I met my husband because of the pro-life movement — I interviewed him for a radio story as I was covering a 40 Days for Life campaign. Since then I’ve attended countless 40 Days for Life rallies, prayer events, pro-life talks and parties — and all as a participant instead of as a reporter.
Unfortunately, though, I couldn’t make it out last Saturday for the national day of protest against Planned Parenthood. I was sick and had to stay home. It was hard for me to not be out there with my husband and our extended family for this day, because this is a part of our family mission — our mission as Catholics, really: to uphold the dignity of human life, and to be at the service of all human life.
So I prayed.
And you can too.
Prayers for Life
I prayed that people will open their minds and their hearts to recognize the injustice that is happening at Planned Parenthood facilities.
I prayed that the truth will continue to be exposed — and that this truth, coupled with our prayers, will move the hearts of people to act and to speak out against what is happening.
I prayed for those who work tirelessly in the pro-life movement, and for those who continue to work in abortion facilities — for them to experience a conversion.
I prayed that women who are experiencing unplanned pregnancies will also experience some unplanned support, encouragement and joy.
And I prayed to see how I could be a greater part of the pro-life movement — a greater voice for the voiceless.
Truly, we all can be a greater part of the pro-life movement. Whether you’re married with many children, married without children, engaged, single or living another vocation, there is a place for you in the pro-life movement – at whatever age and stage you are in life, because you have a voice and because you were born.
I love what Father Frank Pavone, the National Director of Priests for Life, wrote in his book, Abolishing Abolishing. He said, “Prayer is the foundation of all we do in the pro-life movement.”
Well, that could — and should — be said for all that we do in each of our vocations. I encourage you to pray about how you can be a greater part of the pro-life movement and for God to show you how you can use your gifts, talents and time to proclaim the message of the Gospel of Life; that all human life is sacred and that all human life has value from the very beginning, by conception, through the very end, by a natural death.
Pray for the Holy Spirit to lead you, and move forward with active faith.
After you start praying, here are a few places you can begin…
How You Can Protect, Respect, Love & Serve Life
At Home — Always start at home. You absolutely can proclaim the Gospel of Life at home. You can be open to life with your husband, practicing natural family planning if you’ve discerned you need to space your births or avoid having children. You can discern every single month whether God is calling you to have more children, and in this discernment, you can ingrain in your hearts that life is always good and always precious, and it is always a gift. When you practice this with your husband, it will overflow into your interactions with your children, and with your friends and family. So when a pregnancy may be unexpected for someone else, you will be able to jump in and remind them of its inherent goodness and value.
You can talk to your children about when life begins and you can celebrate life whenever someone gets pregnant in whatever circumstance. You can teach them that every life matters, and you can show them how to be generous to those in need and how to support those in scary and tough situations. Serving life is a major component of the vocation of marriage; teach your children this!
Teach your children about what happens from the moment of conception until a baby is born; whether you’re pregnant or someone you know is, teach your child that there is a baby inside there! They seem to inherently know this, but assure them of it and help them to understand.
You can have more children. You can give your daughter or son a sibling and teach them that that is the greatest gift they can have. You can be a witness of being open to life to other couples. You may have conversations about it — or you may not; but just being there matters, it counts, and it adds to God’s glory.
If you cannot have more children, or any children at all, you can still be a witness of being open to life, and you can absolutely still be at the service of life.
You can talk about your children, or your nieces and nephews, with friends and family and tell them about what a joy children bring to life. They are the supreme gift of marriage; talk about them like it’s true. Because it is.
You can fast. Add power to your prayers by fasting. We cannot abolish abortion alone, but God can. Offer Him your sacrifices for this intention.
Outside the home — When you work on building a culture of life in your home, it’s only natural that it will overflow into your life outside of your home and it should. It’s a beautiful thing when it does. Just as I mentioned above, being a witness of being open to life sometimes doesn’t involve all that much more than just being there — whether it’s at church, at a restaurant, at a school event. Take your children with you, and pray that your beautiful family will touch someone’s heart. You might never know about it, but you can make quite an impact on someone without even talking with them. Let your presence as a family be known.
Attend a prayer rally, like a 40 Days for Life campaign, and commit to praying in front of an abortion facility every week.
Educate yourself so you feel prepared to speak out about this. (Why Pro-Life?) Personally, one of the biggest reasons I didn’t speak out about being pro-life for a while was because I didn’t think I knew enough about it all to defend my position. So read as much as you can. Inform yourself so you can inform others. Learn about the horrific vision of Margaret Sanger; the eugenics and racism behind her work in founding Planned Parenthood. Read about why that matters still today.
Change your Facebook profile picture; use the LIFE filter on it.
Post on your Facebook, or your blog, about what Planned Parenthood is doing. I know it can be scary, I know you can lose friends that way, but we cannot be silent about evil. If you don’t know where to start or what you say, follow this ProLife page and you can just re-post what they share.
Share these videos, talk about the truth. We should be outraged about this.
Learn about and explain to people why women don’t need Planned Parenthood. They need real healthcare clinics and there are plenty of those.
Last weekend’s national protest against Planned Parenthood is just the beginning. If you didn’t make it out to a protest on Saturday, please pray this next week and consider how you can join the pro-life movement.