Tag Archives: 40 Days for Life

Coming Up in Ottawa

First Place OPTIONS is holding its 20th Anniversary Dinner & Auction this Friday, October 19th, from 6pm to 10pm. Our club supports this pregnancy resource centre every year through our December baby shower.

Life Canada‘s National Pro-Life Conference is October 25-27 and takes place not in Ottawa but in Toronto.

Kathleen Gray of the Centre for Reproductive Loss will be at Saint Paul University on Saturday, November 3rd in Room 102 (through the main doors, up the stairs, and straight down the hall to your left) for a training session from 9:30-10:30am and Q&A from 10:30-11:30am, regarding the Healing Process Model © for use by counselors, clergy, etc. in acknowledging and compassionately addressing the emotional, spiritual, and psychological distress of individuals and families affected by such loss as miscarriage, stillbirth, abortion, adoption, SIDS, infertility, and sterility.

On the evening of November 3, Action Life has a fundraiser with Brian Lilley called Changing the Culture by Changing Hearts and Minds at St. Maurice Parish (4 Perry Street). Cocktails are at 6:30pm, the lasagna dinner is at 7pm and the cost is $35.

The 40 Days for Life campaign continues until November 4th.

A Rachel’s Vineyard retreat weekend will be held in Ottawa the weekend of November 9-11 to offer non-judgmental post-abortion healing for women and men.

A Wine and Chocolate Tasting Event to benefit Campaign Life Coalition and the Miriam Centre will be held on Sunday, November 18 from 2pm to 5pm at St. Francis Xavier High School (3740 Spratt Road). The event will be hosted by Nick Vandergradt from CFRA and Stephen Woodworth will be the guest speaker.

Also in Toronto rather than Ottawa, the deVeber Institute‘s Annual Dinner and Public Lecture will be on November 22 at 7pm. Margaret Somerville will speak on The Deadly Debate: Physician-Assisted Suicide on Trial at the University of Toronto. Email bioethics@deveber.org for more info and to RSVP for this free event.

Finding Your Spark

by James Richmond

It is not difficult for people to believe something for so long that they end up forgetting why they believed it in the first place. Unfortunately, this has happened several times in my life, but, thankfully, each time something has happened to reaffirm my belief.

I was raised in a pro-life environment and I accepted the idea that abortion is wrong early on in my childhood. Obviously, as I grew my beliefs were challenged and thus they matured, helping to bring me to where I am today: majoring in Ethics at the University of Ottawa. Almost every day I have the opportunity to debate current controversial issues with my professors and classmates. We cover a broad range of topics like abortion, euthanasia, stem cell research, eugenics, and animal rights. While I am so thankful that I have been given these wonderful opportunities to try and change the hearts and minds of my classmates, sometimes I can get caught up in the philosophizing and forget the very real battle that is taking place every day in abortion clinics around the world.

A couple of weeks ago, during the spring break, I was privileged to be able to travel down to Florida with some of my close friends to enjoy the beaches. While we were visiting, the 40 Days for Life campaign was taking place, and the local parish invited us to join them outside the abortion clinic for the hour that they had signed up for. We gladly accepted and spent an hour that evening holding signs and praying for any young couple who was considering an abortion.

I have participated in the 40 Days for Life campaign in Ottawa, and I knew that this was not just confined to Canada, but despite that knowledge it was inspiring to see our two nations united in a common purpose. As I mentioned earlier, despite debating life issues frequently in class, it is easy to view abortion in a sterilized, philosophical light, and not as an ongoing reality where lives are lost every day. Standing out on the sidewalk in Florida with a pregnancy crisis centre on one side of the street and an abortion clinic on the other side, I was reminded just how real the battle is that is going on for the lives of our preborn children.

It may seem like a comical comparison, but the two buildings straddling the street with their two very different purposes seemed similar to the angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other acting as two opposing consciences. I can only imagine the incredible stress and fear that must go on in a woman’s head as she stands looking at those two buildings on either side of her. While I stood there and prayed for the lives of the preborn and the hearts of the couples considering an abortion, my passion for the pro-life campaign was reignited.

The purpose behind this blog post is not to just tell you about an experience that I had, but to challenge readers to find their spark. Go out and find the spark the reignites the fire in your heart so that when you begin to question why it is that you are going to a club meeting when you have a paper due the next day, you will think back to that spark and be inspired. Whether it be seeing the horrific graphic images of aborted foetuses, standing on a street corner outside a clinic or high school, or debating with your friends, I hope that everyone fighting for the rights of the preborn has something that stirs up their passion for defending life.

