Local Author Shares ProLife Conviction with Book

The following is a profile article I have written about Brendan Lyons, the author of Single Candles. The profile was published in March 2017, He currently resides in West Chester with his wife, Elise.  This has been approved by the writer of the profile that was originally written for CatholicPhilly.com.

Brendan Lyons always thought he was pro-life — until he met fellow advocates who were even more ardent about the cause.

The encounters spurred the Downingtown author to write “Single Candles,” a collection of short stories on the challenge to respect life in a culture of death.

The narratives form a chain of events that link several characters, all of whom demonstrate compassion and bravery in their commitment to the sanctity of life.

In one piece, a senator defies his own political party; in another, a neonatal surgeon is asked to compromise her principles.

Although the stories are fictional, the passion that informs the characters’ conviction is very real.

“When people see others actively fighting for what they believe in, it inspires them,” Lyons said.

A Villanova University graduate, Lyons wanted to use his writing talents for more than class assignments. His stories have allowed him to explore his convictions in greater depth while fulfilling his calling.

“I’ve learned how satisfying it is to use your gifts to serve the Lord,” Lyons said.

Lyons hopes to inspire young people to witness to the sanctity of life, despite ridicule and rejection.

“Even one person speaking for life — lighting a single candle — can start to change the world and push away the darkness,” he said.

A parishioner of St. Joseph in Downingtown, Lyons seeks to double the impact of his book by donating the proceeds of its sales to Birthright of West Chester, a crisis pregnancy support center.

“(Birthright) provides vital services for mothers and children in need that are hard to find,” Lyons said. “Places like that are the key to ending abortion.”

You can purchase your copy of the book today here: Single Candles Vol. 1

Single Candles

Pro-Life Censorship Hits Local Organization

It should come as no surprise that groups who are preaching the messages of truth and love are coming under attack by the mainstream media with its censorship.

Not only have liberals silenced the success of recent pro-life movies such as Gosnell,  which debuted at No. 1 in the box office and in time became a successful independent film, and soon to be released Unplanned, which tells the story of Abby Johnson and how she saw the truth behind the abortion industry after watching an unborn child being killed by an ultrasound-guided abortion.

In addition to movies with right-leaning messages, the liberal censorship has also hit many organizations that counter the toxic messages sent out by left-wing commentators, entertainment and public figures. One local organization in Philadelphia called The Culture Project has become victims or such censorship. Founded in 2014 by Cristina Barba, the organization’s mission is to “proclaim the dignity of the human person and the richness of living sexual integrity, inviting our culture to become fully alive.” (From their website). Today the organization is present in Los Angeles and San Francisco California, Toledo, OH (they will launch a group in Cleveland this coming fall), and a travel team.

One way the organization has done this is through their media initiative that was launched last year. They are present on Facebook, Instagram, and even a weekly video series on their Youtube Channel. (Subscribe to their channel here: Culture Project)

In an email that was sent out by the organization this morning, they have raised an alarming pattern. At first, they have received tremendous responses from young people and even parents. Their most viewed video was  “A Toxic LACK of Masculinity”  with 150,977 views. A missionary shared how she saw no man protect her dignity while being sexually harassed in downtown Philadelphia.

All of that began to change. Some of their newest videos struggle to reach 2,000 views. Despite paying for boosts on their Facebook outlet, they began noticing that their videos were flagged and suppressed because of their chastity and pro-life references.

The organization has asked for everyone to visit their channel, share their videos with family and friends, and most importantly pray for them.

Irony: the most popular platforms are okay with vulgar videos with raunchy content no one bats an eye, yet when a group offers a counter message, the mediums loses their minds. What has this world come to?

Giving God permission

On Thursday, March 14th, 2019, I answered Monique’s call to fill a last-minute vacant hour outside of Planned Parenthood. That one hour turned into two. As I was going through the daily readings for that day, I realized that the Gospel of Matthew really spoke to me in a profound way. Here’s the full story from Dr. Ruberu, the coordinator of the 40 Days for Life campaign in Center City Philadelphia, who started the first campaign in the fall of 2014.

I began talking to a young man about my age who was waiting for his girlfriend who had an appointment. I opened his eyes on what was happening inside of Planned Parenthood and he was blown away.

Another gentleman saw my our Lady of Guadalupe rosary that my best friend gave me when we were in DC a couple of summers ago. I encouraged him to keep praying for the end of abortion.

My 10 AM had no escorts outside so I had no problem planting seeds by handing out our blessing bags to the women entering the facility.

For the first time, I had people walk past and commend me for being present.

I was later joined by Elaine Coyne. She had a calm and sweet approach to the women and workers coming in and out of PP.

I remember reviewing today’s gospel and it talks about asking and receiving. It turns out someone asked for a blessing bag and she received one. I never realized how rewarding it is to stand and let those who enter know that there is a better option than abortion.

I also recall hearing the story of how St. Teresa said to a newly ordained cardinal. She said to him these three simple words: “Give God Permission”. I felt like I just emptied myself that day and let God just take control of what I was doing by showering his love to everyone.

– so happy Mickey was there to fill one of our last minute hours…as did Joe Paganelli, Elaine Coyne, and Paula Terreri!!! Thank you all so much!

2019 Lenten 40 Days for Life Campaign: Planned Parenthood in the Gayborhood


From March 6 to April 14, our community will take part in 40 Days for Life … a groundbreaking, coordinated international mobilization. We pray that, with God’s help, this will mark the beginning of the end of abortion in our city — and beyond.

The largest Planned Parenthood facility in Pennsylvania kills around 4,000 babies through abortion. Every 3rd Saturday there’s a Helpers’ of God’s Precious Infants Vigil following Daily Mass.

In the fall of 2014, the 40 Days for Campaign was introduced here and it has made a community-wide impact. Not only would faithful warriors close by coming out and pray, but college and high school students plus young adults would help fill the much needed hours.

One highlight we have is Archbishop Chaput praying outside in Fall 2017.

Arch Chaput

13 babies were saved during the last campaign. The hours are Monday to Saturday from 8AM-5PM. Abortions are done from Wednesday to Saturday. Across the street from Planned Parenthood, there’s a wonderful Community Women’s Center under the operation of Legacy of Life.

To sign up for vigil hours, please visit: https://40daysforlife.com/local-campaigns/philadelphia/ or contact Monique Ruberu roobearoo@hotmail.com

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Screening of Unplanned Hosted by Generation Life for Young Adults

Unplanned, the movie based on a memoir written by Abby Johnson, tells the story of how she walked away from Planned Parenthood after witnessing an ultrasound-guided abortion. She shared how 40 Days for Life planted the seeds for her conversion.

Abby was the director of the facility in Bryan Texas, which is now the headquarters of 40 Days for Life.

This spring the movie will be brought to life. Generation Life will host a screening in King of Prussia mall on opening night Thursday, March 28th at 7PM. Information is below:

Join Generation Life for the premiere night of the highly anticipated film ‘UNPLANNED.’ Connect with other young adults (18 and up) interested in exploring the testimony of a former abortion clinic director & her powerful life-changing experience. The movie followed by lively discussion and yummy food.

Reserve your DISCOUNTED TICKET here:

Also, view the trailer, which is No.1 on iTunes here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gBLWpKbC3ww&t=1s

You can also order Abby’s book here: https://www.amazon.com/Unplanned-Dramatic-Parenthood-Eye-Opening-2014-12-01/dp/B01FKUMXJ0/ref=sr_1_2?crid=3OJWHXJS5PRDX&keywords=unplanned+by+abby+johnson&qid=1550779153&s=gateway&sprefix=unplanned%2Caps%2C321&sr=8-2

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