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22 / 09 / 2010 - Precious Life officially launch `40 Days for Life`
Today (Wednesday 22nd September) in Belfast and Derry, Precious Life officially launched their 40 Days for Life Campaign - 40 days of prayer, fasting, and outreach for an end to abortion.
Catholic members of our group organised special Masses at St Mary's Church, Chapel Lane, in Belfast; and St Joseph's Church, Whitechapel in Derry. Afterwards they held Prayer Vigils outside the abortion referral agencies in the two cities. [see below for more photos from Belfast vigil]
The 40 Days for Life Campaign consists of three components - prayer and fasting; peaceful vigils outside abortion agencies; and community outreach. We hope this 40 day campaign will inspire people who have never been involved in pro-life activities to come forward and join the pro-life movement. Precious Life has already distributed thousands of campaign leaflets across Northern Ireland.
Speaking to the media, Director of Precious Life, Bernadette Smyth said “During his visit to Britain, Pope Benedict XVI called on each of us to change the world by working for a culture of life. At the Prayer Vigil in Hyde Park on Saturday, the Holy Father said ‘Each of us has a mission, each of us is called to change the world, to work for a culture of life, a culture forged by love and respect for the dignity of each human person.’ Over these next 40 days, Precious Life will be working in our mission to promote the culture of life by forging love and respect for the dignity of unborn children.”
She added “We will be praying and fasting for the protection of Ireland from abortion and the repeal of the 1967 Abortion Act in Britain. Precious Life will also encourage more people to join Prayer Vigils outside abortion facilities. Here in Northern Ireland, we are urging people to join our daily vigils outside the Family Planning Association's (FPA) abortion referral agencies in Belfast and Derry. As part of the community outreach component of the Campaign we are encouraging people to take the pro-life message out onto the streets. As the late Pope John Paul II instructed ‘...go out on the streets and into public places ...Woe to you if you do not succeed in defending life.’ Precious Life will be recruiting new volunteers to distribute information from our Pro-Life Information Table which we set up in towns across Northern Ireland every Saturday."
Bernadette Smyth concluded "We will join with others from across the country to pray and fast and pull out all the stops for 40 days to end the tragic violence of abortion. God used 40-day periods to transform individuals, and to change the world. From Noah in the flood, to Moses on the mountain, to the disciples after Christ’s resurrection, it is clear that God sees the transformative value of His people accepting and meeting a 40-day challenge. We look forward to seeing what kind of change God will bring about throughout Ireland and Britain.”