March for Life Recap

Hard to believe that January kicks off with so many things. One of them for pro-lifers is the annual March for Life in Washington, DC.

Nearly 750,000 people from all across the United States and beyond borders descended upon our nation’s capital to give voice to the voiceless.

Many brought signs with well-known organizations attached to them. Others got creative using a popular hit show or even social media memes to articulate a point.

The highlight of this year’s march is the historic address given by the President of the United States, Donald Trump. He is the first to do so in the march’s history.

“Every life brings love into this world. Every child brings joy to a family. Every person is worth protecting.” 

Though there were thirty-six counter-demonstrators that tried to foil the fun, it gave the marchers more fuel to continue to give voice to the voiceless. One of them was arrested for trying to trespass. No question and surprise that there were more.

The youth and young adults that were in attendance brought vibrant energy that can easily shake capital hill with their various chants such as the famous, “Hey Hey Ho Ho Roe v Wade has got to go” or “We love babies, Yes, we do. We love babies, how about you?”

The March for Life will forever be a well-attended event. Unfortunately, the mainstream media did not give it fair coverage as it has been the same old, same old since the beginning of the march’s existence.

What to take away?

Though it happens once a year we must march for all life from the moment of conception until natural death every day. Our job is to be present for every human, born and unborn. Whether we are Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, agnostic, or atheist, we have a duty to protect every life. Every life saved is worth the effort.

I long for the day that those who come to Washington every year will not march for the reversal of the Supreme Court. Rather, we offer chants, songs, and prayers in thanksgiving for the end of the scourge of our society known as abortion, euthanasia, capital punishment, and even unjust wars. Let us make it happen by getting involved in our community today.

9 Days for Life Novena- Day 6

9 Days for Life

Intention
May expectant mothers choosing adoption receive grace and support in embracing this loving option.

Prayers
Our Father, 3 Hail Marys, Glory Be

Reflection
Mothers placing their children for adoption often face many challenges along the way. One of the greatest obstacles can be inaccurately perceiving adoption as abandonment. But mothers who place their children for adoption are not abandoning their children. Rather, they are exemplifying the sacrificial love of Christ on the Cross in choosing to do what is best for their children, even at great cost to themselves. Like Christ, they pour out their bodies and souls for the sake of another. The Letter to the Hebrews reminds us that, in the face of fears and trials, we can “hold fast to the hope that lies before us. This we have as an anchor of the soul, sure and firm” (Heb 6:18-19). We pray that all mothers considering adoption would be filled with “the peace of God that surpasses all understanding” (Phil 4:7) and see the beauty of their sacrifice. Let us all cling fast to the anchor of hope, for we have received “a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, ‘Abba, Father!’” (Rom 8:15).

Acts of Reparation
(Choose one.)

Do you have a sweet tooth? Or do you prefer salty snacks? Pick your favorite kind of treat, and give it up for the day.

Make an act of faith, hope, or love.

Offer some other sacrifice, prayer, or act of penance that you feel called to do for today’s intention.

One Step Further
“Accompanying Expectant Mothers Considering Adoption” suggests nine ways to offer ongoing support to a woman who is considering placing her unborn child for adoption. Many of the tips given are also helpful for supporting a friend who is experiencing a challenging unexpected pregnancy, even if adoption has not been brought up.

Supplemental resources regarding adoption can be found at http://www.usccb.org/adoption-resources.

A Pro-Life To-Do List

To do list

 

For the past few years, I took time on my Facebook page to reveal some of the things I hope to accomplish or do in a given new year. It can be challenging, but at the same time, it can help you to do new or accomplish things that you’ve always wanted to cross off.

As a pro-lifer, you may be on the same boat as I am. You may be asking yourself what you can do in the New Year to be a better pro-lifer or go into the unknown. To help you get a jump start on your pro-life to-do list, I came up with 10 things you can do as a pro-lifer.

