The National March for Life Ottawa will be held this year on Thursday, May 10, 2012. Last year over 15 000 people converged on our nation's capital to call for an end this senseless killing of a human being.
If you are interested in participating yet do not wish to drive up yourself, consider joining us on our chartered bus.
Our deluxe coach will leave from Montreal's downtown Via Rail Central Station (935 de la Gauchetière West) on Thursday, May 10 at 7:00 AM, and return to Montreal at the same location for about 6 PM. Round-trip tickets are $30 per person.
For those of you living on the West Island or Laval, you needn't travel downtown to board. We will make a second pick up on the way to Ottawa at the Fairview Shopping Center - corner Highway 40 and St. John Boul.
To reserve, call Quebec Life Coalition at (514) 344-2686. Payment guarentees you a seat on a coach.
Join us this year in Ottawa as we gather under the theme that "Abortion hurts Everyone."
Yesterday afternoon, at the 40 Days for Life prayer vigil, four vigilers were swarmed by a throng of disgruntled university students. After this experience I better appreciate the meaning of spiritual warfare.
Here's what happened:
At about 4:45 p.m., shortly after having returned from a break, I heard some ominous sounds getting louder and louder. It didn't sound good.
My fears were realized, as at least 60 to 70 youth appeared walking up St-Laurent Boulevard and on reaching the intersection with St-Joseph crossed over into the park and besieged our prayer site. We were four vigilers at the time - three men and one older woman, and wherever we turned there they were - in front, behind, to our right, to our left.
The crowd was raucous. Led with blowhorn, chants were sung. Many motorists encouraged them on and the mob reacted jubilantly whenever a car horn was blown.
After a while many of the youth began to crowd our banner, leaning on its sturdy yet not unbreakable PVC support frame. My supplication to be cautious seemed to spur many on to do the opposite; these began to uproot the frame and untie the banner. I suspect that had I not stood on the unfurled banner its fate would have been worse than footprints and a twelve inch gash.
The outcome of our other materials was not as kind. Several struts of the frame were stolen. Our enlarged fetal picture despite being broken in two was saved from any further damage by one of the vigil participants.
Unfortunaley the other end piece did not fare as well. Below are before and after pictures of the other end piece - the one advertising our toll-free help line.
Where were the police in all of this, you may wonder. No fewer than ten police cruisers stood by watching from the sidelines. Sgt. Filion explained later that he did not order an intervention because he did not have the numbers to do so. And so, for over an hour the vigilers prayed and tried to dissuade the youth as much as they could.
For the better part of the hour, we prayed on our own. Then Philip, one of the vigil participants, suggested that he and I pray Saint Patrick's Breastplate Prayer. As we began to do so and throughout its recitation, a young woman protester began howling, trying to break our concentration. To no avail.
Upon finishing, this woman disappeared and what can accurately be described as intelligent conversation began between myself, Philip and five or six of the young folk.
At 6 p.m. the crowd began to disperse and a few of our reinforcements appeared. At this point we decided to resume our vigil and, minus the frame, held aloft our banner.
Police levied fines on three of the young people.
Some pics of the event:
(Day 24: 308 Saved Babies!!!)
Three out of five women are coerced into having their abortions.
Yesterday at the 40 Days for Life prayer vigil location, a young women approached as I was praying with a colleague and asked us whether we knew that our presence was intimidating to women.
As I reflected on her question, my thoughts turned to the work of Dr. Reardon at the Elliott Institute. He and his peers are documenting the numerous instances in which women are coerced into having their abortions. I encourage you all to visit The Unchoice web site to learn more about this work.
I am not advocating that women be given a choice in having an abortion - every abortion destroys a human life and, so, this fact trumps a woman's choice in disposing of the life growing inside her.
Rather, I wish to expose yet another misconception that abortion gives women a choice.
Also, I wondered if our visitor had seen the sign at our prayer site offering free help to pregnant women.
The vigil runs through Sunday, April 1, daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
(218 Saved Babies and counting!!!)
Yesterday - day 17 at the 40 Days for Life prayer vigil, marked International Women's Day and our site in Lahaie park - corner St. Joseph E. and St. Laurent blvds., "welcomed" two separate groups.
First twenty-five or so "pro-choice" students from Université du Québec a Montréal, banner and noise-makers in hand, showed up at around 11 a.m., parking themselves directly in front of our banner. They stayed nearly three hours, spending this time chanting and enjoying the support from pro-choice motorists. Before 2 p.m. they headed out, going to another demonstration in downtown Montreal. As they left, they swarmed our banner, plastering it with stickers. Fortunately there wasn't any damage.
