Q: Does Prayer and Fasting really work?

A: Yes it does!

40 Days for Life does indeed work through the intercession of our Lord, Christ Jesus!
Just take a look at these numbers:

Help needed

Last Saturday I received a call from one of the former abortion facility workers we helped find a new job a few years ago. She was unfortunately laid off a few months ago. She has been able to find some part-time work close to her home. Unfortunately, she is without a vehicle which makes it difficult to make scheduled job interviews. Does anyone know of somebody that has a car they are willing to give away to help our friend out?

Also, if anybody knows of a medical assistant position in the area please e-mail us at eccflife@gmail.com. We have somebody looking for a new job.

We are also asking for prayers for a mother who courageously chose life for her twins a few weeks ago, but unfortunately lost them yesterday. She herself is in critical condition. Please pray for this mother.

We start off the final week of this 40 Days for Life campaign with HUGE news!

Since the first coordinated 40 Days for Life campaign in 2007, we have now received cumulative reports of 10,000 babies who are alive today because their mothers rejected abortion and chose life!

10,000!!!

To God be the glory … great things He has done!

Watch this beautiful two-minute video to see many of the children who have been saved by the grace of God … and through your prayers and efforts. Click on the image below …

YouTube Preview Image

Friday, March 27th at 7 PM
Candlelight “Stations of the Cross” with Bishop Parkes
In front of the American Family Planning abortion facility at 6115 Village Oaks Drive in Pensacola

Saturday, March 28th at 8:15 AM
Closing Mass for the spring 40 Days for Life campaign
Little Flower Catholic Church, 6495 Lillian Hwy, Pensacola

Sunday, March 29th at 3 PM
Jericho March and Victory Celebration on the final day of the Spring 2015 40 Days for Life campaign in Pensacola.
Join us in front of the American Family Planning abortion facility at 6115 Village Oaks Drive in Pensacola.

We received confirmation that four mothers were inspired to protect the life of their unborn child after conversations with a sidewalk advocate on Friday. Thank you, God, for giving this sidewalk advocate the words to say that encouraged these mothers to seek help elsewhere! With God, all things are possible! That makes seven lives saved, that we know of, during this 40 Days for Life campaign in Pensacola!

We have 15 days left to 40 Days for Life! Keep coming out to pray and remember to fast as well. Your peaceful, prayerful, loving witness DOES make a difference!

Below is a blog post from Julia Prichett, Program Coordinator, Sidewalk Advocates for Life. Julia offers some great pointers on how your conversations can be more effective in front of the abortion facility through these helpful tips of conversation.

Be a person not an encyclopedia

You have often heard us here at Sidewalk Advocates for Life say we should “be a person, not a protester.” This week — as I was reflecting on some of the mishaps of my earlier advocacy days — I couldn’t help but laugh. My mantra back then should have been: “be a person, not an encyclopedia!”

As women would exit their vehicles and make a b-line for the abortion center’s door, I would tell her everything she ever needed to know about abortion and the help available. While on the surface this seems like a good technique, it can actually be detrimental because it creates a wall between the advocate and the one he or she is trying to help. In time, I learned to slow down and open up conversations with people instead of overwhelming them with information.

When we feel the pressure of the clock ticking as someone hastily walks to the abortion facility entrance, we can inwardly panic and talk a mile-a-minute about the information we wish she knew. This week I want to give a few helpful tips to help us further cultivate the heart of a Sidewalk Advocate, willing to be an open book instead of an encyclopedia.

Advocates should cultivate the virtue of LOVE

Add some extra love to your outreach: give each person you talk with a genuine compliment. Does she have
pretty hair? Are his tattoos neat? Does she work hard to provide for her children? Did he open the car door for his girlfriend? Authentic compliments are powerful!

Advocates should cultivate the virtue of PEACE

When someone gets louder, get softer. This can happen in a myriad of ways. If someone begins to raise his or her voice, lower your voice to help preserve a calm presence. If she is telling you all the problems that brought her to the facility and becomes greatly worked up as she shares, let your response be soft. Peace, in some ways, is about balance. We must be softer to compensate for the loudness around us in order to bring peace to the environment.

Advocates should cultivate the virtue of HOPE

Are you looking for a way to offer hope in a split second? Then try this line: “[insert her name here], if you will let your son or daughter live for the next 24 hours, then I promise you we will solve the problems that brought you here today. Can you give us just 24 hours?”

