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Another proof of the Power of Prayer can be seen in Joe Scheidler’s Report from the Front Lines of the battle against abortion.
|Joe Scheidler and Father Gruner on the set of FATIMA "The Moment Has Come"|
You’ll find it hard to believe what the priest in the green windbreaker and the nun with the straw hat accomplished.
I would have trouble believing it myself if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes. I feel as if I’ve witnessed the multiplication of the loaves and fishes. I’ve seen a miracle. I’ve always believed in the power of prayer, but I believe in it now in a whole new way.
Did something ever happen to you that was so profound, so powerful, so amazing - that it transformed the way you looked at everything? That’s what happened to me earlier this month in New York.
You see, I took five of our top sidewalk counselors to New York to see the priest in the green windbreaker and the nun in the straw hat in action at a notorious Brooklyn abortion mill. I had heard that the priest, Msgr. Philip J. Reilly, and the nun, Sister Dorothy Rothar, C.S.J., closed 22 abortion mills in the Brooklyn/Queens area, converted dozens of abortion mill workers, and talked some of the most hard-core abortion-bound women out of killing their babies. It sounded too good to be true.
I prayed while Msgr. Reilly and Sister Dorothy talked to the pregnant mothers and accomplices entering the extermination center.
Using the prayerbook assembled by Msgr. Reilly, our prayer group became absorbed in prayer. Our hearts were so warmed by the mysteries of the Rosary and the litany to the Blessed Mother and by singing some of the beautiful, old hymns that we didn’t want to be interrupted for anything. It was as if we were already in Heaven.
Dozens of pregnant mothers approached the abortion mill and went inside. Three of them were so hard-boiled they seemed beyond hope. I didn’t think there was a chance Msgr. Reilly would convert these three, but I prayed: "Lord, if Father Reilly can convert these three, I’ll know You’re touching the hardest of hearts with Your love in response to our prayers at this moment."
One of the three, a young Jewish woman dressed in black, had cursed Msgr. Reilly as she entered death’s door. She came out after a few minutes and hugged Sister Dorothy. (Father was busy talking to another woman when she came out.)
Another woman was dressed in leather and wore an orange top. "This gal – no way," I thought. Ten minutes later she came out of the abortion mill in tears and hugged Msgr. Reilly.
The third girl was black, dressed in a striped outfit. She was with a black man and yelled at Father while entering the mill. About 15 minutes later they came out, seeking pro-life help.
I will share with you something personal. I have seen the hand of God. I have witnessed the unfolding of a miracle. I have watched in amazement while praying for things to happen as they were happening!
That day, 37 pregnant mothers changed their hearts and chose life, one of them a Catholic who said she wanted to return to the sacrament of confession. That day we deprived the abortion industry of over $15,000 in fees. It’s almost beyond belief.
Even though some babies died at the abortion mill that day, remember that no one wants to die alone. We stood watch with these condemned, abandoned children at the hour of their death, prayed for them, and loved them - the only kindness they ever knew on Earth.
Let me give you the essence of Father’s method. There’s no confrontation, no shouting, no anger – only a low-key, charitable offer to help, supported by prayers and hymns. But Father uses a powerful tool: blessed rosaries. When a woman approaches a mill, he puts a rosary in her hand and says: "Look, if you need any help, we’re here to help you. God loves you. He cares about you and your baby."
Father puts a rosary into the hand of the accomplice - the pregnant woman’s companion - and tells him (or her) to pray a Rosary that she’ll do the right thing. If the woman is already inside, Father tells the accomplice to go inside because "she’ll need you. Give her this literature. She needs it." Bear in mind that Father is supported by several teams of prayer warriors while all this is going on - one prayer team right there at the mill itself. Other teams pray in convents, chapels, or in homes. Prayer support is the key to the method.
Father says the abortion-bound pregnant mothers are not our enemies, nor are the abortion-mill workers, because as sinners we’re all in the same boat. Let’s face it: we’ve all been in morally dangerous situations where we could have benefited if someone had handed us a rosary with some information. Satan is our enemy because he is committed to evil and cannot repent.
Here in Chicago we’ve saved thousands of babies from abortion using our Chicago method of sidewalk counseling, but now I want to incorporate the method developed by Msgr. Reilly and his Helpers of God’s Precious Infants to save even more women and their babies.
The truth is, the abortion catastrophe will be solved by massive conversions – massive ongoing daily repentance. Never before has there been a more urgent need to bring people back to God. As Msgr. Reilly told us, "If you convert the mother you also save the baby."
Here’s my plan, inspired by what the Lord showed me in New York. I use "99 Ways to Stop Abortion" (the title of my book), but sidewalk counseling has always been the Pro-Life Action League’s number one program. Here in Chicago we’ve already begun implementing Msgr. Reilly’s method, and we saved three babies at the Albany abortion mill the first time we tried it. We’ll save more as we develop more prayer support.
In the fall, I flew Msgr. Reilly into Chicago to present a workshop on how to apply his method, and Msgr. Reilly led a field training exercise at a Chicago mill. From coast to coast I will continue to preach and teach sidewalk counseling at all my speaking engagements, but now I’ll also promote Msgr. Reilly’s program.
I believe in my heart that this method of sidewalk counseling can bring the abortion industry to its knees. Make no mistake: we care about the pregnant mother, and we’re determined to bring her back to God. Fifteen centuries ago, St. Benedict summarized what needs to be done: Ora et labora, pray and work.
The Pro-Life Action League has the infrastructure and contacts to promote and spread this astonishing method throughout the land.
Yours in Christ,
Joe Scheidler, Director.
Ed. Note: For further information, Mr. Scheidler can be contacted at: Pro-Life Action League, 6160 N. Cicero Avenue, Chicago, IL. 60646.