A couple of hours later a mother, pushing her 18-month old, strolled by and stopped again in front of our banner, homemade pro-choice sign in hand. Caroline stayed for an hour and a half and was joined during this period by Charles, a sympathetic motorist returning from work who wished to stand in support of her cause. Also, shortly after the latter's arrival, another mother and child - this time a seven year-old, arrived, again in support and another mother.
Participants in both groups with whom I spoke confirmed a suspicion I have often had about pro-choicers. Absent from their rhetoric is any reference to and respect for the life in the mother's womb. Rather their arguments emphasize the rights of the mother and her quality of life.
By 4 p.m. the regular prayer hum of the location had returned and remained so until 7 p.m.
Yesterday I wrote that the 40 Days for Life Vigil site was drawing people from all around the Montreal area to come and give a prayerful presence against abortion. Likewise it is drawing persons opposed to this goal.
This past Thursday, a group of eight men and women in their early to mid twenties converged on the site at the corner of St. Joseph E. and St. Laurent blvds. With homemade signs stating "Pro-Choice", they milled about for about twenty minutes before heading off into warmer climes. During their stay, I was approached by one, a young woman, who wondered about the sign indicating the number of Saved Babies. I explained the source of the number - the national 40 Days for Life web site, and the reporting method - emails sent to the central office from the 256 or so current vigil locations from around the world (e.g., 10 in Canada, 9 Spain, 7 Australia).
After the conversation had ended, we went our separate ways. Shortly there after, I notice that the scarf that had been draped around this young woman had found a new location - spanning the homemade sign indicating the number of saved babies! Does hiding the truth lessen it in anyway?
The vigil runs through to and including Sunday April 1, daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Have you made plans to drop by? Love to see you there.
(Day 13 - 148 Saved Babies)
While reading today's Office of Readings, I was carried back to this past weekend's experience at the 40 Days for LIfe vigil location.
In the book of Exodus, the angel of the Lord protected the Hebrew people from Pharaoh's army by placing itself between the two camps. So, too the vigilers outside the Morgentaler abortion facility in Montreal were protected by the angel of the Lord from the local secular climate via the harsh weather conditions of this past weekend.
Saturday's strong winds and Sunday's cold temps dampened many spirits safe those of the prayers coming to stand and pray for life. Of these, many travelled from afar - Pincourt, Longueuil, and Laval, to spend several hours at the vigil location in Lahaie park.
Also, the site is drawing diverse prayer groups. On Saturday, six members of a Lasalle faith-based group came to spend the afternoon, with a pot of soup for all to partake in, while on Sunday members of St. Patrick's youth group were on hand. (At the kick-off, a Côte-des-Neiges couples group were on hand vowing to return.)
Finally, in addition to groups, the vigil is a magnet for individuals who otherwise do not see one another. For example, over the weekend, persons from different faith communities converged to pray and share fellowship.
The vigil runs through April 1, daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Yesterday I learned that we had breached the three figure threshold (101) and today the count stands at 121 saved babies.
Thank you every body. Your prayers are making the difference.
Here in Montreal, we are not aware of any turn arounds. Yet, we stand strong at the corner of St. Joseph and St. Laurent Blvds, advocating for a culture of life.
Via our banner, prayers, and outreach, we are hoping to bring God's message of love to many who have lost the joy of living.
Even in yesterday's snowstorm, our message was getting out. A few among us engaged the pedestrians of the Main, many of whom were vehemently opposed to our presence in such a public venue. We can only pray that God touches their hearts, permitting them to turn and walk with Him in the fulness of life.
Union de prière!
Day 2 at the "40 Days for Life" prayer vigil was pretty barren.
The number of participants was half that of the previous day - 11 compared to 22. The weather progressily got worse as the day went on; a snow squall hit the park at around 3 p.m. And even the pro-choice crowd remained away. Pretty stark day.
Yet, anyone familiar with deserts knows well that it is teaming with life. The "barren" afternoon - no one had register from noon until 7 p.m., indeed was not devoid of life.
First there were the moments of solitude. I was blessed. Prayer and reverie brought me to the foot of the Cross or in the garden of Gethsemane. Hymns buoyed my spirit.
Also, an elderly woman passing by, went out of her way to give me words of encouragement.
Then the first in a series of non-scheduled prayers showed up. At 2 p.m. Barbara arrived and together we chatted and prayed and before we knew it, it was already 4 p.m.; time for her to leave. An hour passed before a second prayer warrior showed up - Yves, and at 6 p.m. a third, jerome replacing Yves.
