I can only say what a blessing it was to me to have the opportunity to participate in the 40 Days for Life campaign for the very first time. I had no idea what to expect or how this was going to work out, especially since the time slot I ended up choosing was a 6AM slot. God’s grace was definitely with me throughout the time, enabling me to keep the commitment and be on site to pray everyday of my commitment with a few exceptions – the morning I blew a tire on my way to the clinic and the 2 mornings after hurricane Sandy – I prayed without being at the abortion clinic.
Some mornings were harder than others, no doubt, but God was so faithful to meet me in prayer and to give me amazing things to pray. There were times that I surprised myself with some of things I heard myself praying.
As far as Dr. Carhart’s Germantown abortion clinic is concerned, I believe we accomplished much in the Spirit. The campaign director for Germantown sent out this information to all of us:
700+ hours of prayerful presence on Wisteria
-over 500 prayer warriors from 20 churches joining together
-2 abortion workers are no longer at Germantown Reproductive Health Services
-No abortions for two weeks!
This is exciting news, especially the fact that there were no abortions for two weeks in row in Germantown. The information out of the international campaign is just as exciting. The final numbers are not in yet but so far we know that globally 608 babies have been saved from abortion.
The devotional below that was sent out to all 40 Days for Life prayer warriors after the 40th day. It makes realize that there are multiple ways to storm the gates of Hell. Prayer, of course is number one. But today is election day in the United States and by casting our votes on behalf of life is another way of coming against the gates of Hell!
Pray that the witness of 40 Days for Life bears abundant fruit, and that we begin again each day to storm the gates of hell until God welcomes us into the gates of heaven.
On this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.
— Matthew 16:18
REFLECTION by Fr. Frank Pavone
When we read this verse, we usually think that the Lord is promising that the church, which is His Body, will withstand all the attacks launched against it. Of course, that is true. But when we think about it more carefully, we realize that in a battle, the gates do not run out into the battlefield to attack the enemy. Rather, they stand still to defend the city from the enemy attacking it. So when the Lord says that the gates of hell will not prevail against the church, who is doing the attacking? It is the church storming the gates! The church, all of God’s people in Christ, is called to take the offensive, to run into enemy territory, and to gain ground for Jesus Christ. We do not wait for an invitation; we already have a command. We prepare, but we do not wait for circumstances to be perfect; we already have one who has gone before us.
During these 40 days, we have stormed the gates. We have taken the offensive. We have pushed forward the boundaries of the kingdom. And we must keep doing so, in numerous ways. Indeed, the gates of hell will not prevail. The gates of falsehood will flee in the presence of truth. The gates of sin will melt in the presence of grace. The gates of death will fall in the presence of the church, the People of Life!
Father, we praise you. We have heard the voice of your Son, and therefore we can make our voices heard. We have done battle with the power of evil, and therefore we can have compassion on those still within its grip. We have been freed from the kingdom of darkness, and therefore we can bear witness to your Kingdom of Light.
May the witness of all your people through these 40 Days for Life bear abundant fruit, and may we begin again each day to storm the gates of hell until You welcome us into the gates of heaven. We pray in the victorious name of Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.