico who stopped by. He is visiting friends in PA, and he saw me with my rosary and stopped to ask about 40 DFL and shared that he was also a Catholic, and is going to look into 40 DFL campaigns in his area.
One thing that stood out to me in praying the Liturgy of the Hours (midday prayer) while on the sidewalk is from Psalm 25: “He guides the humble in the right path.” I was struck by how when we are humble, it allows the Lord to truly be in charge of our lives– and of course, if we let Him take that role, He will inevitably guide us in the right path. Many things are amiss in the world today, but we can be humble and LET THE LORD LEAD.
Cecilia and Carolyn:
We had a very beautiful day at the vigil. Father Jim led us in three Rosaries. Most people were very gracious. We had one young man give us $20 for our cause. We had a woman ask about pap smears, and Cecilia was gracious and gave her information. Also we had a pretty young girl ask about adoption options and that information was also given to her. So we had a good day, and lots of people thanked us for what we were doing. We’re hoping and praying that God will bless us and get Planned Parenthood out of there, and get something good in that building.
Regis and I were joined for both hours by Barb and Christine from Mother of Sorrows Parish. The weather was good for the first hour, then the floodgates opened. Barb ministered and gave materials to a young girl who came out while we were praying the Rosary. She looked like a lost soul. She took the materials and sat with her boyfriend in the car for several minutes. The rest of the Rosary was offered specifically for her while Barb prayed the last mystery with hand outstretched in prayer over the car. As today’s Psalm reads, ‘Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.’ May we live with hope that our Good God can take what is intended for evil and produce good: changing hearts and minds and saving lives and souls.
May we always trust in the Lord’s mercy and love for us.
When we sin, let us humbly return to Him.