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Letter to Clergy: Promote 40 Days of Life
Bishop Conley wrote the following letter to all priests of the Archdiocese of Denver, encouraging them to promote and participate in the upcoming "40 Days for Life" prayer vigil. To learn more about this event, visit www.40daysforlife.com.
February 7, 2011
My dear brother priests,
I am writing to inform you that the pro-life initiative called 40 Days for Life will take place in Boulder, Fort Collins and Denver from March 9th to April 17th, coinciding this year with the season of Lent. You may recall that a 40 Days for Life campaign took place throughout the Archdiocese of Denver in the fall of 2008 and was coordinated by the archdiocesan Respect Life Office. I am writing, once again, asking you to encourage your parishioners to participate in this important pro-life initiative.
The 40 Days of Life campaign, an ecumenical and community based effort, draws attention to the evil of abortion and has three simple components: prayer and fasting, constant vigil and community outreach. This campaign has been extremely successful across the country in saving babies, sparing women the trauma of abortion and raising pro-life awareness in the community. The faithful are encouraged to offer their Lenten prayers and sacrifices in a spirit of repentance, seeking God’s favor to turn hearts and minds from a culture of death to a culture of life, with the hope of bringing about an end to abortion in America.
I ask you to invite those who are able to gather in prayer and peaceful witness in front of the Boulder Abortion Clinic or the Planned Parenthood abortion facilities in Denver and in Fort Collins. Education and community outreach will be conducted by volunteers in each community. It is always powerful and moving for the lay faithful to be joined by their clergy in prayer and public witness. I would respectfully ask you to consider leading one of the prayer vigils. Volunteers will be distributing more specific information in the parishes as Lent approaches. You may also visit the 40 Days for Life website at www.40daysforlife.com.
I realize that many of you serve on the Eastern Plains and on the Western Slope. You are always welcome to join the vigils at any of the three abovementioned locations, but your spiritual support through prayer and fasting is most appreciated.
Most Reverend James D. Conley, S.T.L.
Auxiliary Bishop of Denver
Prayer for the Unborn
By Bishop Conley
Almighty Father and Lord of life,
You have entrusted to men the noble mission of safeguarding and protecting human life with the utmost care from the moment of conception to natural death (Gaudium et Spes No. 51).
During this holy season of Lent, a time of both penance and great hope, stir in our hearts a greater love for you and for each other. During these 40 days of spiritual renewal, lead us to a deeper conversion so that by living in your light and love we may bear witness to the gift of life.
Lord Jesus, the firstborn of all creation, have mercy on us. Accept our prayers and our fasting in atonement for the tragic sin of abortion. By the merits of your precious blood shed for our redemption, instill in all hearts a profound respect for the gift of life and bring about an end to abortion, euthanasia and every other assault on innocent human life.
Reawaken in the heart of every pregnant mother a profound love for the life growing in her womb and grant to her unfailing courage to choose life for her child.
Come Holy Spirit, strengthen us and give us fortitude to work tirelessly to promote a true Culture of Life, a culture that recognizes the dignity and sanctity of every person. Raise up men and women to serve in public office who will enact laws which will safeguard and protect all human life.
Blessed Mary, Mother of God, you bore the Author of Life in your womb. Through your intercession may our hearts be conformed to yours so that we might accept, nurture and cherish all human life.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.
Written by Bishop James D. Conley
Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Denver
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