Thursday, September 25, 2008

40 Days for Life: this year's campaign begins


Last year I got shingles out of the stress of trying to organize the calendar for the Delaware 40 Days for Life effort. This year I am a worker bee, not an organizer. This is the second year for 40 Days for Life, an ecumenical effort of prayer, fasting, and community outreach to bring an end to the scourge of abortion in the US.

Jesus spent 40 days wrestling with the devil in the desert. Moses spent 40 years wrangling the people of God through the desert. Let's spend 40 days in prayer and sacrifice, wrestling and wrangling in the desert of fear and hopelessness that chooses death by abortion over life with hope.

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DAY 2 INTENTION
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Pray for those who work in the abortion industry, and
for those who have repented of committing abortions
and have resolved to defend life.

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SCRIPTURE
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Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into
your hands I commit my spirit." When he had said
this, he breathed his last. The centurion, seeing
what had happened, praised God and said, "Surely this
was a righteous man."

-- Luke 23:46-47

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REFLECTION by Fr. Frank Pavone, Priests for Life
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"Those of us who have participated in the killing of
unborn children are the Centurions of today. We have
dropped our swords against the unborn child. Now we
must recognize the depth of our guilt and deal with
the ramifications... To revitalize our humanity we
need to forgive and be forgiven, to reconcile and be
healed."

These words come from a brochure of the Society of
Centurions, an organization for former abortion
providers. These words convey in a beautiful and
moving way what is happening across the nation as
hundreds of abortionists and their staff members
experience repentance, conversion, and healing.

How does this conversion begin? Dr. Philip Ney
writes, "The factors that changed their opinion on
performing abortions, in the following order of
frequency, were: evidence of the infant's humanity, a
spiritual experience, personal distress, evidence of
the mother's distress, scientific articles, being
accepted as a person, a personal relationship with a
pro-lifer, pro-life pickets." (The Centurion's
Pathway, p. 77).

The journey is not easy. But the Jesus who heals us
calls us to face the truth of what we've done, make
restitution where possible, and engage in the hard
work of mending relationships. Let's pray for the
Centurions; may their numbers increase!

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