Guest Post (sort of!)

Below is an email my mom sent me a couple days ago. Get excited…this is the first ever D-of-C guest post (even though she didn’t know it would be when she wrote it)! Just had to share.

So Uncle John calls last night to catch up. In the process of the conversation, he mentions that he will be going to the New Cathedral for the annual pro-life Mass. He mentioned that after Mass, the congregation walks to the Planned Parenthood Abortion Mill while praying the rosary together. They continue to pray the rosary at PP and then walk back to the Cathedral. Uncle John didn’t ask me to go, although I did ask him what time Mass was without making any kind of commitment. I got off the phone thinking, “I wish Mass wasn’t so early (8am) on a Saturday morning!”, but by the time I went to bed I had set my alarm for 7 toying with the idea of going. I told Dad when he came to bed that I might be going to that Mass the next day.

The alarm went off in the a.m. and I hit the snooze until about 7:30, finally getting up with the goal of going to Mass. I arrived at Mass about 10 mins late (so unlike me). The Cathedral was packed. Mostly with old white folk like me, some young families with a few kids intermingled and a youth here or there. Wondered why at a parish that is so diverse in a city that is also diverse there was such a lack of representation of minorities there. Always bothers me when I go to something or support an issue and it seems to just be a bunch of white folks there…oh well maybe we can talk about that at a later time. Back to today….

So Mass ended and we started to process out of church saying the rosary with the Bishop leading us. It was such a beautiful day and I was glad I had gotten up to do this.

We arrived at Planned Parenthood and I saw Uncle John over by the entrance to their parking lot, so I walked in that direction even though most of the folks stayed away from there. So there I stood outside the black metal fence praying my rosary with some other folks. Then a car pulls up and Uncle John stops it and offers the people some literature and directs them to an RV across the street that is sponsored by ProLife and offers ultrasounds, counseling, prenatal care etc. for free. The security guard told John not to block the driveway and the women who were standing there for PP were gesturing the car to come in the parking lot, but Uncle John kept talking till the car drove into the lot. I watched Uncle John do this several times and each time I felt so nervous and scared for him. The people in the lot would talk to each other and then laugh loudly; at one point Uncle John said to them, “I don’t see any of the moms laughing as they enter your building, not sure what you find so funny.” A gentleman inside the fence walked the perimeter of the fence looking at each of us with such anger and hate. At one point several of the workers came outside with their cell phones and cameras and took pictures of the group of us praying, why I am not sure, but it made me want to ask them. I felt such helplessness as car after car pulled in despite Uncle John’s efforts. He did get two women to go over to the Prolife RV. After a while  the bishop and seminarians started to walk back to church, still praying, taking the group with them.

I wasn’t ready to leave so I continued to stand there and a young couple next to me didn’t move either, so we continued to pray the rest of the rosary together. When we finished the rosary, the young woman turned to me and thanked me for praying with them. I am not sure why, but when she hugged me, I just began to sob in her arms. I pointed out that John was my brother and she said some wonderful things about him. I told her that he was so brave and I could never do what he does. She told me I was good and brave for being there myself. She told me she and her husband come and pray the rosary there every third Saturday; I then hugged Uncle John continuing to sob and telling him (quietly, in case you are picturing me wailing) how proud I was of him and what a good man he was. All he said was, “This is a sad place, isn’t it?”

I walked back to the Cathedral by myself and it took a while before I could gain my composure. I knew that my emotions were a result of a combination of lots of things…mainly the reality of the fact that there is a place where women go to kill their babies, that I haven’t done anything to stop this, how scary it is to do what John does and how terribly frustrating it was to be treated or reacted to by people who didn’t even know me, how touching it was to pray with that young couple….all I know is that I have to figure out what this all means to me…..

I talked with Dad about this….pretty much said what I said in this email. He asked me if I had read your latest post and I said I had not so then I read it…….wow, what timing.

I guess I want you to know I understand exactly what you are experiencing and feeling. What can you do? Pray. Maybe even pray at one of the PP mills. At least that seems like a good place to begin.

Love you so much,

Mom

He get it from his momma. 

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2 Responses to Guest Post (sort of!)

  1. Stephanie says:

    Wow, now that I am done crying, I can relate to your mom’s experience as I have been to PP in St. Louis for this event several times. It is always powerful prayer and many different emotions overtake you. One of my most amazing spiritual experiences happened when I went to PP to pray on Good Friday. I prayed the Stations of the Cross and it never seemed so real. I really felt like I was helping to carry the cross with Jesus and experienced the jeers and insults of those shouting from behind the fence. So much anger and hate. I’ll never forget it and these postings will inspire me to attend the 3rd Saturdays more often. Your mom and Uncle are pretty amazing, but you know that! 🙂

  2. Uncle John says:

    Monica. Ok, so I’m a little behind catching up on my favorite blog. Thank you for bringing the Hope of the Gospel of Life to that terrible place. We often do not know that we’ve made a difference, which can be discouraging. Two weeks ago we had a “only” 50 of my fellow PARISHONERS at the mill. I couldn’t help but do the math (let’s just say it was a fraction of a fraction of our parish community.) I was disheartened. i was not well received by the moms and dads that day. But when I returned last week, I learned that the previous Saturday one of the moms who went in spite of our efforts came back out later and tearfully spoke with one of our sidewalk counselors. She said she was on the table, in the stirrups when “God touched my heart” and she changed her mind! She said she was a Christian and knew abortion was wrong but was hell bent on abortion until God touched her heart and drew her off that table. How about that? Once again God uses a rag tag group of terribly flawed instruments. And drew my eyes, in all my brokenness, from my calculator to the foot of the cross where only 3 stood in faith. God bless you for being there that day, and for sticking around. I am blessed AND I got to meet the mother of my favorite blogger!

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