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DAY 29: Courageous and charitable witness

March 17th, 2010 by admin

Outside abortion centers, faithful volunteers are praying for God to protect women and their babies from the tragedy that awaits inside. Inside these facilities, staffers are scrambling to find volunteers to shield their clients from people they refer to as “anti-life zealots,” who are peacefully standing in prayer.

It seems to be happening more during this current 40 Days for Life campaign than it has at any time in the past — and that’s a credit to the success of your prayerful efforts.

Nancy says she’s seen it at the 40 Days for Life vigil in Plattsburgh, New York.

Here’s a picture of volunteers praying in Plattsburgh:

“Planned Parenthood employees call in ‘escorts’ when they see us appear,” she said. “Escorts — in their minds — are needed to ’safely’ bring in the clients, as they feel the need to ‘protect’ them from the peaceful pro-life prayers! It’s quite a show on their part.”

Mary has seen it as well. When she went to take part in the 40 Days for Life vigil in Canton, Ohio recently, she and the other vigil participants “were joined by two young men carrying signs of hate.”

The men were trying to stand in the way of the people praying, all the while laughing and saying hateful things. “I told one young man that I would pray for him — but he didn’t seem to hear me or to care,” Mary said. “I tried to keep getting around them with my sign but they were relentless and it almost became a game — a circus act, if you will.”

Mary said it’s best to ignore protesters — just pray silently and “stand firm in the truth of what we are doing together — saving lives.”

Here’s a picture of 40 Days for Life volunteers in Canton:

At the 40 Days for Life vigil in Providence, Rhode Island, Joanne said a Planned Parenthood worker confronted a prayer volunteer who was carrying an “I regret my abortion” sign. The employee argued that this woman had no “right” to regret her abortion!

“The employee joined the escorts near me to ridicule her for having had eight children,” Joanne said, “even saying vulgar things against her motherhood.”

As the worker and the escorts continued to mock the woman with the sign, Joanne pulled her aside “to assure her that God was blessing her greatly.”

Just at that moment, one of the women that the escorts had been trying to “protect” came bursting out of the abortion center.

“It’s so scary in there,” she said. “This is the second time I’ve come for an abortion and couldn’t do it. I was in the room and on the table, and I couldn’t do it — so I left. Thank you for being here. God bless you!”

“What would we do without the courageous and charitable witness of faithful volunteers?” asked Joanne. “I am always awed to stand with you who are sent by the Lord for this work!”

Today’s devotional is from Fr. Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life.


We pray for the grace to be strong when others ridicule or oppose us.


Anyone who does not take up his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

–Luke 14:27

REFLECTION by Fr. Frank Pavone, Priests for Life

To stand up for what is right means we stand against what is wrong, and that means that those who love what is wrong will oppose us, just as they opposed Christ. Taking up the cross means we continue speaking and standing for the right even when that opposition comes.

We experience this, in particular, when we are out on the streets, where people are not expecting the pro-life message and where they did not go to hear it. We must remember to never take the opposition personally.

When people ridicule or yell at us, we might get a guilty feeling or be tempted to think we did something wrong. We did not.

The insults are not being hurled at us personally, but rather at the truth of what we are standing for, and at the demands of the moral law.

There are many who are trying to run away from those demands, or who have managed to tuck the abortion problem away into a distant corner of their minds where it can no longer disturb them.

By standing publicly for the cause of life, we have short-circuited that denial and frustrated those efforts to ignore the issue. Therefore, some will be angry, perhaps not fully realizing why.


Lord, thank you for the grace of being pro-life, and of standing strong when others may ridicule or oppose me.

During this 40 Day campaign, may your peace fill my soul, especially when I may endure the opposition of others, and may I become more like your crucified and risen Son. Amen.


To download today’s devotional as a formatted, printable PDF to share with friends:


Yours for Life,

David Bereit
National Director
40 Days for Life

PS: What’s new with 40 Days for Life in your city? Please share the good news by leaving a comment below.

14 Responses to “DAY 29: Courageous and charitable witness”

  1. Pat Says:

    I always hated the abortionists because of what they do to women and babies. I can’t go out there and pray for health reasons, but I find that praying along with you in the devotionals is very beneficial. I can talk to women online. But the benefit I’m getting from this is I find that I no longer hate abortionists; I just want Jesus to reach them sooner rather than later. This is a tremendous change for me.

  2. Dave Mattozzi Says:

    Let us all pray for an end to abortion in the world.

  3. Ted Kershaw Says:

    At Berwyn Heights in MD yesterday; during the 2 hours [10 till 12, only two women were admitted. Otherwise the door was locked. No escorts, just the occasional client and us. The Spanish gambit continues to work. This time French worked also on one girl. They light up when they find someone who speaks their language, Peace, Ted Kershaw

  4. Helen Albano Says:

    We pray outside of an abortion referral clinic as no abortion clinic is located in our county. Several time the workers have come out to take our pictures, even at times asking us. Has anyone else experienced this and would you know why they do this?

