Friday, March 25, 2011

Yes to Life

I had my planner out as I signed up to pray with my family outside an abortion facility in support of 40 Days for Life.  I needed to pick a "good" time--avoiding traffic, a violin lesson, club meetings, etc.  Logistics was my focus. 

So it was sweet to realize this morning that we would be praying for life on the Feast of the Annunciation, the commemoration of Mary's great "Yes."

Annunciation by Maurice Denis, 1912

Our parish is responsible for two (long) days of vigil, so our family showed up for an hour.  This year we're at a new location, along a highly visible, busy road (three lanes each way!).

I've been involved in pro-life activities over the years, but had never prayed publicly in front of a facility until today.  Standing there in a small group with a few signs felt so different from participating in the March for Life; it felt more public, more outspoken.  That doesn't make sense except that it was more ME out there than US (hundreds of thousands) together.  We clustered for a few minutes, then faced the traffic and began praying our (20 decade!) rosary.

Those first minutes of facing the cars were intense.  I felt that I was truly reaching out, praying for others, hoping a heart might change.  The March is upbeat and hopeful and prayerful, but almost everyone downtown is pro-life that day.  This morning a wide variety of attitudes drove by.

We received some positive horn-toots, one negative yell, and one long honk/thumbs down.  All received friendly waves in response.  :-) 

(Much later) I think I'll always remember the cold (low 30's!), the bright sunshine, the noise of the cars, and the rhythm of the rosary recited with my family.  And the emotions--peace, and near tears of hope (for changed hearts) and gratitude (for gifts of encouragement from passers-by).  It was an amazing experience, a special way to take part in the Annunciation.

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