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

The Hero Priest of France and The Cowardly Cardinal of New York

The presence is real.   

Out of Tuesday’s tragedy in France, as the world watched in horror as  Notre Dame Cathedral burned, we witnessed a beautiful example of extraordinary heroism.

Father Jean-Marc Fournier, the chaplain of the Paris Fire Brigade, saved the Blessed Sacrament and the Crown of Thorns from the blazing cathedral.

Why?

Why would a man risk his life to save a piece of bread from burning, collapsing 800-year-old cathedral where he could have been killed in an instant?

He risked his life because, as Catholics, we not only believe, but we know with absolute certainty that the consecrated host is the actual Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ, our Lord, and Savior.

This heroic man was willing to risk his life, likely without hesitation, to save Christ from the fire. He reveres, honors, loves and defends Christ in the Eucharist. 

By contrast, in the state of New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo professes to be Catholic while endorsing, legislating, and defending abortion and the murder of newborn infants.

Cuomo also persecutes Christians and people of good faith who oppose his blood lust zealotry, calling them bigots and hate mongers and telling them they are not welcome in the state of New York. He is an agent of deception and evil.

Yet Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York will not rush into the burning fire of Governor Cuomo’s deceit and falsehood to defend Christ from sacrilege by denying this modern-day Judas the Eucharist.

No — the cardinal gives excuses and reasons and just wants to go along to get along. The horrible examples to the faithful are not just scandalous, they are demonic.

If the television game show Jeopardy were played in hell, the words of Cardinal Dolan would be on full display under the category, “Things the Devil Might Say.” 

In a prepared statement, Cardinal Dolan explained that excommunication of Governor Cuomo would not be effective because “many politicians would welcome it as a sign of their refusal to ‘be bullied by the Church.'”

What?!

We know, of course, that his words are pointless and those of a politician, not a shepherd who cares for the souls of his flock.

During Holy Week, let us pray for Father Jean-Marc Fournier and that God in His mercy will raise up courageous priests, bishops, and cardinals in the generations to come.

** This was from an email blast sent out by Judie Brown of American Life League. It is republished with her permission.

Abortion Facility Hours in Greater Philadelphia Area

It is no question that half the abortions that happen in Pennsylvania are in Philadelphia. You are needed to pray in front of these “chop shops”.

Philadelphia Women’s Center

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6,000 babies are killed at the largest non-Planned Parenthood affiliate in the city of Philadelphia. This facility is located at 777 Appletree between Chinatown and Old City. The facility itself sits on the 7th floor of the eight-story pictured above. The sad part is that five floors below it is a daycare center. The facility is open from 6:30 AM to 5:00PM (Tuesday through Saturday). They only do surgical and chemical abortions. A weekly vigil is Saturday from 6:30 AM to 10 AM.

PP CC

Peter Rawson from A Baby’s Breath prays outside of the gates of hell during 40 Days

Planned Parenthood has two facilities in Philadelphia. One is in the heart of Center City on the corner of 12th and Locust Street. 3,500 babies were killed last year, making it the second most in Philadelphia. Their hours are 7:30AM to 5PM Mondays through Saturdays. Mondays and Tuesdays are counseling days. Abortions are done between Wednesdays and Saturdays. There’s a 3rd Saturday vigil with Helper’s of God’s Precious Infants on the 3rd Saturday of every month with 7:45 AM mass at St. John the Evangelist located on 13th Street below Market Street.

Northeast PP

In the far northeast of Philadelphia, there’s another Planned Parenthood on the edge of the facility. Lowly maintained. It is located at 2751 Comly Road. Their hours are:

Mon Closed Tues 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Wed 7:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Thurs Closed Fri 7:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Sat 7:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Sun Closed.

There’s a 1st Saturday mass at ST. Katharine of Siena on Frankford Avenue near Holy Family University at 8AM. Vigil at the facility immediately follows it.

West Chester PP

In West Chester, PA, a forty-minute ride from Philadelphia, Planned Parenthood does abortion. Location is 8 South Wayne Street. The hours are:

Mon 11:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Tues 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Wed 11:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Thurs 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Fri Closed
Sat Closed
Sun Closed

Planned Parenthood Northeast Philadelphia- Castor Avenue

PP Castor Avenue

Another Planned Parenthood is in the Northeast section of Philadelphia. This is a referral center. Their hours are:

Mon 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Tues 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Wed 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Thurs 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Fri 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Sat 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Sun Closed

Warminster, PA (Bucks County)

Mon 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Tues 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Wed 12:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Thurs 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Fri by appointment only

Warminster PP

Planned Parenthood-Upper Darby 7200 Chestnut Street Upper Darby, PA 19082

Upper Darby PP

Mon 10:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Tues 10:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Wed 10:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Thurs 10:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Fri 8:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Sat 8:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Sun Closed

Planned Parenthood Media

PP Media

Mon 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Tues 12:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Wed 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Thurs 11:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Fri 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Sat Closed
Sun Closed

 

Unplanned Screening: Where to See It?

As Unplanned is less than 48 hours from hitting theaters, Pro-Lifers are ready for the most anticipated Pro-Life movie since Bella and Gosnell combined. In an email sent out by Pro-Life Union of Greater Philadelphia President Tom Stevens, he notes many theaters are hosting a screening in the days leading up to its March 29th release.