Advocates should cultivate the virtue of ACCEPTANCE

Have you ever been in a dialogue with someone and then he casually mentions something immoral he is doing? This often puts us in a difficult situation of not wanting to affirm the immoral behavior but also not wanting to close off the connection we have been forging with him. If you find yourself stuck between a rock and a hard place, try an open-ended question to navigate the situation. For instance, if she shares with you that she is having an affair, ask her: “How has that been for you?” This allows people to keep sharing and opening up without perceiving any judgment from us.

Advocates should cultivate the virtue of HUMILITY

It can be upsetting when we get caught in a snag on the sidewalk. Whether it’s not speaking the same language as the person we have called over or being baffled by a woman’s situation or need. Because we want to be seen as people and not protesters, it is okay to be human and not have all the answers. Most likely, whoever you are talking with will understand. Let her know how important she is to you and that you care about her situation deeply and will find out the answer as quickly as possible. Then, do just that!

The Emerald Coast Coalition for Life invites you to join Bishop Gregory Parkes as we pray together and reflect upon the passion of our Lord and savior, Jesus Christ, through the “stations of the cross.” The event will take place in front of the American Family Planning abortion facility, 6115 Village Oaks Drive on Friday, March 27th at 7 PM. Mark you calendars for this special night for life. Please share this event with others.
It’s going to be a beautiful night for life!

40 DFL Stations of the Cross 2015

Can you help?

Have you participated in 40 Days for Life Pensacola (a ministry of the Emerald Coast Coalition for Life)?
We need your help…

This Friday and Saturday (March 6th and 7th), volunteers are needed to take 1 to 2 hour blocks of time at the Smokin’ In The Square Barbecue competition at Seville square, in downtown Pensacola. The Emerald Coast Coalition for Life (the organization that runs 40 Days for Life Pensacola), is one of the charities this event is raising money for. Can you help out the organizers of this event who are raising money for our organization? If so, please call Rusty at 850-623-7608 or e-mail us at eccflife@gmail.com.
The hours for the Smokin’ In The Square barbecue competition are 12 PM to 9 PM on Friday and 10 AM to 7 AM on Saturday. Any time you can give to volunteer at this event will be greatly appreciated. Come out and enjoy some barbecue and #GetYourQueOnForLife
Many thanks,
Ernie

ECCFL at Smokin' In The Square

From the Emerald Coast Coalition for Life in Pensacola:

A 29-year-old mother was rushed by ambulance to the hospital on February 19, 2015 for uncontrollable bleeding resulting from an abortion at the American Family Planning abortion facility in Pensacola, FL.

Below is a partial transcript of the 911 call:

  • 911 Operator: What is your location?
  • Clinic Worker: 6115 Village Oaks Dr. (American Family Planning abortion facility)
  • 911 Operator: Which room are we coming to?
  • Clinic Worker: The back room.
  • 911 Operator: What happened?
  • Clinic Worker: We are here an abortion clinic and we started a procedure (abortion) and the patient started bleeding and she is bleeding REAL HEAVY now and we can’t stop the bleeding.

Abortion is NEVER safe.

Please join us in praying for this woman.

, , , , ,

We have seen this here in Pensacola. Between 2006, the year before the first 40 Days for Life campaign in the fall of 2007 and 2013, in Pensacola we have witnessed a 44% drop in the number of abortions through the efforts of the Emerald Coast Coalition for Life. Praise the Lord! When people stand peacefully and pray in front of our local abortion facility, the number of abortions each week drop substantially. Will you stand peacefully and pray in front of Pensacola’s last remaining abortion facility at 6115 Village Oaks Drive? Will you take the call to stand and speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves? Will you bring the LOVE of Christ to the darkest place in our town? Sign up for your hours to pray at www.40daysforlifepensacola.com

From the 40 Days for Life national website, www.40daysforlife.com
When we held the first-ever 40 Days for Life campaign in front of the Planned Parenthood abortion center in Bryan/College Station, Texas back in 2004, local abortion numbers dropped by 28%.

God used those 40 days of prayer, fasting and 24-hour vigil in that community to bring 1,000 people into the pro-life movement for the very first time.

That was just the beginning. After much prayer and persistence … that Planned Parenthood facility closed its doors. Today, that building serves as the location for our international headquarters.

Prayer transformed that community … and it can transform your community.

That facility is just one of 60 abortion centers that have closed following 40 Days for Life campaigns outside their doors. These closures do not happen overnight. But they do show the power of prayer.

Could your city be the next to become abortion-free?

