Like so many of our readers, members of our family have participated in the March for Life for years, starting with our oldest children around 2003. This year was no exception when our tenth child and his younger sister attended the 2018 March. And like so many attendees – participation usually is not without some type of sacrifice. This can vary from sleep deprivation especially if you are a youth leader with many charges under your wing to simply the financial cost of making the long trek to and from DC. In our case this year the sacrifice for our youth group and their parents meant having to get up on a cold winters day at 4 AM so as to get their children to the bus in time to be on the road by 5 AM.
So many are willing to make their own personal sacrifice and often every year to what has almost become a pilgrimage that culminates for most in celebrating Mass and then the March for Life itself. In between all, this is the comradeship, time shared in prayer with peers and often breaking bread with strangers.
But what comes after we have returned home and picked back up our daily cross whether it’s working a job we don’t enjoy to support our family or it’s the daily grind of parenting or just trying to be a good student while still so tired from the hours spent on the road and most likely sleeping on church floors for the previous week?
It was a question that posed itself after a friend suggested that she worried that for many attendees the march was the end all and be all of their fight against abortion. So what can we do to keep up the fight against abortion once we get back home and the dust settles and we are back to our regular routines?
I threw that question out and got quite a few great responses. Here they are:
Prayers for the protection of Life:
No doubt anyone making the annual trek to DC in the cold month of January is already praying for the end to abortion. This is good, but we can amp up that prayer through sacrifice and fasting. These small acts of sacrifice can take many forms. It can be something as simple as reducing our sugar in our favourite hot beverage, not using salt for a day or remembering to offer some pain we are suffering up as a prayer. I sometimes endeavor to turn my driving into a prayer. I do this by offering up my effort to stay within the speed limit as a continuous prayer.
When you are doing your daily prayers whether alone or with family or friends – pray for government members by name that their hearts will be touched by the grace of God and their eyes open to the horrors of abortion and the need for it to be stopped. In particular, you might want to pray for our 14 sisters and brothers who recently voted against passing The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.
For a very busy person, adding these little actions can bring more meaning to your day. It will also help strengthen the effectiveness of your prayers.
- Write to Congress and politicians regularly. (Here is a link to a government resource for writing to your senator and here is another link for addresses for senators and click here to go to a site that helps you find who your congressman is.)
- Participating in quiet prayer of the rosary in front of a local abortion mill
- Becoming involved in a local pro-life movement
- If your parish offers resources for the 40 Days for Life campaign, try to make use of them.
- Supporting an outreach pregnancy program or Rachel’s Vineyard through prayer, fasting, donations and/or volunteering.
So many of our readers are young mothers with growing families. You must already feel just so overwhelmed just in the caring of your young charges! I can imagine you reading this article and thinking “oh come ON… how am I supposed to do any of this?”
I know! I have been there and I have only four children of my thirteen still remaining at home! There are days when I still feel this way! Don’t sell yourself short though! You can make tiny little acts of the will and sacrifice throughout your day. Encourage your older children to do so, too! However, don’t give up that coffee that is getting you through the day, though – your kids need you sane. But maybe when you hear that phrase “Mum, Mum MUMMY!” just one time too many that can be your cue to say a Hail Mary for the unborn … and your sanity.
If finding the time to write to anyone besides your child’s teacher explaining that the baby really did chew up your son’s homework is just inconceivable – then maybe you can save up your younger children’s artwork and mail some of the best pieces to a local pregnancy shelter. They can put them up on their bulletin board or fridge! It would cheer up someone else with your five-year-old’s rainbow. After all, your fridge can only hold so much art – right?
Hopefully, some of the ideas shared here have inspired you.
We’d love to hear any other ideas that our readers might have! How do you keep fighting the fight on a regular basis between Annual Marches for Life? Please share them below in our comment section!
Christi Gareis is a homeschooling mother of thirteen, with four children still at home. Her youngest child can boast that she was an aunt before she was born. Christi has been blogging since 2005 and has three blogs. In addition to blogging, Christi has been published on Catholicmom.com as well as in CCL’s magazine Family Foundations. She also wrote the section on How to ‘Prepare Your Child for First Reconciliation’ in the book '101 Stories of Reconciliation' by Sister Patricia Proctor.