  1. Host a screening of a pro-life themed movie. Unplanned took the world by storm and there is no question that many groups want to show movies like the world phenom of 2019. Cinema is a powerful medium to convey the message of life.
  2. Take part in a 40 Days for Life campaign (February 26th thru April 5th, 2020 and again the fall from September 23rd to November 1st). Be on the lookout once registration for vigil hours become available.
  3. Have a mass or Holy Hour offered for an end to the scourge of abortion or the conversion of those involved with the diabolical industry.
  4. Brush up on apologetics. It may be one thing to think you know it all. It’s another if you educate on what to say to those who may not know the issue at hand. Some people to learn from are Stephanie Gray and Trent Horn. Using their experience, they share the dos and don’ts in conveying the pro-life message to an individual or group.
  5. Volunteer at a pregnancy resource or crisis center. Many of them are not too far from a Planned Parenthood facility. these facilities need additional help with tasks like answering calls, taking inventory, and even being a support to vulnerable women. Side note: consider helping one raise funds for an ultrasound machine.
  6. Take part in prayer vigils. Yes, this may be scary, but we have been reminded 365 times in the Bible to not be afraid. If you can muster the courage every day to be present, your reward will be heaven. Don’t know what to say or do? Here’s a blog post for that. Here’s a post on prayers to recite in front of the facilities.
  7. Donate or raise funds for pro-life organizations. A previous blog post breaks down different groups that may help you decide who you can send your donation. If you want to go towards a fundraiser route, you might want to consider having a quizzo night, have someone teach ballroom dancing, or arts and craft and sell them with proceeds going to a pro-life organization of your choosing.
  8. Attend a rally. One of the most common events you can attend is the March for Life in DC, Chicago,  or West Coast area (San Francisco or L.A. areas). You may also want to consider attending one on the state level. (Pennsylvania will host their inaugural state march on May 18th, 2020.
  9. Attend a pro-life seminar near you or on a national scale. Dr. Monique Ruberu and Richara Krajewski will be speaking at the annual National Pro-Life Summit on January 25th in Washington, DC. Secure your spot today.
  10. Recruit more people to join the pro-life cause. Visit parishes, have displays on your campus, invite a pro-life speaker to your classroom, and learn more about how you can

2019 in Review: 20 Blog Countdown

Hard to believe that 2019 is drawing to a close. It still is a call for us to recall and reflect on the success and how we can be better in the new year.

Voices for Life wants to thank everyone who has shared our posts, read our content, and even engage with us. In honor of the New Year, the team has decided to put together the top 20 blogs of 2019. Each one will include a clickable word that will take you to the original post.

No. 20: Spiritual Battle

In March, I wrote a blog about why engaging in prayer is essential in the constant spiritual battle against abortion.

No. 19: Democratic Party Support of Abortion on all stages

A faithful couple from Warminster, PA issue a concern on their neighbors who support the Democratic Party. Who knew that it would come ahead of the race for the Democratic Nominee for President of the United States.

No. 18: Kentucky Abortion Law Stands

After a very challenging and uphill battle, Kentucky’s ultrasound law that was passed by the state was upheld by the nation’s highest court.

No. 17: Huh?

Anita Flynn shared about how ill-informed Presidential Candidate and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren as she was watching a late-night show with the candidate as the special guest.

No. 16: Gravestones for Aborted Children

Aleteia wrote about the efforts of the Knights of Columbus as they help memorialize the victims of abortions.

No. 15: 30th Birthday Reflection

I celebrated my 30th birthday this month which comes at the pinnacle of everyone’s Christmas preparations. I reflected on my 30 years of living and how a 1/3 of my peers never had the chance to live like I have.

No. 14: Praying Outside of Planned Parenthood… In Nashville

During my travels to the music city, I learned about a Planned Parenthood facility that I figured I take part in with other people in hopes of saving a life. I shared what I saw.

No. 13: New Faces Cut Teeth in Saving Babies

During one of her email reflections, Dr. Monique Ruberu shared how some first-timers took part in the 40 Days for Life campaigns in Philadelphia.

No. 12: Creativity in Defending Life

A post by Regnum Christi sparked my interest and thought that it needed to be shared. Learn how you can be pro-life.

No. 11: Eleven Cases of Dangerous 3rd Term abortions

Operation Rescue shared how late-term abortions can be dangerous through the investigations on eleven different occasions

The top ten were selected to share and issue a call as to why we must defend life. It also shares some of the news that has happened on a local, state, and even national level. Some headliners of 2019 were reserved for the top 10.