We fellowshiped and it was 6:55 p.m.; five minutes to go. After a final prayer of gratitude, we closed up shop, gathering the site's belongings. Day was done.
I'm writing this from an internet cafe on Parc Avenue - I have a two hour break... until noon.
Great day yesterday. Gruelling yet full of grace.
I spent eleven hours at the site yesterday and received many blessings, much positive stuff. Foremost was the trinkling of folks to the site to pray. Some came for five to ten minutes while others stayed for an hour or two. And this went on for the entire day - from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Most came alone - Jean, Gabriel, James, Emilia,..., but others came in groups - a young couple from Verdun with their parents who are visiting from Brazil.
Also, had a couple to registrations. One man has offered to covered two two-hour slots per week and another couple will take an hour block on March 3rd. Slowly that schedule is filling.
Our nieghbours (the counter-protesters) showed up at 4 p.m. and stayed a couple of hours. The same lot we are familiar with. Jovial. Free bagels may have been an incentive from many. I felt hostility by one of the thirty or forty that showed up during this time. They have invested in a new banner, stitching similar to our own. I wonder how they bought it...
If you are anything like me, you are probably rejoicing with each passing day. Not only are we enjoying more daylight but also a stronger sun. Winter's end is near. (Click here for the February Newsletter !)
Could it also be, in the light of recent events, that the end of Canada's abortion winter is near? Is the era of free and unrestricted abortion is ending?
We at the Quebec Life Coalition think so and you can helpmake this happen. More about this in a moment.
Abortion's Winter Thaw
First, the abortion thaw is underway. During the first week of February, the Honourable Stephen Woodworth, the Member of Parliament for Kitchener Center, Ontario, took a big step at thawing the abortion winter which has blanketed our land since 1968.
It was back in 1968 that Justice Minister Pierre Trudeau introduced legislation that permitted the performance of abortions in hospitals provided a three-doctor panel judged the medical merit of the procedure for the particular woman.
This legislation was challenged in 1988. Dr. Morgentaler argued that to restrict the procedure to hospitals alone was unconstitutional. The Supreme Court of Canada agreed, the Trudeau legislation was quashed, and ever since no federal law governing the procedure has existed.
Since this decision, the Conservatives have tried to write legislation but to no avail. And so at any time during her pregnancy and for any reason, a woman can have an abortion.
Will the step taken by Conservative member from Ontario be able to achieve legislative distinction?
And so on Monday, February 6, Mr. Woodworth took a step in this direction. His press release begins:
Today MP Stephen Woodworth filed a Motion with the Clerk of the House of Commons to ask Parliament to form a special Committee to study Canada's 400 year old definition of human being and report back to the House on the medical evidence it finds and on options to deal with this archaic law.
The 400 year old definition states that a child is a human being only at the moment of complete birth.
Yet, medical science, observes Mr. Woodworth, has progressed since this seventeenth century legislation on which Canadian law is based. A revision is due.
And not only a revision but also an evaluation of its implications, guided by the following questions:
What medical evidence exists to demonstrate that a child is or is not a human being before the moment of complete birth?
Is the preponderance of medical evidence consistent with the declaration in Subsection 223(1) that a child is only a human being at the moment of complete birth?
What are the legal impact and consequences of Subsection 223(1) on the fundamental human rights of a child before the moment of complete birth?
What are the options available to Parliament in the exercise of its legislative authority in accordance with the Constitution and decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada to affirm, amend, or replace Subsection 223(1)?
Income Tax Defund Plan
Also, we at the Quebec Life Coalition have found a way to contribute to this thaw, with a little help from you.
Included herewith, you will find a form to be filled and included with your provincial income tax statement. It is addressed to the minister of Finance requesting that your tax monies targeted for provincially funded abortions be refunded to you.
As we believe that the purpose of healthcare is helping individuals in our society with their sicknesses; and
Whereas pregnancy is not an illness; then
We conclude that abortions do not fall under the coverage of the ministry of Health.
So, we encourage you to fill in the form below and to submit it along with your tax return.
Along with the initiative of Mr. Woodworth, you will be contributing to ending abortion's winter reign.
Many thanks for your continued support,
Coordinator for English and Multicultural Community Outreach
Quebec Life Coalition
As a special offer and to commemorate the "40 Days for Life" prayer vigil – from Wednesday, February 22, to Sunday, April 1, 2012, both new donors and regulars who respond to this month's appeal will receive a complimentary "40 Days for Life" t-shirt.