Spring Valley, New York

“Even though the sacrifice is great,” said Eileen, the local coordinator in Spring Valley, “there is great joy in saying yes to God’s will.”

The first week of this 40 Days for Life campaign has been quite cold, but volunteers have gathered to pray each day – generally standing in the snow – across from the Planned Parenthood center. There is much at stake here.

Eileen said there has been a steady decline in the number of abortions in Rockland County, where Spring Valley is located. In 2006, the year before 40 Days for Life started, the county recorded 704 abortions. By 2012, that number had been cut in half … to 351.

Of course, Eileen said, “one abortion is too many and we have much more work to do. But we are witnessing the direct result of prayer power!”

Greenville, South Carolina

The 40 Days for Life team in Greenville says so far, this campaign has been “amazing” … as unusually cold weather has swept into the area.

Right before their big weekend event, a driver leaving the abortion center stopped to deliver a message to the people praying – a woman who had come for an abortion changed her mind.

Then during their rally, they learned that two more babies had been saved the day before.

“Our prayers and sacrifices – especially braving this extremely cold weather – are being honored by God,” said one of the volunteers. “Praise the Lord for all his blessings!”

Overland Park, Kansas

Add Overland Park to the list of cities where volunteers have described the first week of the campaign as “very cold.”

But Wendy, the local leader, said “single digits could not dampen the spirits of the faithful who gathered on the sidewalk outside the Center for Women’s Health abortion facility … and there is much excitement and enthusiasm.”

Volunteers are praying on the public sidewalks surrounding the abortion center. Wendy says by their presence, they are “proclaiming faith that God is taking the ground and that abortion will end here.”

Today’s devotional is from Rev. Rob Schenck, president of Faith and Action.

Day 8 intention

We pray for a renewal of our zeal to offer generous help to the unborn and their families.

Scripture

If I have despised the cause of my male or female servant when they complained against me, what then shall I do when God rises up? When He punishes, how shall I answer Him? Did not He who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same One fashion us in the womb?

— Job 31:13-15

Reflection by Rev. Rob Schenck

The ground is level as we stand before God.

Job lived with an awe provoking sense of God’s expectation of him, particularly regarding his obligation to care for the weak and needy.

He knew that in God’s economy everyone stands on level ground when it comes to our status as God’s creatures. Because of that central truth, we must take care of each other.

Job also knew that he didn’t deserve any of the good things God gave to him. Instead, those blessings came to Job from God’s benevolent heart.

As an extension of that knowledge, Job instinctively linked his obligation to be generous to others to God’s kindness toward him.

As in Jesus’ parable of the unmerciful servant (Matthew 18:23-35), Job knew that it is an egregious sin to deny to others what we enjoy ourselves.

He actually calls down on his own head severe condemnation and even punishment should he fail to share with others out of his own abundance (see verses 16-23).

Proverbs 3:27 reads, “Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so.” Some things are so obvious that we don’t even need to pray except to ask of God forgiveness and the power to do what so obviously needs doing.

Prayer

God, forgive us when we try to explain away the obligation we have to help others who need help.

Enable us to not devalue them because they are in the circumstance that they are in, but to see them for what they are, those, who like us, were formed by your hand in their mother’s womb. Amen.

Happy Monday, Pensacola pro-lifers!
We have received some questions regarding the vigil hours and location so we wanted to clarify. The stand and pray location (vigil site) is in front of the American Family Planning abortion facility at 6115 Village Oaks Drive in Pensacola. We are asking individuals, groups, churches, etc., to stand and peacefully pray from 7 AM to 7 PM each day through March 29th. To sign up for vigil hours online please go to http://40daysforlifepensacola.com/scheduler.php?logout=1

Another question we have been asked is regarding the days abortions take place in Pensacola. Abortions take place on Thursdays and Fridays. On Thursdays things begin around 6:30 AM and continue through 4 PM (most Thursdays). Sometimes, abortions are done through 7 PM. On Fridays, mothers begin to arrive at 5 AM, but we encourage people to come around 7 AM to 12 PM as the best hours to lovingly reach out to mothers, fathers, and workers. Please continue to pray for this campaign here in Pensacola and for the 251 other campaigns around the world.

Below is from the 40 Days for Life National website…

Great news to start the week! Through the first weekend of this 40 Days for Life campaign, our local teams have reported …

… 26 babies saved from abortion – that we know of!

Praise God!

Every one of these lives represents answered prayers – your prayers!

Norristown, Pennsylvania

Volunteers spoke to a mother leaving the Planned Parenthood facility in Norristown. “She had a pregnancy test,” said Rita, the local coordinator, “and is going to keep her baby!”