No. 10: Room in the Inn

I wrote a reflection about having room in the inn for single and unwed mothers who are pregnant. Not just during the Christmas season, but 365 days a year.

No. 9: Angels Have Red Hair

In sharing from the late Joseph Wall, Pat Dowling shared his amazing writing that was published through the American Life League in Fall/Winter 1996.

No. 8: Inaugural Year for The Gianna Center of Philadelphia

The Gianna Center of Philadelphia will round out the next two spots. First up, their year in review

No. 7: The Gianna Center Gala

In celebration of its establishment and hopes of continuing its operation, the center held its inaugural gala. They honored organizations, such as the Knights of Columbus and Missionaries of Charity for their extraordinary work.

No. 6: Chick Fil A and Hallmark

The two franchises do ring a bell with every average person. Sure, you hear about women guilty pleasure of Hallmark movies while a fast-food chain closes on Sunday. Sadly, they have been on the news for disturbing reasons. Chick Fil A caved yet they have a super deep connection to the abortion industry. Meanwhile, Hallmark recently became open to the idea of sodomy romance.

No. 5: Teacher’s Adoption Story

Terry Noble shared an article about how a teacher stepped in to adopt a child with down syndrome following the death of her student’s mother.

No. 4: Students for Life Honor Bishop Shanahan

Bishop Shanahan High School in Downingtown, PA area was recognized as the pro-life club of the year by Kristan Hawkins of Students for Life of America. This took place during the annual National Conference in DC. Read more here

No. 3: Diamond and Silk

In October, Diamond and Silk, conservative black women duo on social media, headlined the annual Pro-Life Federation Dinner in Harrisburg. Here’s the full message.

No. 2: The 38th Annual Stand Up for Life Dinner

At the annual dinner, 1200 prolifers had the opportunity to hear a powerful message of love and mercy from Rachel Guy while learning about Dr. Monique Ruberu’s mind-blowing conversion story. It even placed the spotlight on pioneers, brave witnesses, and a rising star in the movement on her college campus. Read more here.

No. 1: Brian Sims

State Rep. Brian Sims has been on the news lately. This time it’s for all the wrong reasons. During the springtime, Sims live-streamed himself harassing pro-lifers outside of a Planned Parenthood that is located in the heart of Philadelphia. In the first incident, there was an elderly woman praying. Sims insisted that he continue to verbally harass her to the point that he got closer to her. In a separate incident during Holy Week, Sims was at it again. Only this time, he offered a $100 to anyone watching the video to give him the names of the teenage girls who were praying at Planned Parenthood while verbally race-baiting them. This was done in front of two of the teens’ mother. The father responded

Nearly a week and a half following the surfacing of the videos on social media, a thousand pro-lifers from near and far rallied outside of the Planned Parenthood where it all took place.

Honorable mentions:

COL 1972

Earlier this year, a family from West Chester launched a clothing line to counter the status quo of the fashion industry who continue to support Planned Parenthood. Since their launch, they have made appearances and even took time to answer some questions about their business and their background.

Life Dress

Angelique Clark came up with an amazing idea to make dressing up lifeworthy. She had an opportunity to share her passion for life and fashion.

Christopher West

Pope Francis bestowed a papal honor to Christopher West of the Theology of the Body Institute for his extraordinary work. In the fall he spoke to people during the True Freedom Conference.

Unplanned

Abby Johnson’s book became a movie with the same name It shares how she walked away fro Planned Parenthood after eight years. In the spring, it debuted in the top ten and maintained its position there for two weeks. Oer the summer it became a best seller in pre-order

 

 

 

Help Support Gianna Center of Philadelphia with End of Year Fundraiser

The Gianna Center of Philadelphia has a tremendous opportunity here to make up for the less than expected revenue from our fundraiser as we have a generous donor willing to match funds up to 25,000 but ONLY until Dec. 27.
Find out more here

Give the Gift of Life This Christmas

Christmas is fast approaching. There are so many ideas for gifts to give this season. Even though you may have completed all of your shopping, and crossed items off your list, there are other people struggling, wondering what they’ll do this Christmas and what the next year will bring.

