Game changer? I think not. Congress has clearly demonstrated that they can write law after law after law but still fail to obliterate the abortion/choice law. (Which is really bad law, by the way). I'm not saying that we should not be incrementally savvy--just look at what some fantastic legislation has done here in Arizona recently for the rights of the unborn. That is an extraordinary example of being legislatively "wise as serpents & as gentle as doves". At the end of the day, though, abortion law change does not happen with the legislative branch of government.
I personally believe that there will be an end to legalized abortion in my lifetime. It will take not an act of congress but an action of the Supreme Court....an overturning of Roe V. Wade. And I am confident that we are inching ever closer to this showdown with each passing year. Once it is overturned, it will pass to the state level where each state will enact its own "Life Legislation" etc. etc. That's at least my view.
So what do we do in the meantime? (& yes, it's a pretty mean time) We don't give up hope! We do what we can do, where we can do it and with the capacity that God gives us to do it, whenever possible. Is there an abortion clinic in your neighborhood? Organize a prayer vigil at it. Write letters to the local establishments that surround it. Tell them that you are uncomfortable with there being an abortion clinic right next to your a) dry cleaner b) veterinarian c) pizza parlor d) Walgreens e) grocery store. Send letters of abortion testimonies to the clinic and include the fabulous turnarounds by doctors who used to be a part of the abortion industry (www.silentnomoreawareness.org).
And you can do what Jim & Linda from my parish just did: They took their teen Religious education class out our local abortuary - Planned Parenhood Thunderbird - and prayed the rosary. A rosary field trip! Not only did they pray, but the EDUCATED the young people about the culture of life. These teens are the next generation of doctors, lawyers, legislators, justices. These are future parents, voters, teachers and humanitarians. These will be the torch bearers of the next generation entrusted with the sacred duties which have been so unscrupulously lost on my generation. I have great hope in them. (And I tell them so!)
Below, please enjoy their eye-witness accounts and commentaries on their experiences & especially the miracle at the end. And if you know of any other Jim and Lindas in your neighborhood, say a pray for them. They don't wear any noticeable armor, but they are warriors just the same.
(Reprinted with their permission)
Jim & Linda Ward
Sacramental Preparation Class/St. Joan of Arc
High School Students
Some of the teens in the High School Sacramental Preparation Class at St. Joan of Arc Roman Catholic Church in Phoenix, chose for their “Community Service Project” to attend a class on “How to help an abortion-bound woman make a life-affirming choice” held on a Saturday morning at St. Joan of Arc. Some others who were not able to make it to the class held a “baby shower” with gifts to be donated to Maggie’s Place; and a combination of these young adults came to pray in front of an abortion mill on a Friday afternoon after school! What you will see below is an exact transcript of some of their thoughts on this life-saving community service project!
“From the moment we set foot on the property, a feeling of despair seemed to fill the air. It was as though everyone knew there was something wrong, but no one wanted to say it. Everyone going into and coming out of, or even going by the “clinic” seemed rather bitter about the place, and seemed ready to lash out at anyone who went too close. The instant we began praying, we began to receive strange looks from people in adjacent buildings. (Let it be noted that the Planned Parenthood building had blurred windows, highly contrasting the clear glass of all the other stores on the property, as though to hid something!) As we prayed, we got stares that made it very clear that we were not to feel welcome in this place. After one mystery (of the Rosary), a worker walked out and threatened to call the police, because it seemed that we were to be as far from the place as they could legally make us. We moved to the sidewalk and continued to pray, and as we were moving, two girls going by in a car, yelled about how the teachers should be ashamed for taking “children who don’t even know what’s going on.” This struck me as both insulting and hypocritical because they were referring to us as “children” when we are already 15; and hypocritical because then they say “children who don’t know what’s going on,” my first thought was of children still in the womb, who are killed without any reason besides convenience. When I’d heard all the stories of pure hatred emanating from abortion clinics, I thought they were exaggerating, but I was wrong. These “clinics” are the very embodiment of ignorance and hatred.” Ivan Garcia
“Last week on Friday, a group of kids from my Sacraments class and I prayed outside an abortion clinic. That experience made me realize why it is wrong to have abortions, and although many people shouted comments to us about how we were wrong, I realized that people like to believe they are right, and so they try to shut off God, and in that process they commit many sins, such as abortion, because they aren’t aware of the truth of God. It also made me realize the importance of saying the Rosary because many abortion clinics have closed after people have said the Rosary, and because of that I realized the importance of praying the Rosary. As a result of this experience, I will be saying the Rosary more often as well as praying to end abortion. Before this experience, I thought abortion was OK, but after actually praying to end it and seeing how the girls who were getting an abortion reacted to us praying, I realized that taking anyone’s life is wrong, whether it be by abortion or euthanasia.” Telvi Campos
“Community Service: My thoughts.
For my community service, I couldn’t go to the clinic, but I went to the preparation class. My experience there was amazing! I learned many new things. But also understand the consequences and how many problems there were.
When I was in the class, I learned that a baby’s heart starts beating in just 4 weeks! I learned many new things! I used to be okay with abortion, but when I took that class and came out I was surprised that I even thought it was okay. That class really helped me. I also learned how they took the baby out. It was shocking! I couldn’t even believe they can do something like that. I also heard about a book that a lady from Planned Parenthood wrote who disclosed many things about abortion.
Taking this class was very, very helpful. I learned many new things in just one day! It was amazing. I really like it. It’s shocking that a person that horrible can do something that horrible to a person so innocent. This really changed my way of thinking and my way of acting.” Karen Canizalez
“When we went to the clinic I was very nervous because I didn’t know what to expect. We started praying and everything was going well, until some lady that worked in the clinic came out and told us to leave or she would call the police. I wanted to say something, or cry, I was feeling all this emotion, but I stayed quiet and just kept praying. I’m actually glad I went because I felt very good inside. Knowing that I’m helping by praying against abortion, and I will keep doing whatever I can to help out.”
“When going to the clinic I thought that if we got insulted it wouldn’t affect me. Once I heard what these two ladies said, that was when it hit me. They started saying that why did we have kids (my little brothers) there, that they didn’t even know anything and they started to “flip us off.” While that happened a nurse came out and started yelling and telling us that if we didn’t leave, they were going to call the cops. So we left to go to the sidewalk and continued praying. I went up to my Mom and asked what was wrong and she said that she felt bad because they pointed my brothers out. My Mom was teary and my brother was crying. I felt really sad and I started to feel all choked up, but I knew I had to be strong and not cry, so I was. When we were finished, I felt very proud of myself, my brothers and my boyfriend and my Mom for taking it very well, and I’m also proud of my boyfriend because he volunteered to go. I’m very happy to have experienced this, and I am willing to do it again. J” Liz Cejudo
And a few additional comments from some of the other students:
“I chose to pray the Rosary outside of an abortion clinic to help save the lives of unborn babies…I learned that some people need help, even if they don’t know it.”
“…it is good to pray to stop abortion…I didn’t care what people would say…”
“I chose to pray at the abortion clinic because it was a great opportunity to save lives and to get closer to God…my parents encouraged me to do this…I grew in the understanding of serving my neighbors by helping others who are most in need, by understanding their need, and helping them no matter what.” Jacqueline Garcia
(Please note, Jackie also counseled a friend who is pregnant and her mother wanted her to get an abortion. She gave her friend information to help out with her pregnancy and is praying for her. The friend said she just didn’t feel right about aborting the baby and Jackie confirmed that it was not the right thing to do! A life has been saved because of her prayers, knowledge and bravery in speaking the truth)