Brian Jenkins at the Archdiocese of Montreal about to distribute prayers for the 40 days for Life vigil -- Photo: Joanne Of Arc
By Joanne of Arc for Quebec Life Coalition
Montreal -- The 40 Days for Life vigil started in Montreal, Quebec on Ash Wednesday.
On Tuesday, February 21st, I had the opportunity to spend half of my day with VP of Quebec Life Coalition, Brian Jenkins, as he prepared for the 40 days for life vigil to begin in Montreal, Quebec on Ash Wednesday.
We started our morning with a quiet time in adoration of the blessed Sacrament who filled us with peace for the day to come.
Brian Jenkins distributing prayer cards at Marie-Reine-du-Monde for the 40 days for Life vigil --Photo: Joanne Of Arc
Then we attended a mass that was offered by Father Alain Vaillancourt for the 40 days vigil at the Cathedral, Marie-Reine du Monde. Before mass, I observed Brian cut out papers with prayers that he then distributed to parishioners at the church, asking to support him in his efforts.
Brian Jenkins cutting out prayers to distribute to parishioners to pray for the vigil. --Photo: Joanne Of Arc
As we walked through the Archdiocese of Montreal, I noticed that Brian was well known by priests and warmly encouraged in his efforts. Parishioners seemed to be responsive to his request for prayer and agreed to take the prayers he was distributing.
Brian has reported to the Quebec Life Coalition team, how his first day developed as he was outdoors for 12 hours in a row.
Brian Jenkins writes after his first day of Vigil on his blog:
"A blessed day witnessing for unborn life and God.
The temperatures warmed up from a low of –12c (wind chill –18c) at the outset, 7 am and progressively warmed up as the day went on to a high of –7c at closing time, 7 pm.
In addition to my familiar signs, I brought with me two other aids. The familiar signs read, in both French and English, “Choose Life” and the pregnancy support sign “Pregnant? Worried? Call... 1-855-871-4442. The third item brought, again bilingual, was the 40 Days for LIfe “Pray for the End of Abortion,” The last item, appropriate for Ash Wednesday, a simple wooden cross, about six feet in height.
Six people came to join me in prayer. Mary was the first to arrive around 8am and was joined shortly thereafter by Alexandre. The two stayed for about an hour. After a short interval of being alone, Charlotte came around 11am and she was followed by Jerome, the latter staying for a couple of hours while the former for a few hours. Jos arrived in the mid-afternoon, meeting me at the 2:30pm mass and staying until about 5:30pm. And finally, it was Denis’ turn to vigilate, arriving around 4pm and staying ‘til closing.
Several visitors stopped to give encouraging words. Linda and Sonia, regular commuters, greeted us with their smiles and kind words. Then came John who stopped by and snapped a picture of Mary and me. In mid-afternoon Sylvio stopped to share on societal woes. Then came Maurice who shared about a recent trip to Mexico. Finally, Mario passed by after the afternoon mass to greet the prayer volunteers.
As to be expected the pro-life message was not unanimously welcomed. Detractors were present throughout the day. Early on, while I was praying with Mary, a middle-aged gentleman satirically acted out a rendition of the devil. Many grimaced in displeasure at the sight of our presence; I suppose our signs contributed to these reactions.
As for the abortion facility, it was business as usual. The receptionist arrived at her customary 7h40, while the administrator shortly thereafter – 8h00. As best as I could see from our 50m restricted zone that the courts have imposed on us, I spotted at least two couples whom I suspected were headed there.
During the twelve-hour vigil, we were able to cover about eleven of these.
Keep an eye out on more reports on the vigil to come.
Visit Brian's website for daily reports :https://www.40joursmontreal.org/
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