Want to give the best gift to individuals struggling this Christmas season? How about the gift of life?

Keep in mind the pregnant woman who appears distressed, worried, or unsure while walking toward the entrance of an abortion clinic. Your kindness, compassionate approach, helpful resources, and prayers could inspire this pregnant woman to give the gift of life to her unborn child. Imagine her having this newfound hope for a better future; what a joyous occasion that would be this Christmas!

Make a donation to the Pro-Life Union of Greater Philadelphia here

Thousands Gathered to Celebrate Life, Honor Courageous Witnesses and Pioneers

Since 1981, pro-lifers from all across the greater Philadelphia area to celebrate the accomplishments of the past year and look ahead to recommitting to defend life from conception until natural death as a new year is just mere weeks away. On Sunday evening, 1200 pro-lifers from newborn to great grandparents gathered for a night to remember, connect with other pro-lifers, and celebrating their first inalienable right; life.

This year, the Pro-Life Union of Greater Philadelphia area, used the evening to honor award recipients who have chartered authentic healthcare for women, stood tall against the hatred of a state representative, and leading by example on a college campus. Not only did they honor those who were rewarded for their amazing works, but they also took time to recognize the medical students who were in attendance, especially those at Drexel and Thomas Jefferson Universities.

In his open remarks, Fr. Christopher Walsh and Tom Stevens reminded everyone that everything State Rep. Brian Sims said in a viral video when attacking pro-lifers this past spring was all a lie. Pro-lifers continue to do the amazing work in not only caring for babies in the womb, but to also care for the mom and their baby for a lifetime in helping with home economics, job skills, and even their education endeavors.

In addition to the award recipients, the attendees had the opportunity to hear from two amazing speakers. The first was Dr. Monique Ruberu. Dr. Ruberu shared her experience while in residence at Hahnemann University Hospital of how she was forced into taking part in an abortion and she knew from that day that she will never do it again. She encouraged all in attendance to stand tall for their faith and the most vulnerable in our society with her.

The second speaker was Rachel Guy. She thanked everyone for all they do to defend the unborn child.  While in the womb, doctors gave a grim diagnosis to her parents who were encouraged to abort Rachel. Her parents chose life instead. Rachel was born at 1 lb. 2 oz. and became healthy during her five-month stay in the NICU. She founded His Love and Care, a ministry that connects expectant mothers with pro-life OB/GYNs and physicians.

As 2019 draws to a close, this is one of the most amazing events that every pro-lifer from conception to senior citizens look forward to when it’s an opportunity to recommit to fighting for the good in the world and even their faith no matter what our professions are in life.

 

 

‘We Never Thought Twice’: Teacher Adopts Student With Down Syndrome After Mom Dies

 

Caucasian mother holding baby girl with Down Syndrome

The following is an inspiring story by Will Maule of Faithwire.  He writes about the selfless love of a teacher, a terminally mother and her son.

A compassionate teacher has adopted her own student after his mom died of cancer.

The incredible story began four years ago with a brutally honest conversation between special-ed teacher Kerry Bremer and Jean Manning, a terminally ill mother.

Though the pair had only known each other for a matter of months, their conversation would prove to be life-altering both for Kerry and for Manning’s son, Jake, who has Down Syndrome.

“I said, ‘I may be overstepping here and forgive me if I am, but my family and I would like to offer guardianship for Jake if you need a backup plan,’” Bremer recalled to TODAY Parents.

Through tears, Jean accepted her offer.

“I’ll sleep better tonight than I have in a very long time,’” the ailing mother explained.

Bremer noted how she “fell in love with Jake instantly” and could not help but offer him a place in their family. “I knew he would a need a home and there was no way I wouldn’t open ours to him,” she said.

Kerry Petkewich Bremer about a week ago

This past Wednesday, Jeanie Manning became a “Queen Angel.” She fought a long, hard and often very unfair battle with cancer. We knew it would happen some day, but it was the last thing any of us expected this past Wednesday. As a result of her passing, we will love, protect and treasure Jake just as we promised. He will live with us forever and we will keep her memory, her love, her determination and her beautiful smile alive in his heart and ours every day! We love you “Queen Angel Mom.” Fly high and watch over us every day. “Our boy” will miss you terribly, but we’ve got this! ❤️🙏😇 “Bremer, party of 6

On November 13, Manning passed away,

“My mom went to heaven,” Jake told CBS 17. “She’s my queen, angel mom. She’s always in my heart..she loved me so much.”

