Contact: Amber Dolle, 40 Days for Life, 804-852-2979
WASHINGTON, March 14 /Christian Newswire/ -- "We are seeing a tremendous change taking place across the nation as our second simultaneous coast-to-coast 40 Days for Life campaign draws to a close," said David Bereit, national campaign director of 40 Days for Life.
In this campaign, which began February 6 and ends March 16, people in 59 cities in 31 states joined together for 40 days of prayer and fasting for an end to abortion, 40 days of constant, peaceful vigil outside abortion facilities and Planned Parenthood offices and 40 days of pro-life community outreach.
"We know lives have been saved. People participating in vigils across America report that women who were planning to abort their babies changed their minds – in many cases, just because of the simple presence of people standing vigil outside the clinics, praying for these mothers and their children," said Bereit. "The reports we receive every day always include mention of lives spared from abortion."
Another result of 40 Days for Life is increased public awareness. "I know many people are simply not aware that abortion is present in their neighborhoods," said Bereit, "but this effort has changed that. One of the leaders of a local 40 Days for Life campaign told me she had driven past a building almost every day for ten years, but never knew an abortion facility was present. A whole community knows it now."
In other locations, abortion clinics are nestled in office parks or at the back of strip malls. They blend in unseen. "But when people find out," said Bereit, "they're shocked. And they want to do something about it. No one wants an abortion clinic in their neighborhood, near their children's schools."
Bereit said people frequently ask him what happens on Day 41, when the formal part of the 40 Days for Life effort has ended. "The question seems to be answering itself," he said. "For one thing, people see that being at the clinic saves lives. There are efforts under way in many cities to see that there are people praying outside whenever abortions are being done."
Local leaders are also seeing a need for more trained counselors to speak to the women – and men – who arrive for abortion appointments. "Local communities have identified these needs," said Bereit, "and we at the national level intend to do everything we can to support them in meeting those needs.
"We are most humbled by the many victories – God's victories – that have been reported during this 40 Days for Life effort," he said. "We look forward to the future with hope and anticipation."