Yesterday, I attended NC Right to Life’s annual prayer breakfast with a small group of friends from the Raleigh Catholic young adults group. Several of us were even given the opportunity to help lead a prayer, which was a moving experience in itself.
I’ve heard of the breakfast, which is followed by a march, but I’ve never attended. I’ve always been hesitant about faith-based pro-life initiatives; after all, isn’t the best way to persuade pro-choice people using logic and science (the same types of arguments they purport to use for their own cause), rather than the religion that many of them don’t believe in?
But, I realized, that’s not really the point of a prayer breakfast, or many other faith-based pro-life programs. Abortion is one of the greatest – if not the greatest – evils in the world. We’re up against people who (mostly) believe that what they’re doing is good. We’re up against, in the U.S. at least, roughly half the population.
Up against this kind of evil – the kind that so many people don’t even know about, the kind that is supported by elected officials, and the kind that kills more than 1,700 children per day (and that’s just in the U.S.) – what is the answer?
Yes, the answer is science, and logic, and policymaking, and conversations with pro-choice people. But against this kind of evil, there’s one thing that we can’t win without, and that’s prayer.
So, no, the prayer breakfast likely didn’t change any minds about abortion, but it surely convinced some people (me included) to get more involved in the movement, and it most definitely, most importantly, raised a lot of voices in prayer, pleading for protection for the unborn, for people at risk of physician-assisted suicide, for women and couples facing crisis pregnancies – in short, for a country, and a world, full of despair and death.
In the face of such despair and death, hope and prayer are the best weapons we have. So prayer breakfasts, and pro-life rosary groups, and other faith-based initiatives are important. In fact, I’d say they’re essential – the only things that will make abortion not only illegal but unthinkable.
Next weekend, St. Raphael, my parish here in Raleigh, is starting a nine-month spiritual adoption, a type of prayer where you commit to praying each day for an unborn child in danger of abortion. I’ll be signing up and keeping you posted here on my blog and on my Twitter @everyday_roses on the experience – and the development of the child I spiritually adopt!
For more information about the pro-life movement, here are some of my favorite resources: