Where have all the Christians gone???

I am not discouraged. I may sound like it, but I am not. The reason for this post is that I suspect that many Christians are discouraged and have decided to sit on the sidelines of the battle to end abortion. It used to be that we were able to fill over 75% of the 480 hours of our 40 Days for Life campaigns with church groups. To say that has dropped off would be an understatement. We are now three weeks away from our kick-off and we have only 80 hours filled, leaving 400 hours with only a shift manager and buddy on the sidewalk. How is this going to look to our city? Will it look like Christians care that 3,452 helpless pre-born babies were killed here last year? Where is the grief? Where is the repentance? If this was Ninevah, we would be weeping and putting on sack cloth and ash and asking God to forgive us! But no, this is not Ninevah. This is the United States of America, Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. Churches are mostly empty. Christians are discouraged. Christians are fearful. We scrape and struggle to make sure that two people are praying in front of those terrible doors for each hour that abortions are happening year-round…and we do the same for the 40 days except that we have to fill many more hours, from 7 am to 7 pm every day for 40 days. Thankfully there is a core group of committed Christians who make it possible for this to continue. But where are the churches? Why can’t a church adopt 2 or 4 hours out of 40, and gather a few people to come and pray?

In this very place where we stand, babies are being kept alive until their organs can be harvested for research, and then sent to the University of Pittsburgh. Their scalps are being grafted onto rodents in a “humanized mice” study. CLICK HERE to read about it and to see the photos. The very part of the baby that SHOULD have had the waters of baptism poured onto it is now growing on the back of a rat. What an abomination! If Christians won’t repent of this atrocity, who will???

Bottom line is this: WE NEED YOU ON THE SIDEWALK! We need you to be peaceful. We need you to be loving and gentle, but we need you to be there!

Here is what we need you to do:

If you are discouraged about this battle with the darkness, fear not! We have God on our side, and He will fight alongside of us! Some of our 40 Days for Life/Sidewalk Advocate team members got together at my home this past weekend for a time of much needed Christian, pro-life fellowship. I asked some of them to give a message to you, to encourage you as to why you should not give up the the pro-life activism, witness and prayers. This is what they had to say:

Some of our 40 Days for Life & Sidewalk Advocates gathered at my home this past Sunday for much needed fellowship!
Dean says that it is better to be there, than not to be there.Your presence is immeasurably important in ways that you do not see. If you’re not there, and the sidewalk is empty, there is no one there to be a light of hope. Satan wants to plant the idea in your mind that you are doing absolutely no good down there, but that is not true! There is plenty of times we will be discouraged, with the amount of rejection that we face down there, but try to pray through that!”
Lisa reminds us that the most important thing to remember about 40 Days for Life is that it is about PRAYER! “It is not protest. It is not confrontation, it is just prayer, which makes a huge difference on the sidewalk. Prayer is ALWAYS efficacious, it always does what it is meant to do. God always hears our prayers.”
Steve holds up the resource card that we hand out on the sidewalk and tells us,It is not important for us to know how many babies God has saved through our presence on the sidewalk. If we give 100 of these cards to abortion vulnerable women and men, and even one out of those hundred changes their mind…we never know it, but we have saved a child!” He reminds us that instead of “thinking big”…and thinking that we have to do something complicated, such as gathering a huge group of folks from our church…maybe it is better to do as St. Therese of Lisieux taught…and just do something small, with great love. We just need to be like a little child. Even a child could hand out these cards. Steve encourages us that, “Even if you are just having a bad day, come on down and pray. It will make you feel better that you did something loving for someone else.
Greg says, “To those who may be thinking about giving up and not coming to the sidewalk during these fall forty days, you can’t give up!” He reminds us that, “We are doing God’s work! God wants us there, it is Satan who doesn’t want us there. So, do you want to give in to Satan’s will, or do you want to overcome that battle, and join the good fight and be with us on the sidewalk? We may not save a baby every time, most of the time we fail. But our heart and our prayers are in that battle, and that is what God wants us to do! And we DO save lives! We have saved 5 to 10 babies for sure in the past two years, and twice that many turn-aways, so we are doing good work! We are letting people know that there are pro-life people in Pittsburgh, that people care and that people love life and that abortion is not the right thing, it is the wrong thing. It is a sin against God’s will. So come on down and join us! We need you! The more people that are there the stronger we are.
Katie encouraged us by reminding us that we have more babies saved than we realize. She said, “A woman came out recently and told her that she changed her mind, but if she hadn’t told us, we would have never known. Our presence may prick consciences and may soften hearts. Sometimes we are able to maintain relationships, have baby showers and stay in touch…but most of the time it is just that the person needed a little bit of help to change their mind. They may never tell us, but our presence there is important!” Katie also made the good point that even when we don’t save the baby, it is important that that baby has at least one person who “wants” them…to “welcome” them. Imagine being totally rejected by one’s own family, to the point that they take you to have you KILLED. There is no rejection greater that that. We are there so that those little one’s are not completely alone and unsupported.
Randy spoke about a recent sermon that he heard that encouraged him. The pastor spoke about the things going on now, such as abortion and other sins against God have happened in the past, and usually foretell the coming collapse of a society. It usually is a sign of increasing paganism, which sounds discouraging…but there is hope. He said, “It is like ancient Rome, which was converted by Christians. There will need to be a re-claiming of Christian society, even though it may get darker before the dawn…this has happened before. Paganism was conquered by Christ before, and it will happen again. There is hope!”
Dee’s advice was my favorite. I will quote her entirely; “St. Theresa of Avila said that ‘God plus one equals an Army!’ That means that the work isn’t our work, it’s God’s work. So, when we stand down there and pray, and hold signs, we are witnessing to God Himself. It is His life that we are witnessing to. So if we are praying and we don’t see anyone being saved, maybe someone in another city is being saved! Maybe that child at home is being saved! We don’t have to know. We just have to be God’s witnesses, and stand there and support each other in our prayer. Just remember St. Teresa of Avila, ‘God plus one equals an Army!'”

Finally, a reminder from Charlene:

The Remembrance for the Victims of Abortion will be Saturday, 9/18/2021 after Noon Mass at St.Paul’s Cathedral, Oakland    on the lawn by the Memorial. Fr. Kris Stubna, Presiding, Rain or Shine. Pray for those who could not pray for themselves!

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