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‘40 Days for Life’ campaign set
archived from: 2010-09-13
by: Pittsburgh Catholic Staff Report

Rally on Sept. 18 to mobilize pro-life community

Organizers are preparing for a kick-off rally to launch the “40 Days for Life” campaign to mobilize area pro-life people and organizations to protest and end the practice of abortion.

The rally is set for 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18, in Downtown Pittsburgh in front of Planned Parenthood, 933 Liberty Ave. The rally will feature music and speakers including Pastor Keith Tucci of Living Hope Church and Deacon Alex Wroblicky, secretary for evangelization and social concerns for the Diocese of Pittsburgh.

From Sept. 22-Oct. 31, hundreds are expected to participate in the 40 Days event, which supporters are calling “the largest and longest coordinated pro-life mobilization in history.”

The campaign is a national one but, according to Nikki Bruni, campaign director for the Pittsburgh area, it’s the first time the group has tried to directly activate and involve local churches and congregations in the campaign. They are seeking 40 churches to sign up and become an official part of the campaign.

Toward August’s end, the director said they had received word from 32 churches or congregations that would participate. Bruni was confident the campaign would secure the remainder before its start.

“The campaign helps bring all the denominations together to unite Christ’s body in the battle for life,” Bruni said.

There are three components to the campaign: prayer and fasting, peaceful vigil and community outreach.

Under the prayer and fasting component, supporters are asked to join together for 40 days of “fervent prayer” and to fast to end abortion.

Peaceful vigil involves participants giving public witness outside Planned Parenthood. This involves hour-long prayer shifts. Participants are asked not to engage in any aggressive behavior.

“When you have to stand up and pray in public, it makes it real, it really does strengthen your faith,” she said.

Community outreach will involve, according to organization materials, taking “a positive, upbeat pro-life message to every corner of our city, through media efforts, advocacy and public visibility.”

Pink and blue ribbons symbolizing infant girls and boys will also be distributed. Bruni said they represent prayers for the babies to be saved from abortion.

Bruni said the grass-roots outreach will involve positive door-to-door contact requesting people to fast and pray to end abortion.

Those interested in joining the campaign are encouraged to visit the website and follow the prompts to sign up. The website is: http://40daysforlife.com/pittsburgh.

Bruni says those who register will receive via e-mail a prayer and Scripture verse daily for the 40 days of the campaign.

The director said ultimately the campaign “will strengthen (Pittsburgh’s) pro-life community, making them more united.”

“When you have to stand up and pray in public, it makes it real, it really does strengthen your faith.” — Nikki Bruni




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