After Jean passed, Jean honored her promise and Jake moved into the family home. The house was already filled with Jake’s toys and clothes from the countless hours he’d been spending there while his mom went through grueling treatment. The transition was tough but is going well so far.

“We never thought twice about it,” Manning said of their decision to welcome Jake into their family. “I loved this kid so much. He has done more for us than we could ever do for him.”

Website: Faithwire

Think What Would have been Lost Without Adoption

November is National Adoption Awareness Month and to celebrate, the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation has been posting stories all month on adoption.  Below is one from Maria Gallagher, Legislative/PAC Director of the Federation on Wendy’s founder, Dave Thomas. 

adoptionnotabortion _1_

by Maria Gallagher

My co-worker surprised me one day by asking, “Did you see what’s on your cup?”

I turned the red paper cup around and looked at the wording imprinted on it. It stated, “Face it. Without adoption, Wendy’s wouldn’t be here.”

I knew it to be true. The founder of Wendy’s, the late Dave Thomas, had been adopted as a child. As an adult, after building a successful nationwide restaurant chain, he became a tireless advocate for adoption.

Think about it. Consider the jobs that would have been lost, the relationships that never would have formed. The people who would not have had Dave Thomas to look up to as a mentor and a business leader, were it not for adoption. Just one child. One story.  One adoption.

This story continues here.

 

Adoption is a Loving Option

As this is National Adoption Awareness Month, I thought I’d share my adoption story with everyone.  I so often post stories from others on this subject and thought it about time to share my own.  

Adoption

You never know where you will be or what you will be doing when God sends a messenger to call you to serve Him.

I was  home on a Saturday, probably cleaning, when I received a telegram (this was way before the internet) from my uncle in the Philippines asking if we would take a child he came across in the hospital.  Without hesitation, my husband and I said yes; and so, our journey through the adoption process began.

A Little Background

My uncle, Father Gratian Murray, started out his ministry as a Christian Brother (he was known then as Brother Gratian of Mary) who was sent to the Philippines.  One of his major accomplishments was to start a home for abandoned boys called Bacolod Boys Home where boys he rescued from prison or living on the streets could have a place to call home.  Father Gratian was a major influence in my life, and I’ve saved the many letters he would send me over the years.

After 25 years of service as a Christian Brother, he became a diocesan priest.  On one of his trips to visit parishioners in the hospital in Bacolod he came across this little 11-month old girl who had been abandoned at birth and was living in the charity ward of the hospital.

My uncle knew we had our names on the adoption list in our diocese, so he automatically thought of us when he saw her.  At that time our Archdiocese had not handled many foreign adoptions (those who adopted before then were referred to the Archdiocese of New York), so we had to do a lot of the leg work ourselves. Finally, just after her second birthday, our daughter Maria came home to us.

It was a very cold night in January when she and the sister in charge of adoptions for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia  came in.  We were anxious as we didn’t know how she would respond to us.  When they came into the airport after landing, she came right to me as if she knew I was her mother.

The language barrier was a little hard at first.  My uncle had sent a paper with the words she knew and what they meant. It didn’t take long for me to figure out what she was saying and for her to learn our language.

When she was in the first grade, she became a US citizen.  She proudly announced to her teacher and her classmates that she was becoming a ‘senior citizen’. We all thought that was so cute and my sister actually had a cake made to celebrate afterwards with the words ‘Congratulations to the world’s youngest senior citizen’.

My daughter is 45 years-old now and has three children of her own as well as four grandchildren (making me a great-grandmother!).

By the way, during the adoption process, I found out I was pregnant and had  two other pregnancies after that.  Maria has three younger brothers and they are very close. I can’t imagine our lives without her or our sons. It wasn’t an easy ride; however, it certainly was worth it.  We’ve shared happy times and sad times, but we are all always there for one another.  In the link below are some pictures of our family; we are very proud of each and every one of them.

Adoption really is a loving option!

 

Family pictures