It was Day 1 of the campaign – Ash Wednesday – and the counselor who spoke to the woman said she was leaving Planned Parenthood … and heading straight to church.

“The Norristown Planned Parenthood is very, very busy,” Rita said. “It was a dangerously bitter cold day today … God bless the faithful prayer warriors who have such warm and loving hearts.”

Montgomery, Alabama

On Day 1 of the campaign, volunteers watched – and prayed – as 20 women arrived for appointments at the abortion center in Montgomery. They knew it would be challenging. Wednesday is abortion day.

The volunteers did have some joyful news to report. Two mothers changed their minds and chose life for their babies. Michelle, the local leader, said “What an awesome way to begin 40 Days for Life!”

“May God continue to bless our efforts to love the moms and their preborn children,” Michelle said, “and bring hope to the hopeless.”

Houston, Texas

The Houston Coalition for Life operates a mobile pregnancy help center on the street outside the city’s huge Planned Parenthood abortion mega-center. While they are able to connect with many women, the sad truth is that others insist on keeping their appointments for abortions.

Volunteers spoke to a woman who came from out of town to have an abortion … so her family wouldn’t know about it. “She was extremely upset, but unwilling to come to the bus and didn’t want to change her mind,” said one of the local leaders. “She will probably be suffering a lot tonight.”

A second young woman saw the ultrasound of her baby, but is still thinking about abortion. She has had more than one previous abortion.

However, a third woman who was considering abortion was willing to listen. She is older, and has a number of children. After seeing her child on the sonogram, she is now planning to have her baby.

Please keep all of these women in your prayers.

“God uses our visual witness to save lives,” said one of the volunteers. “Come be a part of this union of prayer and action … working toward an end to abortion!”

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

Day 6 intention

Pray that those tempted to abort may understand that their child is already present, and already a real person.

Scripture

And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.

Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.”

— Luke 1:41-44

Reflection from Fr. Frank Pavone

Jesus not only loves unborn children – He was one himself!

Think about this for a moment.

We often hear people speak of a pregnant mother by saying, “She’s expecting a child.”

Now if one is expecting a package, the package is not yet there.

As reflected in our verse for today, however, this is not the case with the mother.

Her gift is already there.

The pregnant woman, a mother already, does not have a child “on the way,” but has a child, already present and in full possession of his or her human rights, starting with the right to life.

Prayer

Jesus, open my eyes to your presence in the life of every child. Open my heart to joy in the birth of every child, a birth that reflects the joy of your own birth in Bethlehem.

As you shared life in the womb of Mary, so now send your protection upon every child still in the womb, and grant to their mothers the strength and joy that comes from welcoming the gift of life. We pray through Christ our Lord, Amen.

Abortion knows no borders. It will go anywhere … and the same goes for 40 Days for Life!

Volunteers in 19 countries are participating in the current campaign, including three nations that are on the list for the first time: Ethiopia, Romania and Slovenia.

Robert Colquhoun, the international outreach coordinator for 40 Days for Life, first witnessed the campaign during a trip to Canada. When he returned home to England, he organized the first British vigil … and has since helped 40 Days for Life spread in four continents.

Leading a campaign is hard work … and there can be unique challenges in different parts of the world. Here’s a look at two new vigil locations where faith has led the way.

Cluj-Napoca, Romania
Romania

Julia, the local leader of the first 40 Days for Life campaign in Romania, said the kickoff rally drew representatives from Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant faith communities.

“The Greek Catholic bishop attended the whole event, including our short vigil at the abortion facility, which is also the second largest maternity hospital in the city,” she said. The bishop read from John 17:13-21 and offered his blessing.

Julia said one of the priests who attended the kickoff serves as a chaplain at the hospital, and often visits the women in the abortion area to offer counseling and prayer. He and his wife signed up to pray four hours a week at the vigil.

“Three major local media outlets covered the event, including a live interview on the 6 pm news,” she said. “We were in shock to see how optimistic they were about the message and this movement.”

Julia had expected negativity from the media, but that hasn’t been the case. “Another media outlet,” she said, “specifically asked that we arrange to have a big group present for the filming in order to have a strong and convincing message.”

The campaign has already received commitments from 200 volunteers. “Some teachers will be attending with their whole classes, either during or after school hours,” she said.

Julia and her team anticipate 40 Days for Life growing in Romania. “Already, Bucharest and five other cities are looking to join the next campaign!”