Here is the message:

The movie Unplanned is coming to a theater near you starting March 28th!  See below to reserve tickets.  If you’re already working with one of these teams, please continue to do so since all teams have put tremendous effort, time and money into their theater showing(s).  Please share this email so that we can fill the theaters!The Unplannedmovie is based on Abby Johnson’s true story.  It has been rated ‘R’.  Please see the attached letter from Abby regarding this.  To see an R-rated movie a person must be 17 or older or be accompanied by a parent/guardian.MOST OF THE BELOW ARE PRIVATE SHOWINGS: (Public showings can be found atunplannedtickets.com, search by zip code) EDGMONT / NEWTOWN SQUARE, PA — DELAWARE COUTY – Thanks to the Respect Life teams at St. John Neumann, St. Pius X and parishioners:

KING OF PRUSSIA, PA — MONTGOMERY COUNTY – Thanks to Respect Life teams at St. John Neumann and parishioners:

DOWNINGTOWN, PA — CHESTER COUNTY – Thanks to St. Patrick’s Knights of Columbus, Deacon Libbi and parishioners:

NESHAMINY, PA — BUCKS COUNTY — Thanks to Dr. Monique Ruberu:


PHILADELPHIA, PA – Thanks to Generation Life.

https://www.generationlife.org/unplanned?utm_campaign=2861c8b9-f46a-4cdc-8516-dd5194f4bb6d&utm_source=so Note: Some of the theaters may be sold out, so please call the rally captain closest to you. If it is sold out, go at your own convenience. 

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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?

Be Not Afraid

In a recent email sent out by Monique Ruberu, she shares how a sidewalk servant helped in a recent save.

This work is really hard. There are times that the person who is considering abortion is no more than a child herself.

One of our sidewalk servants was put in contact with a very young girl. She was in a relationship with an older person and conceived a child. Her age makes this a case of rape. When the conversation began, she was unwilling to consider allowing the pregnancy to continue.  Her main concern was that it would prevent her from pursuing a gymnastics career in the future.

The Sidewalk Servant had multiple conversations with this girl, explaining that although she couldn’t guarantee that she would be an Olympic gymnast in the future, it is totally possible for her to have a child and still pursue her dreams.

Despite the many conversations, the sweet young girl decided to go for an abortion today to planned parenthood.  The Sidewalk servant sent her one more message:

“I heard that you are going to get the abortion. I wish you would reconsider, but I understand why you feel that you need to. I am here to talk, I know you must be really scared, but I want to remind you that you are in control of your life, not your boyfriend. Please don’t do this for him”

The girl responded ” I changed my mind. God told me not to do it. I heard him… do you believe me???”

SS: “Really? what did He say? I believe you. God has spoken to me before.”

girl: “He said to be not afraid for I have a plan for you. That’s what I heard”

SS: “That’s right, He has a plan for you because YOU are HIS child.. You have no idea what God has planned for you, but it is bigger than you and me. Where did He talk to you?”

girl: outside of the planned parenthood

SS: were there people outside? Did they help you? They have resources you can use”

girl: ya, but not right outside.  I want to give my life to God like my sister..

My friends. This girl who is so brave, and so willing to listen to the voice of God is just a child herself. If she can be so brave and come to the gates of hell… and because she heard His voice SHE can turn away… shouldn’t we be there… every hour that they are open… all year?

Rejoice.. two of our children have been saved today. This young girl, and her precious child… Thanks be to God for this loving Sidewalk servant.. all names deleted to protect the privacy of the pregnant mom.

please help us cover the next set of hours:

Wed 3/20:

12th and locust: 12

Friday 3/22:

12th and locust: 11,12

777 appletree: 11,12

Tuesday 3/26:

777: 1,2

Tuesday 4/2:

777: 1,2

Wed 4/3:

777: 8,9,10,11,12,1,2,

Visit 40 Days for Life to sign up for your vigil hours.

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A Timely Reflection From Sunday’s Second Reading; Stand Firm for Faith

Sunday, March 17th marked the second Sunday of Lent. We have heard of a powerful reading from Paul’s Letter to the Philippians.

Here’s a recap:

Join with others in being imitators of me, brothers and sisters,
and observe those who thus conduct themselves
according to the model you have in us.
For many, as I have often told you
and now tell you even in tears,
conduct themselves as enemies of the cross of Christ.
Their end is destruction.
Their God is their stomach;
their glory is in their “shame.”
Their minds are occupied with earthly things.
But our citizenship is in heaven,
and from it, we also await a savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
He will change our lowly body
to conform with his glorified body
by the power that enables him also
to bring all things into subjection to himself.

Therefore, my brothers and sisters,
whom I love and long for, my joy and crown,
in this way stand firm in the Lord.

This reading really speaks to us as we are two weeks into the current 40 Days Campaign. We have had our shares of triumph, sorrow, and woes. Times of being dissed for our stance in the abortion debate. More importantly, losing friendships because of our convictions. St Paul reminds us to stand firm. We must stand firm in protecting every innocent baby that is scheduled to die by an abortion provider near you. Let us stand tall and fight the forces of evil with our spiritual weapons, fasting, and almsgiving. Offer it up for those who mock and persecute you, the escorts, the workers, and even supporters of Planned Parenthood.

When the going gets hard, STAND FIRM FOR THE FAITH!

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