Post-grad pro-life activism tips

by Alana Beddoe
So the school year is upon us and maybe this is the first year you aren’t going back to the grind. What is your role in the pro-life movement now?
Here are a few ideas:
-Get involved in projects with Action Life or Campaign Life Coalition; there are events that take place through the year that need planning and advertising.
-Volunteer to speak in front of high school students.
-Offer to mentor new members in the pro-life club that you were part of.
-Participate in the 40 Days for Life campaign taking place from Sept. 28 to Nov. 6 in Ottawa in front of the abortion clinic on Bank St.
-If you are involved with a faith group, volunteer to steer the pro-life committee.
-Support pro-life organizations financially.
Remember that the people you work with might need a listening ear and someone to explain the pro-life message to them. So stay up to date with pro-life apologetics!

40 Days for Life

uOSFL would like to remind all our readers that 40 Days for Life began on September 22 and will continue on until October 31 across from the Morgentaler Clinic at Bank and Sparks.

Although this is a religious event, uOSFL supports the amount of coverage this event brings to something that no one is willing to talk about – that abortions are carried out daily in our fair city.

As such, uOSFL will be participating on Fridays from noon to three. We welcome you to go and participate with any organisation you may be part of or with your friends and family, but we also welcome you to come stand with us. Regardless of your beliefs on prayer, we are a public presence against institutionalised murder.

For more information, please see 40 Days’ website.

40 Days for Life

While this may seem premature in a wet and chilly June when many of us are dreaming of summer, we would like to remind you all that 40 Days for Life Ottawa will be beginning on September 23, 2010 and lasting until November 1.

40 Days for Life is a 40-day 24-hour prayer vigil outside the Morgentaler Abortion Clinic, located at Bank and Sparks. Teams are invited to sign up for a one-hour slot during the event. Although this vigil is organized by a Catholic organization,  uOSFL has always been and remains a non-religious organization; however, even as a non-religious organization, we support the work of 40 Days for Life as it calls constant public attention to the plight of the unborn.

40 Days also offers training for volunteers in ‘sidewalk counselling’, which is engaging the people who are seeking out the Clinic and trying to help them arrive at a better solution than abortion.

If you are a member of a club, group, or organization that supports life, regardless of your religious inclination, consider signing up for 40 Days for Life  – your presence is just as important as your prayers.

UPDATE: uOSFL will be particpating in 40 Days for Life every Friday from noon ’til 3pm. If you would like to participate in the vigil but are unable to find a group to attend with, consider coming and standing with us.

Where’s Your Joy?

by Reita S.

Just before Easter, my co-workers and I were going out for dinner. As we walked from the university to the restaurant, we passed about a block below the Morgentaler Clinic, and site of the 24-hour vigil, 40 Days for Life.

Though the vigil wasn’t taking place at the time, one of my co-workers commented, “That’s where all the pro-life people congregate.” Of course, I waited somewhat anxiously for his opinion of us. “You know,” he continued, “They just seem really miserable. Every time I walk past, I see a bunch of old ladies hunched over signs that say ‘God loves you; Save babies’ and clicking their rosaries. Where’s their joy? It just seems like a duty or something.”

I must admit I really didn’t know what to say to that and I’m glad the subject was dropped as we continued on; however, I’ve been turning that comment over in my mind for the couple of months since. Did he just go by on a bad day, when the weather was terrible and only a few wet volunteers made it out? Was he reading some personal biases into the people’s expressions? Or did he see something of a scary reality – we feel like saving babies is a duty or obligation?

The pro-life movement certainly has significant ties to religious groups, specifically the Roman Catholic Church. This does not mean that all pro-lifers are Catholic, Christian, or even religious. Pro-life is a moral ideology that is not limited to one particular faith or age group. Why then do people hear the word ‘pro-life’ and think we must all be elderly Catholic ladies, intent on judging the young or some such nonsense?

Clearly, trying to marginalise a position makes it easier to criticise. I think that my co-worker found it much easier to dismiss the prayer vigil by reducing it to two groups which endure a lot of criticism ‘the outdated elderly’ and ‘the crazy Catholics’. Perhaps he saw one woman like that and assumed the whole group was like that? I’m not sure. I’m ashamed to say I didn’t ask.

All I can say is that as pro-lifers, we need to be careful that our burden for truth and justice never becomes a burden of obligation. While protesting injustice is not something to rejoice over, we should certainly have the joy of our convictions and the knowledge that we are not compelled to do this. In fact, it would be so much easier to turn a blind eye! We are pro-lifers because we love justice and we have the hope that one day our efforts will change hearts and minds, and thus change laws and actions.

Don’t fall into the trap of letting this become a burden or a chore. Few people have respect for a reluctant activist. One of the biblical psalmists wrote that “zeal for your house has consumed me”. Let us take that as an example. Let our passion for justice transform our actions – let no one say that we’re only there because we have to.