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Group Uses Spiritual Nonviolence as Pro-Life Tool

United States Religion
by Christine DeSadeleer Sep 23, 2009
Pro-life group will use prayer and fasting from now until October to get their message to the masses.

This headline might make some of you worry:

Pro-Life Activism Adapting And Thriving.

What made me choke on my tea was the first line of the article: “The number one cause of death in the United States is abortion.” And here I thought it was heart disease.

Ok, I’ll give them that the purported number of abortions a year is higher than people who die of heart attacks (whether everyone would concur that abortion is a cause of death is another matter). I can’t say I agree with their statement that “radically pro-abortion politicians now control the executive and legislative branches of the [US] federal government.”

Last time I checked, the Supreme Court upheld the Federal Partial-Birth Abortion Plan in 2008 that President Bush had signed into law in 2003. But while the Bulletin article begins with a decidedly political tone, this “adapting and thriving” of pro-life activists has less to do with politics and standing outside of abortion clinics, screaming at doctors, and more to do with nonviolence.

It seems the group 40 Days for Life is bringing the issue back to what they consider, at its root, a spiritual question. And using spiritual, non-violent action is how they are getting their message across.

Using “prayerful, non-confrontational witness,” the group asks people to pray and fast for an end to abortion where they live, to keep vigil outside a local abortion clinic, and to get the message out to a wider community for 40-days, which many Christians can relate back to Jesus’ time in the desert.

Pro-Choice Vs. Open Conversations

As probably most of you who have read other articles I have written might imagine, I am pro-choice. But I have to say, with the exception of the fact that this group employs the tactic of going door-to-door, I’m actually impressed with their approach.

Using prayer and vigils are actual nonviolent approaches, and allows everyone to take part in the conversation.

I’m certainly more willing to listen to what they have to say as compared to when they shout, craft derogatory signs, or use violence to promote a supposed nonviolent purpose.

Using prayer and vigils are actual nonviolent approaches, and allows everyone to take part in the conversation, unlike the comparable religious billboards that imply atheists are murderers and t-shirts that say Muslims are devil-like. And isn’t that what we’ve been hoping for?

Maybe this approach even means there is the possibility of people listening on both sides of the debate.

Or maybe I’m completely deluded.

What do you think about 40 Days for Life’s approach to spreading their message? Share your thoughts below.

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