    I would assume they just want you to leave. Your presence raises questions among their clients, and that’s bad for business. If you’re on public property, you are certainly free to continue your prayers. Thanks and God bless!


  5. Anna Says:

    Matthew 25: 40
    ” The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’

    Lord, today we offer our prayer of praise and thanksgiving for
    hearing and answering our prayer for those future generations
    condemned to death by abortion.
    We give you thanks for those babies that have been saved and those that will be saved by our prayers. Help us to not grow weary of doing your will for the least
    among us.
    I ask this in the Holy name of Jesus. Amen.

  6. Ninek Says:

    I lost my child to abortion many years ago and have since developed a special fondness for people born in that year, that would have been my child’s friends. One such person posted on her web page that she “hated” those protesters outside the clinic. At first I was horrified that my young friend would post that, who had no idea what I’d been through, but I used it as an opportunity. I told her about my experience and how her mother and I had made such different, life changing choices at the same time in the past. Although she said her political position was unchanged, I’d like to think I planted a seed. I’d like to believe that she will turn this over in her heart and come to see things differently.



  8. Chris Says:

    Isaiah Chapter 49: 14 But Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me; my Lord has forgotten me.” 15 Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.
    This quote from today’s scripture reading says it all, The Lord knew even back then that this was going to be a battle(cross) for us to bear. We must kept praying to the Lord, which all of you are doing so very well. Remember, “He will never forget us”. God Bless you all for what you do.

  9. Sister Says:

    May Gad bless you all. I cannot go and pray in front of the clinic, but my prayers is with you. Once, I was a child sentenced for abortion – that’s what doctors wanted. My Mom got a big heart – she chose life.

  10. Gladys Brayer Says:

    Driving home from Mass yesterday I felt overwhelmed by sorrow for all the people suffering in the world..there is so much need for prayer and a return to God..for when mankind turns away from Him..calamity follows. While on the verge of tears I received an interior message from the Holy Spirit…”DON’T WORRY. I AM IN CONTROL.” And I suddenly realized it’s true..He IS in control, regardless of whatever happens in this world…and I’m so grateful that He is…my spirit lifted and I smiled. It’s such a privilege to pray for the unborn babies and their parents, mothers and fathers, to take part in the 40 Days for Life and the Tuesday of each week year round. Thanks to all who care and faithfull pray..whether as part of a large group or a single warrior! God bless us all!

  11. Gladys Brayer Says:

    Why is it when I leave a message..I am repeatedly told it is a duplicate..that I have left it before..because it isn’t true. Perhaps it’s best if I no longer attempt to share…this question is not for publication..but I would appreciate an answer. Thank you.

  12. Patricia Says:

    I am so thankful for this 40 days for life campaign. Today I have a son
    and grandson with me. My first child was aborted because my Italian Sicilian mother in law justified pushing me to have an abortion: “American women do those things.” I was told to read the newspaper, not the Bible and that
    I my husband could not afford another child. She spoke secretly at the church parking lot while my husband said that he would not love me if his mother didn’t. I was scared and thought I had to do what his mother said. I had no family support of my own. If only abortion had been illegal!!!!
    God bless this campaign and thank you all.

  13. Gina Bonjernoor Says:


    I forwarded an email a couple of days ago to family and friends and after that I was unscubscribed and wasn’t getting your wonderful messages of hope and saving! Please ,please, start sending them to me today. It is 6:25 a.m. in Michigan, where I live, and I know I would have gotten your email for today (March 18th) by now! I love to hear from you and Gods mercies and faithfulness!

    Thank you for all your continued perseverence. I appreciate you! God Bless you!

    Gina Bonjernoor

  14. Claudia Says:

    Today’s devotional/ reflection made me think of a comment made to me by my sister a few months back. She paid for my abortion and found the clinic for me and was my “support” and helped in the decision I ultimatly made. She let me know she was not sorry for helping me back then because it was the best thing for me at the time. I was very hurt at those words.. Had she not seen the pain and anguish I suffered for having aborted my baby? Well, almost immediatly I felt the tug at my heart(I know that it was the Holy Spirit) She isstill in denial… she has to justify the “help” she gave me… to do otherwise would be to admit that it was wrong. I was able to forgive her for her words and began to pray for her. I’m sharing this because many people who are pro choice or who HATE people praying infront of the clinics have been hurt by abortion themselves, by having had one, coerced someone, paid for one or been silent about it. These people also need our prayers. We need to pray for their hearts to be opened to the truth and that they allow the Holy Spirit to break down their walls of denial so that they can repent and be healed from the pain that abortion causes. So today I encourage all of us to remember these people daily in our prayers.
    God Bless!!!

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