Today, 40 Days for Life kicks off its next prayer vigil. This pro-life movement started in College Station, Texas and has grown to be an international force. It aims to bring an end to abortion through peaceful prayer out on the sidewalks in front of abortion clinics. The results of this powerful movement are staggering:
- Reports document 4,313 lives that have been spared from abortion — and those are just the ones we know about
- 53 abortion workers have quit their jobs and walked away from the abortion industry
- 16 abortion facilities completely shut down following local 40 Days for Life campaigns
The most famous abortion worker conversion, of course, is Abby Johnson who was once Planned Parenthood’s employee of the year. I recently had the privilege of sidewalk counseling along side her in Austin and she has a moving story to share with both women and abortion workers entering the abortion facility. She attributes her conversion to 40 Days for Life.
I’d like to share a turnaround story with you that I was involved in this time last year. It was the 2nd day of our 40 Days for Life prayer vigil:
I was praying outside one of the abortion clinics in South Austin when I spotted a woman sitting in her car in the parking lot. I presumed that she was waiting for someone. Still, something told me to approach her. I walked over to her car and waved for her to come out of the car. She obliged and began to speak to me in Spanish.
She tells me her name is Areli and she is not waiting for anyone. She was sitting in the parking lot thinking about what to do. She is pregnant, has other kids and has financial problems. The father of the new baby doesn’t want to be involved. She has an appointment for the abortion the following day. I tell her in my broken Spanish that she doesn’t have to abort her baby and that there are places that can help her. I call a Spanish speaking sidewalk counselor and he takes it from there. After an emotional phone call, the woman agrees to go to a pregnancy resource center, which she does the following day. I lost track of her after that but I’m hopeful she continued her pregnancy and is enjoying her new baby, who should be about 6 months old now.
I have no special skills. I’m just a working mom with a heart for life. I simply show up and let the Spirit do His thing. Each of us can make a difference. So, I ask you to think about praying at a 40 Days for Life vigil. Perhaps you can’t commit to a recurring prayer hour, – just think about praying for one hour on one day during the prayer campaign. You can go here for more information and to view locations across the United States.
“When the time comes, as it surely will, when we face that awesome moment, the final judgment, I’ve often thought, as Fulton Sheen wrote, that it is a terrible moment of loneliness. You have no advocates, you are there alone standing before God — and a terror will rip your soul like nothing you can imagine.
But I really think that those in the pro-life movement will not be alone. I think there’ll be a chorus of voices that have never been heard in this world but are heard beautifully and clearly in the next world — and they will plead for everyone who has been in this movement. They will say to God, ‘Spare him, because he loved us!'” ~Congressman Henry Hyde